Posts Tagged ‘protests’


七月 3, 2019


the hong kong lego façade has been breached
the glass was shattered
sorry lego
we have tons of your bricks
our kids love you
we liked legoland in denmark
you were kind of slow with ai weiwei
or were you
his lego face of ilham tohti
is powerful
the hong kong lego façade has been breached

MW July 2nd, 2019









六月 4, 2018



I don’t know but I’ve been told,
I am 52 years old.

I was young when it happened.
We were all young, those who remember.
Those who died, they stay young.
Even he who died last year.

I was in Taiwan.
I am from Austria.
Many things happened 29 years ago.

I hate Beijing Tian’anmen.
Everyone hates that stupid song,
everyone who knows.

Actually that place is history.
It’s a cool city.
I remember riding my bicycle
through the gate in 2008.

In the late 1990s people flew kites on the square.

They demolished the South Gate,
the whole quarter.
The city, most of it.
Every city.

Still, you could ride through the gate.
Now even the subway entrance is blocked.

Back then the world saw the true face.
Now security shows its true face,
so everyone knows.
Does it help?

MW June 4th, 2018



大家叫 MARX,就一个音节。




Dreamt of Marx last night.
Everyone was Marx.
Young and old, male and female, all the same name.
On the street people hailed each other “Marx!”
I guess the dream was in German or English.
Just one name, only one syllable.
Nothing else.
Everyone of us throughout the city.
Not sure which city actually.
No me, only us.
In this dream it was very natural.

MW May 2018



der mond ist aufgegangen
der mond ist heut orange
geht über kränen auf
der park ist voll von kindern
es ist bald 10 am abend
doch morgen schlafen alle lang

denn morgen ist fronleichnam
ein feiertag ein großer
mit großer prozession
und jedenfalls viel ruhe
und weniger getue
und auch ein bisschen sommer schon

wir stolzen menschenkinder
sind eitel arme sünder
und wissen gar nicht viel
wir spinnen luftgespinste
und suchen viele künste
und kommen weiter von dem ziel

mond lass dein heil uns schauen
auf nichts vergänglichs trauen
nicht eitelkeit uns freun
lass uns einfältig werden
und vor dir hier auf erden
wie kinder frech und fröhlich sein

so legt euch denn ihr brüder
in gottes namen nieder
kalt ist der abendhauch
wir wollen alle schlafen
denn wir sind müde affen
und unsre kranken nachbarn auch

MW Mai 2018


三月 8, 2017
Feminist Group Applauded, Criticized After Censorship

Feminist Group Applauded, Criticized After Censorship

Feminist Group’s Weibo Shuttered

Feminist Group’s Weibo Shuttered







“Busy Hating” in German.

(English version and explanations see China Change)


Morgens hass ich die USA,
zu Mittag Südkorea,
am Abend Japan.
Ich bin sehr beschäftigt mit Taiwan und Singapur.
Dann träum ich von Vietnam und den Philippinen.

Montag gegen Südkorea,
Dienstag gegen Japan,
Mittwoch USA,
Donnerstag unabhängiges Taiwan,
Freitag aufmüpfiges Hongkong,
Samstag undankbares Tibet,
Sonntag fromme Uighuren.

Wir haben viel Arbeit.
Alles Andere muss warten!


Übersetzt von MW im März 2017

See also this statement:


九月 8, 2016







Shen Haobo

came to Tian’anmen Square.
Surprised to find
nobody there.
Then I remembered
it was June 3rd.
A few police cars
peacefully parked.
Weeding tools resting
when work is done.

Tr. MW, September 2016

JUNE 4TH, 2014

六月 5, 2014



There were demonstrations in Vienna yesterday. I went during the day, but in the evening I was too tired. It was important in the evening, of course. They let far-right organizations march through the city, canvass at universities and so on, aggressively protected by police. Anti-fascist protesters have a hard stand. Police brutality is fatal sometimes. A young subway sprayer was beaten into a coma by Wiener Linien public transport security and police in early April, and has not woken up since then. In the evening of June 3rd, the East Asian Studies department at Vienna university held an open discussion. The most interesting thing was three young female students who had interviewed Fang Zheng 方政 via Skype. He was that athlete whose legs were severed by a tank when he helped a female student get out of the way in the morning of June 4th, 1989. He became a disabled athlete and set records. But they were always worried he would get too much publicity, so he was barred from some international events. He kept quiet during the Olympics in 2008, so that he would get his passport and could leave in 2009. Lives in San Francisco, chairs an exile organization there. That presentation was great. The North Korea specialist made some interesting remarks, and in the end a Chinese professor finally made a brief personal statement. Vienna University vice president Prof. Weigelin-Schwiedrzik asked the students present what they would have done, if they would have stayed on the square under the threat of martial law. It is a romantic question – the protests in 1989 are always romanticized, as if it had been one great student party. Students took the lead, but the most important thing about any nationwide protest is popular participation, workers and many common people, not elites. Same with Taiwan’s recent Sunflower Movement. Anyway, I raised my hand and said I could not know what I would have done. Several people said so. I said I was in Taiwan in 1989, they also had demonstrations, with different aims. The February 28th, 1947 massacre in Taiwan had not yet been acknowledged. What I should have said when I raised my hand was that everyone present should think about taking part in the anti-fascist protests the next day in Vienna, on June 4th, 2014.

Tiananmen Square



一月 24, 2012

Photo by Ronnie Niedermeyer

那時候在北京很多民房可以看到支持那時候流行的氣功教會、詛咒那时候的主席和执政黨的塗鴉。不只是小區裡牆上樓梯裡等等,也有三環的地下通道等地方。那時候北京還禁止放炮,但越來越多人不管,包括警察。給他們這樣一點的自由就是很好的活門。2000 war auch ein Drachenjahr. In Beijing hat es im Juni zum ersten Mal richtig geregnet, die Sandstürme waren dementsprechend. Jiang Zemin lief am Neujahrstag mit einer Fackel das brandneue Milleniumsmonument hinauf. An vielen Hauswänden, in Stiegenhäusern, aber auch in Unterführungen unter den größten Straßen gab es Graffiti gegen Jiang und die KP, und für Falungong. Feuerwerk in der Stadt war noch nicht wieder erlaubt, wurde aber immer mehr toleriert. Die Blockfrauen fuhren mit einem VW-Bus durch den Hof und kämpften mit einem Megaphon gegen die Knaller. Sie wurden völlig eingenebelt und kamen kaum durch. Aber vielleicht war das 2002, 2000 wohnten wir noch in einem kleineren Hof.
中國大陸繼續肯定一些西方19世紀的經濟和價值,肯定不是理想的價值。歐洲媒體都比較自由,都報到去年阿拉伯之春、“我們是99%”等等運動都很興奮。但他們有一些基本的限制。2009年奧地利警察故意射死一個14歲的孩子,另一個孩子重傷。他們在超級市場偷東西,沒有武器。奧地利大部分報刊都站在警察的一邊。最後法官雖然判斷追獵和從後面殺死孩子做得不對,但還是讓的那位射手繼續工作,持續帶槍。在經濟方面,奧地利媒體和社會體制同樣顯得很限制。2012年一月份美國 Standard & Poor (名字直接翻譯就是“標準和貧窮”)財政顧問組織判定歐洲很多國家不是最好的投資對象。像他們那樣的財政顧問集團還有Moody’s、Finch等等,都在美國。他們在2011年一直說歐洲很多國家,包括最大的和最富裕的經濟當投資對象都不如美國。同時在無論什麼地區的媒體,無論美國、歐洲、亞洲等等都沒聽說過美國經濟和財政很健康,比法國等等健康的道理。但歐洲各地還是都繼續跟美國財政顧問組織合作,很缺乏講體制問題的討論。
不願意討論自己社會的體制問題,所以每次因為阿拉伯之春、因為艾未未、劉賢斌,因為2011年12月和2011年一月份中國大陸判重刑的知識分子有或大或小一點的新聞,有的讀者也許一時很興奮,但總編輯每次很快都健忘。反正有經濟問題。MIT DEM KOPF DURCH DIE CHINESISCHE MAUER lautet der Titel der Ausgabe 62. Bitte Beiträge (Prosa, Lyrik, Drama, Essay, Foto, Grafik, Kunst) als Openoffice-Dokument (zur Not MS-DOC, maximal circa 10.000 Zeichen/Text) beziehungsweise *.JPG / *.TIFF per email an Wir können kein Honorar zahlen, die ausgewählten Autoren erhalten Belegexemplare. Das Copyright bliebt wie immer bei den Autoren. Einsendeschluss ist der 25.3.2012
跟你們說過,維也納文學雜誌 Wienzeile 在2012年春天有中華專輯。我們對中華文化涉及的所有地區的問題都感興趣,包括中國大陸和台灣的異族,等於不是漢人或不是漢語、不倡導國語的文化,也包括本人或家族從中國等地區來的,在世界各地生存的文化,只要在某種方面跟中華文化、歷史等等有關係的。德語題名為 Mit dem Kopf durch die Chinesische Mauer。直接翻譯就是人頭穿長城。低頭撞牆本來不是很健康的做法吧。但這幾年來無論中國大陸的官方或歐洲等地方的限制都沒辦法完全活埋社會的一些討論,包括所謂新媒體,像中國的微博。我們編輯這份雜誌請大家提供自己做的文章和圖案。投稿可以用中文或英語,我們會譯成德語。目前我們不能給稿酬,但每位作者會收到幾分雜誌。

維馬丁 敬上

Ai Weiwei

四月 8, 2011

Interesting. Please click on the Global Times link (also at the bottom), read the article and then click on the “Related” links under the article. These other stories add a lot of perspective, through earlier and mostly positive Global Times coverage of Ai Weiwei’s various projects and activities. I remember seeing Lian Chan 連戰 on TV in Taiwan in the 1980s*. He was prime minister then, I think. Kept saying “Yi fa bali! 依法辦理”. To be handled according to law. Everything should be handled according to law. This was already after martial law 戒嚴 was lifted 解嚴 in 1987. But many opposition figures and activists were still in prison (they had a prison island, “Green Island” 綠島, for example) or barred from returning to Taiwan. Martial law had been lifted, but many laws from the One-Party-rule were still on the books, and actually still enforced (See the poem “After Martial Law Was Lifted – In Commemoration of Lifting Martial Law in Taiwan on July 15th, 1987” by Li Qin’an [李勤岸 – 解嚴以後 – 一九八七年七月十五日臺灣解嚴紀念] Now which law is the Global Times article referring to? Let US bake our cake of social progress and eat it at the same time, and have it OUR way, and let nobody in the world talk too much about it, because this is the LAW. Right?
Very interesting how they keep on contradicting themselves. “Was said to have been detained”. Was he, or was he not? Maybe just kidnapped? “It was reported his departure procedures were incomplete.” Interesting. So which law will not concede before Ai Weiwei? Which departure procedures law? No, it’s THE LAW. Shoot first, deflect questions later.* Happens in every society.



Global Times (4/6/11):
Law will not concede before maverick
法律不会为特立独行者弯曲_评论_环球网:, most discussed on @dujuan99/china ( See also China Geeks (4/8/11).

魏京生: 从艾未未事件看中国法制的演变

Geremie Barme on Ai Qing and Ai Weiwei

Nude photos and other incriminating activities of Ai Weiwei

It’s really very simple, and even seems a bit tedious when you think about it. Yet I go on watching these shows. What else would you have me look at, dear readers?

Salman Rushdie

Who is afraid of Ai Weiwei?(Language Log)

貝嶺:裸體公民艾未未 (China Times, also in Ming Pao)

Naked Citizen Ai Weiwei (Ming Pao, Hong Kong, May 2011)

Photo by Katharina Hesse

There are many relations of this case to other arrests like the one on April 8 of Zhao Lianhai 趙連海, speaker for parents whose children had been poisoned by tainted milk.
Zhao had been released on parole after beeing imprisoned for “disturbing the peace”. But on April 6, he uplaoded a moving video, holding his child and trying to make a public statement at home.


*This blog entry started out as a post on the MCLC email listserv. A lively discussion ensued. Andrew Field pointed out that Lu Xun 魯迅 and many other modern writers were banned in Taiwan under martial law. James Dew, Tim Wong, Kirk Denton, Christopher Lupke and others remembered how foreign students read these writers in a special room at Taiwan University, and how Chen Yingzhen 陳映真 connected to Lu Xun and the May Fourth tradition. Chen was imprisoned for “pro-communist activities”. Tai Jingnong 台静农 (1903~1990), a well-known writer and painter in Taiwan, was originally a student of Lu Xun.

* Jerome Cohen uses a similar expression in the South China Morning Post (4/27/11): “Second, it also seems clear that, whatever the evidence being assembled about tax evasion or other charges, this was not the motivation for Ai’s detention. This case started out on a ‘detain first and look for justification later’ basis.”

Chinese rock music related to Ai Weiwei:, via Jeroen Groenewegen

南都社论: 躺在时间的河流上怀念他们

Liu Xiaobo worldwide reading

三月 23, 2011

The world-wide reading on March 20 was a big success. In Leipzig, as far as I heard. In Vienna, it was interesting. Instructive. Great experts. Reporters Without Borders. Amnesty International. Writers in Prison, with Helmuth Niederle from the Austrian PEN. Professors from the East Asia departments of Vienna and Bratislava. Poetry. Protesters in China, in prison. Women, peasants, workers. In spirit. In between. Over 90 cities in 33 countries on six continents. At least. Gerhard Ruiss and Bei Ling read in Leipzig. At the book fair.

Herta Müller’s speech on March 20 in Berlin was published in the FAZ on March 26. Very good speech. She has read the biography. Maybe a little too fast. The labour camp didn’t come immediately after the first prison term. He wrote the confession in prison at the end of 1990 and went free in January 1991. Everything else is correct. The episode with his father, who wanted him to give in. And the labour camp. She does take a side, very emphatically. The last sentence is the most important one. “More and more supporters of Charter 08 are disappearing in jail.” Liu Xianbin was sentenced to 10 years a few days ago. Altogether he has been sentenced for more than 25 years since 1989. His most serious crime seems to have been one of the founders of an opposition party at the end of the 1990s.  Liu Xianbin’s wife Chen Mingxian chronicles her life in the last 20 years in this account:

There is also a good piece in the NY Times by Geng He, wife of the human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng:

Teng Biao has disappeared, Ran Yunfei has been detained for a while, and now Liu Xianbin has been sentenced to 10 years, to name but a few. The situation is very clear. No progress, just the opposite.

MuseumsQuartier Wien, Raum D / quartier21 - Photo by Pernille Koldbech Fich

There will be a reading with Bei Ling, poet and publisher, in Vienna at the same location on April 12.

Egypt and China

二月 3, 2011

A sign in Cairo

Chinese sign in Cairo

Any discussion on forbidden topics is worthwhile. And this topic seems to be at least semi-forbidden on websites easily accessible in China. Social unrest is widespread and continues to grow. China is built on denial. Not on the Nile. There is no river in Beijing. I wonder if there has been any precipitation by now since fall. It was pretty bad in 2000, I remember. They dug huge canals all the way from around Nanjing and Wuhan to bring water for Beijing and Tianjin. Imagine a new canal dug through a city center, 100 meter down. That’s what I saw somewhere in Henan in 2007 or so. Maybe most people don’t take part in uprisings yet. As anywhere, people are concerned with their family and their livelihood. Not with the government. Unless something bad enough happens, you don’t need to take action. Maybe you’ll discuss something, like Premier Wen visiting the Beijing Petition Bureau. They do seem to feel the need to address some problems publicly, and not only through suppression. They continue to suppress many words, such as eleven or civil society. Actually I’m not sure if eleven is still sensitive, but it wouldn’t surprise me, since a certain dissident who was sentenced to eleven years on Dec. 25, 2009, got a lot of publicity lately. Any comparison of China with countries in volatile situations is worthwhile. It’s important not to end up in the Nile, or in denial. That’s a nice little joke I heard from our friend Liam, very nice if you’re far away, I guess. To a very large extent, China is built on denial. The same could be said about other societies, like Austria. But maybe at least there is less denial now than 30 or 40 or 50 years ago. In Austria, maybe. It’s a dialectical process, maybe. There is still a lot of denial. But in China denial is at the base of the system. In private talk, if you’re a friend, people will tell you what they went through in the 1950s, -60s, -70s and so on, or what they are doing now, even if it’s against official policy. But is there enough public discussion of past and present grievances and problems? This is already very close to the question Adam (see below) has put in his post. Adam is right, saying that China is very special and very stable and so on often gets very obnoxious. I am very wary of any big-time supportive international collaboration with institutions in China. Just look at what happened at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2009. The organizers cooperated with China’s GAPP, the general administration of pressure and prodding to toe the government line in publishing. The Ministry of Truth. Maybe they had to, to stage a China-themed fair. And the ensuing scandal was good, except for a few officials. Any kind of discussion is good, any kind of publicity, if there is a lot of denial. I wonder if the Robert Bosch trust fund and other Western sources of funding for cooperation with China learned anything. In December there was a discussion in Germany and Austria, after an article in the Sueddeutsche Zeitung suggested that Chinese Studies institutions staid away from the topic of the Nobel Peace Prize award for a Chinese dissident. Maybe some of them do, if the people in charge are too closely affiliated with the Confucius Institutes situated right inside the Chinese Studies department, as it is usually the case now. In Vienna, this wasn’t a problem. There was a big discussion on January 11 at the Sinology department of the East Asian Institute, one of the most engaged and open events at Vienna University in a while, probably. Bei Ling, author of the Liu Xiaobo biography was there, reading and talking to an enthusiastic crowd, in a very interesting discussion about the roles of intellectuals and public institutions. Professor Weigelin was fully in her element. Prof. Findeisen and Dr. Wemheuer contributed important points on literature and society. Who would have thought that in January, people around the world would spontaneously think of 1989? At least for me it feels like back then, very sudden change sweeping through several countries. So of course there are many comparisons. It is nice to live in exciting times, and important not to end up in the Nile. May they have peace and better times in Egypt soon!

Shanghai Scrap (2/1/11):

Comparing Egypt and China ­ wrong questions, meaningless answers

Sign in Arabic and Chinese

From Language Log

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