A specter is haunting China
Why the case of a Chinese law professor matters: In this piece for the NYR Daily, I tell the story of Xu Zhangrun, a Chinese law professor who has published a series of remarkable essays criticizing the government.
That elicited a predictable government backlash, but what makes his case really special is the outpouring of support he's received from most public intellectuals in China. What his case highlights is that this year, the 100th anniversary of the May 4th Movement, Chinese are still searching for a key demand of that momentous uprising: "Mr. Democracy."
Note 10 days later: This has been one of my most-read articles of the past year, with my original Tweet retweeted more than 140 times and the article already ranking as one of the NYRB's best-read blog pieces.