Articles on Mao Zedong

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A Buddhist monk releases birds, symbolizing the spirits of the victims of the 2004 tsunami. This Chinese tradition of analogy was taken up by the demonstrators in Hong Kong. Samantha Sin/AFP

Hong Kong: when the citizen-birds rebel

Hong Kong protesters deeply identify with nature, a reference to the current environmental crisis but also a fluid conception of collective action that is inscribed in ancient Chinese tradition.
U.S. President Donald Trump, seen here in a February 2018 photo, has a beef with trade deficits. Yet running trade deficits with Asian countries has long spurred American spending and consumption. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Donald Trump’s misguided aversion to trade deficits

Donald Trump's obsession with trade deficits, and his subsequent wielding of the tariff big guns, is the absolute wrong approach for the U.S. economy.
Clive Hamilton paints a picture of China’s unrelenting determination not only to control those within the country, but also to dominate the world using whatever means at its disposal. AAP/Wang Zhou

Book review – Clive Hamilton’s Silent Invasion: China’s Influence in Australia

Clive Hamilton’s book is perhaps a useful reminder that we must not be naïve about our relationship with China, but his prescription is the wrong direction for tackling the genuine issues he raises.
Chinese President Xi Jinping claps while addressing the media in October 2017 as he introduces new members of the Politburo Standing Committee at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

Xi Jinping’s chilling grab for absolute power in China

Any naive hopes for a peaceful evolution to democracy in China are shattered against the reality that it's now a one-man dictatorship. What does it mean for the West?
The controversial $12-billion sale of light armoured vehicles to Saudi Arabia has embroiled Justin Trudeau’s government in controversy. The vehicle in question is shown here at a news conference at a General Dynamics facility in London, Ont., in 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Spowart

Canada’s checkered history of arms sales to human rights violators

Canada used to be more careful about selling arms to countries that practised human rights violations. What happened?
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau walks with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang during a welcoming ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China in December 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Canada drops charade of progressive trade with China

Canada’s "progressive trade agenda" with China might have died in the Great Hall of the People earlier this month. But there's now an opportunity for a serious reconsideration of the relationship.
Chinese President Xi Jinping reviews the guard of honour on a state visit to Zimbabwe. Reuters/Philimon Bulawayo

Why the focus on China’s role in Mugabe’s fall missed the bigger picture

A narrow interest in whether Beijing actively pushed for Mugabe’s fall is based on the assumption that the China-Africa relationship is an isolated phenomenon.
The Red Detachment of Women was one of just eight model theatrical pieces approved for performance during the Cultural Revolution. Mark Gambino

The Red Detachment of Women marches forward – but to where?

The staging in Melbourne of this classic of the Cultural Revolution has attracted controversy. And amid Bermuda shorts and weapons galore, this political ballet has contemporary resonances.
A paramilitary policeman stands guard under a giant portrait of Chairman Mao Zedong at the Tiananmen gate in Beijing. Damir Sagolj/Reuters

Culture, free speech and celebrating Mao downunder

In China, art is called upon to promote the Communist Party's agenda. But the staging of concerts here commemorating Mao Zedong's death poses thorny questions about artistic freedom.
Bruce Beresford’s expansive art collection grew from flea-markets. Frank Brangwyn (1867-1956). Exodus (Study for a mural). Photo: Jenni Carter

From the Queen of Sheba to Jeffrey Smart: how art shaped Bruce Beresford

Bruce Beresford can't draw, but he has wept in an art gallery. A lifelong delight in a wide range of art – from paintings to opera – has influenced his craft from a young age.

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