Pronouncements(March 2021)
March 1 2021
by Gregory J. Hugh, Publisher – CEO, China Insight, Inc.
With a handful of snowstorms travelling through the country over the past few weeks, it may not feel like spring is coming anytime soon. But as we enter the month of March, the spring equinox isn't too far behind. According to the Old Farmer's Almanac, spring equinox in 2021 falls on Sat., March 20, at 5:37 a.m. This will mark the astronomical first day of spring in the Northern Hemisphere.
Asian American Unity Coalition (AAUC)
March 1 2021 According to the Asian American Unity Coalition (AAUC) Preamble: Asian Americans shall either win equal citizenship UNITED or suffer discrimination separately. To aspire to live as equals in a free market system like the U.S.A. where we represent one of the smallest minorities, we must UNITE to acquire sufficient strength to fight off discrimination
committee100Study_202103
March 1 2021
[NEW YORK, Feb. 8, 2021]
– Committee of 100 (C100), the nonprofit leadership organization of Chinese Americans in business, government, academia, healthcare, and the arts announced a landmark study on the historic contributions of Chinese Americans to the fabric of American society.
2 Physicists 202103
March 1 2021
by Elaine Dunn.
March 8 is International Women’s Day. Since 1911, women the world over have been honored for their achievements, be it in the cultural, economic, educational, historical, political or social fields on this day. March 8 is also a day for women from all backgrounds to come together to break down barriers for gender parity and women’s rights.
Bergad
family 202103
March 1 2021
This article by Sarah Lemagie, reprinted with permission from the Minneapolis Foundation, first appeared in the foundation’s website on Dec.7, 2020.
When the pandemic struck Minnesota this spring, Pearl Bergad reached out to her two sons and their wives: We’ve built up a pretty substantial reserve in our Donor Advised Fund at the Minneapolis Foundation, she pointed out. Let’s do something with it now.
Book Review 202103
March 1 2021
Reviewed by J.D. Mabbot, contributor
Niklas Hageback’s “The Downfall of China or CCP 3.0?” is an insightful look at inside the policies of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) that will decide whether it will face an impending downfall, or yet again can manage to transform itself radically and weather the storm.
CNY Photos 202103
March 1 2021
by China Insight
View the wonderful photos from local Chinese New Year Celebrations.
Publisher’s Pronouncements (Feb 2021)
January 30 2021
by Gregory J. Hugh, Publisher – CEO, China Insight, Inc.
Now that Joseph R. Biden has been inaugurated as the 46th president of the United States, the country needs to unite again after experiencing a tumultuous period under the previous administration leading to a tragic demonstration at the nation’s capital on Jan. 6.
Garden fundraising
30 January 2021
By William Zajicek, contributor.
The St. Paul-Changsha China Friendship Garden, located in Phalen Park, Saint Paul, is seeking additional funds ($160,000) to complete Phase I of the garden construction and begin Phase II.
CNY do’s and don’ts
30 January 2021
By Elaine Dunn, China Insight.
Feb. 12 will be start of the Year of the Ox, which, according to Chinese tradition, is a symbol for wealth. So … here are a few tips on how to ring the year in the Chinese way.
App deadline for CGM
30 January 2021
by Elaine Dunn, China Insight.
The Chinese American WWII Veterans Recognition Project enters its fifth year with great anticipation for the award ceremony of the Congressional Gold Medal to more than 3,000 veterans who have applied for, and confirmed for this honor.
local national speedskating champion
30 January 2021
by Elaine Dunn, China Insight.
Whether the 2022 Winter Olympics will take place as planned in Beijing or not (China Insight, January 2021) is anyone’s guess at this point, but to the many hopeful participants, their training and laser-sharp focus are on getting to one of the three medal-winning podiums in their event in whatever city it may take place.
CGM
January 3, 2021
By Greg Hugh.
It has been a long and uncertain journey, but Chinese American veterans who served their country in World War II were finally awarded the Congressional Gold Medal on Dec. 9, 2020.
Efforts to enact the Congressional Gold Medal Act for these Chinese American veterans first began in December 2016. An exploratory committee led by the Chinese American Citizens Alliance (CACA) set out to secure the support of members of Congress. The bill, first introduced to the Senate and the House of Representatives in May 2017, was ultimately passed on and signed by President Donald Trump Dec. 20, 2018.
NY Chinatown images
December 31, 2020
by China Insight.
While air travel is still risky health-wise and lockdowns are common, here is a chance for us to “travel” and see New York City’s Chinatown.
The Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) and the Center for Jewish History (CJH) are co-hosting a new online exhibition, “An Unlikely Photojournalist: Emile Bocian in Chinatown,” at https://exhibits.cjh.org/bocian.
Beijing 2020 Olympics
December 31, 2020
by Elaine Dunn, China Insight.
The 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing opened with great fanfare. It was China’s debut on the world stage, an opportunity to showcase its history, culture and its athletes to a global audience. Fast forward to the 2022 Winter Olympics. Once again, Beijing will be the venue. However, circumstances are quite different.
2021 Chinese Holidays
December 31, 2020
Compiled by China Insight.
China’s 2021 holiday schedule will, per tradition, include two week-long holidays: Chinese New Year, aka Spring Festival, which will take place Feb. 11-17; and the National Day Holiday, Oct. 1-7.
Society Fat Size
December 31, 2020
compiled by China Insight.
On Nov. 11, a netizen posted an image of an apparel size chart seen at a Taiwanese chain store in China, saying, “I was shocked when I saw this size chart at a RT-Mart today. Am I completely rotten?” That image and post went viral and it enraged the online community, causing the company’s China Division to issue a public apology the following day.
Garden202011
November 2020
by Bill Zajicek, president, Minnesota China Friendship Garden Society.

There were two large volunteer projects at the garden this summer/fall. As a result, the rock garden was completely weeded and mulched; the donor stanchion received a new coat of paint, the Hmong Heritage Wall was painted, and as a gift from the Minnesota Peony Society, nine peonies were planted: three each of herbaceous “Krinkled White,” herbaceous “America Red” and tree peonies (Fuji-Zome-Goromo, Renkaku, Tai Hai)!!!
HKU
November 2020
By Elaine Dunn

The Hong Kong University (HKU) appointed two mainland Chinese scholars to its governing council, one of whom is alleged to have direct ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Book Review 202011
November 2020
By China Insight

You may notice the more-than-usual number of books included this issue. With Christmas giving around the corner and the snowy winter approaching, China Insight thought these titles may provide gift ideas or just material for a “good read” in front of the fireplace.
Enjoy!
GoodJob_Deed
November 2020
[ST. PAUL]
– Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) Commissioner Steve Grove announced the #GoodJobsNow campaign with Rick Trontvet from Marvin Windows in Warroad and Traci Tapani from Wyoming Machine in Stacy.

By Greg Hugh, Staff Writer 

Butterflies have long held a special place in the hearts of the Chinese people. The tragic story of the Butterfly Lovers, Liang Shangbo and Zhu Yingtai, is one of the most celebrated romance stories in China. This legend is sometimes regarded as the Chinese equivalent of Romeo and Juliet. By Greg Hugh, Staff Writer 

Butterflies have long held a special place in the hearts of the Chinese people.  The tragic story of the Butterfly Lovers, Liang the_butterfly_lovers_by_hikaru_ryuuenShangbo and Zhu Yingtai, is one of the most celebrated romance stories in China.  This legend is sometimes regarded as the Chinese equivalent of Romeo and Juliet.

The Butterfly Lovers (also known as the Love Story of Liang Shangbo and Zhu Yingtai) has inspired all kinds of literary works, like the Yue Opera, violin concertos, plays, films and even a TV series have drawn inspiration from the story of the Butterfly Lovers.

Set in the picturesque town of Hangzhou (which lies about 100 miles southwest of Shanghai), the only daughter (Yingtai) of a rich provincial lord disguises as a boy in order to go into higher education where she meets a scholar, Shangbo. He is talented and hard-working, but poor, but nevertheless soon she falls in love with him. However, not long after, she is ordered to return home because her parents decide to marry her into a rich family. It is then that she confesses to Shangbo of her love for him.

In spite of her declaration, Yingtai is forced home to wait for the day of her marriage with the rich man, whilst Shangbo goes to the capital city to sit for his exams.

Later, Shangbo receives a post as a provincial officer and goes to Yingtai's family to propose marriage, but is harshly turned down because of his poor family background. Shangbo dies in the misery for his love for Yingtai, and Yingtai is still made to follow the engagement her parents made for her. On the day when she is sent to the wedding ceremony, her carriage passes by Shangbo's tomb. She goes down from her carriage to pay her tribute to Shangbo, a request she made to her parents. As she knelt in from of his tomb, the tomb opens and she steps in...

Yingtai disappears, and onlookers only see two butterflies flying out of the tomb. It was said that they were Shangbo and Yingtai, freed from the bounds of tradition.

According to another version of the legend, Zhu Yingtai assumes a male identity so she may travel to study in Hangzhou, a southern city in China, where she meets Liang Shangbo. In the course of their studies, Zhu and Liang become very close friends. From a Confucian perspective, the notion of "Junzi" (gentleman) is a well-exemplified ideal in Chinese history and its quality and characteristics are well expounded upon by Confucian scholars. Basically, this implies the highest integrity, morality and demeanor, coupled with well-refined abilities and skills both in martial arts and academia -- the kind of relationship that Zhu and Liang had achieved. When the time came for Zhu to return home, the pair is overcome with much suppressed sadness. Zhu offers her younger sister's hand in marriage and entreats Liang to visit her residence to discuss the issue with her parents. Liang is unaware that Zhu is female nor that she does not have a younger sister. (She is, in fact, offering her own hand in marriage.)

A year passes before Liang makes his way to Zhu's residence. He is overjoyed to realize Zhu's true identity and that she is in love with him. However, happiness turns into sorrow as the two soon discover that Zhu has been betrothed to another man. In great sadness, the two lovers meet at the tower and lament their great misfortune.

Upon his return to Hangzhou, Liang falls ill in his great misery and dies. When Zhu hears of this on her wedding day, she flees to his grave. There, legend has it that her tears move the heavens so much that the clouds themselves shed tears over Zhu's grief. Then, the earth beneath her cracks open and the ill-fated Zhu commits suicide by jumping into the open grave. Miraculously, the pair is transformed into butterflies. Arising into the sky, they flutter and dance side by side among the flowers, never to be separated again.

For thousand of years, its theme of the pursuit of knowledge, admiration of love and appreciation of life has moved people's hearts. The devious plot, vivid characters and ingenious storyline have made it a classic for many Chinese. The Butterfly Lovers is a treasure of Chinese folk literature and art.

The Butterfly Lovers originated in the Jin Dynasty about 1,600 years ago, and mainly spread through Ningbo, Shangyu, Hangzhou, Yixing, Jining, Runan and others cities. Through time it has been enriched, and people even built gravestones and temples for the couple. This story, the most influential folk tale in China, is also known in Korea, Vietnam, Burma, Japan, Singapore and Indonesia.

Thus the Chinese have come to revere the butterfly and by sharing this story we hope it will provide you with a culturally-enriching experience and explain why the Butterfly School Project was added as an activity for A Passage to China.  Also, as part of the fashion show that will be part of this event, clothing that would have been worn by Shangbo and Yingtai will be on display.  See back page for complete details on A Passage to China.

Editor’s Note:  For additional information on The Butterfly Lovers go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butterfly_Lovers

The Butterfly Lovers artwork by: ©2007-2009 ~Hikaru-Ryuuen

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CHINAINSIGHT (CI) is published monthly ((except July/August and November/December are combined) by China Insight, Inc., an independent, privately owned company started in 2001 and headquartered in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota.

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