"Il punto critico è focalizzato sulle isole che i cinesi chiamano Diaoyu e i giapponesi, che ne hanno il controllo, Senkaku. Sopra quelle isole e le acque circostanti nel novembre scorso la Cina ha stabilito una “Air defense identification zone”, che in pratica rivendica il controllo su parte dello spazio aereo giapponese e sudcoreano e sfida il trattato di mutua sicurezza tra America e Giappone. Come ha rilevato il sinologo Thorsten Pattberg, le isole rischiano di diventare un nido di kaiju, i mostri giapponesi come Godzilla, “metafore di conflitto, minacce esistenziali, apocalisse, incarnazioni delle guerre passate e future”." [IL FOGLIO.it] Pattberg quoted in:
Comment on "China to promote cultural soft power" (China Daily, Jan 1)
"The main challenge to the Chinese nation, as I see it, is not just to compete with the Western countries. The true challenge is to write China in "world history", and the only way to do it is by promoting Chinese terminology.
Western words for Chinese concepts have distorted the reality of things. China is not the first nation to rise in modern times, but the only one who doesn't have an alphabet. Although some Chinese concepts like yin and yang or kungfu have been adopted by Western writers; yet there seems to be no language policy on behalf of the Chinese that actively promotes the usage of Chinese terms abroad, certainly not in the sciences, nor in the humanities for that matter.
China should care about her "cultural property rights" like it cares about its lands and seas. Being the inventor of an idea, and the owner of its name, has great advantages. Let us make no mistake: The West today knows China only on Western terms; not on Chinese terms.
The Islamic world with its ayatollahs and imams, its bazaars and kebabs; and the Hindu world with its dharma and karma, its yoga and avatars and so on, are far ahead when it comes enriching English, which is still the international language. But the future global language, of course, is not today's English; it will have to adopt tens of thousands of non-American and non-European concepts.
We cannot make all Americans and Europeans learn the Chinese language; but what the Chinese can do is to inform the general public in the West about Chinese key concepts. To put "culture" in a more economic perspective: Nations should compete for their terminologies like they compete for everything else."
What's in a Chinese word? What to do with un-European ideas? When do we translate (Chinese words) and when not? How to influence the world on Chinese terms? Read this feature piece by PKU journalist ZHAO Ting - HERE.
"That’s a great strategy. I have seen with my own eyes how Western specialists compete for those prestigious posts of ‘Director of the Confucius Institute for X-land at the University of Y.’ It’s inevitably followed by a promotion at the University of Y from unknown professor to the rank of dean. It is because, when dealing with China, no one takes half measures. The perks are obvious: an affiliation with China’s Ministry of Education, easy access to visas, flights, conferences, and wining and dining. Naturally, the newly appointed deans will introduce their students to their CIs. It’s an authoritarian-style top-down approach."
Ten years ago a network of Confucius Institutes was founded as a soft power tool designed to promote Chinese culture and foster the country’s positive image on a global scale. However, it appears that the institution has not managed to fulfil its primary objective, and to an extent has become ‘westernized.’ BRICS Business Magazine interviewed academics closely familiar with the Confucius Institute system to explore the reasons behind this... (by Olga Sorokina)