Contemporary Chinese TV Serials: Configuring Collective Memory of Socialist Nostalgia via the Cultural Revolution

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Abstract

Using China's Cultural Revolution as a representative historical event, this article examines how the collective memory and popular history revolving around it are manufactured and interpreted in televisual media narratives. The collective memory of the Cultural Revolution, as I will show, is constructed and not preserved, and the collective framework of memory, as the predominant thoughts and the governing ideological rhetoric of society, configures people's memories of past events. A textual analysis of the TV drama, The Place Where Dreams Start [Meng kaishi de difang, 1998], a typical revolutionary nostalgia text, will expose the process of collective memory concerning the Cultural Revolution for what it is—cultural amnesia that is misleading and regressive.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-35
Number of pages14
JournalVisual Anthropology
Volume29
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes

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