With a friqqin’ video game very loosely based on an 18th-century book that I strongly suspect most of the incensed young men have never read, if they’ve even heard of it. No matter; eyeballs bulge, arteries pop and tempers flare as those magic ingredients come together: glorious Chinese culture + evil Japanese defilers.
A JAPANESE adult computer game based extremely loosely on a classic is getting a thorough pasting on Chinese bogs as being literary blasphemy.
According to ZD Net, “Slaves of the Red Mansion” is a fantasy game about girls sold into sexual slavery and has been branded a bawdy version of “Dream of the Red Chamber” penned by Qing dynasty (1644-1911) author Cao Xueqin.
The Chongqing Economic Times said that the main character, a young girl called Lin Daiyu, was closely modelled on the novel’s heroine. Chinese boggers say that turning “Dream of the Red Chamber” into a lewd game besmirches a treasure of Chinese literature, and desecrates Chinese culture.
There are calls for the game maker to halt production and to apologise to the Chinese people.
However, one has to wonder how much of this opposition is real and if it is anti-Japanese blogging engineered by China’s masters. China is always keen to remind Japan of its war crimes against the country. The Communist Youth League, which is sort of like the Young Conservatives of Beijing, have been involved in campaigns to educate youth of Japan’s pre-World War II invasion of China.
Same old same old. It’s just so interesting (read, disturbing) to see how the slightest spark – usually imagined, not real – can set the same old game into motion again. Same script, different players. And about the anti-Japanese bloggers perhaps being “engineered by China’s masters” – I strongly doubt it. Influenced by the masters, definitely, in that the young people are subject to the anti-Japanese rhetoric on a continual basis. But the masters don’t have to engineer reactions like this. They’ve already programmed the machinery. You drop the quarter in (with the latest trivial rumor of Japanese desecration of China), and the dancing chicken starts to strut around as always. These bloggers are full of blind rage, and they embrace any excuse to release it. It feels good, it keeps the nationalistic fires burning, and as long as it’s contained and doesn’t get too much outside attention it’s just fine with the masters. They can just sit back and smile.
Richard Burger is the author of Behind the Red Door: Sex in China, an exploration of China's sexual revolution and its clash with traditional Chinese values.