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Talking Points, January 23 - February 6, 2008

The U.S.-China Institute's weekly newsletter
January 23, 2008
USC U.S.-China Institute

Talking Points
January 23 - February 6, 2008

This week brought at least two signals of how dramatically China has changed in the last decade. The first came in an announcement by senior family planning officials stating they were aware of the public outrage over how readily the rich were able to “buy” exemptions from family planning regulations. Sensitivity to public opinion (expressed in a China Youth poll and elsewhere) is already a big change. Even more striking, though, was one of the ways that officials plan to punish the well-to-do who can readily pay the average Beijing fine of $13,500 to exceed the birth cap. Officials plan to have a negative statement entered into the violator’s credit report. It wasn’t too long ago that the very idea of credit reports would have required explaining. A second sign was the announcement by the Bank of China that it had suffered serious losses this past quarter due to investments in U.S. securities, including some $8 billion in subprime mortgage-backed securities. Talking Points noted in September that three major Chinese banks held $12 billion in such securities. The U.S. and Chinese economies grow increasingly intertwined by the day.
In addition to stock market fears, one of the big topics in the Chinese blogosphere these days is the beating death of Wei Wenhua. Wei was a construction executive who stopped and took cell phone pictures of Tianmen city (Hebei province) inspectors beating villagers who sought to block the dumping of trash near their homes. The city inspectors turned on Wei, killing him. The case has aroused great indignation. At least one local official has been dismissed and others arrested while investigations continue. The legal environment in China is complex. Next week, Michigan political scientist Mary Gallagher will visit USC and speak on efforts to establish the rule of law in China while maintaining authoritarian political controls. We hope you can attend her presentation. In February, we also welcome David Bachman (Washington) to discuss America’s East Asian allies and their relations with China and Susan Shirk (UCSD) whose current projects include directing the University of California’s international conflict and cooperation research program. Also in February, USCI is sponsoring a symposium on what the study of imperial China’s foreign relations might offer American policy analysts and policy makers. Seven distinguished historians and political scientists will speak on February 17.
Secondary school teachers are reminded that the deadline to apply for our summer 2008 study tour to East Asia is February 1. We are also preparing to launch two new East Asia and New Media seminars and invite teachers to apply. Please go to the K-12 Curriculum section of our website for more information. We encourage USC faculty and students to learn about our research grants. The application deadline is March 3. Information is available in the announcements section of our website:
As always, we welcome your comments and suggestions. Please pass Talking Points along to friends and colleagues.
Best wishes,
The USC U.S.-China Institute


USC Events

01/24/2008: Informational Session: Beijing Summer Program 2008
USC VKC 111, Los Angeles, CA 90089
Cost: Free
Time: 12:00PM - 1:00PM
The Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures offers a second informational session for students interested in learning Chinese in China during summer 2008.

01/31/2008: Legislating Harmony? Authoritarianism and the Rule of Law in China

USC Leavey Library Auditorium
Time: 3:00PM - 5:00PM
Cost: Free
University of Michigan's Mary Gallagher focuses on labor and law.

02/01/2008: The Early Modern in East Asia: The Challenges of Periodization

USC Social Science Building 250, Los Angeles, CA 90089
Cost: Free
Time: 9:00am-5:00pm
Please rsvp to:
Can we apply a standard periodization scheme across East Asia? Historians of China, Japan, and Korea examine economic and cultural networks, environmental patterns, intellectual trends, state structures and practices, and contemporary debates on "the nation".

California Events

01/23/2008: The Future of Chinese Cuisine in the U.S.
Chinese Culture Center Chinatown Hilton 750 Kearny Street, 3rd Floor San Francisco, CA
Cost: $25 Asia Society Members, $35 Non-members
Time: 6:00PM - 8:30PM
This program will look at the changing face of Chinese food in China, as well as in places like Vancouver, Flushing, and the San Gabriel Valley in Southern California.

01/24/2008: Taiwan's Civil Society and the Blue-Green Deadlock, 1986-2007

UCLA 10383 Bunche Hall, Los Angeles, CA 90095
Cost: Free
Time: 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
A talk by Wu Jieh-min in the Taiwan Studies Lecture Series.
01/24/2008: Yu Hongmei Los Angeles Premiere
Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater
631 West 2nd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Cost: General Admission $20; Students/Alumni with Affinity Card $16; CalArts Students, Faculty & Staff $10
Phone: 213-237-2800
Time: 8:30PM - 10:30PM
Erhu soloist Yu Hongmei performs in Los Angeles at the CalArts Theatre.
01/27/2008: Chinese New Year Family Festival
The Bowers Museum
2002 N. Main St John M. Lee Court , Santa Ana, CA 92706
Cost: Free
Phone: (714) 567-3600
The Bowers Museum hosts a Chinese New Year festival including traditional Chinese music, dancing, and martial arts.
01/29/2008: China's Durable Inequality: Legacies of Revolution & Pitfalls of Reform

UCLA 10383 Bunche Hall
Los Angeles, CA 90095
Time: 4:30PM - 6:00PM
Professor Mark Selden explores inequality issues raised by China's dynamic growth. 
02/01/2008: "Will the Rise of Chinese Nationalism Make China's Rise Less Peaceful?"

IEAS Conference Room, 2223 Fulton Street, 6th Floor, Berkeley, CA
Cost: Free
Time: 4:00PM - 6:00PM
University of Denver's Suisheng Zhao addresses concerns regarding China's rise to great power status and the implications this has for Chinese foreign policy.
02/05/2008: Poetry and Calligraphy in the Garden
Friends’ Hall
1151 Oxford Road , San Marino, CA 91108
Time: 7:30PM - 9:00PM
Professor Yang Ye explores the arts of poetry and calligraphy in a traditional Chinese garden. 
02/06/2008: China, Fragile Superpower: How China's Internal Politics Could Derail Its Peaceful Rise

IEAS Conference Room, 2223 Fulton Street, 6th Floor, Berkeley, CA
Cost: Free
Time: 5:00PM - 7:00PM
Susan Shirk, Director, UC Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation, University of California, San Diego. 

North America Events: 

01/26/2008: The Lost City: Beijing
Auditorium A, Angell Hall
435 S. State Street , Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
Cost: Free
Time: 7:00PM - 8:30PM
An enlightening look at the issues of urban gentrification and preservation in Beijing today.

01/29/2008: Revolutionary Alchemy: Shanghai's "January Revolution" Reinterpreted

Room 1636 School of Social Work Building
1080 S. University, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109
Cost: Free
Time: 12:00PM - 1:00PM
A talk by Yiching Wu, Michigan Society of Fellows and Assistant Professor of Anthropology and History.

01/30/2008: Security, Identity and the Rise of China

Lindner Family Commons
The Elliott School of International Affairs, 6th Floor,
1957 E Street, NW
Cost: Free
Time: 12:30PM - 1:45PM
William Callahan will speak as part of Sigur Center's lecture series on Sub-national Asia. 


10/12/2007 - 01/27/2008: Rank and Style - Power Dressing in Imperial China

Pacific Asia Museum
Address: 46 North Los Robles Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101
Time: 10:00AM - 6:00PM
Cost: $7 for adults, $5 for students/seniors
Phone: (626) 449-2742
For the first time in the United States, the Pacific Asia Museum presents selections from the Chris Hall Collection of Hong Kong, October 12, 2007 - January 27, 2008.

10/04/2007 - 02/08/2008: From the Abundant Pharmacy: Traditional Chinese Medicine in LA's Chinatown

The California Endowment’s Center for Healthy Communities: Big Sur Education Gallery
1000 N. Alameda Street , Los Angeles, CA 90012
Cost: Free
Time: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM; Monday thru Friday
The exhibition features historical and contemporary photographs and videos of selected stores and herbalists.

11/06/2007 - 02/10/2008: China on Paper: European and Chinese Works from the Late Sixteenth to the Early Nineteenth Century

Research Institute Exhibition Gallery, Getty Center, Los Angeles, CA
Cost: Free
Illustrated books, prints, and maps from the special collections of the Research Library tell the fascinating story of mutual interest and collaborative works produced by Chinese and Europeans from the late sixteenth to the early nineteenth century.

11/10/2007 - 02/17/2008: Everyday Luxury: Chinese Silks of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911)

Santa Barbara Museum of Art
1130 State Street , Santa Barbara, CA 93101
The exhibition features a collection of Chinese costumes and textiles from the last three hundred years.


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 artists.


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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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