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Title: Love, intimacy and relationships :exploring young Chinese people's identities in the post-reform and globalizing era
Authors: Yang, Chao
Issue Date: 2018
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: Since the implementation of reform and opening up policies in 1978, the economic and socio-cultural environment in modern China has experienced a dramatic transformation under the influence of urbanization and globalization, which have facilitated a more individualized identity among Chinese youth. This research focuses on the subjectivity of a group of young Chinese professionals in Beijing, who were born in 1980s and early 1990s and have been greatly shaped by the changing social and cultural environment in the reform era. By examining how young people fashion their romantic selves in contemporary China, the research explores how the interplay of state policies, modern family and mediatisation that have played an important role in creating possibilities for an emerging post-socialist romantic subjectivity. Specifically, Chinese youth often embrace individual freedoms and choices facilitated by the free market economy and consumerist culture, while at the same time draw upon (a sometimes new understanding of) traditional familial values in order to pursue personal happiness in a modernizing society and gain an identity as Chinese in a globalizing era. More specifically, the subjectivity and power/knowledge model introduced by Foucault’s (1979) work The History of Sexuality provides a historical interpretive framework to examine the subjectivity transformation of Chinese youth. As a main part of people’s identity, love and intimacy are conceptualized as social and cultural constructs shaped by the interaction of modern institutions and the reflexivity of the individual. By employing semi-structured interviews under a constructivist research paradigm, the most popular reality TV dating programme works as a mediated dating allegory and a dialogic platform for young people to construct their relationship related values.
Description: PhD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Arts and Cultures

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Yang, C. 2016 (3yr rest).pdfThesis1.63 MBAdobe PDFView/Open
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