China to Bjork: You Hurt Our Feelings

Travel Blog  •  Jim Benning  •  03.10.08 | 4:00 PM ET


It’s official: Bjork “hurt the feelings of the Chinese people” when she shouted “Tibet! Tibet!” at the end of a recent concert in Shanghai. That’s the word from the Ministry of Culture. The outburst came following the Icelandic singer’s performance of her song “Declare Independence.” Reports Reuters: “The performance ‘not only broke Chinese laws and regulations and hurt the feelings of Chinese people, but also went against the professional code of an artist,’ the ministry said in a statement quoted by the official Xinhua news agency.”


The ministry announced it would tighten restrictions on foreign performers as a result.

Bjork posted a statement about the song and incident on her Web site: “this song was written more with the personal in mind but the fact that it has translated to its broadest meaning, the struggle of a suppressed nation, gives me much pleasure . i would like to wish all individuals and nations good luck in their battle for independence.”

(Bjork has apparently declared her independence from capitalizing first words of sentences, too.)

As we noted last week, Foreign Policy observed that Bjork “appears to use the song as a neo-Wilsonian Mad-Lib. Last month, she dedicated it to Kosovo, and in the video for it, she wears an outfit bearing the flags of Greenland and the Faroe Islands, both Danish territory.”

But really, who doesn’t have a song they like to use as a neo-Wilsonian Mad-Lib?

5 Comments for China to Bjork: You Hurt Our Feelings

cg 03.10.08 | 7:03 PM ET

Oh fuck the chinese. Who cares if she offended them by pointing out something thats been blaringly obvious to the rest of the world forever….

Kelsey 03.11.08 | 9:33 AM ET

I think they should have been more offended by her outfit—China meets Star Wars.

mrickwald 03.11.08 | 10:49 AM ET

I agree with CG

Buddhist miao zen 03.16.08 | 1:53 PM ET

Tibet and Buddhism are not politics.To be a buddhism,I’m disappoint to heart what Bjork say.we need peace and love ,not War and some thing called “independence”.

Lee 03.27.08 | 3:55 AM ET

I heard about this. It seems like it wasn’t that big of a deal. People left because it was the end of the show.

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