Yiyu Tian Talk: We don't want another Cultural Revolution - A Discourse Analysis of the Pro-Trump Phenomenon among Chinese People

Yiyu Tian China Studies Colloquium Talk May 5, 2017
Yiyu Tian China Studies Colloquium Talk May 5, 2017

GWSS graduate student, Yiyu Tian, will give a talk as part of the China Studies Colloquium Series.

Friday, May 5, 2017
1:00 p.m.
Thomson Hall 317
The presentation will be in English.


Chinese people in the US, including Chinese Americans and non-citizen aliens, are depicted in US and international media as “politically active” in their support for Trump. Based on analysis of polling data, media interviews, on-line debates and articles, this research addresses questions of which group of Chinese people voted or otherwise supported Trump, and what kind of political discourses they use to organize people. Chinese people who voted for Trump tend to have high incomes, and are very vocal and influential in social media. They use progressive terms such as “civil rights” and “freedom” to create a regressive yet appealing story that parallels events in the political history in China—including the Cultural Revolution, the June Fourth event, and current political surveillance—to “Political Correctness” in the US, which they describe as un-free and exploitative, especially toward Chinese people. On the other hand, terms such as “white leftist” were created and used negatively to describe and isolate Chinese people who don’t support Trump. These Trump supporters have created a discourse of democracy and freedom to disguise the desire for their racial and class privileges in the US.