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Alexander Davenport
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Entries by Alexander Davenport

Fair and Balanced? Lhasa Vs. Urumqi

(0) Comments | Posted July 20, 2009 | 10:23 AM

When violence rocked Lhasa in April 2008, the Western media had a field day. For weeks, American news outlets reported on the violence and the subsequent Chinese response. Despite the rather low death toll (19 people), political leaders across the Western political spectrum called for sanctions, an Olympic boycott, and...

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Getting Along with the Invaders: Bishkek Versus Kashgar

(2) Comments | Posted June 24, 2009 | 8:37 AM

Last week, the New York Times published an article on the relocation of the Uighur detainees from Guantanamo to the islands of Palau and Bermuda (a great deal considering the first batch of Uighurs who left Gitmo went to the slightly less glamorous Albania). The article roughly coincided with my...

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From China's Migrant Workers, Silence on Tiananmen

(0) Comments | Posted June 4, 2009 | 9:53 AM

While the Tiananmen anniversary reverberates across Western media, for the migrant worker community of China, the day will pass almost ignored. This is a rather surprising reality given the harsh conditions and the general disenfranchisement most migrant workers feel in regards to the political leadership of the country. But to...

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Misrepresenting Minorities in Shanghai's World Expo Publicity Push

(2) Comments | Posted May 1, 2009 | 4:25 AM

On April 28th, the New York Times released a poll showing a marked shift in perceptions of race relations in the United States. Of those polled, nearly 2/3 felt that race relations were on the right track, a dramatic improvement from before and a possible product of the thus far...

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Evolving Laws but Stagnant Realities for Shanghai's Migrants

(0) Comments | Posted March 31, 2009 | 12:05 PM

Not surprisingly, the existence of the 200,000 or so children of migrant workers living in Shanghai is far from easy. But the lives of children whose parents could not take them to the cities is oftentimes even more heart wrenching. The story of one girl in particular shows the struggle...

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Chinese Universities to Temporarily Expand to Fight Unemployment

(1) Comments | Posted February 26, 2009 | 3:04 PM

Faced with economic turmoil, China is tweaking domestic policy in some rather unexpected places to combat rising unemployment. A recent policy directed towards university students reveals the wide range of citizens affected by the economic crisis and the extent of the anxiety within the ruling party.

Numerous newspaper articles...

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Daft Punk'ed in Shanghai

(1) Comments | Posted February 11, 2009 | 5:47 PM

On Sunday, February 8, rumors emerged in the Shanghai expat community that the legendary French electro and house group Daft Punk was going to perform for the first time in China. A Facebook page boasted of a "secret" concert to be held on the following Friday. The catch was that...

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Baby Steps: Online Debate, Dissent, and Democracy

(4) Comments | Posted February 5, 2009 | 1:16 PM

Seconds after Wen Jiabao, China's popular Premier saw a Cambridge University student's shoe whiz by him, China's blogosphere exploded with opinions.

Indeed, China's blogosphere has become a popular release valve for the frustrations, joys, and sorrows of a nation of 1.3 billion people. While obviously access to the Internet...

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China Says "Zai Jian" to W.

(0) Comments | Posted January 27, 2009 | 5:30 PM

While Americans are pleased to be rid of former President Bush, China is not nearly as jubilant. As despised Bush was at home in recent years, he left a much less negative -- albeit more mixed -- legacy both among the rulers and people of the People's Republic.

W. came...

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Chinese Migrants Home for the Holidays, Perhaps Permanently this Year

(1) Comments | Posted January 7, 2009 | 12:41 PM

Across China, migrant workers are heading home. The annual ritual of returning to ancestral villages provides workers with what is usually their only opportunity to see family each year. Typically, the train stations and bus stations are clogged with migrant workers rushing from their last day of work to catch...

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Blagojevich and Beijing: Political Corruption in China and America

(0) Comments | Posted December 18, 2008 | 3:05 PM

Unless you've been living under a rock, it would be hard to avoid the whirlwind of scandal currently engulfing Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich. While his predicament is unique, political corruption is nothing novel in the US or China.

"All of the corrupt officials should be rounded up," exclaimed Mr....

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Crises, Bailouts, and Migrants

(0) Comments | Posted December 11, 2008 | 6:11 PM

As in every economic downturn, those at the margins of society often suffer the most. China is no exception. The brunt of the crisis is likely to be felt most acutely by the poorest and the most marginalized of Shanghai society -- its migrant workers.

Seeking jobs and a...

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Obama Brand Captures Chinese Youth

(1) Comments | Posted December 3, 2008 | 8:43 PM

To take a whiff of the political climate here in China, one needs only to flag a cab. Amidst the din of blaring Chinese radio news, pervasive cigarette smoke, and mind-spinning maneuvers in rush hour traffic, Chinese opinion of America is usually easily discernible. But not this year.

"Bush will...

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