Friday, August 29, 2008

Rabindranath Tagore

Thou Hast Made Me Endless- XV

Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941 AD) the Nobel Laureate of 1913 was introduced to the West primarily through the collection of English translation of some of his poems/songs captioned as ‘Gitanjali’ (=Offering of Songs). More translations of his works followed by the poet himself and others after he had won the Nobel, including poems/songs, dramas, short stories etc. However, such efforts were sporadic and sluggish, mostly on individual initiative, which still remain so.

As a result, a vast volume of the poet’s works remains un-translated while, it appears, it is an impossible proposition to translate even a substantial part of the poet’s total works to permit those, not privileged by the knowledge of Bengali language, a reasonably broad view of his myriad creations where unfathomable perceptional depth of top grade aesthetics runs through, literally true to his song “Thou hast made me endless / Such is Thy pleasure”.

Notwithstanding this, an upsurge of Tagore translation took place in the last decade of the twentieth century by virtue of a good number of eminent poets/translators e.g. William Radice, Joe Winter, Ketaki Kushari Dyson, to name a few, all of whom left their valuable contribution to this oeuvre and my book THE ECLIPSED SUN is a modest addition to this. I have put stress on a few aspects of the poet’s works, particularly those in his twilight years, which seemed to me quite inadequately covered so far. The followings are presented mostly based on this book.

RAJAT DAS GUPTA: Calcutta: e-mail:

Poem No: 8 of the book PATRAPUT written at Santiniketan, ( where the Poet’s University “Visva Bharati” situates) on 5th November 1935.

[Translator’s note: Volumes of philosophical dissertations might not have brought home better the Upanishadic perception of oneness of the trivia with the cosmos than this small poem.]

This wild seedling finds way to me,
Yellow and green in her leaves I see,
Flowers are violet, cups wily
To sip light delightfully.
But no answer anywhere
When her name I inquire
She is in the club of the anonymous
Where belong the heavenly stars inglorious.
So, I capture her in my pet name
Piali (*), in my privacy that is her fame. (*)

There, Fuchsia, Marigold and Dahlia golden,
Grace the ceremony of the garden.
But my Piali remains in liberty,
Though in utter ignominy –
Unfettered by distinction of class,
A Boul (**), unsocial, lost in the mass. (**)

But soon the flowers drop and dry
Without clamour or outcry.
Her horoscope – only a few moments’ combine,
The nectar in her heart a few drops fine.
In a short span of time is her journey done,
While ages engulf flaming petals of the Sun;
Her history noted at the corner of a tiny page
With a tiny quill by the Scribe of all age.

Yet, a massive history it does unfold,
From one page to other one can’t behold.
The centuries in their eternal stream,
Their ups and downs in slow rhythm
That raised and buried many a mountain range,
In oceans and deserts brought seas of change,
Along that Time’s flow eternal,
Advanced this flower’s vision primordial.

In this flower’s transience, this vision primordial
Lives all through fresh, dynamic and eternal.
Its end one is to sight yet,
That formless concept, the un-sketched portrait
Remains eternal in some unseen contemplation
That I try to conceive in my imagination.
In which unseen is held Mankind’s trend,
The future, past and present.

· * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

(*) ‘Piala’ in Bengali means ‘Cup’ from which the Poet has coined its feminine ‘Piali’ which also happens to be the name of many a girl/women, not necessarily relating them to a ‘cup’, unlike this flower where its similarity with a ‘cup’ is implied.
(**) Bouls are a sect of people in Bengal, whose concentration is most in the Birbhum district of W. Bengal where the Poet’s University “Visva Bharati” (=World University”) situates. Bouls are remarkable for their highly spiritual songs with their “Ektara” (a single stringed musical instrument) played in tune, which is their heritage for generations. Religious liberalism is also a remarkable feature of Boul song. These are notwithstanding the low educational level of the Bouls particularly in their earlier generations when singing and begging was their sole occupation. Bouls songs have profoundly influenced Tagore’s own music known as Ranindra Sangeet (=Rabindranath’s songs). In the nineties of the last century Purna Das Boul familiarized the Western world with Boul song by virtue of his performances there including America.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Nano: A poltical football?

Becoming a sustainable corporation

From The Statesman
ND Batra

Tata Motors’s Nano project’s difficulties in Singur triggered in my mind a stream of random thoughts as to how a global corporation should build a sustainable enterprise that takes into account not only the government but all stakeholders including the humblest farmer with a “two-bigha” plot of land. But this column is not about the great Tatas, the pride of India.

The idea of what constitutes a company’s individuality, reputation and trust is important. Image and identity contribute to these intangible assets. McDonald’s, Nike, Pepsi, Coca-Cola, Chevron, and, yes, even ExxonMobil, for example, are powerful global brands and in many ways they project what the US is all about. Protecting brand reputation, when a crisis hits a company, big or small, is of paramount importance. Successful executives are great communicators and diplomats. They don’t threaten to walk away; they solve problems.

In the age of 24/7 media, corporations have become righteously obsessed with their reputation. Investigative journalists thrive on controversies and apart from serving their own self-interest, they serve a very useful social purpose. They keep corporate America on its toes. Imagine if Enron, WorldCom and other companies that went down the drain because of corruption had been subjected to an intense media scrutiny. Millions of people would have been saved from grief.

Before “60 Minutes” and similar television investigative programmes invite their subjects for an interview, they do their homework. Company whistleblowers and insiders supplement the news media’s own internal investigation.

The important point is that since corporate America cannot ignore the news media, the best thing is to make professional preparations to meet them and give them necessary cooperation. It is important to know how to communicate effectively and persuasively during a crisis so that the situation can be brought under control and remedial measures taken to re-establish the company’s reputation. Today all major corporations scan the burgeoning blogosphere and social networks. Most have their own blogs and they invite their stakeholders to contribute to them. NGOs and social activists have as much access to the news media as any big corporation.

Business culture in India has been changing rapidly and Indians are more open to global corporations today than they were a decade ago. And like Europeans, Indians too demand that global companies maintain the same high standards as they do in the US.One cannot underestimate the importance of the perpetual news cycle for the corporate global and the necessity of having an adequate response structure in place in order to take corrective measures in case the news media inadvertently damage the company’s reputation.

Many corporations use institutional advertisement to inform the public about facts that might have been ignored by the news media. Advertisement is a very important tool not only for promoting products but also for advancing a company’s vision of its social responsibilities. This is one form of communication over which a company has full control. During a crisis, a transnational company should hire the services of local agents and public relations companies. Local knowledge is very important during crises.

A corporation should report to the public about its social responsibility activities in a manner that can stand public scrutiny. Some corporations use their social responsibility activities as a tool of corporate diplomacy to build social capital and goodwill. They use their social capital when hit with a crisis. If a company has a code of ethics, let it be known to the public as to how the company is following the code. Of course, every corporation should have a code of ethics.

Europe might seem to us a house divided against itself, but when it comes to dealing with US global corporations like GE, Microsoft, Apple, et al, or a country like China, EU takes a united stand. Instead of getting help from Washington, global corporations develop their corporate diplomacy. All major corporations, Boeing, Microsoft, Google, for example, have their own corporate diplomats who use the same tools and talents as political diplomats do in dealing with international crisis. Many of them are retired ambassadors, state department officials, and military officers; and they know their jobs.

Not pulling out but lying low and waiting for the situation to improve might be a better option for transnational companies when in trouble. Even in Venezuela, the fifth largest oil producing country, some oil companies have decided to stick around, hoping that the situation will improve. In some countries, for example, KFC (Pakistan) and McDonald’s (France), outlets have been set on fire, demolished or boycotted by anti-global activists; nonetheless, business operations on the whole have continued.
Instead of quitting altogether, holding back further direct investment or even curtailment may have a remedial effect. Perhaps Tata Motors should think again these lines. The government’s backing is important but help should be sought as a last resort. Global companies should develop their own public relations, including relations with the local news media and coalition-building with local interest groups.

Although an early awareness/warning system could help predict many problems before they turn into crises, not every catastrophic event can be predicted. An early awareness system shows the potential of various issues that might emerge.If an issue has already emerged and if preventive measures are not taken before it reaches the take off stage, the issue will turn into a full-blown crisis involving NGOs and the news media.As a corporate public affairs expert, one has to cultivate public goodwill and manage public perceptions. Public goodwill is a valuable asset for a global corporation.

The complexity of dealing with multiple stakeholders is very important in understanding the parameters of doing business abroad. Monsanto, for example, had a setback in Europe but not in other countries such as China, India and Brazil. Cultural differences even in India cannot be ignored.
Were Tata Motors an American company planning an operation in India, they wouldn’t have allowed Nano to become a political football.

(ND Batra is professor of communications at Norwich University)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Pakistan Today

If Musharraf couldn’t do it, who could?

From The Statesman
ND Batra
Pakistan and its humongous problems won’t go away. In fact they are spilling into neighbouring countries and beyond.

In its six decades of bloody history, one of the country’s prime ministers Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was hanged like a thug and two others, Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto, were unceremoniously booted out from power and forced into exile. When under the pressure of “friendly persuasion” by outside powers, the two political rivals, with no love lost between them, were allowed to return to Pakistan, Mrs Bhutto, a darling of the West, was killed in an election melee and the other returnee, Mr Sharif, has been plotting revenge against the (ex)General who humiliated him in a 1999 putsch.

ince the 1980s when General Zia-ul-Haq seized power, Pakistan has been gradually turned into a nation with a fundamentalist mindset. In varying degrees, every institution, including the Pakistan armed forces and the ISI, has been infused with the fundamentalist virus that spread from Saudi-financed Wahabbi schools. Islamic fundamentalists and the US-financed Afghanistan armed resistance ultimately drove the Soviets out and also factored into the final collapse of the Soviet Union.

When the United States withdrew its presence from Afghanistan leaving well-armed guerrillas behind, the ISI in collusion with Al-Qaida and its financial resources raised the Taliban that overran the country, imposing brutal order on the war-ravaged nation. By any historical standard the ISI-Taliban control of Afghanistan was a remarkable achievement of the Pakistan armed forces. No less significant has been the development of nuclear weapons, which made Pakistan a nation that could not be ignored in the light of proliferation threats and Islamic militancy.

On Christmas Day in 2003 when suicide bombers hit Mr Musharraf’s motorcade ~ certainly not the last attempt to kill him~ many analysts wondered what good was the mighty General to the United States in its global mission of fighting terrorism if he could not protect himself. Against all odds, Mr Musharraf put up a face of being a steadfast ally of the United States in its fight against Al- Qaida terrorism. He cautiously responded to peace overtures from India. But many in the West began to be impatient with him. Some wondered whether Mr Musharraf was fully committed to fighting Al-Qaida; or had another agenda.

But the United States saw no alternative to the man who seemed to control both the military and civilian life.

In the beginning, Mr Musharraf had an aura of “exceptionalism” about him, as if he were a man of destiny. He led a bloodless coup in 1999, promising to end political corruption and take Pakistan into a new direction. He conjured the vision of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk as to how he had liberated Turkey from Islamic orthodoxy and made it a modern country. But Mr Mushrraf’s dream died too soon.

When the events of 9/11 forced him to reluctantly break away from the Taliban (whose control over Afghanistan had created an illusion of strategic depth for Pakistan) and join the US war against Al-Qaida, Mr Musharraf invoked the Prophet Muhammad’s political alliances and strategies (even with the enemies) and the Prophet’s final triumph.

Unfortunately, Mr Musharraf’s opportunistic alliance with Islamic parties to build a political base to keep his secular rivals, Bhutto’s Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and Mr Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N), out of power backfired; he unwittingly allowed extremism to grow. In 2002, Mr Musharraf assumed wide-ranging powers, including the power to amend the Constitution and dismiss Parliament. Under the new deal, which Parliament approved with the help of the ruling coalition and the Islamic alliance, the Muttahida-Majlis-e-Amal (MMA), Mr Musharraf’s seizure of power, including all orders and ordinances, could not be questioned “in any court or forum on any ground whatsoever.” Not even the US President has so much immunity for his actions.

The General who would become a civilian one day would continue to have the power to dissolve Parliament ~ though with the subsequent approval of the Supreme Court ~ until his term ended in 2007. The Supreme Court seemed the last best hope for democratic aspirations in Pakistan but he fired the Chief Justice and several judges who might have gone against him and overturned his election as President in 2007 for another five years. Out of fear, like Richard Nixon, he over-reached himself. The lame duck National Assembly passed the constitutional amendment in three days and the Senate rubber-stamped it. Transition to democracy seemed safe for Mr Musharraf’s continuation as a powerful head of the state. But the February parliamentary elections brought his political enemies, the slain Bhutto’s PPP and Mr Sharif’s PML-N, into power.

Initially, Mr Musharraf’s goal might have been to pursue his grand vision of making Pakistan a modern progressive Muslim nation. Apart from developing working relations with the secular parties whose leadership remained exiled and barred from political participation, Mr Musharraf kept up the momentum of building peaceful relations with India through dialogue, trade and cultural exchanges.

Even the Kashmir problem seemed solvable.

But Mr Musharraf failed to comprehend and control two contradictory forces in Pakistan, the militant Islamic extremism that is not only prevalent in the tribal belts of the Northwest but also in the main street as well as the barracks; and the so-called growing legal-eagle educated classes who benefited from the 6-7 per cent economic growth but who saw their last best hope for freedom and democracy in the judiciary not in his authoritarian rule.

On Pakistan’s Independence Day, Mr Musharraf, under the threat of impeachment, begged his political enemies for reconciliation. “If we want to put our economy on the right track and fight terrorism then we need political stability. Unless we bring political stability, I think we can’t fight them properly… Political stability, in my view, can only be brought through a reconciliation approach as opposed to confrontation,” Musharraf said.

During most of the nine years since he seized power, Mr Musharraf exercised absolute power; nevertheless, Pakistan saw little peace and stability. Now with the return of chaotic democracy, Pakistan is still “the most dangerous country in the world,” which the United States cannot ignore. Nor can India.

(ND Batra is professor of communications at Norwich University)

Thursday, August 14, 2008

It is India again!

Ring out the gloom on 15th August

From The Statesman

The policy of being too cautious is the greatest risk of all.
Jawaharlal Nehru

Freedom from fear is the freedom
I claim for you my motherland!
Rabindranath Tagore

India’s lumbering democracy has much to celebrate on the Independence Day, notwithstanding whatever happened in Kabul, Ahmadabad and Naina Devi. A rising power knows how to put down petty fires here and there.
India’s culture of “order-in-disorder” and free enterprise keeps gradually transforming the country into a vibrant economy; and in spite of the slow down, the economy is still likely to grow 7.5 to 8 percent for the year ending March 2009, though die-hard optimists still believe that 9 percent will be within the reach.

Quite a few years ago India crossed the critical juncture, that indefinable and momentous point when economic growth became irreversible, regardless of who would govern the country. Now with the realignment of political forces after the Dr. Manmohan Singh’s UPA government won the vote of confidence over the issue of nuclear agreement with the United States, liberalization of the economy will hasten.

The forces of economic growth and the marketplace have begun to dominate and would trump everything else including provincial and religious communalism. Indians of all karma, Dalits, Muslims, Brahmins and others, have come to understand that the way to prosperity is through entrepreneurship. An entrepreneur is a connector, a network builder, a boundary breaker. Look at Kumari Mayawati of Uttar Pradesh, for example.
India has not stopped exciting the world’s imagination and investors keep exploring its potentials. For many global investors India offers another boulevard of growth and diversification where they can put their resources to alternative productive uses. International investors want growth with protection for their shareholders and India seems attractive because its legal system including property and contract law is well developed. Tata Consultancy Services, Reliance conglomerate, Infosys Technologies, and Wipro are not the only companies for which India has become a world leader. There is a growing field of auto industry, biotechnology, petrochemicals and pharmaceuticals, where Indian companies have built international brand names.

The global buzz that India is full of talented young people who can perform competitively continues. India’s self-esteem is rising; and so is the motivation to excel. Today a young Indian with a professional degree from an American university may want to work for an American company in the beginning of his career but eventually he dreams of returning to India and setting up his own business. Do not call it a reverse brain drain; rather it is the reinforcement of India’s brain power with fresh blood from abroad, a kind of perpetual loop.

India is gradually emerging as a global hub for specialized knowledge processing for global corporations. Knowledge economy depends upon extracting and creating new knowledge from databases and is in a sense value-added outsourcing. Although India is far from becoming a full-fledged knowledge economy, this is a persistent trend, apart from other growing fields such as genetic engineering and high-tech healthcare that will hasten the transformation of India in the next decades. But much more needs to be done to sustain India’s 9 percent growth.

One of the biggest hurdles for rapid economic growth in India, and no one can deny it, is the red tape, which takes nefarious forms such as expectations of under the table money; fear of the loss of bureaucratic power due to privatization; and apprehensions about foreign direct investment (The East India Company syndrome).

Let’s not forget that the primary goal of rapid economic growth and its ultimate measure is poverty reduction by generating opportunities for employment, especially for the rural population, who mostly depending upon agriculture. For centuries rural India has been held hostage to nature’s uncertainties. Technology can break nature’s stranglehold on the poor farmer. Most rural workers should be absorbed into agro-industry, manufacturing and service industries and that again will necessitate massive investment in building rural and urban infrastructure and upgrading the existing one.

Rising expectations at home and abroad are creating compelling conditions for the government to put its act together and become pro-active. India has no choice but to get out of the political inertia, upgrade its clogged roads and overcrowded airports, eliminate frequent power outages and scuttle the red tape.

India is increasingly becoming an integral part of globalized economy and is clearly thriving on the synergy between multinational corporations and its indigenous strength, which come from its top universities, democratic institutions and the ingenuity of its people for innovative solutions to complex problems. That is why the coming of global giants such as Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation to broadcasting and Steven Spielberg’s DreamWorks to Bollywood is so important. Let there be collaboration and competition for India’s eyes and ears.

What is Ingenuity? It means transcending a system’s limitations by finding an alternative route to reach the same goal. When a creative and ingenious mind hits the wall, he or she gets fired up to find another way and improvises by transferring intelligence from one application to another. The challenge therefore is whether India’s ingenuity can be applied to undertake collective action to build reliable highways, ports, railroads, power plants and airports speedily enough to handle rapid growth.

Corruption is a serious problem in every society. The source of corruption is unchecked exercise of power, of course. Elected officials can be removed, though one might say cynically, only to be replaced by another bunch of hoodlums. But democracies do have methods of dealing with corrupt people in high places. There is a two-fold solution to the problem. Public accountability through media exposure, especially the Internet and television, as the American experience shows, is a strong corrective. Former US senator John Edwards, a hopeless seeker of the White House, for example, has been exposed by the news media for having an extra-marital affair while his wife has been fighting breast cancer.

Secondly, privatization could counter official corruption because it takes power away from bureaucrats and gives it to entrepreneurs and corporate leaders. But they too, as the American experience shows, abuse power. Nevertheless, if laws were enforced rigorously, the corrupt would find their rightful place in jails as many American CEOs have discovered. War against corruption and poverty will never come to an end.

On this Independence Day, let not gloom and doom take hold of us. It is our moral responsibility to create conditions that encourage risk taking and reward entrepreneurship. It is only through free spirited and full-blooded entrepreneurship that India can meet the challenge of becoming an India that our children and grandchildren can be proud of and the whole world can look up to.

(ND Batra is professor of communications at Norwich University)

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

China Today

Beyond Beijing Olympics

From The Statesman
ND Batra

China seems to be a nation that is inebriated with great expectations about its future, while rest of the world is just struggling to get along with bad debts, spiralling prices and random bursts of terrorism.

From die-hard communism to marketplace capitalism has been a long march indeed, though not what Mao Zedong might have conceived. But that is in fact a great tribute to China’s genius, its adaptability and resilience, creating the perception of China’s relentless and inevitable rise to a global superpower. Today China is healthier, better-educated, richer and more optimistic about its progress than most other developing countries. A recent Pew Global Attitudes Project survey showed that 86 per cent of the Chinese said they were happy with their country’s direction provided by the Communist Party.

China fascinates the global corporate with its controlled narratives of boundless opportunities and more so with the power of its ruling party’s collective will that rules 1.3 billion hardworking, entrepreneurial and yet obedient masses. China has come to believe that since the world cannot do without its inexpensive goods and talents, there’s not much to worry about intellectual property, currency manipulation to boost exports, massive trade surpluses, and rising foreign exchange reserves that end up as US Treasury notes, so no harm done.

Now the whole world is waiting for the 2008 Games to open ~ hopefully ~ under Beijing’s clear blue skies “to refashion the Olympics from a sports and merchandising extravaganza to an engine of political and social change”, as The Wall Street Journal had optimistically put it once upon a time. China won the right to host the Games in spite of its record about human rights of the people of Tibet, the followers of the banned spiritual movement Falun Gong, and political dissidents and scholars, some in jail waiting for a fair trial. Doing business with China is more important than human rights, though Americans along with rest of the world go on paying lip service to the issue. The US House of Representatives passed a near unanimous resolution (419-1) last Wednesday criticising China’s human rights record. President George W Bush will be attending the Olympics but last Tuesday he met a group of Chinese dissidents and promised to raise the human rights issue. China of course protested, and that’s the end.

Trade and the Olympics had little humanising effect upon Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union; therefore, to expect wonders to happen in China because of the Olympics in 2008 or increasing international trade is expecting too much from China’s monolithic system. It is doubtful if rising prosperity would persuade China’s Communist Party to loosen its control over power and become less authoritarian. Since China took the road to capitalism about three decades ago, its economy has been opening up and growing rapidly with its gross national product (GNP) rising to more than 9 per cent annually, which has made the Chinese, especially its elite and entrepreneurial classes, ultra nationalistic and patriotic.

Tiananmen has been wiped out from the nation’s historical memory.

Many long-term economic benefits would accrue from the 2008 Games because the whole enterprise has necessitated massive investment, billions of dollars in infrastructure and information technology to modernise and showcase Beijing for the events. Hundreds of thousands of tourists are pouring into China and the organisers hope that apart from enjoying the Games they would admire the rise of new China. China seeks global acknowledgement and respect for its achievements.

China feels that it can compete with the best without the noise and chaos of an open society like the United States, where the people demand accountability from their political leaders. No wonder Beijing with the help of US telecommunication companies, Google, Yahoo!, Microsoft and Cisco, has been trying to expand its control into the digital domain. Social scientists say that large centralised political systems break down due to internal pressures triggered by communications technology, unless they have built-in capabilities for adjustment.

So it is too early to say what might happen in China in the age of the Internet, satellites, cell phones and hosts of other wireless, digital, and interconnected sensing devices that are becoming available to the masses. China might succeed in controlling the digital generation and guide it into a nationalistic upsurge as it happened during the recent Tibet protests. Some US corporations cannot stop thinking that by offering selective partnership to Chinese businesses they would be able to co-opt China’s brain-power. For example, after selling its ThinkPad to a Chinese company, Lenovo Group Ltd. in 2005, IBM alerted the public about the inevitability of China’s rise and the need to harness its strength for corporate America. A full-page advertisement amusingly admonished: “The future is a dragon. Do you hear it coming?” The IBM boasted of access to a global pool of Nobel laureates, research labs and no less than 3,000 scientists, engineers and technologists. Instead of paying the salaries of scientists and technologists to solve complex problems, the ad asked, wouldn’t it be great simply “to rent their minds?”

Renting brain-power from China for doing specific jobs may sound more acceptable than outsourcing, but post-Olympics China’s intellectual and manufacturing power may no longer be available for renting. The Japanese too have been hearing the dragon coming. In 2005, the Chinese government permitted loud and sometime violent protests against Japan in several big industrial cities, including Shanghai and Hong Kong, regarding Japanese insensitivities to their bruised feelings.

The Chinese claimed that their feelings had been hurt because some Japanese school textbooks showed no regrets about the atrocities the Japanese troops had committed against them during World War II. There were other reasons. Japan had begun to explore undersea oil and gas deposits in a disputed region of East China Sea; and of course Japan’s continuous strategic alliance with the US regarding the Taiwan issue has been an irritant. When Japan asked for an apology and compensation for vandalism and damage to its diplomatic and commercial property, China said it had nothing to apologise about. Before the street protests, the Chinese government had allowed an online petition drive by millions of Chinese against Japan’s effort to seek permanent membership of the UN Security Council. The unprecedented online phenomenon showed how China could mobilise its masses.

Just as the Chinese authorities aroused the Chinese to come out and protest against Japan, with the same speed they ordered protesters to shut up. The Communist Party is capable of generating and controlling mass enthusiasm through nationalism, as it is doing for the Games now. It will be interesting to see how the Games affect China as the world turns.

(ND Batra is professor of communications at Norwich University)