19 Ways of Looking at Wang Wei by Eliot Weinberger, Octavio Paz

By Eliot Weinberger, Octavio Paz

Nineteen assorted translations of a unmarried poem with reviews on each one model by means of Eliot Weinberger and creation contributed via Octavio Paz.

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2. It may well be, in fact, by the middle of 2006, that even the brief interlude created by September 11 has run its course; in the last six months my local newspaper, the Los Angeles Times, has been full of articles wondering about the impending economic threat posed by China, as well as its diplomatic differences from the United States on such issues as Iran’s access to nuclear weapons. ” New York Times, “In Candor from China, Efforts to Ease Anxiety,” April 17, 2006. 3. Rice on foreign policy in the new Bush administration: “The United States under President George W.

By continually reading Chineseness as premodern, these writers establish a racial and cultural opposition between China and the West that can never be overcome; any technological or cultural change will always be superficial, simply laid on top of an eternally fixed Chinese identity. S. government wants. By separating the Chinese fully from modernity, these writers are able to read that difference not as a difference of opinion (which would then require discussion, convincing, or possibly simply an agreement to disagree about how people should live) but as an ontological, racial difference that makes the Chinese into aliens.

Technologies are cultural, in that they express all sorts of cultureshaping values and exert a number of forces on lived experience (the telephone, for instance, reshapes the way people think of communication and distance just as much in China as it does in Europe and the United States). Presumably this is true of submarines and electricity as well. At the same time, however, once one sees that electricity and submarines are able to exist in China and not substantially interfere with whatever one thinks of as “Chineseness,” one ought to be able to at least begin to wonder whether that might be true of hamburgers or deconstruction as well.

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