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  • China's history
  • 20th Century China
  • Chinese Industrial Development

    How has China transformed, inside 30 years, from developing nation to the world's next largest economy after the USA? Includes interviews with historians, eye-witnesses and party officials.

    TIANANMEN SQUARE A dramatic turning point was the Tiananmen Square massacre in 1989 - the communist party decided to bring in economic, if not political, freedom. It meant an historic turning away from state control to a market economy.

    AN ANCIENT CIVILISATION But the causes of China's rise go right back into history, to the world's oldest civilisation, and in a sense it is only returning to its former greatness.

    COMMUNISM GOOD AND BAD Despite the excesses, it can be argued the communist takeover in 1947 laid the foundations for China's rise, beginning the process of industrialisation, mobilising the people and sharing out the land more equally. One of its key achievements: allowing social mobility. But inequality, corruption and pollution are causing widespread protest.

    DVD / 2014 / 25 minutes

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  • China's world role
  • China in Africa, Europe, Latin America
  • China as a world power

    China is flexing its economic muscle, investing all over the world. What does this mean for the West?

    AFRICA China needs access to energy and raw materials - that's why it's pouring huge investment into Africa. Mozambique's economy, for example, is booming, with Chinese-led construction and agriculture projects. Is this part of a "grand plan" on China's part? Who is "master" and who is "servant" in these new relationships?

    THE EU also receives Chinese money, and is China's largest trading partner, but what about principles such as human rights? Critics argue the EU is in danger of losing its sovereignty in the rush for China's gold.

    CONFLICT WITH THE USA? As China asserts itself on the world stage, is there a danger of conflict with the USA? In fact, China is a long way from challenging the USA militarily and anyway, conflict is "unthinkable", the experts say, in the nuclear age and when the two powers are economically co-dependent.

    DVD / 2014 / 25 minutes

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  • China's political system
  • Popular protest in China
  • Internet censorship in China

    China is now a market economy, but holds on to the communist political system - pollution, corruption and ethnic divisions cause great tensions.

    POLITICS They call it "Socialism with Chinese characteristics" but the communist party has a monopoly on power and no opposition is tolerated. There are tensions in regions such as Xinjiang Province where movements for independence have led to violence.

    PROTEST In a one-party system the people are the opposition. A major cause of popular protest is land expropriations to build factories. The party says it must listen to these protests - but are they?
    FREEDOM OF SPEECH Protests grow against censorship and human rights violations - the authorities try to clamp down but the internet is hard to censor. Says one blogger: "We can hope for a civil society, where people may dare to speak out."

    DVD / 2014 / 25 minutes

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  • Chinese business case studies
  • The Chinese economic miracle
  • Women in business
  • Small businesses in China

    China's "new billionaires" are well-known but what about the small businesses? Many were set up by migrants who have battled against hardship - and many are women.

    THE PR BUSINESS 24 year old Tian Qiuyu started her business while she was still at university and now employs 6 people - but she never forgets her roots in a poor, remote village area where education was a fight against the odds. She wants to help educate other young people from the country. "They shouldn't just accept their fate. I didn't."

    THE BEAUTY SALON Yu Xinpei is also the daughter of poor farmers, but now owns two beauty parlours and employs 60 people. She now mixes with Shanghai's other young high-flyers whom she is keen to learn from.

    But for most migrants, earning a living is a hard struggle. Mrs Zhang set up a small retail business with her husband - with the heartbreak of leaving her children behind.

    DVD / 2014 / 23 minutes

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  • China's social development
  • Modern China
  • Conditions in rural China

    A big principle of socialism is equality, but China's new society has glaring inequalities. The communist party calls it "socialism with Chinese characteristics" but, in the rush for growth, have they created a society far harsher than western capitalism?

    COMMUNISM COMES TO IKEA The new China now has a growing middle class with the same aspirations as their western counterparts - they want good schools, a good apartment, holidays, a decent retirement package - and furniture from Ikea!

    TOWN AND COUNTRY But the "economic miracle" has left millions behind - there is much hardship in China's vast hinterland where water is scarce and harvests are poor. The government says it is listening to the protests of the disenfranchised - but are they not more interested in holding on to power?

    DVD / 2014 / 23 minutes

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  • China's urban migration
  • Modern China
  • China's industrial revolution

    Chinese development has depended on a vast influx of 250 million migrant workers into the cities - some have prospered but most are poorly paid and housed, with few rights. Mass protests mean the government can no longer take them for granted.

    THE TRAINEE CHEF'S STORY Li Xu Bin is a migrant worker like millions of others, on low pay and with little job security, living with his wife in a single room in Beijing's suburbs. They have left their child behind, the cause of much heartache.

    THE FRUIT VENDORS Like Li Xu Bin, Mr and Mrs Zhang have moved to the city to earn money to pay for their children's education. The rules say their children must stay behind. Meanwhile they have to work all hours to make ends meet. Says Mrs Zhang: "We never have a single day off."

    DVD / 2014 / 21 minutes

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  • China's air and water crisis
  • Renewable energy in China
  • China's industrial development

    The Chinese want the same life style as the West - but at what cost? The air and water are polluted, causing much suffering and protest - as well as a drought crisis. Chinese leaders talk of moving away from fossil fuels, but how much changes at local level?

    "THEY SILENCE OUR COMPLAINTS" The holiday resort of Hangzhou is supposed to be a model "green" city, but in the suburbs it's a story of toxic chemicals, corruption of local officials and suppression of protest.

    WATER CRISIS Over half of China's rivers and lakes are badly polluted, and the water table is falling. 300 million rural people lack access to safe drinking water. Ma Jun has created a website to shame the worst industrial polluters.

    RENEWABLES The experimental city of Himin Solar Valley is held up as a great example of sustainability - but is it too little, too late?

    DVD / 2014 / 28 minutes

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  • Women In China
  • Education In China
  • Universities In China
  • China's "One-Child" Policy

    The communist revolution gave women theoretical equality, but centuries-old oppressions still persist. Women have suffered through the "one child" policy. But women are now among China's top entrepreneurs.

    "ONE CHILD" POLICY China's coercive policy of forbidding more than one child has had a cruel effect on China's women. The policy is now being relaxed - but some women are happy with one child.

    SUICIDE WATCH China is the only country where the suicide rate is higher among women than men - experts say this may be down to the low status of rural women. Can education help?

    "EDUCATION COMES FIRST" Language professor Wu Quing runs a vocational school for young rural women. "It's a man's world - but change rural women and you will change China."

    "THE STUDIES ARE DEMANDING" Architectural student Ghuan Zhaoyu is one of China's growing university population. She wants to study abroad but, as an only child, she has to think of her parents.

    DVD / 2014 / 26 minutes

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    The influence of Confucius' philosophies on how humans interact with each other remains as relevant today as it did in his own time. This clip collection explores Confucius' life, the development of his philosophies and their impact on Ancient Chinese society, in particular the roles of men, women and children.

    Please contact us for primary and secondary schools pricing.

    Note : The above titles may have some territorial restrictions. Please feel free to send us an enquiry.

    DVD / 2013 / (Upper Primary - Middle Secondary) / 17 minutes

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    The social hierarchy in Ancient China was paramount. Emperors, government officials, nobles, peasants, merchants and slaves all had their role to play within Chinese society. This clip collection looks at each of these key groups, examining their daily life and the role law and religion played throughout society.

    Please contact us for primary and secondary schools pricing.

    Note : The above titles may have some territorial restrictions. Please feel free to send us an enquiry.

    DVD / 2013 / (Upper Primary - Middle Secondary) / 18 minutes

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    This is an eye-opening journey into the People's Republic of China, with a focus on its capital, Beijing, through the touching personal story of Phabey Wang, who returns to her former homeland. Through heartwarming interviews of four generations of Beijing relatives, she tells an often-emotional story, reflecting on her relative's lives, while also interweaving Chinese history as background from the Opium Wars of the 19th century through the 20th century's Cultural Revolution to what life is like in China today. Here we get an insider's view of the good and evil that comes out of the confusing combination of capitalism and communism, co-existing in a country whose economic growth is forcing it to run before it can walk.

    DVD / 2012 / (Senior High, College, Adult) / 84 minutes

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    A group of advertising professionals lost interest in food bought from urban markets as large amount of pesticides and chemical fertilizers had been applied. To seek vanishing fine food, they traveled to rural areas and met the peasants. Under the surface of beautiful rural scenery, they witnessed the disparity between the urban rich and the rural poor resulting from 30 years of reforms and opening-up.

    Ordinary picnics among a few friends during holidays have gradually become a movement of " Urban-Rural Interaction to Repay the Rural Areas " . Together with the peasants, these professionals make use of their creativity to work on farmland, pigpens, village houses and dining tables, and reflect on their vision of development and ideal lifestyle. They walk side by side with the peasants on the path of rural development, hoping that organic farming may bring higher income to peasants and healthier food to urban people.

    Prosperous cities mark the achievements of 30 years of reforms and opening-up. However, such prosperity has been resulted from the continual support and sacrifices on the part of rural areas. Will the cities repay the rural areas in the future? Maybe it would happen in the next 30 years.

    DVD / 2008 / 30 minutes

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    At 5 o'clock every morning, when the inhabitants of Anyuan Road are still sleeping soundly, over 10 monk students in Jade Buddha Monastery, Shanghai commence their new day as do other monks in the monastery. After praying and taking their breakfasts, these monks get on the "school bus" that is waiting outside the refectory, and travel to the outside world to study in a university.

    Indeed, the Jade Buddha Monastery has been promoting the philosophy of "Living Buddhism", i.e. performing secular works with a spirit of indifference. Guided by such philosophy, the leadership of the monastery has selected some monks to study foreign languages and MBA, and strive to bring innovations to Buddhism, including the life of the monks. The monks participate in and organize social activities actively, and do not resist to act in a commercial way.

    DVD / 2008 / 30 minutes

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    China is transforming with the construction of skyscrapers and modern architectures, which signify rapid economic development and the rise of a powerful nation. However, behind the scene of prosperity, many homes have been destroyed.

    Zhang Wei used to reside in Xianyukou District, which belonged to a historical conservation district. Two years ago,the government demolished her home by force for reason of constructing new roads. It pushed Zhang Wei to the path of making appeals to higher authorities, and she determined to prove that the government had violated the Law on the Protection of Cultural Relics by carrying out illegal demolition. Unfortunately, the court delayed the trial deliberately and the police also hindered them from making appeals. It became a tough journey for her.

    On 6th August 2008, two days prior to the opening of the Olympics, Zhang Wei was detained for 30 days on suspicion of undermining social order. The absence of an independent judiciary in China makes defending against illegal demolition more difficult.

    There used to be over 300 households in Cuobuling Village, Qingdao. After illegal redevelopment carried out by the district government, only the household of Madam Yu remained. To persist in her defence, she had lived a life without water and electricity supply for over a year while expecting the court ruling at second instance. Being unable to seek help from the government, Yu Jian-li, one of the villagers, reported the crimes of corrupted officials on the internet. Consequently, he was convicted of defamation and sentenced to prison.

    Although the Property Law has been promulgated for nearly a year, cases of incompliance with the law still exist. If the issue is not resolved, we will see more cases of illegal redevelopment in the future, pushing more people to the path of defending their rights.

    DVD / 2008 / 30 minutes

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    "Don't think village heads are not cadres" was once a popular saying in Mainland China, meaning although the village head is a low ranking official, he is still a cadre and should not be overlooked.

    Shen Yongqiang is the Secretary of the Communist Party Branch and Head of the Village Committee of Xiadongkuo Village in the outskirts of Beijing. Shen is no dimwit. In the summer of 2006, he started blogging to publicize his village, so as to attract investors to develop his ecology resort. It never occurred to Shen that his blog would record a hit rate of over 220,000 for the first two years. It even captured the attention of various media which then sent reporters to interview Shen.

    However, Shen's putting village matters online has aroused concern and censorship from Town government. From Shen's happiness and trouble, we can see changes as well as rigidity of rural areas in China after reform and opening-up.

    DVD / 2008 / 30 minutes

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    This documentary offers a fresh and original look at Shangahi, China, a harbor city that is developing at such a fast and breathtaking pace it is surpassing its "rival," Hong Kong. Not dwelling on the causes of China's economic boom, this program underscores the transformations, contrasts and exuberance of Shanghai's renewed dynamism. Here we get a glimpse of the new China, as well as a reflection on the responsibilities of Western countries. In Shanghai today we discover the buzzword is "success" - success at any cost. We are introduced to several Shanghai residents, such as architects, writers and entrepreneurs, plus a number of ordinary people, and some "nouveau riche," those who crave luxury. Shanghai we see represents the splendors and miseries of global capitalism, where there is sadly no room for the well being of a so-called Western-like middle class; also we learn how middle classes in Western countries are experiencing progressive erosion as a result of China's giant economy, which is impervious to the fair redistribution of profit. Finally, we look at the advantages and drifts of a model of economic growth that is striving to export all over the world, with unperturbed optimism,in the name of "development."

    DVD / 2008 / (Junior High, Senior High, College, Adult) / 50 minutes

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    Directed by Weijun Chen

    An experiment in democracy is taking place in Wuhan, the most populous city in central China. For the first time ever, the students in grade three at Evergreen Primary School have been asked to elect a class monitor. Traditionally appointed by the teacher, the class monitor holds a powerful position, helping to control the students, keeping them on task and doling out punishment to those who disobey. The teacher has chosen three candidates: Luo Lei (a boy), the current class monitor; Cheng Cheng (a boy); and Xu Xiaofei (a girl). Each candidate is asked to choose two assistants to help with his or her campaign.

    To prove their worthiness, the candidates must perform in three events. First is a talent show, where each candidate plays an instrument or sings a song. Second is a debate, in which the candidates bring up the shortcomings of their opponents as well as their own personal qualifications. And finally, each candidate must deliver a speech, an opportunity to appeal directly to classmates and ask for their votes.

    At home, each of the children is coached by his or her parents and pushed to practice and memorize for each stage of the campaign. Although their parents are supportive, the candidates feel the pressure. Tears and the occasional angry outburst reveal the emotional impact. At school, the candidates talk to classmates one-on-one, making promises, planning tactics (including negative ones) and at times expressing doubts about their own candidacies.

    For all three children, the campaign takes its toll, especially for the losing candidates and their assistants. Viewers are left to decide if the experiment in democracy has been "successful" and what it might mean for democracy in China. Please Vote for Me challenges those committed to China's democratization to consider the feasibility of, and processes involved in, its implementation.

  • "This film should lead to much class discussion regarding ethics, campaigning and what it means to ask the question 'What is Democracy?' Recommended." - Educational Media Reviews Online

  • Nominated, Best International Feature Documentary, Cinema Eye Awards, 2008

  • Winner, Sterling Feature Award, Silverdocs Film Festival, 2007
  • Working Films Award, Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, 2008
  • Best Educational documentary, DOCNZ, 2007
  • Special Jury Prize, Taiwan International Children's Film Festival, 2008
  • Best Documentary Award, Ashland Independent Film Fest, 2008
  • Best Documentary, Jackson Hole Film Festival, 2008

    DVD / 2007 / 52 minutes

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    China, the "land of the dragon," once shrouded in mystery, is rising rapidly as a great world power - and facing new ideas and challenges. This documentary, featuring a soundtrack by Yoko Ono, offers a unique look at women in China today through an historical and psychological lens, tracking the suppression of the feminine from dynastic times through the Communist era.

  • "Filmed on-location, this is an important documentary, especially regarding the issue of China and Human Rights." -Ed. Media Review

    DVD / 2006 / (Junior High, Senior High, College, Adult) / 40 minutes

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    Known as the Chinese Hollywood, Beiputuo, a 75-acre movie studio near Beijing, has the same glamour and excitement for Eastern culture as Universal Studios does for the West. Whatever Chinese movie makers need to produce a fabulous feature film, it all comes together at Beiputuo. And it's all because of the visionary work of a Chinese cultural hero, Mei Zi, a woman who never forgot the values she learned as a girl, struggling to get an education, and founded Beiputou, not only as a studio, but also as an artistic exchange center that carries on the traditional culture of the Chinese nation. More than just a "Look-Behind-the Scenes" place to view movie making, Beiputuo also contains a School for Performing Arts and a College for Basic Education in which one class is dedicated to poor or orphaned students that Ms. Zi pays their education and boarding. She regards it an honor to do what she can to promote the arts.

  • "This documentary tells the admirable tale of television writer Mei Zi's dedication to educating poor children and preserving China's cultural arts; it succeeds in showcasing spectacular musical, dance, and acrobatic performances that characterize her movie studio, as well as traditional Chinese costumes and musical instruments." -EMR Online

    DVD / 2004 / (Junior High, Senior High, College, Adult) / 52 minutes

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    Americans Jeff Schiro and Bob Demyan travel to remote areas of China to gain a true picture of this vast country. Stops include Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Gwangui, Yangshoo, Xingping, Leshan and Mt. Emer.

  • "Recommended. Two ordinary guys offer an extraordinary look at the China we never get to see." -Ed. Media Review

    DVD / 2004 / (Intermediate, Junior High, Senior High, College, Adult) / 60 minutes

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    Through a series of eleven passages, this program provides viewers a rare glimpse of a country where 3/4 of a billion people live in rural areas such as Cui-Heng, or Green Village.

    DVD / 2004 / (Junior High, Senior High, College, Adult) / 60 minutes

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    Part One: Psychiatry in China. Overview based on visits to a number of hospitals, interviewing both staff and patients. Extras include extended interviews with two patients and a group discussion with staff.

    Part Two: The Real China is about ordinary people and their day-to-day lives. There are chapter headings that include school life, at the hospital, at work and a brief, very accessible overview of the political state of affairs.

    Psychiatry in China - 14 minutes
    The Real China - 28 minutes

    DVD / 2004 / 42 minutes

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    "Chinese Opera" opens in the make-up room of the People's Theatre in Canton, where the cast is preparing for a 300-year-old Cantonese opera called Nliu Yi Chuan Su, a romance, and then moves on to an acrobatic training school for future opera stars. The DVD concludes with a performance by the Northern Opera Group in Beijing. The viewer is given an in-depth, first-hand experience of this fascinating ancient art form.

  • "After thirty years, these compact films remain valuable and useful for the study and teaching of the places in question, each release offering examples of rare and even extended footage." Dr. Terry Miller, Department of Ethnomusicology, Hugh A. Glauser School of Music, Kent State University

    DVD (With English narration) / 1983 / 28 minutes

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    The Democratic Viewpoint, Geography, The Dynasties, Confucius, China Today.

    DVD / 50 minutes

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    Superstition, Confucian Commentators, Taoism, Buddhism, Tibet, Sung Education.

    DVD / 50 minutes

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    Bronzes, Ceramics, the Character Script, Poetry, Literature.

    DVD / 50 minutes

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    Music, Gardens, Painting, Science, The Descent into Chaos.

    DVD / 50 minutes

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    Japan, The End of the Empire, Communism, Overseas Chinese, the current Dilemma.

    DVD / 50 minutes

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