By Professor Shuang Shen

Cosmopolitan Publics makes a speciality of China's "cosmopolitans"-Western-educated intellectuals who again to Shanghai within the overdue Nineteen Twenties to submit in English and who, eventually, grew to become either cultural translators and electorate of the broader international. Shuang Shen highlights their paintings offering readers with a broader figuring out of the position and serve as of cultural blending, translation, and multilingualism in China's cultural modernity. Shen's encompassing examine revisits and offers the adventure of chinese language modernity as way more heterogeneous, emergent, and transnational than it's been characterised earlier.

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Extra resources for Cosmopolitan Publics: Anglophone Print Culture in Semi-Colonial Shanghai

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But exactly for this reason, from another perspective, studying the city would lead us to rethink the state, reembedding it in a network of transnational relations, many of which have left concrete traces on urban space. This difference, of course, has to do with the recent political change in the status of Hong Kong, but one wonders whether the ambivalent relationship between the nation-state and the city, which is still very much an issue with contemporary Hong Kong, was not also a thorny topic for the old Shanghai.

As I am writing this chapter in the beginning of 2008, with the Beijing Olympic Games approaching, some nagging problems that China has not been able to resolve, such as human rights violations, damage to the environment, and problems with pollution, have been repeatedly brought to world attention by powerful media organizations mainly situated in the West. The March 14, 2008, riot instigated by a few activists of the “Free Tibet” Movement further provided an opportunity for “outsiders” to criticize China’s poor record of human rights.

In this context, the two sides of the phrase—“Chinese” and “modern”––are mutually constitutive terms, both with global and local connotations. The relationship of cosmopolitan cultural appropriation and circulation with the discourse of Chineseness is complex and entangled, sometimes mutually reinforcing, at other times antagonistic to one another. English as a foreign language is a small example of this much larger picture I try to describe in this book. Almost all recent studies of the Republican period contain some empirical evidence of how various cultural products, ranging from intellectual concepts (such as the term “self ”), cultural technology (such as the movie or popular music), literary figures and trends (such as modernism), moved across national borders and impacted cultural formation in the domestic Chinese context, and vice versa.

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