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The Battle for Memory in China

With Pulitzer Prize-winning author Ian Johnson.

Newspaper headlines describe a China that is uniformly bleak: a slowing economy, tensions with the West and a surveillance state that seems to have crushed all opposing voices. But in his new book, Sparks: China’s Underground Historians and Their Battle for the Future, Ian Johnson presents a more nuanced picture of Xi Jinping’s China, one where a vibrant movement of underground filmmakers, magazine publishers and authors challenge the Communist Party on its most important source of legitimacy: its control of history.

Join us as Johnson presents his book and introduces us to China’s counter-history movement, which echoes struggles in our own countries for a more equitable and just accounting of the past.

Ian Johnson is a Pulitzer Prize-winning writer, researcher and senior fellow for China studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. His new book, Sparks: China’s Underground Historians and their Battle for the Future, shows how – despite the best efforts of Xi Jinping’s surveillance state – a nationwide movement has coalesced to challenge the Communist Party on its most hallowed ground: its control of history.

Register for this event at this link.

This event is part of the Knowledge Production in East Asia series at YCAR.

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Feb 07 2024


2:30 pm - 4:00 pm


Room 280N, Second Floor, York Lanes, Keele Campus


York Centre for Asian Research
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