1st Edition

State Propaganda in China’s Entertainment Industry

By Shenshen Cai Copyright 2016
    154 Pages
    by Routledge

    154 Pages
    by Routledge

    Most current research on the evolution of China’s propaganda discourse only touches upon recent variations of official propaganda rhetoric grounded in popular media. Here, the research is extended by tapping into the most recently released popular cultural media narratives such as online documentaries, films, TV drama serials and education programs, all of which are enlisted and co-opted by the state for propaganda goals.

    This book maps out the cutting-edge expansions of official propaganda that are embedded in the entertainment industry of contemporary China. Its case studies bring to light the progression of the mainstream propaganda discourse in terms of its merging, cooperation and compromise with the commercial features of both the traditional and newly-emerging entertainment media. In particular, it examines a group of mass entertainment products which include two best-selling mainstream blockbusters, two on-line commercial web documentaries, the China Central Television Moon Festival Gala series, socialist revolutionary TV drama serials, and a prime time science and education program. In so doing, it forefronts the up-to-date developments and novelties of state propaganda: its motives, reasoning and approaches within the mediasphere of today’s China.

    Illustrating how the CCP propaganda apparatus and tactics evolve and become embedded in popular media products, this book will be of interest to students and scholars of Chinese studies, Media Studies and Popular Cultural Studies.

    Introduction 1. Nationalism, Nostalgia, and Romance: The Politics of the Chinese Moon Festival Gala 2. Founding of a Republic and Beginning of the Great Revival: Propaganda Infused Blockbusters in Present-day China 3. Contemporary Chinese TV Serials: Configuring the Collective Memory of Socialist Nostalgia via the Cultural Revolution 4. The Search for Modern China and The Pillar Standing in Midstream: Two Examples of the Nationalist Genre of Chinese Commercial Media 5. A Rising Star Professor: Yu Dan and Her Interpretation of Confucius 6. A Cultural Reading of Two Contemporary Chinese Revolutionary Spy-themed TV Drama Serials: Undercover and Decoding 7. Conclusion


    Shenshen Cai is a Lecturer in Chinese Studies at the University of Melbourne, Australia. She has recently published articles in journals such as Social Semiotics (2015), Asian Studies Review (2016), and Asian Theatre Journal (2016).

    "Cai does an excellent job describing how the CCP manipulates media culture inside China … Cai’s incisive study should whet a curious reader’s appetite for a broader exploration of the interplay between freedom and state control in China rapidly changing society."

    Journalism and & Mass Communication Quarterly