China’s most popular blogger on why there won’t be a revolution

Han Han, China’s government-critiquing, racecar-driving, Nescafe-promoting  boy-wonder blogger, delights in identifying the red line and joyously dancing circles around it. In a post published today titled ‘Discussing Revolution’ (in Chinese:), Han responds to the recent protests in Wukan without mentioning the village itself, explaining that he has received a lot of questions from readers and ...

By , a former associate editor at Foreign Policy.
MIKE CLARKE/AFP/Getty Images
MIKE CLARKE/AFP/Getty Images
MIKE CLARKE/AFP/Getty Images

Han Han, China’s government-critiquing, racecar-driving, Nescafe-promoting  boy-wonder blogger, delights in identifying the red line and joyously dancing circles around it. In a post published today titled ‘Discussing Revolution’ (in Chinese:), Han responds to the recent protests in Wukan without mentioning the village itself, explaining that he has received a lot of questions from readers and reporters and wants to “explain my view on revolution,” which is, in short, that he doesn’t think there’s the possibility or the need, because people don’t actually feel that they need more freedom or justice.  He continues:

“Let’s say, for a joke, that I approved of revolution, and revolted in Shanghai, and it got big, all the officials would have to do would be to throttle our internet or cell phone signal…after three days of not getting on Weibo you would start to hate me.”

Han Han, China’s government-critiquing, racecar-driving, Nescafe-promoting  boy-wonder blogger, delights in identifying the red line and joyously dancing circles around it. In a post published today titled ‘Discussing Revolution’ (in Chinese:), Han responds to the recent protests in Wukan without mentioning the village itself, explaining that he has received a lot of questions from readers and reporters and wants to “explain my view on revolution,” which is, in short, that he doesn’t think there’s the possibility or the need, because people don’t actually feel that they need more freedom or justice.  He continues:

“Let’s say, for a joke, that I approved of revolution, and revolted in Shanghai, and it got big, all the officials would have to do would be to throttle our internet or cell phone signal…after three days of not getting on Weibo you would start to hate me.”

As for Egypt and Libya, Han writes that they were small countries ruled by dictators for decades:

“China doesn’t have a particular person to revolt against. There are so many cities and people, and also thousands of strange calamities have already happened; the G-spot is already numb.”

He concludes that things wouldn’t work out “even if societal contradictions were ten times more intense, and if we gave you ten Havels speaking in unison in ten cities.”

In a clever bit of verbal juggling, he poses a question to himself: “Sounds like you were bought by the government? Why can’t there be a one person one vote to select a chairman?” He responds by making the very reasonable point that if there were democracy the Communist Party’s trillions of dollars of assets could buy a lot of votes.  Posts like this are one of the reasons Han is so difficult to categorize. As one fellow artist put it, Han is "the best example of post post-totalitarian writing, but he doesn’t know that."

Joshua Keating was an associate editor at Foreign Policy. Twitter: @joshuakeating

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