Beijing Days, Beijing Nights, May 1989

Spectres & Souls This is a companion piece to ‘In Memoriam — 4 June 2021’. In commemorating the Beijing Protest Movement and its bloody denouement on 4 June 1989, we reproduced a prose-poem by Xu Zhangrun and recommended a number of essays and articles, in particular ‘On the Eve, April 1989’, and ‘China’s Spring’, by Orville Schell.… Read

In Memoriam — 4 June 2021

Spectres & Souls It is now over three and a half years since Xu Zhangrun called on the Chinese authorities to re-evaluate the tragic events surrounding 4 June 1989, the Beijing Massacre.… Read

Other People’s Thoughts, XXIII

Other People’s Thoughts is a section in the Journal of the China Heritage site. It is inspired by a compilation of quotations put together by Simon Leys (Pierre Ryckmans), one of our Ancestors, during his reading life.… Read

5.16 — Sorry, Not Sorry

Spectres & Souls   On 16 May 1966, the Communist Party secretly issued the ‘May Sixteenth Circular’《五·一六通知》 to party, state and army organisations throughout China. It was circulated down to the level of county party committees, party committees in the cultural organizations, and party committees at regimental level in the army.… Read

The Spectre of Prince Han Fei in Xi Jinping’s China

Spectres & Souls Vignettes, moments and meditations on
China and America, 1861-2021   ‘China’s Heart of Darkness — Prince Han Fei & Chairman Xi Jinping’, a five-part essay by Jianying Zha 查建英 offered readers a provocative study of the legacy of the ancient thinker Han Fei and the Legalist school in Xi Jinping’s China by one of contemporary Sino-America’s most insightful cultural critics.… Read

Other People’s Thoughts, XXII

Other People’s Thoughts is a section in the Journal of the China Heritage site. It is inspired by a compilation of quotations put together by Simon Leys (Pierre Ryckmans), one of our Ancestors, during his reading life.… Read

On the End of an Error — Day Ten of Jianying Zha & Katō Yoshikazu’s New Decameron

Spectres & Souls Vignettes, moments and meditations on
China and America, 1861-2021   The following exchange between Jianying Zha 查建英 and Katō Yoshikazu 加藤嘉一 comes at the end of the final chapter of Freedom Is Not Free — A New Decameron, the record of a conversation between the two writers, one from China, who is an American, and the other from Japan, who has been a long-term resident of China.… Read

‘I Hereby Cancel Myself’ — Lee Yee

The Best China In the first installment of The Best China, a China Heritage series focussed on Hong Kong launched on 1 July 2017, we introduced readers to recent commentaries written by the veteran journalist Lee Yee 李怡 (李秉堯).… Read

Other People’s Thoughts, XXI

Other People’s Thoughts is a section in the Journal of the China Heritage site. It is inspired by a compilation of quotations put together by Simon Leys (Pierre Ryckmans), one of our Ancestors, during his reading life.… Read

Other People’s Thoughts, XX

Other People’s Thoughts is a section in the Journal of the China Heritage site. It is inspired by a compilation of quotations put together by Simon Leys (Pierre Ryckmans), one of our Ancestors, during his reading life.… Read

A Word of Advice to the Biden Administration

Spectres & Souls Vignettes, moments and meditations
on China and America, 1861-2021   On cue, the Chinese media began publishing articles about the ‘revolving door’ in Washington following the US presidential election in early November 2020.… Read

The State of the Sino-American Pas de Deux in 2021

Spectres & Souls Vignettes, moments and meditations
on China and America, 1861-2021   We have previously compared the relationship between the United States and the People’s Republic of China to the Apache Dance, a Parisian stage act famous at the Moulin Rouge in the early twentieth century.… Read

Introducing Xu Zhangrun’s Ten Letters from a Year of Plague

Viral Alarm Viral Alarm, the theme of China Heritage Annual 2020, was inspired by ‘When Fury Overcomes Fear’, an impassioned critique of Xi Jinping, his government and their disastrous initial response to the COVID-19 epidemic written by Professor Xu Zhangrun 許章潤.… Read

Better Angels, Persistent Demons — Part II

China Heritage Annual 2021 Spectres & Souls: Vignettes, moments and meditations
on China and America, 1861-2021 Introduction, Part II   Spectres & Soul: China Heritage Annual 2021 has its origins in 1985.… Read

Other People’s Thoughts, XIX

Other People’s Thoughts is a section in the Journal of the China Heritage site. It is inspired by a compilation of quotations put together by Simon Leys (Pierre Ryckmans), one of our Ancestors, during his reading life.… Read

Better Angels, Persistent Demons — Part I

Introducing China Heritage Annual 2021 Spectres & Souls:
Vignettes, moments and meditations
on China and America, 1861-2021   In ‘The Invisible Republic of the Spirit’, the preface to China Heritage Annual 2021, we noted that this would be a year replete with significant anniversaries, both in China and the United States of America.… Read

The Invisible Republic of the Spirit — Preface to Spectres & Souls

We quoted this line from the I Ching in ‘On Heritage 遺’, an essay composed as the formal rationale underpinning China Heritage, an e-journal launched on 1 January 2017. This pithy maxim is well-known in the Chinese tradition and it serves well as an epigram for China Heritage Annual 2021, the full title of which is Spectres & Souls: vignettes, moments and meditations on China and America, 1861-2021. … Read

Composed of Eros & of Dust — Xu Zhangrun Goes Shopping

Viral Alarm *** The title of the following essay by Xu Zhangrun, formerly a professor of law at Tsinghua University whose ongoing persecution has featured in China Heritage since 2018 (for details, see The Xu Zhangrun Archive) is taken from a well-known ci-lyric poem dating from the Song dynasty (960-1279 CE).… Read