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Jonathan J. Kinkel is Assistant Director of the Center for Asian Research at Arizona State University. He received a PhD in Government from UT-Austin in 2015, and his research focusses on the development of the Chinese legal system since the Cultural Revolution.

Datong, Forever in Limbo

The 2015 documentary The Chinese Mayor by Zhou Hao documents the story of Datong, Shanxi province, as its leaders embark on an ambitious plan to transform the city into a tourist destination. Still, although the filmmakers devote sustained attention to the relocated residents and their demolished homes, the film is no exposé: it is mostly intended to educate an international audience on the internal workings of the Chinese policy-making process.

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