… “China-Albtraum der Deutschen Welle”, Frankfurt 2012, by Li Qi (or Qi Li, if you put the family name second). Can’t tell yet if it’s a great book, but the first 100 pages (of more than 400) contain a chronology of the Zhang Danhong case which goes far beyond what I’ve seen anywhere else so far.
There’s bitterness in this book – that needs to be said. It’s not written by someone who can, or wants to, put himself above the story, because it’s his story. After the first 100 pages, it’s mostly his personal story.
But it seems to be the most exhaustive account of Deutsche Welle’s Chinese department yet. And given that this is about Deutsche Welle – Germany’s foreign broadcaster -, the way this story goes should be a matter of public interest. It would take a press which would be willing to look at these stories from all sides, and which would be influential enough to get answers from Deutsche Welle itself.
That’s missing so far. Once the Zhang Danhong affair was over (if it ever really was “over”), there wasn’t much media interest anymore. But I’m getting the impression that Qi Li’s book – despite the shortcomings mentioned above, or maybe even because of them – could become a great document of German-Chinese relations, in the long run.
Might write a review later on, before the end of this month. But before that, there’s still a lot to read, and to reflect upon.
» Advocacy Journalism not the Problem, Jan 26, 2012