Digest: April 28 - May 5, 2021

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Issue: 2021/10

  • Date: April 28 - May 5, 2021

  • Sources scanned: 84

  • Content: 232 publications from 57 sources

  • Download raw data (.csv)

Recommended readings:

  1. Liu Yu on the Arms Race in Chinese Education (Liu Yu, translated by Selena Orly):

    What are the consequences of this kind of "arms race" model of education? Everyone is utterly exhausted. Your kid goes to bed at ten o’clock, my kid goes to bed at eleven, his kid goes to bed at midnight. You go to two cram schools, he goes to four. Some time ago I was in a WeChat moms’ group and saw a forwarded news item about a liberal arts mom who transformed herself into a science and technology expert in order to tutor her child for university.

  2. Cultivate Aridity and Deprive them of Air (Holly Snape):

    ‘Grey space’ and ‘tacit approval’ are concepts familiar to people working in or studying China’s organised civil society. But a new policy, introduced in March 2021, to ‘crack down on and rectify illegal social organisations’ attempts to wipe these concepts clean from our lexicon. This policy seeks to cultivate arid land in place of vibrant grey space by prevailing on the Chinese Communist Party, the state, and an array of other organisations to ‘cut off all sources of nourishment’ and ‘remove the breeding ground’ for non–state-approved social organisations. The aim, as the policy puts it, is to ‘cleanse the social organisation ecological space’.

  3. Did the pandemic shake Chinese citizens’ trust in their government? We surveyed nearly 20,000 people to find out (Cary Wu):

    we interviewed 19,816 individuals from 31 provinces or provincial-level administrative regions across China…our data show that Chinese citizens’ trust in their national government increased [since COVID] to 98 percent….91 percent of Chinese citizens surveyed now said they trust or trust completely the township-level government. Trust levels rose to 93 percent at the county level, 94 percent at the city level and 95 percent at the provincial level. These numbers suggest that Chinese citizens have become more trusting in all levels of government…the high levels of trust among Chinese citizens — and what we know about citizen surveys in China — suggest that these results cannot be simply reduced to a misrepresentation out of political fear. These findings are consistent with what other survey scholars have repeatedly shown.

  4. Is there life after Xi? (Richard McGregor and Jude Blanchette):

    Successfully organising a coup against an incumbent leader — especially one in a Leninist one-party state — is also a daunting challenge. An aspiring coup leader faces numerous barriers, beginning with the need to gather support from key members of the military-security bureaucracy without alerting the leader and the security agencies. In the absence of a systemic crisis, the chances of a coup against Xi at the moment are exceedingly small. Given the technological capabilities of the party’s security services, which Xi controls, such an endeavour is fraught with the risk of detection and the possible defection of early plotters who change their mind. Xi certainly has a host of enemies in the party, but the obstacles to organising against him are near insurmountable.

  5. 警惕公权力运行中的内卷现象 (储建国):

    对于已经有四十多年改革经验的中国来说,一方面需要对发展出的有效体制进行“巩固”和“提升”,另一方面需要进一步对无效的体制进行深化改革。这些无效的体制不仅指改革前的旧体制,而且也指实践证明不成功的新体制。因此,我们讲“改革没有止境”就是这个意思。在当前阶段,有的干部,尤其是个别“关键少数”可能会产生畏首畏尾、固步自封的心态,于是,他们创新的主动性下降,甚至被现有的结构锁定,得过且过。这是当前公权力运行中最大的“内卷”问题。

  6. 历史学家能抵抗情势变迁的压力吗?(葛兆光):

    读《顾颉刚日记》,断断续续用了我一个多月的闲暇时间。看完这十几册日记后,记下的竟然是一些颇为悲观的感受。历史学家能抵抗情势变迁的压力吗?历史学家能承受多大的政治压力呢?读《顾颉刚日记》,想起当年傅斯年从国外给他写信,不无嫉妒却是真心赞扬,说顾颉刚在史学上可以“称王”了,但是,就算他真的是中国20世纪上半叶历史学的“无冕之王”,这个历史学的无冕之王,能摆脱民族、国家的情势变化,保持学术之客观吗?他能遗世独立,凭借学术与政治上的有冕之王抗衡吗?


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China Story:

Reading the China Dream:

Made in China Journal:

MacroPolo:

Pew Research Center:

War on the Rocks:

Foreign Affairs:

Project Syndicate:

The Atlantic:

The Economist:

Monkey Cage:

Australian Financial Review:

Lowy Interpreter:

East Asia Forum:

Pearls and Irritations:

Asialink:

The Strategist:

ChinaFile:

Sixth Tone:

China Digital Times:

Quartz:

Inside Story:

Politico China Watcher:

Politico China Direct:

Protocol | China:

The Wire China:

SupChina:

Asia Society:

Center for Strategic and International Studies:

Center for Advanced China Research:

MERICS:

Institut Montaigne:

China Data Lab:

Brookings Institution:

Observer Research Foundation:

The Conversation:

The Diplomat:

Foreign Policy:

ThinkChina:

National People's Congress Observer:

What's on Weibo:

Chinese Storytellers:

Chaoyang Trap House:

Tracking People's Daily:

The India China Newsletter:

Eye on China:

Takshashila PLA Insight:

Beijing to Britain:

China Dialogue:

Lausan:

Hong Kong Free Press:

Taiwan Insight:

中国:历史与未来:

爱思想:

《求是》

中央党史和文献研究院

习近平系列重要讲话数据库

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