China Beat Archive



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June 21, 2008 in The China Beat


Copyright June 21, 2008. Used by permission.


There’s a virtual version of the game tag, in which bloggers who get a cyber-tap on the shoulder have to reveal five things people don’t know about them on their blog, and then can call on five people to do the same. We enjoy it when bloggers we enjoy reading, such as Rebecca MacKinnon, get tagged and we get to learn things like, in her case, which Disney cartoon she was “obsessed” with as a child. Despite the title of this post, though, you won’t get those sorts of personal revelations here. So, I’m afraid you’ll end up frustrated if you are wondering which person who has contributed to China Beat once recorded an album called “Here Comes the Elephants” and which of us has done concerts as part of the band the Black Spoons (hint: they are different China Beatniks, just both have musical backgrounds), as we won’t be naming names. And when it comes to the various Irvine-based bloggers involved with this site, we won’t tell you which spends the most time at the lovely beaches that lie a 15 minute drive or so from campus in one direction, nor which has an annual pass to the world’s most famous theme park that’s located about a 20 minute drive (up to 40+ in rush hour) from campus in the other direction. What we’ll be focusing on instead are the things we do, outside of writing for this blog, that relate to its mission of trying to make sense of and share ideas about China’s past and present.

For example, when not blogging for China Beat, many contributors write for online and print periodicals. For instance, the special issue of National Geographicdiscussed in an earlier posting had articles by Peter Hessler and Leslie T. Chang, while Angilee Shah recently had a piece in Asian Geographic. Several of us who have reviewed books for China Beat have recently done the same for magazines. Kate Merkel-Hess recently had a review of a Zhou Enlai biography appear in theTimes Literary Supplement (or TLS, for short), while Jeff Wasserstrom just told readers of Newsweek International what he liked about Michael Meyer’s account of Beijing hutong life, and Nicole Barnes has been contributing assessments ofvarious China books to Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, which ran her take on a new book about the Rape of Nanjing in May. And several China Beatniks, including Pierre Fuller, have written pieces for newspapers, probably none more frequently than recent guest post contributor Graham Earnshaw, whose 1980s Daily Telegraph reports are getting a second lease on life just now in a great Danwei series.