Gender, Nation, and Subjectivity
Offers new understandings of gender construction and nation-building through the lens of recent Chinese television programs.
The serial narrative, based on the format of TV drama and borrowing film techniques from it, is one of the most robust and popular forms of storytelling in contemporary China. With a domestic audience of one billion-plus and growing transnational influence and accessibility, this form of storytelling is becoming the centerpiece of a fast-growing digital entertainment industry and a new symbol and carrier of China’s soft power. Televising Chineseness: Gender, Nation, and Subjectivity explores how television and online dramas imagine the Chinese nation and form postsocialist Chinese gendered subjects. The book addresses a conspicuous paradox in Chinese popular culture today: the coexistence of increasingly diverse gender presentations and conservative gender policing by the government, viewers, and society. Using first-hand data collected through interviews and focus group discussions with audiences comprising viewers of different ages, genders, and educational backgrounds, Televising Chineseness sheds light on how television culture relates to the power mechanisms and truth regimes that shape the understanding of gender and the construction of gendered subjects in postsocialist China.
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