New information technologies have, to an unprecedented degree, come to reshape human relations, identities and communities both online and offline. As Internet narratives including online fiction, poetry and films reflect and represent ambivalent politics in China, the Chinese state wishes to enable the formidable soft power of this new medium whilst at the same time handling the ideological uncertainties it inevitably entails.
This book investigates the ways in which class, gender, ethnicity and ethics are reconfigured, complicated and enriched by the closely intertwined online and offline realities in China. It combs through a wide range of theories on Internet culture, intellectual history, and literary, film, and cultural studies, and explores a variety of online cultural materials, including digitized spoofing, microblog fictions, micro-films, online fictions, web dramas, photographs, flash mobs, popular literature and films. These materials have played an important role in shaping the contemporary cultural scene, but have so far received little critical attention. Here, the authors demonstrate how Chinese Internet culture has provided a means to intervene in the otherwise monolithic narratives of identity and community.
Offering an important contribution to the rapidly growing field of Internet studies, this book will also be of interest to students and scholars of Chinese culture, literary and film studies, media and communication studies, and Chinese society.
"Gong and Yang’s skillful exploration of these topics demystifies the ubiquitous transgressiveness, heterogeneity, and contentiousness of the Chinese Internet that are often intertwined with issues of class, gender, ethnicity, and ethics within the context of Internet-ization, neoliberalism, and postsocialism…
Reconfiguring Class, Gender, Ethnicity and Ethics in Chinese Internet Culture is a rigorous work that casts light on the promises and struggles the Internet has brought about in contemporary China… It provides readers with both an in-depth theorization of cyberspace and persuasive analyses of relevant Internet-related cultural and media events. Meanwhile, it impressively connects the fields of Chinese literature and history with new media research on online communication and the entertainment industry. Through well-researched case studies, the authors afford a comprehensive and sophisticated consideration of emerging pop cultural terms (e.g., “green tea whore” ??? and “silly sweet girl” ???) and digital practices over the past decade. Both Chinese and Western scholars will find the rich, detailed information in the book fundamentally useful and stimulating….
Overall, the book is a powerful, illuminating contribution to both Chinese Internet culture and media studies. Its dedicated engagement with China studies, literary studies, communication studies, and entertainment industry and celebrity studies in the context of an online mediated environment will be of great interest and use to both academics and the general public."
Jamie J. Zhao, University of Warwick, MCLC Resource Center Publication
Introduction: Cyberspace, Heterotopia and Postsocialism in China 1. Digitized Parody: The Politics of Egao in Contemporary China 2. Circulating Smallness: The Dialectics of Micro Narrative 3. Constructing Gendered Desire in Online Fictions and Web Dramas 4. Figuring Ethnicity: Media, Identity, and the Internet 5. Caught in the Web: Ethics of Chinese Cyberspace