12 épisodes

Strangers in China features voices from the edges of an emergent new China. 
We talk to people with unique perspectives on Chinese society: dissident voices, queer voices, marginalized voices. Some belong to those who push boundaries creatively, while others are just fighting to be seen. All are uniquely Chinese.
All too often, stories about China fail to navigate the many nuances of Chinese society, and overlook those who think or live differently. We’re here to listen closely and illuminate their stories. 
Subscribe to Strangers in China to hear voices from another side of the China story. 
Follow us on social media:
Instagram: @strangersinchina
Twitter: @strangerinchina

Strangers in China SupChina

    • Culture et société

Strangers in China features voices from the edges of an emergent new China. 
We talk to people with unique perspectives on Chinese society: dissident voices, queer voices, marginalized voices. Some belong to those who push boundaries creatively, while others are just fighting to be seen. All are uniquely Chinese.
All too often, stories about China fail to navigate the many nuances of Chinese society, and overlook those who think or live differently. We’re here to listen closely and illuminate their stories. 
Subscribe to Strangers in China to hear voices from another side of the China story. 
Follow us on social media:
Instagram: @strangersinchina
Twitter: @strangerinchina

    Chapter Nine: Mulan

    Chapter Nine: Mulan

    In this final episode of season 1 of Strangers in China, we meet the remarkable Jessie: She studied her way out of abject poverty in rural Hubei while raising her younger siblings. She faced down thugs who were trying to collect debt from her deadbeat father. Then, she made it to Shanghai for college, only to be told she doesn't belong. Meanwhile, she created a rich inner life, inspired by literature, philosophy, and lots of Greek mythology.

    Music credits:

    “Analytical Skeletons,” “Shia Baat,” “Gifts,” and “Vaporize Me,” by csus; “Road Trip,” “Fake Mustache,” and “Sad Ending,” by Purrple Cat; “f@y” and “337,” by Jack Meijer; “xmpty” and “Light Showers,” by lofee; “I Was Nothing,” by Le Gang; “Sorrow,” by Sappheiros; and “I Like You,” by ARTST_UNKNWN2.

    • 57 min
    Chapter Eight: The Plague

    Chapter Eight: The Plague

    This week on Strangers in China, we hear from people all over China about their experiences during the last few weeks, as a deadly pathogen has turned crowded metropolises into virtual ghost towns. There’s a lot of fear and anxiety, but also a lot of pulling together for the common good. And boredom — lots of boredom. Hear how ordinary Chinese are coping with the coronavirus.

    Music credits:

    Theme song: “Analytical Skeletons,” “Hip hop instrumental,” “Vaporize Me,” “Crumbling Chia Pets,” and “Shia Baat,” by csus; “Road Trip,” “Fake Mustache,” “Sad Ending,” and “Wait What,” by Purrple Cat; “f@y,” by Jack Meijer; “Xmpty,” by lofee; “I Was Nothing,” by Le Gang; and “MTL,” by JMC. 

    Videos:

    “Man uses sanitary pad as mask in Wuhan to battle Coronavirus,” China coronavirus: a look inside the sealed off city of Wuhan,” “CoronaVirus- People Are Collapsing In The Streets In China,” and “Wuhan jiāyóu': chants of solidarity spread across city at epicentre of coronavirus.”

    Production credits:

    Producer/host: Clay Baldo

    Researcher: Shunyao Yang

    Mastered by: Kaiser Kuo

    Translation: Josh Ogden-Davis

    Voice-over: Elizabeth Klebenow

    Check out Josh’s podcast, MSG: Mandarin Slang Guide. Josh is a talented translator and charismatic host who teaches you the Chinese slang that you actually need to know. Get the MSG: Mandarin Slang Guide wherever you find your podcasts: 

    ‎Mandarin Slang Guide on Apple Podcasts

    Thanks to everyone who submitted reflections for this episode.

    • 1h 9 min
    Chapter Seven: We all get schooled by Wenfei

    Chapter Seven: We all get schooled by Wenfei

    Wenfei is an education consultant in Shanghai. After he attended high school and college in America, a trend that is on the rise for students from China, he is in a unique position to counsel students that are hoping to do the same. In this episode, he compares and contrasts the American and Chinese educational systems, dives into some of the murky social and cultural implications of making the leap from China to America as a teenager, and provides some insight on the pressure that Chinese teens face when transitioning from one system to another. 

    Works consulted:

    “Louisiana School Made Headlines for Sending Black Kids to Elite Colleges. Here’s the Reality.” by Erica L. Green and Katie Benner; “College Admissions: Vulnerable, Exploitable, and to Many Americans, Broken,” by Anemona Hartocollis; “The Absurdity of College Admissions,” by Alia Wong; “Why So Many Chinese Students Come to America,” by PolyMatter; “China roots out its ‘gaokao migrants’ as university entrance exam nears,” by Laurie Chen; “China’s Unfair College Admissions System,” by Yiqin Fu; “Trade war: How reliant are US colleges on Chinese students,” by Reality Check team, BBC News; “The Real Reason Trump Wants to Ban Chinese College Students,” and by Christopher Rim.

    Music credits:

    “Analytical Skeletons,” “Hip hop instrumental,” by csus; “Road Trip,” “Fake Mustache,” by Purrple Cat; “f@y,” by jack meijer; “Hip Hop Instrumental 174 BPM,” “Hip Hop Instrumental 130 BPM,” “Hip Hop Instrumental 82 BPM,” by Terri Skillz; “IC3PEAK Type beat- Sick,” by svd b1tch; “I Like You.,” by ARTST_UNKWN2; “Lofee,” Xmpty; “MTL,” by JMC; and “Kronicle - Listen Up,” by Fox Beat 2.

    Email: strangersinchinaofficial@gmail.com.

    Thanks to Nowness Shanghai for letting me use their recording studio.

    • 1h 6 min
    Strangers in China: Bonus episode

    Strangers in China: Bonus episode

    Hear bonus material from some of the most insightful profiles we've done so far on Strangers in China. Enjoy!

    • 34 min
    Chapter Six: Let’s talk dirty, cleanly

    Chapter Six: Let’s talk dirty, cleanly

    Let’s talk about sex. In China. Guest host Yoky joins Clay on this week’s episode to lay bare the truth about sex and sexuality in China: The two dive into a conversation with Ying, a sex shop owner in Shanghai, who shares her experiences with her customers, explains Chinese perspectives, curiosities, and apprehensions about sex, and provides a look at sex education, intimacy, and relationships in the country. 




    7:59: How the concept of consent translates across cultures

    14:28: What is sex education like in China?

    20:41: Is the topic of sex taboo in Chinese culture?

    25:40: How Reform and Opening changed sex in China

    39:40: For many women, sex is just an obligation




    Follow Strangers in China on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.




    Music credits: 




    “Analytical Skeletons” and “Shhia Baat,” by csus; “Afterthought,” by Evan Schaefer; “Hi,” by Dovi; “Chill Day,” by LAKEY INSPIRED; “I Was Nothing,” by Le Gang; “Fake Mustache,” “Wait What,” “Road Trip,” and “Happy,” by Purrple Cat; “Hip hop Instrumentals 120 bpm,” by Terri Skillz; “I Like You.,” by ARTST_UNKNWN2; “xmpty,” by lofee; and “Beat 36,” by Dixxy. 




    Works consulted:




    Sex in China, by Elaine Jeffreys with Haiqing Yu; China’s ‘lost’ sexual past is laid bare in Sotheby’s erotic art exhibit, by Agence France-Presse; and The Shanghai sex shop selling more than just toys, by Fan Yiying.




    Thanks to Nowness Shanghai.

    • 53 min
    Chapter Five: Far from home, part 2

    Chapter Five: Far from home, part 2

    Continuing from last week’s episode, Clay and guest host Maggie follow Li and Suyi’s stories, the conditions in which they were raised, and how they ended up so far removed from their rural homes. Part 2 focuses on economic and social mechanisms that are pushing young people away from their smaller cities and toward China’s large urban centers like Shanghai.




    Music credits:

    “Analytical Skeletons” and “Gifts,” by csus; “Fake Mustache” and “Road Trip,” by Purrple Cat; “Chill Day,” by LAKEY INSPIRED; “December,” by Sachko; “I Was Nothing,” by Le Gang; “Xmpty,” by lofee; “I Like You.,” by ARTST_UNKWN2; and “#001- Free Chilled Lofi Beat - 70bpm,” by PATENT. 




    Works consulted:

    Introducing the city of Shanghai and Regional China: internal migration, by The Economist Intelligence Unit; China Gini Coefficient, by CEIC; The pressure to get married is tearing China’s families apart, by Ma Chunhua; In China’s cities, young people with rural ties are angry, The Economist; and The young and lonely hearts of China’s shrinking cities, by Ye Ming.




    Thanks to Mike for his voice-over work. Thanks to Shanghai Curious Minds for letting us record

    with them. Thanks to Nowness Shanghai for letting me use their recording studio, and a shout-out to Monty.

    • 56 min

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