Rebel Without a Country

Isaac Stone Fish
August 31, 2015
Foreign Policy

“Rebel Pepper, China’s most notorious political cartoonist, fled his native land for Japan. But life in exile is tougher than he expected. Over the last few years, his cartoons have become steadily more subversive. Despite his polite, almost deferential demeanor, the moniker ‘Rebel’ fits him well. He’s probably China’s best-known political cartoonist, and certainly the one most critical of the ruling Communist Party. In China, Rebel had grown notorious for satirizing China’s increasingly authoritarian President Xi Jinping — Rebel has drawn Xi as a steamed dumpling and as a shirtless post-coital smoker in bed with a young man — and, Rebel told me, he realized that he had to leave Beijing or risk facing a long spell in prison.”

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Isaac Stone Fish is a 2015 US-Japan Journalism Fellow.