Elephants & Anacondas

The trope of the split personality has been a feature of essays and reflections by Chinese writers and thinkers for over a century. In a famous ‘confession’ 懺悔錄, the journalist Huang Yuanyong (黃遠庸, 1885-1915), who for a time supported the despised government of Yuan Shikai, said that he felt as though his soul 魂 was dead while his body 形 lived on.… Read

Less Velvet, More Prison

This is the first of a pair of essays in China Heritage devoted to the codependent relationship between the party-state and Chinese artists and thinkers. It is a relationship that dates from the 1950s, but one that has developed in symbiotic alliance with the Reform Era from 1978.… Read

Jao Tsung-I on 通 tōng — 饒宗頤與通人

In the 1920s, Chinese teachers of the liberal arts were at pains to oppose what was known as the ‘partification’ 黨化 of education. The imposition of partisan ideology through the promotion of political songs, nationalist narratives and party propaganda (in this case of the Nationalist Party 國民黨) would, they feared, inculcate a new orthodoxy as well as a slavish mentality among the young making them thereby easy targets for political manipulation in the future.… Read

More Light — translation as performance art

This latest addition to The Wairarapa Talks is an interview that John Minford, co-founder of our Academy, gave to a programme called ‘Ear to Asia’. The audio recording of the interview is available here, and a transcript is given below.… Read