The Saul O Sidore Lecture Series at Plymouth State University will present Chinese dissident Xu Wenli addressing “China and Democracy” at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 12 in Boyd Science Center room 144. The theme of the 2006-07 series is “The Challenges of Democracy.” There is no charge for the program.
Mr. Xu Wenli, institute senior fellow at the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University, spent 16 years in prison for his activities as a dissident, and is one of China’s most recognized pro-democracy advocates. He was exiled to the United States following his release from prison due to serious ill health in 2001.
Xu was a leader in the Democracy Wall movement from 1979-1981, edited the Samizdat-style journal April Fifth Forum and played a major role in establishing the Beijing-Tianjin branch of the China Democracy Party in 1998.In 2004 he founded the Chinese Democratic Party Overseas Exile Headquarters and is currently the general convener.
His political program is “To abandon one-party dictatorship, lay aside the issue of Taiwanese independence, restore a democratic China, and build an equal and prosperous federation between the People’s Republic of China and Taiwan.”
Xu says democracy is a challenge with harsh obstacles for many constituencies in China, including the dissidents, members of the government and the ordinary citizen. He will speak to the challenges for these groups in his lecture.
The Saul O Sidore Lecture Series was established at Plymouth State University in 1979 to bring a variety of speakers to the University each year to address the critical political, social and cultural issues and events of our time. A reception with refreshments will follow the program.
For lecture series information call (603) 535-2638.