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Shit youth

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粪青 (fènqīng): shit youth

An angry youth smashes a Japanese computer while the onlooking Chinese computer snickers, “You don’t look ugly, you look patriotic!” (Southern Metropolis Daily)

In Mandarin, “shit youth” is a pejorative homophone for “angry youth” (愤青, fènqīng), young people who are extremely vocal with their nationalism. “Angry youth” are known to whip up anti-Japanese and anti-Western fervor: they founded the website Anti-CNN in response to CNN’s coverage of the 2008 Tibet riots, and frequently catalyze anti-Japanese street protests. “Angry youth” cause the Chinese government considerable anxiety, as they may organize and resist the control of the authorities. The derogatory “shit youth” implies that their fervor is irrational and even dangerous.

On Sina Weibo, one user elucidates the difference between shit youths and other types of youths:

埋葬落魄: Those who dismiss everything, cry and curse, are shit youths. Those who are discontent with reality, eager to create change, and cry out in anger are rage youths. Only those who move forward step by step are striving youths. How many people carry the banner of thought and personality in the name of rage youths yet act in the manner of shit youths. Let’s use our youth to accomplice some concrete things. If we do not strive, what right do we have to “rage?!”


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