China Beat Archive



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September 20, 2009 in The China Beat


Copyright September 20, 2009. Used by permission.


Last spring, China Beat ran an interview with Geremie Barmé concerning a lawsuit brought against the Long Bow Group for its film The Gate of Heavenly Peace. Software company Jenzabar, Inc., its CEO Robert Maginn, Jr., and its President Chai Ling filed suit against Long Bow for defamation and copyright infringement, charges related to content on the documentary’s website.

News stories about the lawsuit can be found at the Boston Globe and the Times of London; it was also the subject of a “Letter from China” by Evan Osnos at theNew Yorker. Last month, producers of Frontline, the PBS documentary program that originally aired Gate of Heavenly Peace, posted a letter supporting Long Bowin its fight against the lawsuit.

In addition to Long Bow productions, Frontline has also provided a venue for several other China-related films, which are accompanied by excellent web resources for classroom use. Tank Man, shown in 2006, can be viewed in full online, and a teacher’s guide is available to download from the website. In June, a podcast on “Tiananmen 20 Years Later” was added to the site; it features commentary by Evan Osnos and Frontline producer Antony Thomas.

We’ve previously discussed two 2008 Frontline programs, Young and Restless in China and Jesus in China, which are well worth viewing if you haven’t taken a look at them yet. China in the Red aired in 2003, and follows ten subjects as they navigate China’s constantly changing society (a format similar to that of Young and Restless, which makes the two a good “compare and contrast” classroom pairing). In addition to teacher’s guides, the websites for both programs also offer extensive readings lists for viewers who wish to learn more about the topics under discussion. All of these programs (except Gate of Heavenly Peace) can be viewed in their entirety online, and some can be purchased on DVD as well.