This unique book takes the reader Obeyond the headlinesO to explore a China few Westerners have seen. The authors argue that the great gap between what specialists understand and the general public believes has led to distorted and potentially dangerous misunderstandings of China. Seeking to bridge that gap, a group of prominent scholars and activists challenge readers to move past the usual images of China presented by the media and to think about the common problems shared by China and the United States. In a morally engaged spirit, they explore such issues as environmental degradation, unemployment, growing inequality, ethnicity, human rights, corruption, and changing images of women to bring to life the fabric of contemporary Chinese life and how it twines around the political consciousness of Americans.
This is a significant book that does more than bring together a number of apposite and informative papers to provide a comprehensive picture of China at the turn of the century. The volume as a whole engages with and interrogates the environments of information, political representation and policy choice behind the headlines or soundbites, popular perceptions of the 'other' and the role that scholars play in their production and interpretation. In this respect it is a self-reflexive volume of professional interest within and beyond the China field.
The China Journal
Scholars and interested lay people who have never lived in China should read this book. So should politicians, journalists and government officials working on China.
Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly
An intriguing discourse that abandons outmoded paradigms and rethinks China from a variety of new perspectives within and without the Chinese polity. . . . The essays make engaging reading for those who wish to probe deeper into the social fabric of everyday life in China.
Engaged and engaging. . . . I know of no other text that wrestles so determinedly and effectively with the jingoistic drivel that our press typically dishes out about China.
Timothy B. Weston is associate professor of history, University of Colorado at Boulder. Lionel M. Jensen is associate professor and chair of the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures at the University of Notre Dame.
Chapter 1 Chapter Foreword Geremie Barmé Chapter 2 Chronology Chapter 3 Table of Equivalents and Measures Chapter 4 Foreword: Between the Linesand beyond the Text Chapter 5 Preface and Acknowledgements Chapter 6 Map: The World and China Chapter 7 Map: China Chapter 8 Introduction: LEAD STORY—Favored Nations, Intertwined Fates Part 9 I: Above the Fold Chapter 10 1 Big Bad China and the Good Chinese: An American Fairy Tale Chapter 11 2 Everyone's a Player, but the Nation's a Loser: Corruption in Contemporary China Chapter 12 3 China's Many Faces: Ethnic, Cultural, and Religious Pluralism Chapter 13 4 Promoting Human Rights in China: An Activist's Perspective Chapter 14 5 China's Road to a Democratic Society: Perils and Prospects Chapter 15 6 Beyond Exceptionalism: China's Intellectuals from Tragic Heros to U.S. Allies Chapter 16 7 Identity and Diversity: Complexities and Contradictions of Chinese Nationalism Chapter 17 8 China's New Economic Reforms: Replacing Iron Rice Bowls with Plastic Cups Part 18 II: Below the Fold Chapter 19 9 Development and Destruction: The Dimensions of China's Environmental Challenge Chapter 20 10 Marketing Chinese Femininity: Images of the Modern Chinese Woman Chapter 21 11 China's Labor Woes: Will the Workers Crash the Party? Chapter 22 12 Reading Out-of-Print: Popular Culture and Protest of China's Western Frontier Chapter 23 13 China's Market Reform: Whose Human Rights Problem? Chapter 24 14 Border Crossings: Chinese Writing in Their World and Ours Chapter 25 Afterword: EXTRA—Headlines Obscure the Real Story Chapter 26 Index Chapter 27 About the Editors and Contributors