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Document Number Nine

John Lanchester: Chinese Cyber-Sovereignty

10 October 2019
The Great Firewall of China: How to Build and Control an Alternative Version of the Internet 
by James Griffiths.
Zed, 386 pp., £20, March, 978 1 78699 535 3
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We Have Been Harmonised: Life in China’s Surveillance State 
by Kai Strittmatter.
Old Street, 328 pp., £9.99, May, 978 1 913083 00 7
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... in its essence a threat to the authoritarian state. The Chinese government favours the doctrine of ‘cyber-sovereignty’, in which countries have control over their own versions of the internet. KaiStrittmatter was for many years the Beijing correspondent for the Süddeutsche Zeitung, and his excellent We Have Been Harmonised is an eye-opening account of this issue. (‘Harmonised’ is a ...

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