The Chinese Society and Culture

The Chinese Society and Culture

Fall 2013

Staff of the Course:

Course Instructor

l  Yu Hai, Professor, Department of Sociology, Fudan University

yuhai_1998@yahoo.com

(M) 13321859728; (H) 65304777; (O) 55665380 (Rm. 929 in Art and Literature Building)

http://www.oldssdpp.fudan.edu.cn/yuhai

l  Hu Anning, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology, Fudan University

huanning@fudan.edu.cn

(M) 18201778359

 

Teaching Assistant

l  Zhang Jun, Department of Sociology, Fudan University

12210730025@fudan.edu.cn

(M) 13761555102

l  Zhang Miao, Department of Sociology, Fudan University

12210730026@fudan.edu.cn

(M) 13917696255

 

Teaching time : 15 :25pm- 18 :00pm every Friday

Classroom : 6107 (Sixth Teaching Building)

 

 

Objective of Course :

This course aims to familiarize students with a number of salient themes and issues in contemporary Chinese society. As China’s rapid development is increasingly focusing worldwide attention on the People’s Republic, it is crucial to be able to grasp the social, cultural and political underpinnings of China’s unique trajectory and present-day situation. In turn, such an understanding requires acquaintance with an array of key notions and conceptual tools that will be methodically introduced and explicated throughout the semester.

Course Description:

The course is organized sequentially into two sectors:

The first sector with four lectures will focus on Shanghai Studies as a means to offer a distinct localized illustration of the Chinese experience. Today, it is safe to say that Shanghai is one of the most powerful cities in East Asia and even the world. Yet despite its global stature, it remains deeply Chinese, occupying a unique position vis-à-vis the issues and challenges arising from the country’s rapid pace of development. To the researcher, Shanghai displays the interaction of geography, economy, and society. Local culture itself remarkably varied, as it ranges from Chinese revolutionary culture to the city’s own civic culture to modern pop culture. The lectures will address the history of Shanghai in a national context, its renaissance as a global city as a result of state strategy from the 1990s onward, and issues of urban planning and urban social space.

The second sector addresses Chinese culture and religion. In the first lecture, students will have an opportunity to learn about the cultural foundations of ancestor worship and its contemporary practices, about the meaning of guanxi (relationship) and its application and transition in Chinese society, and about the Five Relationships, the core of Confucian ethics. The second and third lectures will concentrate on the culture of Shanghai, including themes such as Nostalgia and Consumerism, as well as the value system and lifestyle of Shanghainese. The fourth lecture will provide an introduction to the Chinese policy of religious freedom, to the historical background and contemporary situation of Chinese folk religion, and to the phenomenon of mass conversion to Christianity in China.

In addition, there are two other lectures on some special topics: NGO and finance in Shanghai.

Course Evaluation:

Attendance and class participation– 10%

Attendance to lectures and fieldtrips is required for all students. Please inform the TA in advance if you want to ask for a leave due to eligible excuses.

Yuhai’s assignments: (1) a 1500-word essay titled “Shanghai Impression”-30%, based your own observation, critical thinking and reflection in the field work in Shanghai. Empirical experiences are highly valued throughout the course. By fieldwork as well as observation, students will see the city through your own eyes. The reflection over first hand empirical experiences will be included in the paper. (2) Pictures during your stay in Shanghai—20%. You may take a lot pictures during your stay in Shanghai, please pick 10 of them and tell us what the most impressive things in Shanghai are. Write at least 50 words of explication below each picture. Please include the pictures in a word file or pdf file.

Instruction: You can choose any scenes, any people or any aspects of the city life. But you will have to tell us 1. Why you choose these pictures. 2. (If you are a foreign student) What kind of difference or common point between Shanghai and your city you’ve got from the picture? 3. (If you are a Chinese student) What aspect of the city life does this picture remind you? 4. Any pictures you provide as the assignment must be taken by yourself. The pictures from other resources would be taken as plagiarism ones.

Hu Anning’s assignment: a 2000-word essay-40%with the focus on one of the discussing topics. The due time of this assignment is listed in the time table.

Reading materials:

You can download the reading materials at:

http://www.oldssdpp.fudan.edu.cn/yuhai/uploadfile/chinese_society/chinese_society.zip

Password: fd2012

 

Teaching Schedule:

 

Lecture 1 by Yu Hai: Course Orientation and From Cosmopolitan city to Socialist Shanghai (the 1840s –the 1990s).

Reading List

Y.M.Yeung and Sung Yun-wing (editor): Shanghai: Transformation and Modernization under China’s Open Policy, Chapter 19, “ The Shanghai Model in Historical Perspective”, pp494-518, 24pages, The Chinese University of Hongkong Press, 1996

Yu Hai: A City Established from a Sense of Civics, in Beijing Review, July 19, 2007, p25 http://www.bjreview.com.cn/quotes/txt/2007-07/17/content_69619.htm

Yu Hai and Yan Fei: A Story of Shanghai Space: From Mao to Deng.

 

Lecture 2 by Yu Hai: Globalizing Shanghai (since 1990).

Reading List

Tingwei Zhang: Striving To Be A global City From Below: The Restructuring of Shanghai’s urban Districts. From Xiangming Chen, Shanghai Rising, 2009

Fulong Wu: Globalization, Place Promotion and Urban Development in Shanghai, Journal of Urban Affairs, Vol.25, No.1, pp55-78, 2003.

Shahid Yusuf and Weiping Wu: Pathways to a world city, Urban Studies, Vol. 39, No.7, 1213-1240, 2002

Yehua Dennis Wei, Chi Kin Leung, Jun Luo. Globalizing Shanghai: Foreign Investment and Urban Restructuring. Habitat International, 2006(30): 231~244

 

Lecture 3 by Yu Hai: Aspects of Shanghai Studies (1).

Reading List

Yu Hai: Becoming a Chinese Cosmopolitan Place: Tianzifang Beyond the Global-local Duality.

Yu Hai: Narrative of Historic Block Renovation in Power and Concept Dimensions – Case of Tianzifang in Shanghai.

Yu Hai: Urban Renovation in Shanghai’s Inner-City in Social-Spatial Perspective.

Yu Hai: The Shanghainese People and the Identity of City of Shanghai.

Yan Yunxiang: Of hamburger and social space: Consuming McDonalds in Beijing, The Consumer Revolution in Urban China, Edited by Deborah S. Davis, University of California.

Albert Wing Tai Wai. Place promotion and iconography in Shanghai’s Xintiandi. Habitat International, 2006, 30: 245-260.

Wang Xiaoming: Under the sky of Shanghai.

Tianshu Pan: Communal memory, Spatializing Strategy, and Neighborhood Gentrification in Post-reform Shanghai.

Fulong Wu: Rediscovering the ‘Gate’ under Market Transition: From Work-Unit Compounds to Commodity Housing Enclaves.

 

Lecture 4 by Corinne Richeux Hua: Stepping Stone program and Voluntary Organization in Shanghai.

 

Lecture 5 by Hu Anning: Chinese Culture: Ancestor Worship, Guanxi, and Confucian Ethics.

Reading List

Guthrie, Douglas. 1998. The Declining Significance of Guanxi in China’s Economic Transition. The China Quarterly 154: 254-282.

Hom, Peter W. and Zhixing Xiao. 2011. Embedding Social Networks: How Guanxi Ties Reinforce Chinese Employees’ Retention. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes 116: 188–202.

Li, Ling. 2011. Performing Bribery in China: Guanxi-Practice, Corruption with a Human Face. Journal of Contemporary China20: 1–20.

Obukhova, Elena. 2012. Motivation vs. Relevance: Using Strong Ties to Find a Job in Urban China. Social Science Research 41: 570–580.

Peng, Yusheng. 2010. When Formal Laws and Informal Norms Collide: Lineage Networks versus Birth Control Policy in China. American Journal of Sociology 116: 770-805.

Wolf, Arthur P. 1974. Gods, Ghosts, and Ancestors. Pp. 131-182 in Religion and Ritual in Chinese Society, edited by Arthur P. Wolf. Stanford: Stanford University Press.

Discussing Topics

Do you have a counterpart of Chinese guanxi in your country?

What are the similarities and differences between Chinese guanxi and the Western counterpart?

What are the positive and negative social functions of guanxi in your mind?

What is your general perception of Confucianism?

Confucianism appears to be more and more popular in Western societies, do you think so? If yes, why?

Lecture 6 by Hu Anning: The Culture of Shanghai I: the Identity and Life Style of Shanghainess

Reading List

Farrer, James. 2009-2010. Shanghai Bars: Patchwork Globalization and Flexible Cosmopolitanism in Reform-Era Urban-Leisure. Chinese Sociology and Anthropology 42: 22–38.

Farrer, James. 2010. ‘New Shanghailanders’ or ‘New Shanghainese’: Western Expatriates’ Narratives of Emplacement in Shanghai. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 36:1211-1228.

Yang, Xiong. 2003. A Survey on the Professional Life of White-Collar Youth in Shanghai. Chinese Education and Society 35: 36-52.

Yip, Ngaiming. 2012. Walled without Gates: Gated Communities in Shanghai. Urban Geography 33: 221-236.

Yu, Hai. The Production of Space and the Distribution of Right-of-way.

Discussing Topics

Do you think identifying with hometown city or metropolis common in your society?

The stereotype of Shanghainese might not stand for the individual cases, what do you think about the characteristics of Shanghainese based on your personal life?

Lecture 7 by Hu Anning: The Culture of Shanghai II:  Nostalgia, Gentrification, and Consumerism

Reading List

Bao, Yaoming. 2008. Shanghai Weekly: Globalization, Consumerism, and ShanghaiPopular Culture. Inter-Asia Cultural Studies 9: 557-566.

He, Shenjing. 2010. New-Build Gentrification in Central Shanghai: Demographic Changes and Socioeconomic Implications. Population, Space, and Place 16, 345–361.

Lu, Hanchao. 2002. Nostalgia for the Future: The Resurgence of an Alienated Culture in China. Pacific Affairs 75: 169-186.

Ren, Xuefei. 2008. Forward to the Past: Historical Preservation in Globalizing Shanghai. City & Community 7: 23-43.

Wang, Jun and Stephen Siu Yu Lau. 2009. Gentrification and Shanghai’s New Middle-Class: Another Reflection on the Cultural Consumption Thesis. Cities 26:57–66.

Discussing Topics

What do you think about the gentrification in Shanghai? Do you think gentrification is a global trend (e.g. the gentrification of the capital cities in your country)?

Nostalgia can be witnessed in many parts of China. Did you notice similar nostalgia in your country? What are the concrete activities?

Lecture 8 by Hu Anning: Religions in China: Survival and Revival.

Reading List

Bays, Daniel H. 2003.Chinese Protestant Christianity Today. China Quarterly 174: 488-504.

Bruun, Ole. 1996. The Fengshui Resurgence in China: Conflicting Cosmologies between State and Peasantry. The China Journal36: 47-65.

Dean, Kenneth. 2003. Local Communal Religion in Contemporary South-East China. The China Quarterly174: 338-358.

Fan, Lizhu. 2003. Popular Religion in Contemporary China. Social Compass 50: 449-457.

Potter, Pitman B. 2003. Belief in Control: Regulation of Religion in China. China Quarterly 174: 317-337.

Smith, Steve A. 2006. Local Cadres Confront the Supernatural: The Politics of Holy Water in the PRC, 1949-1966. The China Quarterly 188: 999-1022.

Tsai, Lily L. 2007. Solidary Groups, Informal Accountability, and Local Public Goods Provision in Rural China. The American Political Science Review 101(2): 355-372.

Yang, Fenggang. 2005. Lost in the Market, Saved at McDonald’s: Conversion to Christianity in Urban China. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion44:423–441.

Discussing Topics

What are the social functions of religion in your society?

What are the similarities and differences between Chinese folk religion and commonly practiced Tarot, Fortune-telling using a crystal ball, and horoscope?

 

Lecture 9 by Yu Hai: Aspects of Shanghai Studies (2).

Reading List

Yu Hai: Becoming a Chinese Cosmopolitan Place: Tianzifang Beyond the Global-local Duality.

Yu Hai: Narrative of Historic Block Renovation in Power and Concept Dimensions – Case of Tianzifang in Shanghai.

Yu Hai: Urban Renovation in Shanghai’s Inner-City in Social-Spatial Perspective.

Yu Hai: The Shanghainese People and the Identity of City of Shanghai.

Yunxiang Yan: Of hamburger and social space: Consuming McDonalds in Beijing, The Consumer Revolution in Urban China, Edited by Deborah S. Davis, University of California.

Albert Wing Tai Wai. Place promotion and iconography in Shanghai’s Xintiandi. Habitat International, 2006, 30: 245~260

Wang Xiaoming: Under the sky of Shanghai

Tianshu Pan: Communal memory, Spatializing Strategy, and Neighborhood Gentrification in Post-reform Shanghai

Fulong Wu: Rediscovering the ‘Gate’ under Market Transition: From Work-Unit Compounds to Commodity Housing Enclaves.

 

Lecture 10 by Wang Xiaozu: Finance and trade in Shanghai.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time Table for Chinese Culture and Society

Week Date Event Detail
Week 1 Sep. 13 Course Orientation and Lecture 1 Lecture given by Prof. Yu Hai

Course Orientation and From Cosmopolitan city to Socialist Shanghai (the 1840s –the 1990s).

Week 2 Sep.22 Site visit Led by Prof. Yu Hai or Dr.Hu Anning :

Visiting the Urban Planning Exhibition Hall.

Week 3 Sep. 27 Lecture 2 Lecture given by Prof. Yu Hai

Globalizing Shanghai (since 1990)

Week 4 Oct. 4       / National Holiday
Week 5 Oct. 11 Lecture 3 Lecture given by Prof. Yu Hai

Aspects of Shanghai Studies (1).

Week 6 Oct.18 Lecture 4 Lecture given by Corinne Richeux Hua

Stepping Stone program and Voluntary Organization In Shanghai

Week 7 Oct.25 Lecture 5 Lecture given by Dr. Hu Anning

Chinese Culture: Ancestor Worship, Guanxi, and Confucian Ethics.

Week 8 Nov.1 Lecture 6 Lecture given by Dr. Hu Anning:

The Culture of Shanghai I: the Identity and Life Style of Shanghainess.

Week 9 Nov.8 Lecture 7 Lecture given by Dr. Hu Anning :

The Culture of Shanghai II:  Nostalgia, Gentrification, and Consumerism.

Week 10 Nov.15 Site visit Led by Prof. Yu Hai & Dr.Hu Anning :

Visiting the Lingang New City and Yangshan Port.

Week 11 Nov.22 Lecture 8 Lecture given by Dr. Hu Anning :

Religions in China: Survival and Revival.

Week 12 Nov.29 Lecture 9 Lecture given by Prof. Yu Hai

Aspects of Shanghai Studies (2).

Week 13 Dec.6 Lecture 10 Lecture given by Wang Xiaozu

Finance and trade in Shanghai.

Hu Anning’s Essay Due

Week 14 Dec.13    

Yuhai’s Assignments Due

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