15 April 2012

Link of the day: "Worse than the Cultural Revolution"

There is a lot of good stuff published over at the New York Review of Books (NYRB). No wonder one of my friends spoke so highly of them.

On the NYRB blog, there was a nice interview with Tian Qing, head of the Chinese Intangible Cultural Heritage Protection Center. He spoke at length about the tension between modernization and preserving culture. He made a good point (that is not brought up enough) that Western society had 200 years to modernize, something that China has been trying to replicate in a mere thirty years. Moreover, China is a national one billion people. That brings all kinds of complications. Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea modernized pretty well, but they were so much smaller.

I suppose it's inevitable that modernization would happen, but it's sad to see China's heritage disappearing. They held out for a few thousand years; should I think that's pretty good?

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