Posted by Joel Martinsen on Sunday, August 27, 2006 at 12:52 AM
When the family is well-regulated, the state will be rightly governed, and the whole land will be harmonious
It's getting harder and harder to escape the conclusion that SARFT just doesn't like TV. The latest reports from inside the Administration reveal that it is planning to clean up extramarital affairs in family dramas.
Yesterday's Mirror had the scoop, and provided a brief summary of SARFT's war on primetime:
SARFT has also recently banned foreign cartoons from certain evening hours, leaving viewers with a choice between domestic animation and revolutionary classics for their prime-time viewing.
According to an "informed industry source" cited in the Mirror article, SARFT is seeking to limit domestic dramas and place controls on their content, since too many of them have as plot elements a third party breaking up a marriage — the incredibly popular A Chinese Style Divorce, for example. This is "incompatible with the general environment for constructing a harmonious society, and will have a definite influence on society."
SARFT may also be planning to put limits on period farces like My Own Swordsman (武林外传) and those Zhu Bajie comedies, possibly because they share similarities of attitude with the online spoof videos the agency condemned earlier this month.
An opinion piece in today's Yangcheng Evening News sees value in broadcasting these immoral shows:
A commentary on Rednet that has been republished on a number of other portals sees the SARFT's summer prohibitions as the symptoms of a larger cultural and legal problem:
For an opposing perspective, here's an excerpt from an opinion piece in Shanghai Daily in which the writer is responding to the new SARFT rules on online videos:
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The Eurasian Face : Blacksmith Books, a publishing house in Hong Kong, is behind The Eurasian Face, a collection of photographs by Kirsteen Zimmern. Below is an excerpt from the series:
Big in China: An adapted excerpt from Big In China: My Unlikely Adventures Raising A Family, Playing The Blues and Becoming A Star in China, just published this month. Author Alan Paul tells the story of arriving in Beijing as a trailing spouse, starting a blues band, raising kids and trying to make sense of China.
Pallavi Aiyar's Chinese Whiskers: Pallavi Aiyar's first novel, Chinese Whiskers, a modern fable set in contemporary Beijing, will be published in January 2011. Aiyar currently lives in Brussels where she writes about Europe for the Business Standard. Below she gives permissions for an excerpt.
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+ Korean history doesn't fly on Chinese TV screens (2007.09): SARFT puts the kibbosh on Korean historical dramas.
+ Religion and government in an uneasy mix (2008.03): Phoenix Weekly (凤凰周刊) article from October, 2007, on government influence on religious practice in Tibet.
+ David Moser on Mao impersonators (2004.10): I first became aware of this phenomenon in 1992 when I turned on a Beijing TV variety show and was jolted by the sight of "Mao Zedong" and "Zhou Enlai" playing a game of ping pong. They both gave short, rousing speeches, and then were reverently interviewed by the emcee, who thanked them profusely for taking time off from their governmental duties to appear on the show.