Tag Archives: James Cleverly

Fṛm Đ Obzrvr: The London art student whose Chinese political slogan mural caused a storm

Wang Hanzheng said the mural was a ‘silent reminder of the oppression of thought’ in China. Photograph: David Levene/The Guardian
Wañ Hanźeñ sd ɖ ḿṛl wz a ‘sîḷnt rmîndr v ɖ opreśn v ʈt’ in Ćîna. Foṭgraf: Devid Lvīn/Ɖ Gardịn

Ɖ Lundn artstydnt huz Ćînīz p’liticl-slogn ḿṛl cōzd a storm

Transcription of an Observer article of 30 August 2023

Royl Colij v Art stydnt Wañ Hanźeñ ʈt a Bric Len wōl wz betr ɖn a gaḷri

Geneva Abdul
Jnīva Abdŭl

Wnzde, 30 Ōġst 2023

Ẃn Wañ Hanźeñ, a Ćînīz stydnt at ɖ Royl Colij v Art, atndd a grajụtśo in a wérhǎs on Bric Len in īst Lundn in Jlî, h faund ɖ spes crǎdd, unimajiṇtiv n unfit fr prizntñ art.

It wz wɖ ɖs in mînd ɖt at 11pm wn nît rlịr ɖs munʈ Wañ n a tīm v 22 uɖrz pentd a Ćînīz p’liticl slogn in bold red caṛctrz alñ a nirbî wōl strećñ nirli 100 mītrz.

Ɖ artwrc – ẃć spelt ǎt ɖ Ćînīz guvnmnt’s “soṣ́list corvalyz”, includñ ɖ wrdz pṛspeṛti, dmocṛsi n frīdm – wz dzînd t b a “sîḷnt rmîndr v ɖ opreśn v ʈt, presfrīdm n fri spīć ɖt z stl rampnt in Ćîna in 2023”, ɖ artists sd.

It pṛvoct uɖrz t gṛfīti ovr it wɖ refṛnsz t ɖ Tiaṇnmn Sqer maṣcr in 1989, n ɖ frezz “Fri Tîwan”, “Fri T’bét” n “Fri Uigrz”. Bt in a muv dscrîbd bî sm az îronicli ttaḷterịn, Tǎr Hamlits caunsl swiftli pentd ovr ɖ wōl’z mes v slognz n iśùd Wañ a £50 fîn.

“Cntmprri art z ol abt dǎtñ evrʈñ n hvñ a rbełs spirit,” sd ɖ 27-yir-old, hu olso gz bî ɖ nem Yi Ćua. In ɖt sns ɖ wrc – cnsrnd wɖ dmocṛsi, fri spīć n ɖ poḷrîzd îdioḷjiz v Ćînīz n YC culćrz – wz īvn mor s’xesfl fr him ɖn xpctd.

Activist Lydia L sprays an anti-Beijing slogan on the wall. Photograph: snapshot/Future Image/M James/Shutterstock
Acṭvist Lidia L sprez an antīBêźñ slogn on ɖ wōl. Foṭgraf: snapśot/Fyćr Imij/M Jemz/Śuṭstoc

Ɖ gṛfīti rspondñ t ɖ wrc startd apirñ wɖn aurz, smʈñ ɖt Wañ sd h welcmd. Bt it wz ɖ baclaś onlîn ɖt alarmd him. H hd a toṛnt v deʈ̓rets on sośl mīdia n hiz faṃli rsivd ʈreṭnñ cōlz at ɖer hom in Ćîna’z īstn Źeijañ provins.

“Ppl mcñ deʈ̓rets n xpresñ objx́nz ʈru vayḷnt mīnz, ɖt’s xacli śowñ ɖr’z a lūphoul in ɖ sistm v dmocṛsi alawñ ttaḷterịn forsz t xplôt ɖs lūphoul,” h sd, spīcñ in Manḍrin. “Y canot solv ɖ probḷm v ttaḷtẹrịnizm ʈru ttaḷterịn mīnz.”Ɖ wrc hz cm at a momnt ẃn YC-Ćîna rleśnz r ptiklrli strend. Last munʈ, Hoñ Coñ oʈoṛtiz ofrd a bǎnti fr ɖ arest v et oṿsìz acṭvists – ʈri v hūm r livñ in Britn – amd incrisñ cnsrnz v trnznaśnl opreśn. Ɖ foṛn secṛtri, Jemz Cleṿli, z traṿlñ t Bêźñ on Wnzde fr mītñz, in a bid t rny p’liticl daylog btwn ɖ tū neśnz.

“Art z riyli abt hǎ t rflect ẃt’s in ɖ public n gv ɖ public a spes t dscus n rflect on ɖer ǒn,” sd Wañ, hu intrpṛts ɖ slogn az poẓtiv n az reprizntñ ẃt śd b yṇvrsl valyz, nt jst ɖoz ɖ Ćînīz Coḿnist parti clemz t hold.

Az an artist, Wañ sz h z inṭrestd in xplorñ ɖ crosnaśnl pspctiv on hǎ ɖ YC n Ćîna difr îdịlojicli, n ẃr ɖe c’lîd.

In a prīvịs wrc, h plest fîv matṛsz in Pic̣dili Src̣s, oḟrñ t pe wilñ ptisipnts a minimm wej t lî dǎn in ɖ hart v sntṛl Lundn – smʈñ h b’livz wd’nt b axptd in Ćîna. Bfr muvñ t Lundn a yir ago, h peid duznz v Ćînīz farmrz t b rcordd jumpñ lîc frogz in a fīld.

Fr Wañ, ɖ setñ v hiz lêtist artwrc in Bric Len z simbolic v ɖ YC’z “fri” n “ceotic” culćr ɖt standz in starc contrast t Ćînīz ssayti, ẃr sć gṛfīti dz nt xist.

Ɖ caunsl’z dsiźn t pent ovr ɖ slogn, n ɖ gṛfīti ɖt foloud, riḍklz ɖ “wstn cnspśn” v fri spīć n dmocṛsi, h sd. “It’s olso part v ɖ frīdm v spīć in ɖ YC’z valyz. Mcñ ɖs dsiźn t pent it ovr z riyli śowñ ɖ hipocṛsi v ɖ wst.”

Tower Hamlets council painted over the artwork but the slogans continued. Photograph: Carl Court/Getty Images
Tǎr Hamlits caunsl pentd ovr ɖ artwrc bt ɖ slognz cntinyd. Foṭgraf: Carl Cort/Geti Iṃjz

In ɖ wīcs sins, Wañ sz h hz traid t prṣvir ʈru ɖ criṭsizm n h hz bn most hartnd bî an anoniṃs letr snt t ɖ art colij in hiz dfns.

Ẃn asct f ɖ wrc hd bn misintrpṛtd, Wañ sd mni ppl d’nt rflect proprli on art n ɖt tù mć v ɖ foc̣s hd bn on him rɖr ɖn ɖ wrc itslf.“Ɖ oʈr z olrdi ded aftr ɖ wrc z publiśt,” sd Wañ, a refṛns t ɖ Frenć raitr Roland Barthes.

“I c’nt cntrol it, I’m jst ɖr fr ɖ wrc t hapn.”

Instroduction to Ñspel

"House by the Railroad," Edward Hopper, 1925

Fṛm Đ Obzrvr: China wants to erase Tibet. Will Britain stay quiet about this crime?

China is accused of the ‘forced assimilation’ of 1 million Tibetan children. Photograph: Héctor Retamal/AFP/Getty Images
Ćîna z akzd v ɖ ‘forst asiṃleśn’ v 1 miłn T’bétn ćildṛn. Foṭgraf: Héctor Retamal/AFP/Geti Iṃjz

Ćîna wonts t irez T’bét. Wl Britn ste qayt abt ɖs crîm?

Transcription of an Observer article of 27 August 2023

Ɖ YS hz tecn a public stand ovr Ćîna’z crîmz agnst hymaṇti. In Bêźñ ɖs wīc, ɖ YC foṛn secṛtri śd d ɖ sem n śem hiz hosts

Simon Tisdall
Sîmn Tizdl

Súnde, 27 Ōġst 2023

Last wīc’s YS sañśnñ v Ćînīz ofiślz involvd in Bêźñ’z ongwñ criminl eḟts t irez T’bét az a sepṛt p’liticl, eʈnic, culćṛl, linḡstic n rlijs entti śoud America at its bst.

Fy uɖr guvnmnts gv a hūt. Most crevnli lc ɖ uɖr we.

Sáitñ a rīsnt YN rport on ɖ “forst asiṃleśn” v wn miłn T’bétn ćildṛn ordrd intu Manḍrin-lanḡj stet bōrdñscūlz far fṛm ɖer homz n faṃliz, Anṭni Blincn, ɖ YS secṛtri v stet, dmandd Ćîna stop trayñ t iradcet T’bét’s dstñt îdntti.

“W rj PRĆ [Ppl’z Rpublic v Ćîna] oʈoṛtiz t end ɖ coŕśn v T’bétn ćildṛn intu guvnmnt-run bōrdñscūlz n t sīs rpresiv asiṃleśnpoḷsiz in T’bét n uɖr parts v ɖ PRĆ,” Blincn sd – apaṛntli rfŕñ t Śinjañ, Inr Mongoła n Hoñ Coñ, ẃr ɖ rît t slf-dtrṃneśn z olso dnaid.

Ɖ fact America’z sīńr dipḷmat wz redi t tec a public, prínsipld stand wl infyriet n puzl Bêźñ, ẃć hz okpaid T’bét sins 1950. Prezidnt Ći Jinpñ n hiz caḷs Coḿnist cādraz d’nt d prínsiplz. Fr ɖm, altruizm in foṛn poḷsi z an ełn consept.

Ɖ Bîdn admiṇstreśn z trayñ t pać p roci rleśnz wɖ Ćîna. So it’s ol ɖ mor impresiv ɖt it fīlz stroñli inuf abt Bêźñ’z sstemic abysz v deṃcratic n hymn rîts t spīc ǎt, rgardlis v poṣbl neġtiv rīṗcuśnz.

It’s dubli rfreśñ aftr a wīc ẃn a hrd v midl-rancñ, eʈicli ćalinjd, mostli undeṃcratic guvnmnts kǎ-taud t Ći at ɖ Brics sumit in Sǎʈ Africa. Ɖe sīm t ʈnc Ćîna wl bild a fẹrr, justr wrld. R ɖz līdrz nîīv, c’rupt, or mirli stypid?

Jemz Clevrli, foṛn ministr v anɖr miḍlñ pǎr, sz h, tù, wl rêz hymn-rîts cnsrnz ẃn h vizits Bêźñ ɖs wīc. Britiś ministrz olwz se ɖt. Ɖen nʈñ ćenjz. Ẃ z h gwñ t Ćîna at ol? Apaṛntli it’s t mnten daylog (az f wn jenyinli xistd). H clemz ɖ YC hz “ejnsi”, cn xrt inflụns.

Ɖs z dluźnl. Ɖ Ćînīz parti bhīmoʈ, spayñ, bŭliyñ n hacñ, bìtñ p pṛtstrz in Manćestr, torćñ ɖ Hoñ Coñ jônt decḷreśn, bacñ niofasist Vladīmir Pūtin, bsijñ deṃcratic Tîwan n plotñ an oʈoṛterịn “ny wrld ordr” z simpli nt liṣnñ, ispeṣ́li nǎ Yṛp n Britn no longr spīc az wn.

Ći gvz nt a fig fr ɖ YC’z Ćîna poḷsi – nt līst bcz ɖ Cnsrṿtivz canot agri wn. Bt ɖ YS z a difṛnt matr. Phps Blincn’z demarche wl gv him pōz. T’bét z anɖr denjṛs flaśpônt amñ tù mni. N ẃt’s haṗnñ ɖr z wn hyj crîm agnst hymaṇti.

Ɖ mas abysz v T’bétn ćildṛn – it’s hard t imajin ɖ trōma ɖe mst sufr – z part v a dlibṛt scīm t oltr T’bét’s deṃgrafics, intrenć ɖ dominns v mjoṛti Han Ćînīz ppl n culćr, n s’pres T’bétn Bŭdist rlijs practis, lanḡj n mīdia.

Gyal Lo, a T’bétn edyceśnl sośioḷjist, tld ɖ Fri T’bét preśrgrūp: “Ɖ Ćînīz guvnmnt z tẹrñ faṃliz apart n forsñ ɖz vulnṛbl ćildṛn t bcm strenjrz t ɖer ǒn T’bétn culćr.”

A secnd YN inqîri ɖs yir rportd ɖt hundṛdz v ʈǎzndz v T’bétnz hv bn rmuvd fṛm ɖer homz n wrcplesz in rṛl eriaz n asînd t lo-scil “voceśnl trenñ” n lo-peid implômnt, ɖr-bî unḍmainñ îdntti n tṛdiśnl cḿṇtiz.

Campenrz pṛvîd evidns v ńmṛs xesz, includñ arbitrri dtnśn, torćr, sx́l crîmz, dis’piṛnsz n svir puniśmnt v dsnt. In a sns, T’bét z in prṃnnt locdǎn. Pasports t līv r vrć̣li un’bteṇbl. Foṛn mīdia r dnaid entri. Ćîna wonts it fgotn.

Vijilz, marćz n sit-inz stl tec ples, dspt hevi-handd paṛmilitri p’līsñ n ybiqiṭs sveḷns, n r yẓ́li pīsfl, Fri T’bét sz. “Hvr, ɖ Ćînīz oʈoṛtiz r growñ incrisñli intolṛnt … Mni [protests] r met wɖ a vayḷnt rspons”. In 2022, at līst ʈri T’bétans slf-iṃletd.

Ɖ YS Cmiśn on Inṭnaśnl Rlijs Frīdm olso wornz ɖt “ɖ Ćînīz guvnmnt’s cntrol n s’preśn v T’bétn Bdizm hz intnṣfaid, wɖ oʈoṛtiz rstrictñ T’bétans’ axes t rlijs saits, banñ rlijs gaɖ̇rñz, n dstroyñ saits n simblz.

“Muncs n nunz hv bn sbjctd t torćr in prizn, n T’bétans hv bn dtend fr rlijs activtiz oṇrñ ɖ Dalai Lāma [T’bét’s xîld spirićl līdr] or pzesñ hiz portrits,” ɖ cmiśn sd. Hymn Rîts Woć sz ɖ guvnmnt z olso cnductñ mas DNA c’lex́nz, t betr surveil ppl.

Ɖs c’laṃti cd sn tec an īvn darcr trn – ovr ɖ dspytd s’xeśn t ɖ 88-yir-old Dalai Lāma, fri T’bét’s Nobél pīsprîz-winñ fes t ɖ wrld. An uņemd mel ćîld, ɖ ʈrd most sīńr lāma n hed v ɖ feʈ in Mongoła, z rportidli in ɖ frem. Bt Bêźñ z vawñ t impoz its ǒn canddet.

Ɖt Ćîna z atmtñ t wîp c’lectiv meṃriz n cnsîn ɖ old T’bét t oblivịn z nt sirịsli dspytd (xpt bî Bêźñ’z lî-mśīnz). Ćîna argyz its ax́nz r bnîn, ɖt it hz invstd heṿli ɖr. Bt ɖt’s drivn bî its hungr fr naćṛl rzorsz. Az elsẃr, Ći’z obseśn wɖ cntrol, yṇforṃti n cnforṃti trumps ol.

Bî ignorñ Ćîna’z dêli flǎtñ v besic hymn dīsnsi n inṭnaśnl lw, guvnmnts arnd ɖ wrld r cmplisit in T’bét’s sîḷnt ireźr. Nn recgnîzz ɖ T’bétn ppl’z soṿrin rîts or ɖ T’bétn guvnmnt-in-xîl.

So hir’z a ćalinj fr Clevrli in Bêźñ. Ɖ Ćînīz, az yźl, wl tec litl or no notis v Britn’z vyz abt Ruśa, fer tred, s’kṛti n ɖ rest. So ẃ nt yz yr uɖ̇wz mīnñlis vizit t pubḷcli cndem Ćîna’z crîmz agnst hymaṇti in T’bét?

Yr hosts wd b angri. Ɖe wd srtnli b imbaṛst. Bt hu nz? Ɖe mt start trītñ T’bét, n Britn, wɖ a litl mor rspct.

Instroduction to Ñspel

"House by the Railroad," Edward Hopper, 1925