Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Robert "Weiwei" Trudeau: adding a Chinese name in imitation of thew Chinese taking Western names

Ai Weiwei by -artlog-
Ai Weiwei, a photo by -artlog- on Flickr.

"At my workplace, which is 90 percent mainland Chinese, just about everyone I interacted with had an English name, usually selected or received in school. The names ran the gamut, from the standard (Jackie, Ivy) to the unusual (Sniper, King Kong), but what really struck me was how commonly people used them when addressing one another, even when the rest of the conversation was in Chinese," says Huan Hsu at slate.com.

Therefore I want my students to honor the Chinese by researching and choosing a Chinese name.

I've chosen "Weiwei" because I know much about the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei.

Ai Weiwei (born 1957) is a Chinese contemporary artist, active in sculpture, installation, architecture, curating, photography, film, and social, political and cultural criticism, says Wikipedia.[1][2]

Ai collaborated with Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron as the artistic consultant on the Beijing National Stadium for the 2008 Olympics.[3] As a political activist, he has been highly and openly critical of the Chinese Government's stance on democracy and human rights. He has investigated government corruption and cover-ups, in particular the Sichuan schools corruption scandal following the collapse of so-called "tofu-skin schools" in the 2008 Sichuan earthquake.[4]

In 2011, following his arrest at Beijing airport on 3 April, he was held for over two months without any official charges being filed; officials alluded to their allegations of "economic crimes" (tax evasion). In October 2011 ArtReview magazine named Ai number one in their annual Power 100 list. The decision was criticised by the Chinese authorities.

By next class have your Chinese name and notes on the person from whom you have adopted the name.