Thanks to Dan Eady for a long review (and a fair summary) of the new edition of China’s Forgotten People.
The first edition had a very different reception in SCMP – that reviewer lamented that ‘the book does little to bring to life the exotic and enchanting characteristics of Xinjiang’. Though that was by a different reviewer, the difference in tone seems indicative of a shift in the global perception of Xinjiang, and perhaps also of the very different situation in Hong Kong now compared to that in 2015.
I wrote a piece for Apollo magazine about the recent destruction of shrines and mosques in Xinjiang.
What’s often lacking in news stories about Xinjiang is context, especially of the region’s complex history, so I’m glad that the excellent ABC radio program Rear Vision focuses this week on the wider issues behind the concentration camps. The program features contributions from myself, the historian David Brophy, the Wall Street Journal correspondent Josh Chin, and Omer Kanat of the World Uyghur Congress. You can listen/download here.
I wrote about the arrest of the Kazakh activist Serikzhan Bilash and the links between the Uyghur and Kazakh communities in the region for the LRB Blog.
Bloomsbury will be publishing a new, updated edition of China’s Forgotten People in June. The update consists of a foreword and afterword that deals with the camps in Xinjiang – their origins and their rationale, what we know and what we don’t, and why this is such a terrible new chapter in the Chinese Communist Party’s attempt to control and shape the region and its peoples.
I wrote about the camps in Xinjiang for Zocalo Public Square.
Glad to see Xinjiang getting coverage for Francophone audiences on National Radio in Canada- and I’m grateful to them for featuring my book China’s Forgotten People (segment starts around 13h 9m) https://ici.radio-canada.ca/premiere/emissions/plus-on-est-de-fous-plus-on-lit/episodes/427176/audio-fil-du-lundi-18-fevrier-2019 …
I wrote about the arrest of the photographer Lu Guang in Xinjiang for Frieze magazine.
I went on BBC Breakfast this morning to talk briefly about the Xinjiang camps.
I spoke briefly about the Xinjiang camps on the BBC Today program. They got my name wrong. Oh well! You can listen here
I spoke about the legalisation (and thus official acknowledgement of) the re-education camps in Xinjiang on the BBC last night. Segment begins at 24.49.
I spoke about Xinjiang and Theresa May’s visit to China on The World Tonight on Radio 4 last night. That segment starts at 12:52.
I wrote a piece on David Brophy’s remarkable book for the Times Literary Supplement.
There’s an interesting piece on urbanisation in Xinjiang by Wade Shepard at The Diplomat (in which I am quoted). He writes about Horgos, the border town near Yining, where I used to live, and the speed with which Horgos is being transformed into a municipality. In general terms, it seems that the development of this much vaunted New Silk Road is centered around the north of Xinjiang, and thus runs the risk of further widening the economic gap between it and the south of the region (which is where most Uyghurs live).
There’s a Q and A about China’s Forgotten People in the new issue of Time Out Shanghai.
Some thoughtful reviews from Kerry Brown at Open Democracy, Tom Miller at The Spectator, and Jonathan Mirsky at Literary Review (click here for pdfs LR CFP 1 LR CFP 2). Thanks to these experienced China commentators for taking the time to write such considered pieces.
Thanks also to Ian Johnson of the New York Times for his incisive Q and A on the book.
My latest piece on the LRB Blog about China’s dubious claims about the extent and nature of ‘terrorism’ in Xinjiang.
I’ll be taking part in an event on the Silk Road at Asia House on May 14. More details here.
My piece on China’s recent claims that fighters from Xinjiang are training with IS is up at Vice News.
I’ll be talking at Westminster University, London, on March 19th about how Western and Chinese media tends to represent the Xinjiang issue in different yet equally distorting ways – details here.
I attempt to make sense of the horrible killings in Kunming on the LRB Blog
Ilham Tohti, the respected Uyghur economist, has been charged with separatism and faces ten years to life in prison in China. It’s the kind of thing that’s a reminder of how China’s judicial and political system hasn’t made the same kind of progress as its economy. I wrote about the case on the LRB Blog.
I went back to Kashgar, in southern Xinjiang, in September last year for the first time in 13 years. In 2000 it was a place that I was sorry to leave; I didn’t feel the same this time. More words and pictures about that can be found at Unmapped, a new travel magazine that’s publishing the kinds of pieces that are in short supply: well-written, insightful reports from places that the news agenda doesn’t seem concerned about.
There was an explosion in Tiananmen Square last week. On the LRB Blog I write about why it wasn’t terrorism.