WHAT’S HAPPENING, CHINA?
In 2018, Chinese writer, Liu (known as Tianyi on the internet), was jailed for 10 years for “producing and selling pornographic materials”.
Her novel, Occupy told the story of a love affair between a teacher and his male student and contained “graphic depictions of male homosexual sex scenes”. Pornography and “disseminating obscene material for profit” is illegal in China; the book sold over 7,000 digital copies.
Liu’s heavy sentence sparked uproar, with many social media commentators pointing out that serious crimes like rape and manslaughter carry a lower sentence.
While homosexuality is not illegal, it is culturally taboo. Chinese broadcaster Mango TV edited out the Irish entry from the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest. Ireland’s entry, a love song by Ryan O’Shaughnessy called Together, featured a same-sex male couple dancing.
Albania’s entrant, Eugent Bushpepa was also cut from the broadcast because he has tattoos, which are banned on Chinese television.
Call Me By Your Name was dropped, without explanation, from a 2018 film festival in Beijing and, although China has no official anti-gay policy, it censors gay content under it’s very strict laws against pornography.