Building up modernity? : The changing spatial representations of state power in a Chinese socialist "model community"

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1137-1171
Journal / PublicationModern Asian Studies
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2008


This essay looked into how a group of residents in a Chinese community negotiated with the ideological tropes inscribed in the spatial, which aimed to build up state-people trust on the future course of national development. Under investigation was a slum-turned-socialist-model community called "Cucumber Lane" in two historical junctures in which its spatial settings were radically reorganized. It was argued that the two spatial reorganizations exemplified two major state-led projects of modernity, each of which entailed a specific representation of space that ideologically adumbrated a specific course of national development. It was found that while the residents welcomed the project of modernity launched in the 1960s with enthusiasm, they received the other in the 1990s largely with apathy, and even with mistrust and disbelief. © 2007 Cambridge University Press.