Correction on Chinese Gulags

 Posted by on 1 April 2013 at 12:00 pm  China, Communism
Apr 012013

In answering the question on doing business with Chinese companies on Sunday’s Philosophy in Action Radio, I made an off-the-cuff comment about how China doesn’t have gulags.

At the time, I was thinking of massive extermination camps like those of Soviet Russia in the 1940s or the concentration camps of the Third Reich. Today, China doesn’t have anything that extensive, but it’s wrong to say that it doesn’t have gulags.

I knew that what I said was wrong the moment that I uttered it.. but the moment slipped away too quickly for a correction. That’s the danger of speaking extemporaneously!

The Chinese version of the gulag, still in existence today, is the Laogai. I’ve not read a ton on it, but here are some sources worth checking out:

  • Tjitze de Boer

    Wiki: “In 1990 China abandoned the term laogai and started classifying the facilities as “prisons” instead. ”

    Trough the power of redefinition Diana was saved once again from being technically wrong in the first place, the only kind of wrong that really maters.

    • Diana Hsieh

      Indeed, thank you Chinese government! I am in your debt! :-)

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