Contentious Friendship

It is over fourteen years since I suggested to Kevin Rudd that he use the expression zhengyou 諍友 in a speech he was to give at Peking University (PKU) in April 2008. Zhengyou means a friend or an adviser who dares give voice to unpleasant truths, one who offers discomforting opinions and counsels caution. The … more

May Fourth at One-hundred-and-One

The Fourth of May marks China’s annual National Youth Day 五四青年節. It is ostensibly a time to celebrate the enthusiasm and independent spirit of youth. It commemorates the progressive, anti-imperialist student activists who, in 1919, led a national movement to protest against the unfair treatment of the Republic of China at the Versailles Peace Conference. Every … more