Gabrielle Jaffe is a freelance journalist who is currently based in China, covering travel, culture and current affairs for publications including The Atlantic, The Times, and Los Angeles Times.
Latest entries
Off-road in scenic Fujian

Off-road in scenic Fujian

The sweat, the strain, the huffing and puffing – it had all been worth it for this. After a long morning of biking, the 20-minute uphill climb had nearly beaten me. Much of the time the slope was so steep that I decelerated to a
China's graffiti artists

China’s graffiti artists

Some thirty years have passed since the award-winning film “Style Wars” was released, bringing to the world’s attention the little-understood graffiti culture of 1980s New York. Now a new documentary hopes to shed light on the even lesser-known world of China’s graffiti artists. “Spray Paint
Diamante Porsches? Lime Lamborghinis? China's crazy customized cars

Diamante Porsches? Lime Lamborghinis? China’s crazy customized cars

Beijing might be famous for being the city of nine million bicycles, but in the Chinese capital, cars are now king. A world-record breaking 20 million automobiles were sold across the country last year, making China the world’s largest car market. With 200 new models
Marriage in China: Guilt tripped

Marriage in China: Guilt tripped

A controversial advertisement featuring a young woman guilted into marriage by her dying grandmother has been forced off air in China. Broadcast across several television stations and online platforms in the run up to Valentine’s Day, the commercial shows an elderly woman incessantly asking her
In China, novel ways to fake ancient goods

In China, novel ways to fake ancient goods

  Strolling through Beijing’s Panjiayuan Market, it’s easy to imagine you’ve entered an antique treasure trove. Hawkers here sell blue and white porcelain, jade trinkets and Cultural Revolution-era memorabilia. If the prices seem too good to be true, that’s because they are. In the past, it
Mao hailed as a hero at home but not in Beijing

Mao hailed as a hero at home but not in Beijing

Official celebrations of Mao Zedong’s 120th birthday in Beijing yesterday were decidedly low key — but hardliners who had gathered in his home town ensured that the date was fêted with appropriate fanfare. President Xi and the six other leaders who make up the Chinese
Cross-border Chinese smugglers’ tunnel unearthed by police

Cross-border Chinese smugglers’ tunnel unearthed by police

An underground smugglers’ tunnel equipped with lights and a rail track to transport goods from mainland China to Hong Kong has been uncovered by Chinese police. The entrance to the 40-metre underground passage was discovered by border police under a garage in Changling, a small
Shanghai scenes

Shanghai scenes

China re-embraces Confucius

China re-embraces Confucius

QUFU, CHINA—Confucius is quoted as saying, “How delightful it is to have friends come from afar.” But what would the sage have made of the hordes of tourists now descending on his hometown? Visitors to Qufu—the Shandong town where Confucius grew up over 2,500 years
Chinese city restores century-old synagogue

Chinese city restores century-old synagogue

Two Chinese politicians and an Israeli professor are huddled around an architect’s drawing. “Actually it would be better if the fence rails were shaped like Stars of David instead of crosses,” politely suggests the professor, Dan Ben-Canaan, who is advising on the $16-million project to
Qufu, China: a tour of Confucius's home town

Qufu, China: a tour of Confucius’s home town

“I am a descent of Confucius,” says my guide, and I am enormously impressed – until I learn later that the Chinese philosopher’s progeny officially number over two million people. Still, Kong Xiangqiang (or Tommy, as he asks me to call him) has the ideal
Qufu, Shandong

Qufu, Shandong