Early October 2014, I participated in a panel discussion about an exhibition of documentary photographs of Baohan Street in Guangzhou, a place that I have visited on several research stints in China. It was held at the Global South Studies Center Cologne (GSSC), University of Cologne.
Sitting on a plane from sparkling Dubai to beautiful Mumbai, I kept contemplating how caste manifests itself in such public-private social spaces. I wondered whether names of passengers were examined and passengers ‘arranged’ or ‘served’ accordingly. I wondered how they ‘classified’ me, if at all. We were all treated in the same manner, but caste relations can be very subtle. Which caste do African migrants in India belong to?
One week ago, South Africa was forced to cancel the 14th World Peace Summit, which had been scheduled to start October 13 in Cape Town, after nine former Nobel Peace Laureates and 11 affiliated organizations announced they would boycott the conference.
To help its passengers shorten their time, Beijing Subway screens endless video clips. Most of them are rather boring commercials, some promote the Chinese dream (the latest catch phrase of Chinese politics). Sometimes even people, who are interested in the so-called new Asian-African interactions, can find something interesting in the videos.
China is dramatically increasing its media presence in the world. China Central Television (CCTV) established regional media hubs in Africa as well as in the United States and is currently planning another regional center in Europe. Xinhua News Agency is opening new offices and launched its own 24-hour television news; while the English language paper China Daily is publishing regional editions in different parts of the world as well.