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#56881 - 19 Jul 07 00:29 Saudis to Ban RI airlines
Capt. Mainwaring Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 16 Aug 06
Posts: 3225
Loc: here
I enjoyed this little essay - Not entirely on topic but I see things have drifted off in anycase:-

An insider's view of Chinese society and culture. Choose your subject below...


America

“Where do bad Americans go to when they die?” inquired the Duchess.
“They go to America”.
Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, Chapter 3.

The Chinese regard America as a combination of the Promised Land and the Great Satan. They admire America because it is rich, which in a society as materialistic as China’s is the sum of all virtue. On the other hand, they are convinced that the US is constantly working towards China’s downfall. As a result, they all believe that America deliberately bombed the Chinese embassy in Belgrade, that it intentionally crashed one of its spy planes on Hainan, and that it defends Taiwan because it wants to keep China weak and divided.

Art

…these defects in their arts are entirely owing to the peculiar turn of the people, amongst whom nothing great or spirited is to be met with.
George Anson, A Voyage Around the World in the Years 1740- 1744 p. 367

China has produced some great works of art- poetry and calligraphy in particular- but in modern China, the term is used largely to refer to items of kitsch. As a result, appreciation of the arts in China is somewhat stunted. Children are told at school that Chinese poems are wonderful, and they are taught to recite some of them, but understanding is confined to what the work tells you about the author’s biography rather than any aesthetic considerations. Calligraphic prints are given multicoloured backgrounds to jazz them up. Excursions to temples and other scenic spots are popular, but only so that people can take pictures of their friends standing in front of them before going off for lunch.
Music in China means Cantopop, Beijing Opera or pastiches of western music written for orchestras of scratchy folk fiddles. In the circumstances, it is perhaps unsurprising that an unusually large proportion of Chinese people profess not to like any music, which may be an indication that they would if they had actually heard any worth the name.

Bureaucracy

you'll memorialise that Department ... for leave to memorialise this Department. If you get it (which you may after a time), that memorial must be entered in that Department, sent to be registered in this Department, sent back to be signed by that Department, sent back to be countersigned by this Department, and then it will begin to be regularly before that Department..
Charles Dickens, Little Dorrit Chapter 10

Take two thousand years of imperial rule, add fifty years of Communist control freakery and you end up with Chinese bureaucracy. If the aim of a bureaucracy were to consume forests at the fastest rate possible, this would be a world-beater. Nothing can be done without a form. Often in triplicate. Forms are designed on the basis of what questions can be asked rather than what information is needed. If there is no form already in existence for a particular task, you have to create a new one for the purpose, on which you should enter every item of information in your possession. Students in China are required to take lessons in Computing: reasonable enough, except that all they are taught is how to fill in forms on a computer.

Children

Chinese children are weird. Weirdest of all are the babies, which are dressed in outfits with little flaps at the back to allow them to shit wherever and whenever they please (in the gutter if you’re lucky, on the pavement if you’re not).
From about the age of four, the girls have their hair put up in two little antennae on the top of their heads, which make them look like monsters from outer space. These are later transformed into pigtails and then a ponytail.
The boys are less attractive specimens: their faces are usually covered in snot, and they are among the most enthusiastic shouters and starers in the country. Once in their teens they are relatively harmless, their main vice being clogging up Internet bars playing Red Alert when you are trying to e-mail home.
Chinese people in general suffer from arrested development, so even the adults in many ways resemble children. They will fight to be the first onto a train even when they have reservations; and to be the first off, despite walking as slowly as possible once they are out. They believe everything authority figures tell them, and their response to any setback is the huff.

Chinglish

Before Liberation, the Chinese people were oppressed by imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism; after Liberation, the labouring people have become the masters of the country.
Chinese Dictionary

The Chinese government has recently realised that English is a more useful language to know than Chinese, so it has launched a programme to teach everyone English. The result is that all students, regardless of subject, have to study what is called “public English”. This is taught by teachers who themselves cannot speak the language, so they teach it in the same way that people used to learn Latin. The exams consist largely of filling in blanks in sentences, so this is all that the students are taught to do.
Chinglish is what happens when you teach someone to fill in blanks and then ask him to speak or write in English. At moments of crisis such as this, the victim will compose a sentence in perfectly good Chinese and attempt to translate it literally. The results are unfortunate. Chinese is much freer with superlatives than English, for example, so they will tell you that everyone and everything is very beautiful and very lovely and that they very love him/her/it. All foods are very delicious. Years in Chinese are said one digit at a time, so they will tell you how excited they are about the “two oh oh eight” Olympics. And you might spend a long time thinking about “Liberation” before realising that they are referring to what happened in 1949. The following are (probably apocryphal) instructions found in Chinese hotels:

The lift is being fixed for next day. During that time we regret that you will be unbearable.
Please leave your values at the front desk.
You are very invited to take advantage of the chambermaid.
Because of impropriety of entertaining guests of the opposite sex in the bedroom, it is suggested that the lobby be used for this purpose.
Tenants are not permitted to bring cattle or live fowls.


Clothes

[Their clothes] are not annually renewed, but on the contrary are made to last about ten years.
Marco Polo, Travels Book 2 Chapter 11.

China is not the most fashion-conscious nation, and apart from teenage fads, most people are content with an immutable Chinese style. For the men this consists of a grey jacket with a label on the sleeve, a grey pullover underneath, grey trousers and grey slip-on shoes, set off by a wispy moustache. The main crime committed by women is a determination to continue wearing skirts through autumn to the bitter end in winter, displaying luridly coloured thermal tights of a kind last seen on the Wicked Witch of the West.

Confucius

There was something in Confucianism, but what can you say about it now that things have degenerated to such a degree?
Zhuangzi, Chapter 14.

Confucius was a very good and very clever man. He opposed the death penalty and promoted benevolence. He also said:

Do unto others as you would be done by. (Analects 15.23).
The good man does not grieve that other people do not recognise his merits. His only anxiety is lest he should fail to recognise theirs. (Analects 1.16).
Is it not a pleasure to have friends come from afar? (Analects 1.1).

Unfortunately the country today still kills its own people, is in the grip of a national paranoia, and is deeply racist.
This is not to say, however, that Confucianism is without influence in contemporary China. His attitudes to authority and social precedence, unsurprising in the context of a 5th century BC China riven by civil war, have helped to produce a culture today in which ossification, subservience and hostility to new ideas are regarded as virtues. All this is very convenient for the government, which has got over its “Criticise Lin Biao and Confucius” period (a Cultural Revolution era campaign) and now sees Confucius as a useful tool for keeping the masses in order.

Death Penalty

The government is there to rule, not to slay.
Confucius, The Analects, 12.19.

Unlike in most countries, crime in China is generally the preserve of the rich. Corruption is much more prevalent than theft or violent crime. The poor are a much softer target, however, so the main plank of the government’s periodic anti-crime drive is killing thieves, prostitutes and drug users. They do this with such enthusiasm that the country is now responsible for three quarters of the world’s executions.

Environment

It was a town of machinery and tall chimneys, out of which interminable serpents of smoke trailed themselves for ever and ever, and never got uncoiled.
Charles Dickens, Hard Times Chapter 5

The Chinese are bemused by the idea of the environment- the lack of people being by definition bad- but they are making tremendous progress in eliminating it. The pesky Three Gorges will soon be safely under water, and China’s cities do well in the lists of Ten Most Polluted. The most recent achievement has been cutting down all the trees in the north of the country to produce dust storms. The government has recently announced a plan to “tackle” the problem by setting up a monitoring centre.

Food

And thus they make their belly their god
John Mandeville, Travels p. 187

The aims of meals in China are to transfer food onto the table and floor, and to get other people’s spit into your mouth. These purposes are facilitated by eating with sticks, and by swirling your sticks round in the communal dishes. It’s also polite to talk with your mouth full, so that everyone can see exactly what you’re eating. And the Chinese love dogs and cats; normally one between two is enough. Amuse your friends by showing how far you can spit the bones! Chinese restaurants are easy to locate: just look out for what appears to be a pet shop.
Most Chinese people like the idea of trying Western food, but in practice they are invariably disappointed that it does not taste like Chinese food. Ideally, Chinese food should not taste of food at all, but instead of chilli paste, salt, vinegar and of course MSG.

Hello!

Hello in China does not mean hello; it means “I have seen a foreigner”. This is the reason why 99 times out of a hundred it will be shouted after you in the street rather than said to you. The most ardent hello-ers are teenage boys who roam the street in couples with their arms round each other, and who shout at foreigners in what can only described as a queer high-pitched voice. Only in a country where homosexuality is unthinkable could anyone get away with being quite so camp.

Holidays

In China, the holiday is another valuable tool for reducing productivity and spreading the work round. They are helped in this by their use of two calendars: (Western and lunar), each of which has its own set of holidays. The Daddy of all Chinese holidays is the Spring Festival, or Chinese New Year, which they string out for several weeks. This is also the time when about sixty million migrant workers go home to see their families, making travel even more fun than usual. The Chinese words for January, February etc. are “first month”, “second month” and so on, so they will often translate the first lunar month as January as well (to avoid confusion).
Another helper with the Chinese holiday mania is the UN, which has produced endless International Women’s/Children’s/Marmosets’ Days which no one except the Chinese ever notices, but which they celebrate enthusiastically. They think that this makes them just like us.
Another misconception surrounds April Fool’s Day, which they believe is much like Christmas, but a but funnier. If you confess that you haven’t made use of a whoopee cushion since you were ten, they will consider this proof that you are no fun. Religion being illegal, Christmas (“Merry Christmas” in Chinglish) is observed largely by means of grotesque decorations, which are not taken down until February.

Hygiene

China is still essentially a peasant society; some of the peasants now have more money, but their manners are delightfully unchanged. Men, women and children spit anywhere, anytime, indoors or out, which often makes the ground treacherous underfoot. Spitting is also a good means of spreading tuberculosis (a particularly popular disease round here), which breeds yet more spitting. To complement this, the people have an aversion to brushing their teeth, making China the halitosis capital of the world.
The Chinese toilet has a legendary status justly comparable with the black hole of Calcutta. Public toilets have more shit and urine on the floor around the toilet than in it, and cleaning seems to be an annual festival at best. The people also seem not yet to have learned how to flush. Washing your hands after shitting is considered eccentric; after pissing, madness.
The Chinese also take a robust attitude to washing up, dipping the dishes in dirty water being considered sufficient in most restaurants.

Internet

The Internet is very popular in China, despite its being worse here than in any other country except Equatorial Guinea. The more popular it becomes, the slower it gets, so it’s often worth taking along a book when you go to e-mail.
China has Internet Bars instead of Internet Cafes, but despite the name you won’t get a drink there. The Chinese word is Wangba, which can also mean “son-of-a-bitch”, so exercise caution when asking for directions. The best time to try is after America has gone to bed, but before the Chinese students finish classes for the day, and don’t even think about it at the weekend.
In addition to the ubiquitous flaky connections, the computers in most Internet Bars have something horribly wrong with them- a letter E which doesn’t work, a mouse which rolls in only one direction or the like- just to make the experience a bit more challenging. Most unpredictable of all is what you will actually be allowed to look at when you get online. The Chinese government in its wisdom has decided that a number of sites are spiritually polluting and has bravely prevented its people from looking at them. Among these are sites about Tibet, the BBC’s site and most free web hosts, apparently on the grounds that they allow people to publish their own opinions.

Kitsch

It was shapeless, artless, grotesquely beyond kitsch; it was a complicated disfigurement, wrinkled and stinking…
Paul Theroux, Riding the Iron Rooster, p. 333.

The Chinese have a devotion to kitsch surpassing even that of the Romanovs. This is the spiritual home of the novelty lighter, tapestries of fluffy white kittens and multicoloured, flashing, musical fairy lights.
One recent patriotic song was accompanied by a video of a hallucinogenic dream sequence combining Tiananmen Square, workers marching forward into the future, doves, the Yangtze river, Deng, Jiang Zemin and what looked suspiciously like a tractor factory.
The specialty of Chinese television is the song and dance extravaganza, most often performed in skin-tight military uniforms. No grin is too cheesy, no dance routine too hackneyed, no Chinglish chorus too idiotic to feature in these items.

News

The frog in the shallow well said to the turtle from the East Sea: “How happy I am! … As master of this pool of water, I enjoy the full pleasure of residing in this place”… The turtle started to tell the frog about the sea, saying, “The distance of a thousand miles is not enough to describe the vastness of the sea, the height of eight thousand feet is not enough to describe the depth of the sea”… The frog was panic-stricken.
Zhuangzi, Chapter 17.

China has hundreds of TV stations in its various regions, but all of them carry the same news bulletins supplied by the government in Beijing. The first four items normally tell you what the President, Prime Minister, Vice-President and legislative leader (in order of precedence) did that day. Unfortunately the President seems not to lead a particularly active life: the big news story of the day might be his sending a telegram to the deputy prime minister of Togo thanking him for his support for the one China principle (China is possibly the last place on earth where the telegram is regarded as a modern means of communication). Next comes the news of yet more bumper harvests, followed by five minutes at the end for The Rest of the World. All of this is available in stilted English as well as Chinese, so everyone can enjoy the fun.

Non-action

The Sage relies on actionless activity.
Tao Te Ching Chapter 2

Chinese people have a tremendous faith in non-action as the solution to any problem. If it is ignored for long enough, it may eventually become somebody else’s business, so they can ignore it in their turn. People have no sense of urgency in work, in their free time or when travelling. If walking, they walk as slowly as possible, drifting from one side of the pavement to the other in order to slow down anyone foolish enough to be in a hurry. If cycling, they move so slowly that they have to weave from side to side to stay upright. The Chinese may cycle more than people in other countries, but they also do it far worse.

Numbers

The Chinese have a Victorian mania for categorisation, most obviously expressed in their “number formulae”. The best known in the west is the Gang of Four, but a few others are:
Three supports and two militaries
Four clean-ups
Five Taoist mountains
Six arts
Seven emotions
Thirty-six stratagems
Most of these formulations are either government slogans or generally received ideas, which the Chinese find very useful. If everybody else talks about the five Taoist mountains, there is no need for you to worry about all the other ones. It makes life simpler, and a simple life is what they like.

Paranoia

Other nations have been called thin-skinned, but [they] have, apparently, no skins at all; they wince if a breeze blows over them, unless it be tempered with adulation.
Mrs Trollope

The Chinese people are convinced that everyone is against them- they know this because the government tells them so every day. So if the Japanese prime minister honours his country’s war dead, it’s to annoy the Chinese; if other countries disapprove of massacring students in the middle of Beijing, it’s meddling in internal affairs; if the world community supports Tibetan self-determination, it’s because they’re in league with the Dalai Lama clique. Even the rejection of Beijing’s first bid to host the Olympics was taken as a vote against China rather than a vote for the winning city.
Understandably, they have certain grievances about the activities of the Western countries in the 19th century and of Japan in the 20th, but these have been inflated into a national complex. The Japanese occupation in particular is endlessly recycled, while films and television rehearse the mythical Chinese war against Japan. Even Chinese history books repeat the fiction that China beat Japan in the Second World War, while the Chinese state media stir up anti-Japanese hysteria whenever a Japanese book fails to grovel sufficiently.
The result of all this is a determination to become the most powerful country in the world, presumably so that they can have a bash at occupying Japan.

Parties

all are seated according to their respective ranks and dignities, in the places assigned to them, and to which they are entitled.
Marco Polo, Travels Book 2 Chapter 10.

The Chinese party is a serious business. The basic format is that of a talent show, although most of the talent on show is Cantopop karaoke. The master of ceremonies will ensure that the programme is not departed from, while those not performing sit in rows surrounding the performer, in the manner of the United Nations Security Council. Relaxation will be taken as a sign of not trying hard enough.

Proportion

The one thing one cannot afford to have is a sense of proportion.
Douglas Adams: The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Chinese people believe that the world consists of two things: China and Everything Else. And the greatest of these is China. (When in China, you are no longer British, or Canadian, or German, you are simply “foreign”, and are considered an oracle on the question of what “foreigners” believe and do.) Most Chinese people really believe that if “foreigners” knew more about the country, they would think so too.
They therefore learn next to nothing about the outside world, and so they have no basis for comparison between China and other countries. Literature is a good example. The lack of any substantial novelists in the country’s history does not prevent four mediocre Ming and Qing dynasty works from being thought the peak of the novel; Lu Xun, a minor short story writer, is virtually deified and has parks named after him in most big cities; while the writers of interminable plays are considered similar to Shakespeare. Chinese history is considered “glorious” for no other reason than that it is as long as that of any other Eurasian country. Qualification for the World Cup is described as “the culmination of a thirty year long march”. A closely connected problem is that of relativism.

Racism

The racial question is in essence a class question.
Chinese Dictionary

The official line is that china is a socialist paradise and there is therefore no racism. The small matter of Tibet aside, the reason that most of China lacks the kind of racial tensions found in western countries is simply that the Chinese racists have been more successful in keeping out the darkies than our ones were. China is 96% Han Chinese, including Tibet and Xinjiang, which doesn’t give them a great many chances for expressing their racism in everyday life. Unfortunately this racial monotony also means that they have been unable to get over it, so when you come along you become the focus.

Received Ideas

FOREIGN: Enthusiasm for everything foreign is a sign of a liberal mind. Contempt for everything that isn't French is a sign of patriotism.
Flaubert, Dictionary of Received Ideas

As a totalitarian society in which difference is a sin and small-mindedness is a virtue, China is a nest of received ideas. Some of the most popular are:

Beijing: Beijing is a beautiful city. You hope to go there one day.

China: China is a great country with a glorious history. It is a developing country.

Chinese People: The Chinese people are very hospitable.

Cultural Revolution: A mistake. See Mao.

Democracy: The time is not yet ripe. You will quote Mao on the necessity of finishing a house’s foundations before building the roof.

Deng Xiaoping: A clever man.

English: English is an international language. You are learning it, but it is much harder than Chinese.

Great Leap Forward: A mistake. See Mao.

Human Rights: No country has a perfect record on human rights.

Mao: A great man who made some mistakes.

Olympics: You are pleased that Beijing will host the Olympic Games. You hope to work there as a volunteer.

Shanghai: Shanghai is an interesting city. You hope to go there one day.

Taiwan: An integral part of China. If the Taiwanese do not like it, that is their problem.

Tiananmen Massacre: You feel sorry for the students, but you have to admit they were unrealistic.

Tibet: An integral part of China. If the Tibetans do not like it, that is their problem.

WTO: You think that China’s entry into the World Trade Organisation presents both challenges and opportunities.

Relativism

Chinese people adapt to their country’s insularity by adopting a particularly idiotic brand of relativism, according to which there are Chinese ideas and Foreign ideas, and the two must never mix. A good example is Chinese medicine. Chinese medicine as known in the west is a more or less usefully different way of tackling minor complaints, for which acupuncture and the like can be very handy. But for the Chinese, Chinese medicine means a full complement of hocus pocus folk remedies and worries, according to which almost any complaint is caused by wearing too light clothes, exposing one’s feet to cold, or eating hot and cold food in the wrong order (although they disagree amongst themselves about the correct order). Any reference to the laws of physics will be met with a smiling assurance that these are “Western” ideas, which somehow cease to apply at the border. The same response is used to any notion which has not been entrenched in Chinese culture for the past two thousand years.

Staring

… he must regard himself as no more than a beast in a menagerie and take as amiably as he could the crude stares and the poking umbrellas.
John Fowles, The French Lieutenant’s Woman Chapter 14

Staring seems to be what most Chinese like to do for fun. In the daytime, at night, indoors, outdoors, on the other side of the street or under your nose, they will stare. There is a theory that because the Chinese lack the western concept of privacy that it is not considered rude to stare in China. This is nonsense. If you stare back at them (go ahead, it causes somewhat less trouble than hitting them), they will normally become shifty and look away, after which they will cunningly glance back at you every few seconds in the hope that you will have stopped. Chinese people don’t like being stared at any more than you do, and the reason they still do it is their failure to grasp that foreigners are real people with real feelings too. It’s pure racism.

Students

Teach these boys and girls nothing but Facts.
Charles Dickens, Hard Times p. 1

Students in China generally look as if they are fifteen or sixteen, and act as if they are eleven or twelve. They wear clothes decorated with pictures of cartoon characters, and their pencil cases feature slogans such as “a real friend true is always love you”. They giggle when they are happy and sulk when they are not. They think it quite unfair of a teacher to ask them a question to which he has not just told them the answer.
Some of the students’ attitude problems may also be due to their being woken up at six each morning in order to do exercises, so that they are ready to fall asleep again during their first classes.
The students are taught rather like British schoolchildren of the 1950s: they sit in rows behind individual desks, while the teacher stands on a platform at the front of the class and tells them what the answers to the exam will be.

Supermarkets

There is an abundant quantity of game of all kinds, such as roebucks, stags, fallow deer, hares and rabbits, together with partridges, pheasants, francolins, quails, common fowls, capons and such numbers of ducks and geese as can scarcely be expressed…
Marco Polo, Travels Book 2 Chapter 68

Chinese supermarkets outwardly resemble those in the west fairly closely, but under the skin they remain deeply Chinese. Customers are assumed to be thieves until proven otherwise: in furtherance of this policy, they will make you leave your bags at the entrance; if you decide not to buy anything and leave without going through the checkout then all hell will break loose. Once inside, putting anything in your basket is considered a suspicious act, and will often result in a member of staff hovering at your shoulder for the remainder of your visit. The supermarkets are as over manned as every other institution in the country, and each aisle will have one or two women who are good at chatting, but bad at restocking shelves.
Once past the checkout, you have to remember to allow the security guard to tear your receipt. Even the Chinese have no idea what this is for.

Universities

Absolute obedience to parent and teacher forms the ideal foundation on which to build absolute obedience to the masters of society.
Karl Wittfogel, Oriental Despotism p. 144

Universities are run in theory by a President, who lives his life in a very pretty gilded cage, but is not allowed to actually do anything. He is “supervised” by the Party secretary, whose qualifications are having bribed the next highest official and a devotion to Mao. As a result, students are still made to study Mao Zedong thought, and every college has airbrushed pictures of Marx, Lenin, Mao and Deng on the walls.
Teachers also have to be certified as having studied and as upholding the ideas of these four.

Work

Mr Pumblechook appeared to conduct his business by looking across the street at the saddler, who appeared to transact his business by keeping his eye on the coachmaker, who appeared to get on in life by putting his hands in his pockets and contemplating the baker, who in his turn folded his arms and stared at the grocer, who stood at his door and yawned at the chemist.
Charles Dickens, Great Expectations, Chapter 8

Unsurprisingly, there is not enough work in China for one and a half billion people, but the unemployment rate is kept low by employing several people to do one person’s job. Most people finish their day’s work by mid-morning, at which time they start to drink. In the unfortunate event of any work appearing, it is immediately passed on to someone else to deal with. Sacking workers is illegal under almost any circumstances, regardless of redundancy, incompetence, laziness, dishonesty- or of course drunkenness.
_________________________
I also made a vegetarian version,with tempe and tofu chunks for myself and others.Get over it.
Kosong.Wolo.Setunggal.Setunggal.Setunggal.Kosong.Pitu.Setunggal.Kosong.Wolo=Tempik

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#56886 - 19 Jul 07 05:41 Chinese stereotypes [Re: Capt. Mainwaring]
riccardo Offline
Pujangga

Registered: 12 Oct 05
Posts: 2195
Loc: Jakarta
Moved from elsewhere...
The orginal URL in which this was copied from is:
http://www.chinarant.com/china_rant/2005/04/whats_ur_rant.html
It comes from a blog, which seems to be dedicated to young, first-time-abroad English teachers in China and a place to collectively whinge to each other

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#56887 - 19 Jul 07 05:48 Re: Oscar Wilde Essay [Re: riccardo]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Thought that may happen....amusing but long!
_________________________
Menace to Sobriety


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#56888 - 19 Jul 07 05:50 Stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
riccardo Offline
Pujangga

Registered: 12 Oct 05
Posts: 2195
Loc: Jakarta
yeah, I didn't want to delete it full stop because he obviously took at least a full minute to find it by googling and then copying/pasting, but it had nothing to do with saudi flight bans..

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#56890 - 19 Jul 07 05:54 Re: Oscar Wilde Essay [Re: riccardo]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
I keep stuff like that on my hard drive to read on the way to work! Bit like photos and images, I have s tock library ready to use when required. Saves the googling!
_________________________
Menace to Sobriety


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#56893 - 19 Jul 07 06:17 stereotyping China [Re: Capt. Mainwaring]
riccardo Offline
Pujangga

Registered: 12 Oct 05
Posts: 2195
Loc: Jakarta
Quoting: some racist named Hobbins that Pvt. found on google

Art

…these defects in their arts are entirely owing to the peculiar turn of the people, amongst whom nothing great or spirited is to be met with.
George Anson, A Voyage Around the World in the Years 1740- 1744 p. 367

China has produced some great works of art- poetry and calligraphy in particular- but in modern China, the term is used largely to refer to items of kitsch. As a result, appreciation of the arts in China is somewhat stunted.


CHINA’S ART REVOLUTION
Artwork from China is experiencing an unparalleled boom with multi-million dollar sales at Sotheby’s and Christie’s becoming the norm.

On 7 April 2007, a painting by prominent Chinese artist Xu Beihong entitled Put Down Your Whip sold for HK$72 million at a Sotheby’s Hong Kong auction. The sale not only smashed the artist's own auction record, but set a new world auction record for a Chinese painting.

“The contemporary Chinese art market is booming – we break records for many artists every sale we hold,” says Sotheby’s Managing Director, Asia and Worldwide Head of Asian Art Departments, Henry Howard-Sneyd.

Even by recent record-breaking standards, $72 million is a staggering figure. Xu’s painting of an anti-Japanese street play was expected to fetch less than HK$4 million, but with both Sotheby’s and Christie’s experiencing record sales at their respective auctions of contemporary Chinese art, it seems the sky is the limit.

China’s contemporary art movement arose in the 1980s when artists began to express their views on traditional values and culture in the wake of the Cultural Revolution and the country’s rapid modernisation. While Xu died in 1953, decades before the official contemporary art movement began, Sotheby’s twice-yearly Contemporary Chinese Art auctions encompass artists and works spanning the entire 20th century, giving collectors a wider perspective on the development of Chinese art.

Of the true contemporary Chinese artists, it’s Zhang Xiaogang who is stealing most of the headlines with his giant family portraits and split-focus images from the Cultural Revolution era, and who set the world auction record in the true sense of his genre when his Tiananmen Square painting sold for $18 million at Christie’s Asian Contemporary Art auction last November.

Among Zhang’s peers is Yue Minjun, whose garishly coloured Laughing Men represent China's consumer culture, one of the central themes for contemporary artists, along with reflections on materialism, the loss of traditional values and the legacy of Mao Zedong.

Driving the boom
There are many factors driving the boom, including the establishment of the Dashanzi art district (often called Factory 798) in Beijing three years ago, but it’s the central themes of the contemporary Chinese art movement that lies at the heart of its international appeal.

“Most of the buyers are successful people who have made a lot of money and this is art that speaks of their own experience, what money they made and what is happening now,” says Sotheby’s Howard-Sneyd. “China is in the press everyday and is at the forefront of current events. It has an immediate appeal and is very approachable.”

Sotheby’s started its contemporary Chinese art auctions in Hong Kong in 2004 and, says Howard-Sneyd, the auction house was surprised at not just the local interest, but the international interest that followed.

“For a long time Chinese artists were not seen as comparable to those in the West, now they have equal status in the market,” says Christie’s Hong Kong Head of Sales for 20th Century Chinese Art and Asian Contemporary Art, Vinci Chang. “A contemporary artwork by a Western artist such as Damien Hurst goes for around HK$18 million (US$2.3 million) so you can see how comparable the prices are.”

In fact, according to artprice.com, Zhang outsold top contemporary artists including Jeff Koons and Damien Hirst at auctions last year, ranking 38th on a list of 500 artists.

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#56894 - 19 Jul 07 06:19 Re: stereotyping China [Re: riccardo]
riccardo Offline
Pujangga

Registered: 12 Oct 05
Posts: 2195
Loc: Jakarta
BREAKING THE BANK
Selected auction records in Chinese Contemporary Art


Xu Beihong
Put Down Your Whip
Price: HK$72,000,000
Sold at Sotheby’s Hong Kong Contemporary Chinese Art auction on 7 April 2007
**WORLD RECORD FOR ANY CHINESE PAINTING AT AUCTION**


Zhang Xiaogang
Tiananmen Square
Price: HK$18,040,000
Sold at Christie’s Hong Kong Asian Contemporary Art auction on 28 November 2006
**RECORD FOR THE ARTIST AT AUCTION**


Yue Minjun
Goldfish
Price: US$1,384,000/HK$10,795,200
Sold at Sotheby’s New York Contemporary Chinese Art auction on 21 March 2007
**RECORD FOR ARTIST AT AUCTION**


Leng Jun
Five Pointed Star
Price: US $1,216,000/HK$ 9,484,800
Sold at Sotheby’s New York Contemporary Chinese Art auction on 21 March 2007
**RECORD FOR ARTIST AT AUCTION**

Liu Ye
Sinking Ship
Price: HK$7,040,000
Sold at Sotheby’s Hong Kong Contemporary Chinese Art auction on 7 April 2007
**RECORD FOR ARTIST AT AUCTION**


Zeng Fanzhi
Mask 1999 No.3
Price: HK$6,280,000
Sold at Christie’s Hong Kong Asian Contemporary Art auction on 28 November 2006
**WORLD AUCTION RECORD FOR THE ARTIST**


Wang Guangyi
ROLEX
Price: HK$3,928,000
Sold at Christie’s Hong Kong Asian Contemporary Art auction on 28 May 2006
**WORLD AUCTION RECORD FOR THE ARTIST**


Cai Guo Qiang
Drawing for Man, Eagle and Eye in the Sky: Eagles Watching Man-Kite
Price: HK$6,952,000
Sold at Christie’s Hong Kong Asian Contemporary Art auction on 28 May 2006
**WORLD AUCTION RECORD FOR THE ARTIST**

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#56895 - 19 Jul 07 06:28 Re: stereotyping China [Re: riccardo]
Dilli Offline
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Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Trucks are not required


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#56896 - 19 Jul 07 06:29 Re: stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Cheap Season Tickets for Football Stadiums


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#56897 - 19 Jul 07 06:30 Re: stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
No Pots and Pans required


Attachments
2340-4.jpg


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#56898 - 19 Jul 07 06:31 Re: stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Sleep Deprivation is never a problem!


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#56899 - 19 Jul 07 06:33 Re: stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Informal Sitting arrangements


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#56900 - 19 Jul 07 06:35 Re: stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Environmentally friendly dust control


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2343-49-1.jpg


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#56901 - 19 Jul 07 06:36 Re: stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Cheap Sex


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#56902 - 19 Jul 07 06:38 Re: stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Classy Toilet Facilities


Attachments
2345-310-1.jpg


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#56903 - 19 Jul 07 06:42 Re: stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
Dilli Offline
Pujangga Besar

Registered: 26 Feb 06
Posts: 8044
Loc: Nearest Bar
Cost effective vehicle repairs


Attachments
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#56929 - 19 Jul 07 09:31 Re: stereotyping China [Re: Dilli]
emmajkt Offline
Member*

Registered: 02 Mar 07
Posts: 698
Loc: here, there and everywhere
Informative stuff here, Great pics too dilli!
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