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Talking Points, July 30 - August 13, 2008

The USC U.S.-China Institute's weekly enewsletter
July 30, 2008

USC U.S.-China Institute

Talking Points
July 30 - August 13, 2008

The Beijing Olympic Games open next week. A great many heads of state will be in attendance, including U.S. President George Bush. Nine out of ten Chinese expect that it will have a positive impact on foreigners’ view of China (click here for more on this poll). Some outsiders believe differently. For example, the current issue of Foreign Affairs features an article entitled, “China’s Olympic Nightmare.” In it Elizabeth Economy and Adam Segal argue “China's coveted image as a responsible rising power has been tarnished” and that torch relay confrontations turned “Beijing's Olympic dream … into a public-relations nightmare.”

Most of us will be watching when the Games begin, but few will have the perspective of USC diving coach Hongping Li. Twelve times Li was China’s national champion. Twice he represented China at the Olympics. Since 1999, he’s coached the USC women’s diving team, twice being named the NCAA coach of the year. He's also twice been named the U.S. Olympic Committee's "Diving Developmental Coach of the Year." We’ll have a profile of Li and his views of the upcoming games at early next week.


On Tuesday and Wednesday, the Chinese Foreign Ministry condemned two private meetings. The first was in Aspen between Sen. John McCain and the Dalai Lama and the second was in the residential wing of the White House between Pres. Bush and five China-focused human rights activists. The foreign ministry spokesperson urged McCain and others to “recognize the true nature of Dalai who is engaged in splitting activities aiming to disrupt social stability and national unity in Tibet under the guise of religion.” The five activists were alleged to have “long been engaged in anti-China splittist activities and hostile sabotage activities under the banner of so-called 'human rights and religion', which have harmed China's national security and social stability.” Publicly announcing the meetings was intended to convey concern for human rights, but in stressing the private nature of the meetings the officials hoped to avoid antagonizing the Chinese government. The delicate dance associated with these encounters suggest the complex mix of interests, individuals, and institutions involved in U.S.-China relations. Reports on these meetings are available at US-China Today.


Twenty-five teachers from all over California have completed the first days of our intensive two week seminar for secondary school educators. Once they’ve satisfied all seminar requirements, they become eligible to apply to participate in USCI’s 2010 East Asia study tour. Teachers interested in strengthening their ability to teach about East Asia should consider applying to be a part of one of our fall seminars. Please go to the K-12 Curriculum section of our website to learn more.

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

California Events

07/31/2008: Confucianism in Modern Chinese Culture with Yu Dan

The Harry and Yvonne Lenart Auditorium
Fowler Museum at UCLA
Lecture will be given in Mandarin Chinese.
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Professor Yu Dan discusses Confucianism and how it relates to the modern world.

08/01/2008: Southwest and Southeast China with Globe Trekker
Bowers Museum
2002 N. Main St., Santa Ana, CA 92706
Time: 6:30PM
Traveler Justine Shapiro explores Southwest China, taking in the autonomous region of Guangxi and the provinces of Guizhou, Yunnam, and Sichuan. Zay Harding completes the tour, visiting the Southeast provinces of Guangzhou, Jiangxi, Fujian, and Hunan. 75 min.

08/03/2008: Confucius and the First Emperor

Bowers Museum
2002 N. Main St, Santa Ana, CA 92706
Cost: Free with paid museum admission and to members; Lecture only $8
Time: 1:30PM
Dr. Jeffrey Riegel, Professor and Head of School, University of Sydney, introduces and compares the lives of Confucius and the First Emperor, and assesses their respective contributions to the history of civilization in China

08/08/2008: Ancient China
Bowers Museum
Address: 2002 N. Main St., Santa Ana, CA 92706
Cost: Free
Phone: 714.567.3600
Time: 6:30PM - 7:00PM
This film brings the viewer to the Southern part of China in Shaanxi province.  The tour begins in Guangzhou to the Li River in Yangshuo and on to Yumman’s capital, Kunming, and a day trip to the Stone Forest in Shilin. 30 min.


07/15/2008 - 09/02/2008: The Jews in Modern China

Museum of Tolerance
Address: 9786 West Pico Boulevard, Los Angeles , CA
An exhibit celebrating the unique friendship between the Chinese and Jewish people at the Museum of Tolerance.

01/29/2008 - 09/07/2008: The Shape of Things: Chinese and Japanese Art from the Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection

Asia Society and Museum
725 Park Avenue , New York, New York
Cost: Free
Phone: 212-517-ASIA
This exhibition of ceramics, metalworks, sculpture, and painting demonstrates that a depth of information can be revealed through the careful observation and study of the form of an object. 

06/27/2008 - 09/21/2008: Power and Glory: Court Arts of the Ming Dynasty

Asian Art Museum
200 Larkin Street (between Fulton and McAllister Streets), San Francisco, CA 94102
Cost: Cost varies (see website for details)
This exhibition will explore the glories of the Ming dynasty imperial court.

07/26/2008 - 10/04/2008: Absurd Recreation

Sweeney Art Gallery
3800 Main Street University of California, Riverside, Riverside, CA 92501
A multi-media group exhibition of nine artists from China who engage in an absurdist "recreation" of settings, events, and situations in reaction to the rapidly changing social and cultural landscape in China.
07/26/2008 - 10/04/2008: A Sense of Place: Remembering Riverside’s Chinatowns

Sweeney Art Gallery
3800 Main Street University of California, Riverside
Riverside, CA 92501
his series of educational workshops and historical reflections on Riverside's historical Chinatowns runs alongside the Sweeney Art Gallery exhibition, Absurd Recreation.

05/18/2008 - 10/12/2008: Terra Cotta Warriors: Guardians of the First Emperor

Bowers Museum
Address: 2002 N. Main Street, Santa Ana, CA 92706
Phone: 714-567-3600
This summer exhibit at Bowers Museum showcases the famous terra cotta warriors buried with the First Emperor of China.

07/26/2008 - 09/06/2008: Contemporary Photography from China
Address: DNJ Gallery, 154-1/2 N. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036
DNJ Gallery showcases works by several emerging Chinese artists who captured China's changing economy, society and culture through their photographs.


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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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