CCTV

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Date: 2004

Region: Asia

Subject: Political/Economic/Social Opinion

Medium: Public Art


Artist: Vice President of the United States, Dick Cheney

Confronting Bodies: Chinese news programs and government censors

Dates of Action: April, 2004

Location: Shanghai, China

Description of Artwork: Cheney spoke at Fudan University in Shanghai. His speech made references to North Korea, Taiwan and free expression.

The Incident: Cheney negoiated with Chinese officials to be allowed to give a speech, free from censor, at Fudan University during his visit to China; the Chinese government granted him permission to do so. The speech, which recieved no prior promotion, aired at 10am on CCTV, China's all news network. After the speech, edited versions were posted on the internet and in newspapers. All references to North Korea's nuclear arms proliferation, Taiwan's right to arm itself against possible Chinese incursion and free expression were struck from the written record of the speech. In China's Xinjiang province, where a large Muslim population resides, references to the right of "legitimate dissent" were removed.

Results of Incident: No tapes of the speech were released and it will not be repeated. The Bush adminstration suggested that it wished it had negotiated plans for post-speech censorship.

Source: The New York Times, 20 April, 2004