Here at our CUSEF blog, we share news, updates and stories about China and the United States. We provide more than a cursory glimpse of what’s going on between the two powers - here, we offer an in-depth look into their current state of affairs.

What We’re Reading
One Giant Leap
2021-11-17
Wang Yaping becomes China’s first female astronaut to participate in a spacewalk during the Shenzhou-13 mission. [Photo credits: NPR]
Wang Yaping becomes China’s first female astronaut to participate in a spacewalk during the Shenzhou-13 mission. [Photo credits: NPR]
One small step for a woman, one giant leap for womankind! In the early hours on Monday, November 8, Senior Colonel Wang Yaping, 41, made history by becoming the first Chinese female astronaut to conduct an extravehicular activity (EVA), commonly known as a ‘spacewalk’. She is only the second female Chinese astronaut to travel to space. The first was Major Liu Yang, who flew to space aboard the Shenzhou-9 back in 2012. Liu, who was only 33 years old at the time, set a new precedent in Chinese culture and became an inspiration for many young women. Wang boarded the Shenzhou-10 the following year. Read More
What We’re Reading
Shang-Chi: Bringing Ancient Chinese Mythology to Modern Day Marvel
2021-10-19
[Photo credit: Marvel Studios/Disney]
[Photo credit: Marvel Studios/Disney]
Marvel Studios has found its new hero: Shang-Chi. A martial arts master and Ten Rings defector, the hero is forced to confront his past after being drawn into the mysteries of the Ten Rings organization led by his father, Wenwu. The movie, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, stacked with a host of native and western-born Chinese actors, including Simu Liu, Awkwafina, Tony Leung, Meng’er Zhang, and Fala Chen, weaves a beautiful narrative on the importance of family in Chinese culture and how to draw on ancient strength to foster a better future. The movie is considered a worldwide triumph, earning $206.69 million (and counting) in the global box office - making it the biggest grossing movie of 2020 and 2021. While its plot is praised by critics, it’s the captivating way the production interlaces Chinese mythology, philosophy, and cultural practices into modern-day storytelling that contributes to Shang-Chi’s success. Read More
What We’re Reading
CUSEF Book Club: Asian American Literary Voices for AAPI Heritage Month
2021-05-18
To honor Asian American Pacific Heritage Month, we have pulled together a reading list of notable books from Asian American authors and literary composers who use their creative writing skills to construct narratives celebrating their Asian American heritage [Photo credit: O'Fallon Public Library]
To honor Asian American Pacific Heritage Month, we have pulled together a reading list of notable books from Asian American authors and literary composers who use their creative writing skills to construct narratives celebrating their Asian American heritage [Photo credit: O'Fallon Public Library]
To honor Asian American Pacific Heritage Month, we have pulled together a reading list of notable books from Asian American authors and literary composers who use their creative writing skills to construct narratives celebrating their Asian American identity while maintaining the values instilled by their immigrant families. These five books intricately probe the intersecting themes of equity, inclusion, diversity, family values, and adversity by examining the complex journeys of belonging. Read More
What We’re Reading
We Are “Over the Moon” for Netflix’s Newest Animated Film
2020-11-02
Over the Moon puts a modern spin on the classic Chinese legend of moon goddess Chang’e, in which one Chinese girl named Fei Fei sets off on a journey to find Chang’e by building a rocket to the moon. (Photo credit: Netflix)
Over the Moon puts a modern spin on the classic Chinese legend of moon goddess Chang’e, in which one Chinese girl named Fei Fei sets off on a journey to find Chang’e by building a rocket to the moon. (Photo credit: Netflix)
The October 23 release of Netflix and Pearl Studio’s “Over the Moon” was greeted with rave reviews from viewers and critics alike. Reaching No. 1 on Netflix over the weekend, Over the Moon puts a modern spin on the classic Chinese legend of moon goddess Chang’e(嫦娥), in which one Chinese girl named Fei Fei sets off on a journey to find Chang’e by building a rocket to the moon. Adventure ensues as resourceful Fei Fei, accompanied by her the rambunctious Chin and faithful rabbit sidekick Bungee, constructs that rocket and takes flight to prove Chang’e’s existence in honor of her mother. Fueled by the love of her mother, Fei Fei overcomes every obstacle in her path and achieves the impossible. Read More
News Highlights
What We’re Reading
Chinese and American Collaborative Effort to Stop Earth's Sixth Mass Extinction
2020-10-23
Representative Ocasio-Cortez speaks passionately about the Green New Deal alongside its co-sponsor Senator Markey on Capitol Hill in 2019. [Photo Credit: POLITICO]
Representative Ocasio-Cortez speaks passionately about the Green New Deal alongside its co-sponsor Senator Markey on Capitol Hill in 2019. [Photo Credit: POLITICO]
British broadcaster and conservationist Sir David Attenborough recently made a grim warning that our planet is racing toward its sixth mass extinction due to dramatic climate change and subsequent losses of biodiversity. To fight against climate change, President Xi Jinping announced China’s pledge to achieve carbon neutrality before 2060 during his address to the UN General Assembly last month. The U.S. has seen a slightly different track with President Trump’s decision to remove the country from the impactful Paris Climate Accords. While this has drawn domestic and international ire, the U.S. leader remains committed to the decision, further bolstering his stance with pushes for increased use of “clean coal” and continued fracking in various states across the country. Read More