Category Archives: Column

Transnationalism and 1930s British Cinema

By Na Ma, Ohio Univeristy

The forms and institutions of mainstream British cinema have a hegemonic function. In fact, British Cinema is generally considered to have successfully shaped “the national life” and achieved a “high degree of consensus” (Adamthwaite 288). This significant element undoubtedly characterizes British society and contributed to the remarkable stability of British society[1] during the 1930s, when the United Kingdom, like most other countries in the world, was shaken by economic depression, but which had also experienced several labor turmoil in the mid 1920s.
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Comparing Jewish Americans and Asian Americans

By S. B. Woo, President, 80-20 Educational Foundation

Introduction: 80-20 Initiative, the Asian American political action committee, isdevoted to advance civil rights of Asian Americans the second half of the article)
CA Assemblyman Ted Liew, speaking at our 2008 Endorsement Convention
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Modular Innovation and China’s Opportunities

By Xue Zhaofeng , speech at US-China Hi-Tech Summit, Boston 2015

I’m pleased to give some remarks on behalf of Peking University Business School’s (BiMBA) “Modular Innovation and China’s Opportunities” delegation. Our members are mostly from the EMBA alumni of Peking University Business School (BIMBA). All of them are excellent leaders from the investment and industry fields. Our trip to the United States is to search for the origins of innovation, and to explore new technologies, new business models, and new business opportunities.
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Did Mao Say “Better to Let Half of the People Die”?

By Xujun Eberlein

Nearly two years ago, when I translated Yang Jisheng’s response to Dikötter’s strange comments on Tombstone, I said I was intensely interested to find out whether Mao really said “It is better to let half of the people die so that the other half can eat their fill,” and if he did, in what context. I received a couple of clues, but none provided the complete context, and I have been left wondering since. I even sent an email to Yang Jisheng asking if he knew about this Mao quote, but did not hear back – perhaps the email address I got from a journalist friend was no longer valid.
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General Lee and the Forgotten History of the Last Battles of China’s Civil War

By Dr. Ted Lee, translated by Eric Wu,

Born in 1902 at the Licun Village, Yinzhuang Town in Lingbao County of Henan Province, Major General Lee Xuezheng graduated from the 5th Advanced Program of the Republic of China Military Academy. His father’s name was Lee Yingtian, and his mother’s maiden name was Lu. His family was quite prosperous. Being the only child in his family, Lee always exercised filial piety. He had three knuckles on his left pinkie instead of two, which was abnormal compared to others. His parents introduced him to some Kungfu masters, letting him learn and practice Chinese Martial Arts, so that no one could bully him.

Lee graduated from the ninth Province High School in Shanzhou. Later he worked as a lecturer at the first Lingbao County Elementary Schools. Seeing the rampant banditry and the horrible chaos that had occurred while the people in his home town were suffering from poverty, he decided to join the army in order to eliminate the bandits. In 1928, he walked to Kaifeng, the capital city of Henan Province, carrying his luggage. Then he was appointed the mayor of the Haozhen District by the province to settle the trouble of banditry in that most terrible area. In 1930, he became the commander of the self-defensive militia, during which he was nearly murdered three times. Due to his contribution to suppressing the bandits, he was promoted as the commander of bandit suppression of the New Seventh County in Yongmian, Luwen, Shanling in the western Henan Province. By the end of 1931, Lee’s militia had been reorganized into the Independent 454th Regiment by General Zhang Fang of the 20th Army in the National Revolutionary Army (NRA) at the Town of Ouchi in Mianchi County. Lee was appointed the commander of this regiment. Later he was promoted to the 227th Brigade in the 76th Division as the commander, participating in the banditry-suppressing campaigns repeatedly.
Picture above: Lee as the commander of the 67th Division (in the middle of the back row), Lin Weichou as the commander of the 62nd Army (right in the front row), taken between 1947 and 1948 in Tianjin.
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Hillarynomics = Socialism?

By Sun Chenghao, assistant research fellow, Institute of American Studies at China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations

Hillary Clinton is seeking the Democrat Party’s nomination for US President in 2016. She unveiled her economic plan on July 13 at the New School in New York City. To the surprise of no one, there was nothing impressive in the speech. Nevertheless despite stumbling on the campaign trail, she could still win the White House. Yet, she will just be the female version of Obama, making promises of ‘hope and change,’ but never delivering on them. She is claiming that if elected, she would resolve the rising income inequality gap, which millions of Americans care about, although she lives in a huge mansion and her neighbors are Wall Street bankers. Clinton called it, the “defining economic challenge of our time”. A report released by the Brookings Institution in March 2015 concluded that from 2002 to 2013, the incomes of most households in the U.S. stagnated or declined. The median U.S. household earned $51,939 in 2013, 9 percent drop from $56,900 in 1999. Yes, the income inequality gap has widened under a Democrat Party president in the White House.
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An American Teacher’s Advice to Chinese Students on Learning English

By Jennifer Rose Nelson

My time in Hangzhou is drawing to a close, and I want to extend my gratitude generally to the kind people of this city, and specifically to the more than 400 HFLS students I had the pleasure of teaching this past semester. I bow to your studious, curious natures and credit you with revitalizing my passion for education. Many of you are working towards studying or working in English-speaking communities, and now that gaokao is over and final exams are nearly upon us, I am certain that I know what you are thinking as summer vacation approaches: how can I use all of this glorious free time to improve my English? Fortunately, I’m here to offer you some parting advice on how to improve your already-impressive command of my native language.
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A System Engineering Professsor’s View on The Greek Economic Crisis

By Larry Ho, Gordon McKay Professor of Systems Engineering, Emeritus, Harvard University

The current problem facing Greece and the Eurozone has been dominating the news lately. The reports people sees in newspaper and broadcasts make the problem overly complex, difficult to understand and resolve. As a citizen of the US, this is my own simplified view:
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Department of Education Has Let Asian-American Communities Down Again

By Organizing Committee, Asian American Coalition

Short Hills, New Jersey, July 8, 2015, — We are very disappointed to learn that the Office for Civil Rights (OCR), U.S. Department of Education has recently dismissed our Administrative Complaint against Harvard University filed on May 15, 2015. Even though our Complaint presented overwhelming evidences indicating that Harvard University has been engaged in continuous and systemic discriminatory practices against Asian-American applicants, OCR chose to dismiss our Complaint citing a procedural ground. The Department of Education has clearly let Asian-American communities down.
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When Did WWII Start and How Long Did It Last?

By Eric Wu,

As we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII this year, many people are wondering when WWII did start? Answers to this question many depend on which ocean you are looking at.
This 1942 USPS stamp commemorates the five-year anniversary of China’s resistance against Japanese invasion(file photo).
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General Chen Cheng — WWII Hero Who Defended the Free China

By Eric Wu,

Yangtze River and Yellow River are the two longest and most famous rivers in China. They also played vital roles in China’s War of Resistance during WWII. The 1938 Yellow River Flood was created by the Nationalist Government in central China in an attempt to halt the rapid advance of Japanese forces. An estimated 800,000 people in Henan, Anhui, and Jiangsu provinces were drowned. The strategy worked to some degree, and Japanese troops, whose initial plan was to occupy the whole China in three months, were forced to move slowly along the Yangtze River from east to west toward Chongqing, the wartime capital of free China.

In the mid-August 1940, General Chen Cheng deployed five army groups in the sixth war zone, which consisted of 400 thousand troops, to Enshi in Hubei Province, guarding the entrance on the east of Chongqing. Subsequent to the falling of Nanjing and Wuhan, the Japanese Army kept concentrating its main force to break into the China’s wartime capital. In Hunan and Hubei Provinces, which were located on the way to Chongqing, flames of the war had never been put out. The Chinese Army in the sixth war zone had to defend against not only the Japanese Army that was moving to the west, but also another group of Japanese intruders who attempted to break into Sichuan Province along the Yangtze River.
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My Father’s Soccer Jerseys

By Chase Richter, Student in the Advanced Chinese Class, Boston College

I slowly looked through my childhood closet. I saw old toys, old books and childhood clothes, but I was only looking for a comfortable T-shirt. Suddenly I saw a bunch of soccer jerseys, and in that moment I remembered an important part of my childhood that I had forgotten. When I was growing up, my Dad would travel around the world, from East to West. The business trips were not that long, usually from two to three weeks. Every country that he visited he would buy a soccer jersey for me. As I looked at these jerseys, I realized they represented my father’s eternal support.
My father and I at a rugby game last summer.
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Red Thread — My Stories of Adopting Two Daughters from China

(Note: Ms. Taylor delivered this speech about her new book Red Thread at the Yiwen Club in Nowton, Mass. on June 7, 2015)

By Virginia Ross Taylor

Thank you, Zeyang, for inviting me, and thanks to all of you for coming today to hear about The Red Thread, or Hong Si Xian. I am especially grateful to Harry Chen, whose essential roles in this book process have included translator and agent. The families of Zeyang Wang and Harry Chen have been very important to my family for more than a decade.
Ms. Taylor (right) and Xiaoyang Chen, president of Yiwen Club, pose for a picture(photos provided to
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Studying at M.I.T. During WWII

(Note: Prof. Lee graduated from Tsinghua University in 1940. Tsinghua University was relocated to Kunming in Southern China after Japanese troops started full-scale invasion to China on July 7, 1937. In the summer of 1942, he flow from Kunming to India with the help of the Flying Tigers, and then took a long boat ride to New York City. After completing his master’s and PhD studies in just two and half years, Prof. Lee later became a full professor at M.I.T. and started two companies successfully. This article is from his autobiography From Tsinghua to M.I.T., soon to be published by Boston Bilingual Media and Publishing Inc.)

By Shih-Ying Lee

I arrived in Cambridge in early October 1942 and immediately registered at M.I.T. Since I was rather late to register, there was no space in the dormitories for graduate students. Most of my classmates were foreign students from South America, Turkey, China and other countries. Most American students below age 30 were drafted to fight in WWII.
M.I.T. Chinese Students Club, 1942. Prof. Lee was in the front row, 2nd from left.
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