Tiananmen Square: the silences left by the massacre

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An account of the Beijing atrocity and its repercussions, using words banned by the Chinese government

Each year around the anniversary of 4 June 1989, the Beijing massacre, words vanish from the Chinese internet. A comprehensive list of blocked words is published by China Digital Times, which keeps an extensive database. Digital censorship has pushed Chinese citizens to create an irreverent, ingenious and hilarious counter-language of puns, gifs, memes, nicknames and more, to fill in the spaces otherwise left blank. I turned to those missing words to record the events of 1989 and the aftermath.

1. The demonstrations, which daily brought up to a million people to Tiananmen Square, began when Beijing students tried to mourn the sudden death of Hu Yaobang, a reformist leader who had been removed from office.

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Link : Tiananmen Square: the silences left by the massacre

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