Creative industries in China : four perspectives on social transformation
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In late 2004, the concept of the creative industries arrived in China. It was warmly welcomed in Shanghai then subsequently adopted with some degree of caution in Beijing. In the years since, officials, scholars, practitioners, entrepreneurs and developers have exploited of the idea of creative industries, and a range of associated terms, to construct an alternative vision of an emerging China. In 2009, Li Wuwei, the Director of the Shanghai Creative Industries Association, himself a leading player in national political reform, released a book titled Creativity is Changing China (Chuangyi gaibian Zhongguo), subsequently translated as Creative Industries Are Changing China in English. The paper investigates the uptake of the creative industries in China and asks: can they really change China, or are they just rearranging the cultural landscape in some cities?
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