Over the past twenty five years, nationalism has emerged as a formidable and exceptional form of popular political expression amongst educated Chinese youth. This nationalist sentiment, which has found its roots in universities and is nurtured in the chat rooms of cyberspace, is a complex phenomenon that encapsulates the current mood of the ‘Fourth Generation’ in a rising China.
Considered a useful source of political patriotism by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the youth have played an important role in legitimising the CCP’s policies since the early 1990s.
These young elites have successfully carved out a space where a more critical political discourse can be articulated. This and the activities of the fenqing have proved to be increasingly volatile, raising questions about the future place of the Angry Youth in China; as an asset or a threat to political stability.
Nevertheless, as China continues to witness extraordinary economic and military growth, the 4th generation's demands for China to assert itself more in the region will grow louder.
The Under 35s Forum is delighted to host this event, which will aim to take stock of the unique characteristics of Chinese youth nationalism and what challenges (or benefits) it presents for China’s domestic and foreign policies.
- Professor Steve Tsang, Professor of Contemporary Chinese Studies, University of Nottingham
- Vincent Weifeng Ni, Senior Producer, BBC World Service
- Jemimah Steinfeld, Literature Festival Manager, Asia House
For more information please contact the U35 Chair Hannah Croft at (HannahC@rusi.org).