Issue No. 178 | Nov. 8, 2019
Dedicated to the development of the future stewards of U.S.-China relations
China's Grand Strategy
Today's reading is Andrew Erickson's latest article in War on the Rocks, " Make China Great Again: Xi's Truly Grand Strategy ."

Erickson's excellent piece references several Chinese policies, goals and strategies. We've linked to some of the corresponding Chinese-language sources below:

俗语 from Xi Jinping's Speeches
àn jiāo xiǎn tān

Meaning: Hidden reefs and dangerous shallows; hidden dangers or disasters

Original (used as "险滩暗礁"): "长江、尼罗河、亚马孙河、多瑙河昼夜不息、奔腾向前,尽管会出现一些回头浪,尽管会遇到很多险滩暗礁,但大江大河奔腾向前的势头是谁也阻挡不了的。"

Xi Jinping used this  suyu during his speech at the opening of the Second China International Import Expo on November 5th, 2019.

Fourth Plenum Review
Jude Blanchette, AMS board member and expert in China studies at the  Center for Strategic and International Studies , was quoted in Asia Times giving a helpful intro to the Fourth Plenum:
“Taking place nearly 600 days after previous plenary session – the longest gap since the start of the post-Mao era – the meeting comes amidst mounting internal and external challenges for the Party’s leadership, including unrest in Hong Kong, the upcoming election in Taiwan, growing hostility with the United States, and an economy growing at the slowest pace in three decades."

Reports abound on the contents of the Fourth Plenum. But as we always say at AMS, the best thing to do is read the original documents for yourself. Here are the 3 key documents: the communique 公报 , the decision 决定 , and the explanation 说明.

Finally, as a bonus reading, here is an opinion piece by Minxin Pei commenting on what the plenum did (and did not) address.
Literal Translations, Amazing Illustrations
And now, a break from politics. Take a look at some cool artwork by Frankie Huang, recently featured in Radii China and the BBC . Her illustrations showcase clever wordplay in Chinese and, according to Radii, "Highlight the humor of overly-literal Chinese translations."

For example: " 忧郁鱿鱼 AKA the Sadsquid worries that nobody could say their name right in Mandarin, and reminds you to practice the tones: "yōuyù yóuyú"."

Frankie Huang has also written for SupChina, Foreign Policy, Caixin, What’s on Weibo.

You can see Frankie Huang's work on Instagram and show support with caffeine or at her online shop .
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