China’s decades-long repression of Tibetan independence continues on as its global economic power continues to grow. In response to the former and despite the latter, the independence movement persists, represented here through the voices of Wang Lixiong and Tsering Shakya. Born into the repressive one-party regime, both writers now seek for Tibetan cultural and political autonomy, and although each writer theorizes this goal differently, both are in agreement about what must now be done. The result is this milestone exchange.
While Wang suggests the complicity of a fear-stricken religion in perpetuating Chinese imperialist rule, Shakya interprets recent Tibetan history as a history of colonialism, against which the independence movement struggles for autonomous rule. These differing and sometimes opposing lines of thought finally climax in the present struggle for independence, ending upon a joint statement regarding Tibet’s future: true autonomy is the only way.