Sunday, November 26, 2006

China indeed

I am kind of lazy or maybe more a friend of solitude than I sometimes like to admit. But this morning, this Sunday morning I decided to do different. I think that it is time that I write again a bit about my stay here in Wuxi. I am sorry if I bore or disappoint you with my stories, I really try to keep it interesting though ;).

China is, as most of you know, a postmodernist’s dream. Sometimes I feel like being on a ship sailing to an unknown destination on a stormy winter’s day. The captain is lost and the stand-in orders the crew to sail full speed ahead. Where to? Under the banner of harmony we sail through hollow terms like neo-liberalism, post communism and proletarianism into something what has yet to be discovered as “socialism with Chinese characteristics”. The sea takes us to unknown heights, while the wind sings us into deep depths. Some fall from the boat into the water, never to be found again. The strong survive and call for the remaining rest to hang on and peddle faster. “Almost there, almost there”, they shout. “Almost, where?”

China is fascinating. Not from the perspective of its ancient roots or its traditional culture. At least that is not the sole reason, not for me. My reason for coming to China was to be part of the tornado that is going through the country. I sometimes feel like a disaster tourist, the kind of person that you see along the other side of the highway when there was a car accident. However, of course I am not sure (yet) whether China’s development is a disaster. After all, I am a lousy and stinky foreigner. What do I know? I am here to observe and prepare my further investigation.

I started networking to increase my chances of receiving PhD opportunities. China is “hot” at the moment, so I should have a fair chance of receiving a place in a recognized institution. Fortunately, I receive a lot of help from a sociology professor here in Wuxi and my old supervisor in Manchester. It’s good to hear that you are on the right track sometimes.

I am also busy studying Chinese. Don’t ask me to say anything in Chinese, as I am purely interested in writing Mandarin. Again, my interest in the Chinese language is purely theoretical, I’m afraid. I am fascinated with the complex nature of the pictograms and the (sometimes) incomprehensible logic of the compound nouns. This may sounds boring to some of you, sorry. My cultural awareness is not vested in the “Middle Kingdom”, but is vastly grounded in the social traditions and history of Europe, Russia and the Middle East. China is so far away from occidental rationality that it is often impossible to understand where they hid the oriental version of Chinese logic. However, there is no truth without fantasy and fantasy is the key to comprehension. All I need is a bit more time.

I wish you all the best and hope to hear from you soon!

Baci, kus, Kuss, bises, besos, kiss,


Ps. For pictures check: (ctrl C/ ctrl V)