A digest of online China – June 16 – July 10

Animal statues

New texts published

On group labels – Yezi 

A warning against our tendency to ascribe negative, emotionally charged labels to groups – and avoid judgements based on pure stereotypes.

Why do we want to read novels – Shui Muding

In this personal reflective essay, writer Shui Muding reflects on the reasons why she – and others – are moved to write and read novels, and why novels are needed today – how they help us understand the emotions of others, and our own, and the value of literature, beyond the pure sharing of knowledge, to building wisdom.

Abstinence or asceticism – Li Yinhe

Most religious promote a message of sexual abstinence – or so they are superficially interpreted to do. In this piece, sociologist and gender specialist Li Yinhe reframes the question, away from the dichotomy between complete abstinence and boundless promiscuity, to articulate an ethics of temperance, and moderating desire.

New translations completed

Courage is a luxury – Feng Qingyang

When faced with difficulties, will be move away, looking for opportunities elsewhere, or defy them, and look for happiness through the exercise of courage? This piece by Feng Qingyang offers an apology for a neglected virtue.

How to protect the interests of Chinese overseas – Feng Qingyang

When a Chinese manager accidentally tore a portrait of the former Cambodian King, she was publicly humiliated and deported – without much support from the Chinese government. Contrasting this with the attitude of Western diplomatic structures, Feng Qingyang questions the appropriate way for the Chinese government to protect their citizens overseas.

Eat as much chocolate as you want – Ka Hu

A humorous look at liberal education: how should we teach our children the complex art of self-management, when the trend around us seems to be one of increasing indulgence?

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