Chinese Society and Culture

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Introduction China has often been construed by many academicians and Asian studies commentators as a single nation with a solitary majority population (Gladney, 2004). As Gladney (2004) continues to state, the Han often refer to the general Chinese population, with the exception of a few inconsequential minorities. However, a closer look at the social strata that defines the Chinese nation reveals a different perspective; the Chinese people, indeed, are acutely diverse both geographically and linguistically, characterized by a multicultural and multi-ethnic dispensation. Indeed, the importance of culture to the Chinese society cannot be understated, especially as it pertains to post Cold War China. The 1949 revolution which saw Mao Zedong and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) rise to power impacted heavily on Chinese culture and the direction of the nation. The leaders of the new People’s Republic of China hoped that class, cultural, and status differences would be erased, having seen just how desperate the situation was during the long march of 1934-35. This paper will argue that the 1949 revolution, ironically, succeeded in creating a society in which status and class differences became the very drivers of the socio-political change process, which ultimately reshaped the society along class lines. How the Revolution Reshaped Chinese Society along Class Lines It is of necessity to understand that the leaders who inherited China after the revolution were from the old generation marked by the prevailing cultural values and distinctions. Therefore, in as much as they were visionaries, it is inescapable that they would have fallen prey to uphold the prevailing socio-cultural nuances. It is even more important to understand that at ... ... middle of paper ... ...ce of planning in realizing a sound socialist economy. So how has the economic and market reforms redefined class divisions in China? Works Cited Gladney, C. D. Dislocating China: Muslims, Minorities, and Other Subaltern Subjects. University of Chicago Press, 2004. Huang, X. “The Politics of Social Welfare Reform in Urban China: Social Welfare Preferences and Reform Policies.” The Journal of Chinese Political Science (2013): 61-85. DOI 10.1007/s11366-012-9227-x Rose, S. “Contemporary Chinese Youth and the State.” The Journal of Asia Studies, Vol. 68, No. 2 (2009): 359-369. Available online from http://www.jstor.org/stable/20619731 Yan, Yunxiang. “Little Emperors or Frail Pragmatists? China’s ‘80er’s Generation.” Current History (2006): 255-262. Zhang, Y., & Lu, X. “ Shinkliu as China’s Evidential Social Communication.” Studies in Popular Culture (2004): 15-26.
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