Wu, Mei (1998) Negotiating a community space in the state media : the development of cable television in China : a case study of a community cable TV station in Tianjin. PhD thesis, Concordia University.
The spread of cable television in the 1990s has seriously challenged the historically rooted place of Chinese mass media as an organ of the state propaganda machine. One of the more acute features in the cable development was the establishment of cable stations run largely by communal work units known as " danwei " in Chinese. This thesis probes the "micro locale" of a Chinese danwei community and investigates how the communist propaganda is distilled at the grass-roots level and, furthermore, how the indigenous resistance and defiance against the central domination are negotiated and translated into community-based cable television. It seeks to illuminate the nature of the media development in reform-era China from the perspective of community media--or danwei media, as the most appropriate term and, consequently, map out the changing patterns of control, contestation and conciliation between the twin actors of community media and state propaganda. Chinese danwei communities have constituted a basic unit of the social organization of communist China and occupied a prima position in the communist establishment of mass media. It is in the ultimate interests of the state to control media undertakings at the grass-roots in order to dominate the local space of communication and entertainment with the official language and ideology. However, this objective of absolute control on the part of the central government becomes definitely impossible, particularly in the age of economic reform of the 1990s, when the once omnipotent power of the Party-state has withered away remarkably in terms of permeating the daily life of the danwei communities. My research findings illustrate the tension and symmetry between community-cable television and the overarching Chinese media system. On the one hand, community cable embodies the grass-roots resistance to the state domination of television--it is the intelligent use of cable technology on the part of danwei communities to take advantage of the communist tradition of locally organized media operation in gaining control over the local television space. Simultaneously, though, community cable has emerged as the newest medium for the state propagandists to penetrate the basic units of society. It provides local resources to not only assist the delivery of state propaganda to work units, but also the repackaging of the state propaganda vocabulary into more locally palatable television programming. Community cable represents a unique experience of the Chinese people in asserting their desire to recapture the local media and to negotiate their space within the state structure of mass media.
|Divisions:||Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Communication Studies|
|Item Type:||Thesis (PhD)|
|Pagination:||vi, 262,  leaves : ill. (some col.) ; 29 cm.|
|Degree Name:||Theses (Ph.D.)|
|Thesis Supervisor(s):||Buxton, William|
|Deposited By:||Concordia University Libraries|
|Deposited On:||27 Aug 2009 17:13|
|Last Modified:||08 Dec 2010 15:16|
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