Angry (and Misunderstood) China

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It was hard to miss the cover of last week’s “Angry China” edition on the Economist. It was also hard for a lot of people to accept. Paul Denlinger, at China Vortex blog, wrote a good piece on it, and noted:

    “The main gist of the article is that the Chinese government should be worried about the rising tide of Chinese nationalism because a great deal of the anger now directed at western policies and interests are in fact, anger at Chinese government policy. Handled the wrong way, this tide of Chinese nationalism could very well turn against the Chinese government, leading to unpredictable consequences.

    …This is a classic “bait-and-switch” argument. The anger directed at the west is in fact domestic Chinese anger at Chinese government policies, according to this thesis. This is a dismissal of any anger at the west as an argument completely without merit, and an attempt to shift all of the blame onto the Chinese government.

    …The real reason many Chinese are angry is not redirected anger at Chinese government policies, it is a genuine anger at a very biased and one-sided view about China which casts it as irresponsible, selfish, oppressive and wrong, and then throwing all Chinese citizens into the same basket.”

More balance and insight in (some of) the western media’s reporting of China would certainly be helpful. Chinese people, in China and abroad, take real offence at the way China is so often being portrayed (and their anger is sometimes barely concealed). China is a big and complex place, the issues are rarely black and white, and it is not wise to ignore the perspective (or feelings) of so many of the Chinese people.

For people who are doing business in China, it is important to be aware of how seriously Chinese people take these issues – and to read beyond the headlines.

See news source:

    Angry China
    The recent glimpses of a snarling China should scare the country’s government as much as the … Angry China. May 1st 2008 From The Economist print edition …
    The Economist

One Response to “Angry (and Misunderstood) China”

  1. Big Says:

    Chinese just don’t understand the press. The Chinese press are there to sing the praises of the revolution. The western press, therefore, must balance that with the otherside of the story. That is balance reporting. Both sides are presented, albeit by difference media.

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