The Democracy Network

Tiananmen 25 years on - Murong Xuecun

Murong Xuecun talks about his memories of the events of Tiananmen Square.

In this video, which commemorates the 25th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, Murong Xuecun shares his personal memories of the events that took place on June 4, 1989. He also speaks about the ways in which the memories of the protest have lived on.

Murong Xuecun is one of contemporary China’s most famous authors. In 2002, when his novel Chengdu Please Forget Me Tonight took China by storm, Murong gave up his job, and devoted himself to writing full-time. After declining to join the China Writers’ Society, he became widely respected as an independent writer. He is contributing opinion writer for The International New York Times. In his latest commentary I, Too, Will Stand Up for Tiananmen he accuses Beijing of being in denial for 25 years, ‘and now President Xi Jinping’s administration appears more paranoid than its predecessors’. Evidence of this paranoia is the arrest, on May 6, of three friends of Murong. Their guilt: taking part in a home gathering to commemorate the events of Tiananmen Square. Murong writes: ‘at the gathering one of those present read out an essay I wrote about the Tiananmen crackdown […] reciting such an essay at a private gathering can violate China’s laws. By the government’s logic, I too have committed the crime of “picking quarrels and provoking trouble.” I am going to turn myself in.’

In commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the Tiananmen uprising, this is a contribution to a public event organised by the Sydney Democracy Network, in cooperation with the Australian Institute of International Affairs (NSW branch) and the China Democracy Forum.

Become a friend of The Conversation with a tax-deductible contribution today.