“The Man of the Future”: Truths, Rumors, and the Perils of China-Watching

| July 7th, 2011

The current flurry of rumors concerning the demise of former president Jiang Zemin are a clear reminder that while today’s China is light years away from the rigid isolation of the Cultural Revolution, the world of elite politics remains nearly as opaque and mysterious as it was in the 1970s. As the current generation of China-watchers attempt to peer over the walls of Zhongnanhai as it prepares for next year’s leadership transition, they employ many of the same methods and […]Read more…

College Entrance Exam is a test for parents, too

| June 20th, 2011

Earlier this month, more than ten million Chinese high school students sat for the two-day national college entrance examination, or gaokao. Every year the country’s attention is captivated by the ordeal of these students whose entire education up to this point has been solely geared to preparing them for this exam, and which in turn will decide not only their college placement, but will likely determine their future career prospects as well.

Yet behind each child immersed in study stands his […]Read more…