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Talking Points, April 16 - 30, 2008

The USC U.S.-China Institute's weekly e-newsletter
April 16, 2008

USC U.S.-China Institute

Talking Points
April 16 - April 30, 2008

Although news from Tibet and adjacent areas has been limited, debate continues in the United States over what has happened there and what actions Americans and others might take. Nobel Peace Prize recipients Bishop Desmond Tutu and the Dalai Lama called on all to move forward in peaceful dialogue but differed on the Olympics. Tutu called on world leaders to boycott the opening ceremonies while the Dalai Lama continues to argue in support of international participation in the Games. Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and John McCain have said that President George Bush should not attend the opening ceremony. Students on many campuses, including our own, are energetically discussing issues related to Chinese governmental policies in Tibet and news coverage of the issue. At Duke University, however, speaking out has cost a student and her parents. They were targeted for harassment after she participated in a demonstration there.

Coverage within China of demonstrations in Europe and the United States has angered many Chinese. This past weekend, former Time Beijing bureau chief Matt Forney noted, "Educated young Chinese, far from being embarrassed or upset by their government’s human-rights record, rank among the most patriotic, establishment-supporting people you’ll meet…. As is clear to anyone who lives here, most young ethnic Chinese strongly support their government’s suppression of the recent Tibetan uprising." China’s ambassador to Britain, Fu Ying, worries that "demonization feeds a counter-reaction. I do pray ... that the younger generation of Chinese will not be totally disillusioned about the West....”

As always, we remind readers that the voices and daily update sections of US-China Today can help you stay abreast of significant developments and opinions about those developments.

America’s ambassador to China, Clark T. Randt, Jr., will deliver the 2008 Herbert G. Klein Lecture on Monday, April 21. President Bush appointed Randt to this key position in 2001, shortly following a difficult episode in U.S.-China relations, the collision of a U.S. Navy plane and a Chinese jet fighter. The ambassador worked to mend ties, to address trade frictions, to secure compliance with World Trade Organization standards, and to foster cooperation on a wide range of critical issues including battling terrorism, halting the proliferation of nuclear weapons, protecting the environment, and defending intellectual property rights. During Randt’s tenure, China has undergone a leadership transition. That leadership is facing enormous problems, including unrest in and near Tibet. Some worry that those domestic challenges could affect China’s foreign relations. Amb. Randt will assess the current state of U.S.-China ties. The talk will be 10:30- 11:30 am in USC’s Davidson Conference Center. Please rsvp to or by calling 213-821-4382.

This weekend, a group of California secondary school teachers will gather at USC to prepare for a summer study tour of China and Japan. These teachers were selected to go on this Freeman Foundation-funded National Consortium for Teaching about Asia tour after completing a seminar designed to help them bring Asia alive for their students. Teachers who are interested in participating in such a seminar are invited to visit the Asia in the K-12 curriculum portion of our website. We will offer a one-day workshop on using Asian case studies to teach about human rights on May 3 and invite teachers from outside Los Angeles to apply for our residential summer seminar July 28-31 and August 4-7.
Film is an important part of U.S.-China cultural and commercial exchange. On April 24-26, the USC East Asian Studies and School of Cinematic Arts present “Chinese Cinema at 100: Art, Politics, and Commerce.” This conference features presentations by filmmakers, film executives, and film scholars. Chinese and American efforts to penetrate each others’ markets are among the topics to be examined. Three films will be screened: Blind Shaft (盲井), The Banquet (夜宴), and The Assembly (集结号). Li Yang and Feng Xiaogang, the directors of these films, will attend and take questions. Details about this conference and other compelling events are below and in the calendar section of the USCI website.


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Best wishes,
The USC U.S.-China Institute

USC Events

04/17/2008: Super Girls
USC Lucas 108
Los Angeles, CA
Time: 7:00pm
A screening of a documentary of the popular Chinese television show "Super Girls Singing Contest" followed by an audience discussion with filmmaker Jian Yi.

04/21/2008: Pre-modern Chinese Views of Astronomical History and Calendrical Time

Time:  2-4 PM
USC History Seminar Series presents Professor Henderson, who will be discussing his essay entitled "Pre-modern Chinese Views of Astronomical History and Calendrical Time."  

04/21/2008: Herbert G. Klein Lecture
USC Davidson Conference Center, Embassy Room
Cost: Free
Time: 10:30AM - 11:30AM
Clark T. Randt, Jr., is the longest serving United States Ambassador to the People's Republic of China.

04/24-04/26/2008: Chinese Cinema at 100: Art, Politics and Commerce
Cost: Free
Time: 9:00AM - 5:00PM
The conference will address not only aesthetics of Chinese film, but also examine commerce and politics.

California Events

04/16/2008: Striking a Balance: Development and Conservation in Rural China Today

UC Berkeley
Address: 150 University Hall, 2199 Addison Street , Berkeley
Cost: $10 for public
Time: 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM
UC Berkeley Professor Mui Ho will speak on the development of rural China as part of the lecture series "The Emerging Narrative of China."

04/17/2008: The China Price: The True Cost of Chinese Competitive Advantage

Center for Labor Research and Education, 2521 Channing Way
UC Berkeley
Time: 12:00pm
Alexandra Harney from the Financial Times will be discussing her new book The China Price.

04/17-04/19/2008: The Committee of 100's 17th Annual Conference
Beverly Hilton Hotel, Los Angeles, CA
Cost: Varies: please visit Committee of 100 website.
A forum for the discussion of issues pertaining to U.S.-China relations and Asian American progress.

04/19/2008: Symposium on Literati Buddhism in Middle-Period China
UC Berkeley, IEAS Conference Room, 2223 Fulton Street 6th Floor
Cost: Free
Time: 9:00AM - 4:00PM
This one day conference seeks to examine the intersection between elite culture and Buddhism in the Tang, Song, and Yuan dynasties.

04/22/2008: The Nuts and Bolts of Social Science Research in China
UC Berkeley, IEAS Conference Room, 2223 Fulton Street 6th Floor
Cost: Free
Time: 4:00PM
This panel discussion and Q&A session is for graduate students on the practicalities of research in China.

04/23/2008: New Movements from China: Contemporary Art Turns Official
UCLA, 10383 Bunche Hall, Los Angeles, CA 90095
Cost: Free
Time: 2:00PM - 3:30PM
Meiqin Wang will explore the shifting institutional context and representation of Chinese official art since the late 1990s. 

04/24/2008: "Prepare for War": Civil Defense, Population Dispersal, and Tianjin's Cultural Revolution

UCLA 10383 Bunche Hall, LA, CA 90095
Cost: Free
Time: 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Jeremy Brown gives a talk on the effects that the Cold War as well as the Cultural Revolution had on the residents of Tianjin.
04/26/2008: Contemporary China Confronts the International Arena: Influence, Image, and Instrumentalities
UC Irvine
Time: 10:30am-4:30pm
Cost: Free
A day long conference presented by the University of California, Irvine. 

04/26/2008: Wandering Spirits: Chinese Dream Lore & Interpretation
Culver City-Foshay Lodge No. 467
9635 Venice Blvd, Culver City
$10 General Admisson, $8 Museum members, students & seniors
UCLA professor Richard Strassberg will speak on his new translation and study of Chen Shiyuan's encyclopedia of dreams.

04/24/2008- 04/27/2008: Critical Han Studies Symposium & Workshop
Stanford University
Han is a colossal category of identity that encompasses ninety-four percent of the population of mainland China, making it the largest ethnic group on earth. Like other immense categories of identity, whether national, racial, ethnic, or otherwise, Han is beset by a host of linguistic, cultural, political, and historical inconsistencies that call into question its status as a coherent community. Despite this, however, Han has managed to fly below the radar of Critical Race Theory and largely above that of History, Ethnic Studies, and Anthropology. The symposium seeks to bridge this expansive divide, and to bring this fascinating area of research to the attention of a broader, international, and interdisciplinary community of scholars.

04/30/2008: The Rising Tide
UCLA, Public Policy Building 1234
Time: 3:30 PM - 5:30 PM
A documentary screening of The Rising Tide, featuring some of China's most talented emerging artists.
04/30/2008: The Lyrical in Epic Time: Jiang Wenye's Music and Poetry
UCLA 10383 Bunche Hall
Time: 4:30 PM - 6:00 PM
A talk by Professor David Der-wei Wang about Jiang Wenye's literary works and music. 

North America Events: 

04/16/2008: Hong Kong-USA: Partners in Trade and Beyond
Henry R. Luce Hall Auditorium, Room 101
34 Hillhouse Avenue , New Haven, Conneticut 06511
Cost: Free
Phone: 203-432-3426
Time: 7:00pm
Margaret Fong will discuss the extent of collaboration between the United States and Hong Kong.

04/17/2008: China Town Hall: Local Connections, National Reflections
Henry R. Luce Hall Auditorium, Room 101
34 Hillhouse Avenue , New Haven, Conneticut 06511
Cost: Free
Phone: 203-432-3426
Time: 7:00PM
Speakers will focus on the local impacts of the changing and globally important U.S.-China relationship.

04/18/2008: China Anthropology Colloquium Series: Dilemmas of Transnational Migration among Chinese Only-Children

Department of Anthrolopogy, Yale University
Time: 12:00 PM
Professor Vanessa Fong will lead a discussion on her research of Chinese children who study abroad in many parts of the world.
04/18/2008: Films of Fury Screening: Fearless
Henry R. Luce Hall Auditorium, Room 101
34 Hillhouse Avenue , New Haven, Conneticut 06511
Cost: Free
Phone: 203-432-3426
Time: 7:00pm
Film screening featuring introduction and discussion with Chris Hamm.
04/21/2008: Energy Economics and Climate Change in China: Recent Trends, Carbon and Future Projections
International Affairs Building, Room 1512
Columbia University
Time: 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Reception to follow
Please RSVP to
Trevor Houser will give a talk on China's climate and energy changes at Columbia University.
04/22/2008: Private and Public Property Rights: What China Does Differently about IPR and Why We Should Be Concerned
Jerome Greene Hall, Room 103
Columbia University
Time: 4:15 PM-6:15 PM
Mark Cohen will speak on the issue of intellectual property rights in China at Columbia University.

04/22/2008: China's Communist Party: Atrophy and Adaptation
The Elliott School of International Affairs, Lindner Family Commons
Time: 5:00 - 6:30 pm
RSVP: Please RSVP with your name, affiliation, and e-mail to by Friday, April 18, 2008.
David Shambaugh will be discussing his new book China's Communist Party: Atrophy and Adaptation
04/22/2008: A Brief Introduction to the Development of Buddhist Art

Henry R. Luce Hall, Room 203
Yale University
Time: 4:00 PM
Xiong Wenbing, professor of art history at Peking University, will give a lecture on Tibetan Buddist art.
04/24/2008: China Colloquium Series: From Beijing to Shanghai and back Again-A Cultural Historian Looks at China's Changing Urban Scene

Location TBA
Cost: Free
Phone: 203-432-3426
Jeffrey Wasserstrom, professor of history at UC Irvine will speak at the China Colloquium on China's changing society. 
04/24/2008: Films of Fury Screening: The Emperor and His Brother
Henry R. Luce Hall Auditorium, Room 101
34 Hillhouse Avenue , New Haven, Conneticut 06511
Cost: Free
Phone: 203-432-3426
James Milward will introduce and discuss the film The Emperor and His Brother. 
04/24/2008: Printing Democracy: Taiwan's Tang-wai Opposition Journals
Gelman Library, Room 207
The George Washington University
2:30-4:30 PM
A special exhibit premier on Tang-wai's opposition journals and a roundtable discussion.

04/25/2008: Fourth Annual China Symposium: Defining Chinese Modernity: Information, Economy, and Environment

School of International and Public Affairs, Altschul Auditorium
Columbia University, Morningside Heights Campus 420 West 118th Street, New York, New York 10027
Cost: Free
Phone: 212-854-2592
This year's annual China symposium will have a panel discussion exploring the impacts of a growing economy on the Chinese society.


01/23/2008 - 05/15/2008: Cycle of Life: Awakening - Works by Asian Women Artists
IEAS Gallery
2223 Fulton Street 6th Floor, Berkeley, CA
An exhibition featuring the art works of Asian women artist.

04/03/2008 - 05/18/2008: Visualizing Revolution: Propaganda Posters from the People's Republic of China, 1949-1989

Nelson Gallery, Art Building University of California, Davis
Formal Opening on April 10, 6 - 8 pm
Katharine Burnett and Yang Peiming, Guest Curators
The exhibition will feature propaganda art from 1949-1989 from the collection of the Shanghai Propaganda Poster Art Center of Mr. Yang Peiming.

03/06/2008 - 07/27/2008: Chinaman's Chance: Views of the Chinese American Experience

Pacific Asia Museum
46 North Los Robles Avenue, Pasadena , CA 91101
Cost: $7 for adults, $5 for students/seniors
While the experience of being of Chinese heritage and living in America is unique to each individual, this exhibition will investigate the similarities and dissimilarities of these experiences.


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We provide information about China-related events as a community service. If you would like your event considered for inclusion in the USCI calendar, please click here to submit event details.


USC U.S. – China Institute
3535 S. Figueroa St.
FIG 202
Los Angeles, CA 90089-1262
Tel: 213-821-4382
Fax: 213-821-2382
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