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  • Speaker | 25 October, 2019


    In the last two decades, China has discovered 200 species of dinosaurs and documented pivotal information about bird evolution.
    Some dinosaurs are large, such as the Nanyangosaurus and Sinocertapos. Others, such as the feathered Sinosauropteryx, are small and help support the hypothesis that birds evolved from dinosaurs. China’s multi-decade economic boom  has helped by providing more funds for scientific research. The accompanying building drive has also resulted in more sites being discovered (though some have also been damaged this way). Please join us for an evening in which Drs. Xu Xing and Tom Stidham explain why China is so rich in dinosaur and bird remains; what these discoveries mean, and how China is working to protect its palaeontological heritage.
    ABOUT THE SPEAKERSXu Xing and Tom Stidham are both professors at the Key Laboratory of Vertebrate Evolution and Human Origins, and the  Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Xu has discovered more dinosaur species than any other palaeontologist. Stidham studies the fossil record and evolution of the more than 10,000 living species of dinosaurs, otherwise known as birds.

    Walk | 9 November, 2019

    Tiananmen and the Making of Modern Beijing: A Walk and Discussion

    For much of China’s modern history, the area around Tiananmen has been the political epicenter of the Chinese nation. It is the beating heart of Beijing and the stage for some of history’s most dramatic moments.

    This walk and discussion will take us through Beijing’s past from its days as an imperial capital through the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949 and down to the present day.

    During this two-hour walk, we’ll visit the Beijing Urban Planning Hall (a fascinating museum in desperate need of a catchier name!) and explore Tiananmen Square.

    Along the way, we’ll also discuss the political significance of Tiananmen, the events which have made Tiananmen Square famous around the world, and the ongoing evolution of Beijing from imperial capital to a modern megalopolis.


    Jeremiah Jenne is a writer and history teacher based in Beijing since 2002. He has taught Late Imperial and Modern Chinese History for over 12 years and has written extensively on China for a number of publications including The Economist, South China Morning Post, Journal of Asian Studies, Asia Society/China File, Los Angeles Review of BooksRadii China, The Beijinger, and World of Chinese. His work can be found in the anthologies China in 2008: A Year of Great Significance, The Insider’s Guide to Beijing, and the 2015 collection While We’re Here: China Stories from a Writer’s Colony. He is frequently asked to speak or lead workshops on Chinese history, culture, and cultural adaptation to schools, organizations, and company groups from around the world and is the proprietor of Beijing by Foot, which organizes educational programs and historic walking tours of Beijing’s most famous sites and hidden by-ways. You can follow him on Twitter @jeremiahjenne or online at jeremiahjenne.com.


    Important practical information:

    Due to the security around Tiananmen, please be sure to bring your passport or other identification with you. The police occasionally ask visitors to show their IDs before entering Tiananmen Square and ID may be required to enter some of the sites we will visit.

    We will depart from in front of the Beijing Urban Planning Hall at 2:00 pm.

    Getting There

    The Beijing Urban Planning Hall is located at 20 Qianmen Dongdajie, about 200 meters east from the southeast corner of Tiananmen Square along Qianmen Dongdajie (just past the Railway Museum/old railway station on the south side of the street.)

    If you are traveling by subway, you can take line 2 to the Qianmen Subway Stop, from the B Exit cross under the street, and then walk east 180 meters along Qianmen Dongdajie. The Exhibition Hall is on the south side of the street.

    If you are coming by taxi or driver, you can tell/show the driver this address:

    前门东大街20号 北京市规划展览馆.

    qianmen dongdajie ershi hao/beijing shi guihua zhanlan guan.

    Here is a link to the location from Google Maps: https://goo.gl/maps/ByM74

    Here is a link to the location from Baidu Maps: http://j.map.baidu.com/jeLAx

    Walk Information:

    We will be walking both inside and outside for about two hours. We recommend guests wear comfortable shoes and clothing appropriate for the season and for cooler weather.