Online Society in China

Creating, celebrating, and instrumentalising the online carnival

Edited by David Kurt Herold, Peter Marolt

© 2011 – Routledge

240 pages

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415838221
pub: 2013-02-14
US Dollars$54.95
Hardback: 9780415565394
pub: 2011-03-24
US Dollars$165.00

About the Book

This book discusses the rich and varied culture of China's online society, and its impact on offline China. It argues that the internet in China is a separate 'space' in which individuals and institutions emerge and interact. While offline and online spaces are connected and influence each other, the Chinese internet is more than merely a technological or media extension of offline Chinese society. Instead of following existing studies by locating online China in offline society, the contributors in this book discuss the carnival of the Chinese internet on its own terms.

Examining the complex relationship between government officials and the people using the Internet in China, this book demonstrates that culture is highly influential in how technology is used. Discussing a wide range of different activities, the contributors examine what Chinese people actually do on the internet, and how their actions can be interpreted within the online society they are creating.

Table of Contents

List of Editors and contributors Introduction: Noise, Spectacle, Politics – Carnival in Chinese Cyberspace - David Kurt Herold Part I – Creating the Carnival – Netizens and the State 1. Cultural Convulsions – Examining the Chineseness of Cyber China - Wai-chi, Rodney Chu and Chung-tai Cheng 2. The Internet Police in China: Regulation, Scope and Myths - Xiaoyan Chen and Peng Hwa Ang 3. Grassroots agency in a civil sphere? Re-thinking Internet Control in China - Peter Marolt Part II – Celebrating the Carnival – Fun, Freak-shows, and Masquerades 4. Parody and resistance on the Chinese Internet - Hongmei Li 5. China's many Internets: Participation and digital game play across a changing technology landscape - Silvia Lindtner and Marcella Szablewicz 6. Lost in virtual carnival and masquerade: In-game marriage on the Chinese Internet - Weihua Wu and Xiying Wang PART III – Instrumentalising the Carnival – Rioting as Activism 7. Human Flesh Search Engines: Carnivalesque Riots as components of a 'Chinese Democracy' - David Kurt Herold 8. In search for motivations: Exploring a Chinese Linux user group - Matteo Tarantino 9. Identity vs. anonymity: Chinese netizens and questions of identifiability - Kenneth Farrall and David Kurt Herold 10. Taking urban conservation online: Chinese civic action groups and the Internet - Nicolai Volland Conclusion: Netizens and Citizens, Cyberspace and Modern China - David Kurt Herold

About the Editors

David Kurt Herold is a Lecturer for Sociology in the Department for Applied Social Sciences (APSS) at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University.

Peter Marolt is a Research Fellow at the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore.

About the Series

Media, Culture and Social Change in Asia Series

The aim of this series is to publish original, high-quality work by both new and established scholars in the West and the East, on all aspects of media, culture and social change in Asia.

Editorial Board:

  • Gregory N. Evon, University of New South Wales
  • Devleena Ghosh, University of Technology, Sydney
  • Peter Horsfield, RMIT University, Melbourne
  • Chris Hudson, RMIT University, Melbourne
  • K.P. Jayasankar, Unit for Media and Communications, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bombay
  • Michael Keane, Queensland University of Technology
  • Tania Lewis, RMIT University, Melbourne
  • Vera Mackie, University of Melbourne
  • Kama Maclean, University of New South Wales
  • Jane Mills, University of New South Wales
  • Anjali Monteiro, Unit for Media and Communications, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bombay
  • Laikwan Pang, Chinese University of Hong Kong
  • Gary Rawnsley, Aberystwyth University
  • Ming-yeh Rawnsley, University of Leeds
  • Jo Tacchi, RMIT University, Mlebourne
  • Adrian Vickers, University of Sydney
  • Jing Wang, MIT
  • Ying Zhu, City University of New York

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Popular Culture
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Media Studies
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Regional Studies