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Censorship in Contemporary Art in Asia

Censorship in Contemporary Art in Asia

It is imperative to understand that when the concept of censorship of art comes to mind, it pertains to the suppression of words, ideas, or images that are large ‘offensive,’ which often happens when some individuals succeed in imposing their moral or political values on other people. It is crucial to note that censorship may be carried out by private pressure groups, institutions, or the government. However, government censorship is unconstitutional. Private groups and national leaders have often attempted to remove particular artwork from public display. It includes censoring exhibitions and labeling certain works of art as ‘controversial.’ Besides, they even identified some artworks and their artists as ‘objectionable.’ These actions come to the fore from the perspective that censorship is needed to avoid corrupting morals and the subversion of politics. With this knowledge in mind, it suffices to maintain that this is an exploration of how artworks have been censored in the Communist nation of China, including works by Su Shih and Andy Warhol.

Foremost, the notion of censorship of artwork in this nation is not the only work bearing the suppression’s brunt. The efforts of suppression are often related to the broader pattern of pressure that has been brought on education, film, the press, and even television. Crucially, such efforts generally may not suppress certain types of expression. Suppression casts a blanket to fear that leads to voluntary reduction of curtailment in the expression by the persons seeking to avoid controversy, which casts a shadow of doom as arts cannot bloom in such an environment of fear (Association). As such, the preservation of a society that is free to do as it pleases must be crucial for the thriving of artworks. Artworks are generally a potent means for making available feelings, ideas, social growth, solutions to problems, the alleviation of human life, as well as the envisioning of fresher possibilities for humanity. On the flip side, the suppression of ideas in artworks and artistic expressions often leads to conformity, stifling freedom, and curtailing diversity of expression to a restricted span of ‘acceptable’ forms.

In conclusion, poetry has always been an integral part of Chinese culture for more than a thousand years. During the 1070s, Su Shih wrote occasional metaphorical poems and sent some to friends who compiled them and showed them around town. Later, Su was arrested and charged with denouncing the emperor’s chariot and tremendous irreverence towards the emperor. Sentenced to death by beheading, he only escaped the punishment by the emperor’s grace, who was afraid that beheading a popular poet would be unwise politically. However, it is crucial to understand that censorship has not been a recent phenomenon in China. Artists could be imprisoned today and most likely not beheaded. The artists in China can show their talent abroad but not at home.

Andy Warhol’s- Mao Zedong

In this painting of the celebrated communist and founder of the new Chinese revolutionary, Mao Zedong, Andy Warhol made a painting that has been widely censored in mainland China (Warhol). Mao is credited with establishing the People’s Republic of China following virtually twenty years of a civil war that claimed millions of lives and many others fell into starvation. Regardless of the fact that the knock-off pieces of Mao’s paintings that were made by Warhol are available for sale to tourists throughout China, the government’s official statement is that “Warhol’s garishly vibrant color scheme remains a little too much transgressive for the party iconography.” Later, the Global Times, a state-backed media outlet, published an op-ed contending that Warhol’s paintings were virtually disrespectful because the coloring on the face that was bold might be construed as implying that the chairman was wearing cosmetics.

Besides, the contention was also heated by the fact that they maintained that the painting seemed to portray the revolutionary leader, who was widely revered had some lipstick on his lips, which the government strongly disapproval of. They saw it as disrespectful to the man whom they held in high reverence. Censorship in China is enforced by the ruling party, the CPP (Chinese Communist Party) (Xu 243). In this case, the government censors paintings such as Warhol’s painting on Mao, mainly for political reasons and to control the populace. Undoubtedly, the government has censorship over the entire media that can reach a broad audience, including; print media, television, theatre, text messaging, radio, art, the internet, and literature. It maintains that it acts within the legal limits to control the content on the internet within its jurisdiction and that it does not infringe on the rights of the citizens to free speech.

Lastly, culture is one of the main reasons for the censorship of the artwork. In this case, China seeks to ensure that the people are protected from outward influence, especially from the West (Yunchao 56). During the 1970s, the Cultural Revolution saw foreign literature, art forms, symbols, and other religious works were seen as reactionary, and thus, they were targeted for destruction by the Red Guards. As such, the censoring of paintings such as Andy’s is a clear implication of the desire of the Communist nation to ensure that they are in control of every aspect of Chinese life. By censoring the paintings, it is clear that the government wanted to mystify the legacy of Mao Zedong.

Works Cited

Association, National. “Censorship And The Arts.” National Art Education Association, 2021,

Warhol, Andy. “Mao.” Metmuseum.Org, 1973,

Xu, Beina, and Eleanor Albert. “Media censorship in China.” Council on Foreign Relations 25 (2014): 243.

Yunchao, Wen. “The Art of Censorship.” Index on Censorship 39.1 (2010): 53-57.


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The directions for this research paper are below. This paper should be about CENSORSHIP IN CONTEMPORARY ART IN ASIA( pick between China or India)!!!!!!!! (Sources for citation have to be from academic sources. Please use at least 4 academic sources) NO PLAGIARIZING…

Censorship in Contemporary Art in Asia

Censorship in Contemporary Art in Asia

you will research an issue (or connected issues) at stake in Asian arts (East or West Asia). An example of an issue could be censorship trying to find something original and surprising. The issue could be found in either the visual arts (such as architecture, painting, sculpture, installations, etc.), literature (such as poetry, narrative, or playwrights), or performing arts (such as music, dance, opera, etc.).
Format requirements:
• The paper will have an introduction that gets the attention of the reader, identifies the artist that was researched, and previews the specifics about this artist that will be discussed in the paper.
• Use in-text (parenthetical) citations to identify the source of each fact, statistic, research detail, or quote.
• Sources will be properly cited according to MLA style in a Works Cited page.
• Use at least two different sources for the paper, one of which should be an academic source.
• The conclusion of the paper will include a summary of the main points and draw a conclusion about this artist’s success in portraying his Asian culture today.
• The paper will be double-spaced, in 12-point font, have one-inch margins, all double-spaced, and be as error-free as possible. Proofread and revised. Read your paper out loud and actually listen to your sentence structure and grammar usage. Make all corrections before you turn in a final draft.
• Minimum length: three pages (without counting header or title).

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