Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Preparing for the Olympics

Right from the lighting of the torch, it has been clear that the upcoming Beijing Olympics will be even more politicized than most in recent memory.

If you're interested in trying to make some sense of the cultural relations between China and the "west", you could do worse than take in the BBC's Reith Lectures for 2008, Chinese Vistas. The lecturer, Professor Jonathan Spence, begins with Confucius, examines the story of China's relationships with Britain and the USA in turn, and concludes the series with a look at the development of "Chinese ideas of sport".

It would at least make a change from laying in the bevvies and crisps ... err ... drinks and chips before the wall-to-wall TV coverage begins.