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China 2.0

Top Chinese Filmmaker Investigated Over Seven Children



WUXI – Zhang Yimou, one of China’s top film directors is being investigated over claims he has fathered seven children, the Chinese media reported on Thursday.

The Wuxi City Population and Family Planning Commission, in eastern China’s Jiangsu Province, is investigating the Xi'an-born director, after it has come to light that Zhang had at least seven children – a violation of China’s family planning policy reports the Global Times.

Zhang, 61, could be fined up to 160 million yuan ($26 million) for these violations.

China’s one-child policy limits urban couples to one child, and to two children for rural families when the first child is a girl.

Zhang, one of China’s most respected directors, according to Xinhua, has won several awards including the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival and the Golden Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival.

His most famous films include Red Sorghum (1987), Raise the Red Lantern (1991), Hero (2002) and House of Flying Daggers (2004). His last movie, in 2011, was The Flowers of War, starring Christian Bale.

Many of his early films were banned in China, reports the AFP, but he has since become a favorite. He was chosen to direct the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and was a runner-up for the Time Magazine Person of the Year in 2008.

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food / travel

Pasta v. Fascists: How Italy's Staple Dish Became A Symbol Of Resistance

Pasta may not be considered controversial today, but it played an important role during Italy's fascist years, particularly in one family's celebration of community and liberation.

Photo of the Cervi family.

Photo of the Cervi family, whose seven children were shot by the Fascists on December 28, 1943, at the Reggio Emilia shooting range.

@comunisti_alla_ribalta via Instagram
Jacopo Fontaneto

ROME — Eighty years ago — on July 25, 1943 — the vote of no confidence by the Grand Council of Fascism, leading to Benito Mussolini's arrest, set off widespread celebrations. In Campegine, a small village in the Emilian province, the Cervi family celebrated in their own way: they brought 380 kilograms of pasta in milk cans to the town square and offered it to all the inhabitants of the village.

The pasta was strictly plain: macaroni dressed with butter and cheese, seen as more of a "festive dish" in that period of deprivation. As soon as the Cervi brothers learned about the arrest of Mussolini, they procured flour, borrowed butter and cheese from the dairy, and prepared kilos and kilos of pasta. They then loaded it onto a cart to distribute it to their fellow villagers. Pastasciutta (dry pasta) specifically regards dishes with noodles that are plated "dry", not in broth. That would disqualify soup, risotto, ravioli...

Even though pastasciutta is the most stereotypical type of pasta today, it had a complicated relationship with the government during Italy's fascist years.

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