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Dangerous Pleasures

Author: Gail Hershatter
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520204386
Size: 78.56 MB
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This pioneering work examines prostitution in Shanghai from the late nineteenth century to the present. Drawn mostly from the daughters and wives of the working poor and declass elites, prostitutes in Shanghai were near the bottom of class and gender hierarchies. Yet they were central figures in Shanghai urban life, entering the historical record whenever others wanted to appreciate, castigate, count, regulate, cure, pathologize, warn about, rescue, eliminate, or deploy them as a symbol in a larger social panorama. Over the past century, prostitution has been understood in many ways: as a source of urbanized pleasures, a profession full of unscrupulous and greedy schemers, a changing site of work for women, a source of moral danger and physical disease, a marker of national decay, and a sign of modernity. For the Communist leadership of the 1950s, the elimination of prostitution symbolized China's emergence as a strong, healthy, and modern nation. In the past decade, as prostitution once again has become a recognized feature of Chinese society, it has been incorporated into a larger public discussion about what kind of modernity China should seek and what kind of sex and gender arrangements should characterize that modernity. Prostitutes, like every other non-elite group, did not record their own lives. How can sources generated by intense public argument about the "larger" meanings of prostitution be read for clues to those lives? Hershatter makes use of a broad range of materials: guidebooks to the pleasure quarters, collections of anecdotes about high-class courtesans, tabloid gossip columns, municipal regulations prohibiting street soliciting, police interrogations of streetwalkers and those accused of trafficking in women, newspaper reports on court cases involving both courtesans and streetwalkers, polemics by Chinese and foreign reformers, learned articles by Chinese scholars commenting on the world history of prostitution and analyzing its local causes, surveys by doctors and social workers on sexually transmitted disease in various Shanghai populations, relief agency records, fictionalized accounts of the scams and sufferings of prostitutes, memoirs by former courtesan house patrons, and interviews with former officials and reformers. Although a courtesan may never set pen to paper, we can infer a great deal about her strategizing and working of the system through the vast cautionary literature that tells her customers how not to be defrauded by her. Newspaper accounts of the arrests and brief court testimonies of Shanghai streetwalkers let us glimpse the way that prostitutes positioned themselves to get the most they could from the legal system. Without recourse to direct speech, Hershatter argues, these women have nevertheless left an audible trace. Central to this study is the investigation of how things are known and later remembered, and how, later still, they are simultaneously apprehended and reinvented by the historian. This pioneering work examines prostitution in Shanghai from the late nineteenth century to the present. Drawn mostly from the daughters and wives of the working poor and declass elites, prostitutes in Shanghai were near the bottom of class and gender hierarchies. Yet they were central figures in Shanghai urban life, entering the historical record whenever others wanted to appreciate, castigate, count, regulate, cure, pathologize, warn about, rescue, eliminate, or deploy them as a symbol in a larger social panorama. Over the past century, prostitution has been understood in many ways: as a source of urbanized pleasures, a profession full of unscrupulous and greedy schemers, a changing site of work for women, a source of moral danger and physical disease, a marker of national decay, and a sign of modernity. For the Communist leadership of the 1950s, the elimination of prostitution symbolized China's emergence as a strong, healthy, and modern nation. In the past decade, as prostitution once again has become a recognized feature of Chinese society, it has been incorporated into a larger public discussion about what kind of modernity China should seek and what kind of sex and gender arrangements should characterize that modernity. Prostitutes, like every other non-elite group, did not record their own lives. How can sources generated by intense public argument about the "larger" meanings of prostitution be read for clues to those lives? Hershatter makes use of a broad range of materials: guidebooks to the pleasure quarters, collections of anecdotes about high-class courtesans, tabloid gossip columns, municipal regulations prohibiting street soliciting, police interrogations of streetwalkers and those accused of trafficking in women, newspaper reports on court cases involving both courtesans and streetwalkers, polemics by Chinese and foreign reformers, learned articles by Chinese scholars commenting on the world history of prostitution and analyzing its local causes, surveys by doctors and social workers on sexually transmitted disease in various Shanghai populations, relief agency records, fictionalized accounts of the scams and sufferings of prostitutes, memoirs by former courtesan house patrons, and interviews with former officials and reformers. Although a courtesan may never set pen to paper, we can infer a great deal about her strategizing and working of the system through the vast cautionary literature that tells her customers how not to be defrauded by her. Newspaper accounts of the arrests and brief court testimonies of Shanghai streetwalkers let us glimpse the way that prostitutes positioned themselves to get the most they could from the legal system. Without recourse to direct speech, Hershatter argues, these women have nevertheless left an audible trace. Central to this study is the investigation of how things are known and later remembered, and how, later still, they are simultaneously apprehended and reinvented by the historian.

The Workers Of Tianjin 1900 1949

Author: Gail Hershatter
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 9780804722162
Size: 47.98 MB
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This is the story of the workers of Tianjin (Tientsin) and how, in the first half of the 20th century, they helped shape Tianjin's identity as the major industrial centre of North China. This text should be of interest to students of the period covered, and also to those students of Communist China who wish to understand the antecedents of China's current urban society and trace the roots of powerful continuities. The book offers a wealth of detail on material life, forms of entertainment, local festivals and individual rites of passage and makes use of studies of the local economy carried out by contemporaries and in the People's Republic. The Workers of Tianjin is a contribution to both Chinese labour history and urban history.

The Talented Women Of The Zhang Family

Author: Susan Mann
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520250895
Size: 43.34 MB
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"There is absolutely nothing remotely like this book in the history of late imperial women. [An] immensely important book."--Gail Hershatter, author of Women in China's Long Twentieth Century "A masterful work."--Lynn Hunt, coeditor of Beyond the Cultural Turn

Engendering China

Author: Christina K. Gilmartin
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674253322
Size: 18.48 MB
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This first significant collection of essays on women in China in more than two decades captures a pivotal moment in a cross-culturalâe"and interdisciplinaryâe"dialogue. For the first time, the voices of China-based scholars are heard alongside scholars positioned in the United States. The distinguished contributors to this volume are of different generations, hold citizenship in different countries, and were trained in different disciplines, but all embrace the shared project of mapping gender in China and making power-laden relationships visible. The essays take up gender issues from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. Chapters focus on learned women in the eighteenth century, the changing status of contemporary village women, sexuality and reproduction, prostitution, women's consciousness, women's writing, the gendering of work, and images of women in contemporary Chinese fiction. Some of the liveliest disagreements over the usefulness of western feminist theory and scholarship on China take place between Chinese working in China and Chinese in temporary or longtime diaspora. Engendering China will appeal to a broad academic spectrum, including scholars of Asian studies, critical theory, feminist studies, cultural studies, and policy studies.

Sisters And Strangers

Author: Emily Honig
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 9780804720120
Size: 43.98 MB
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In Shanghai, China's largest industrial center prior to 1949, cotton was king and the majority of mill workers were women. This book presents rich information on all aspects of the life of this group of urban workers. Book jacket.

Permitted And Prohibited Desires

Author: Anne Allison
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520923447
Size: 35.55 MB
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This provocative study of gender and sexuality in contemporary Japan investigates elements of Japanese popular culture including erotic comic books, stories of mother-son incest, lunchboxes—or obentos—that mothers ritualistically prepare for schoolchildren, and children's cartoons. Anne Allison brings recent feminist psychoanalytic and Marxist theory to bear on representations of sexuality, motherhood, and gender in these and other aspects of Japanese culture. Based on five years of fieldwork in a middle-class Tokyo neighborhood, this theoretically informed, accessible ethnographic study provides a provocative analysis of how sexuality, dominance, and desire are reproduced and enacted in late-capitalistic Japan.

Cinderella S Sisters

Author: Dorothy Ko
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520253906
Size: 67.17 MB
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Footbinding is widely condemned as perverse & as symbolic of male domination over women. This study offers a more complex explanation of a thousand year practice, contending that the binding of women's feet in China was sustained by the interests of both women and men.

Beyond The Neon Lights

Author: Hanchao Lu
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520243781
Size: 62.45 MB
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How did people live through the extraordinary changes that have swept across modern China? How did peasants transform themselves into urbanites? This study weaves documentary data with ethnographic surveys and interviews to reconstruct the fabric of everyday life in Shanghai in early 20th century.

Absolute Erotic Absolute Grotesque

Author: Mark Driscoll
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 0822392887
Size: 36.53 MB
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In this major reassessment of Japanese imperialism in Asia, Mark Driscoll foregrounds the role of human life and labor. Drawing on subaltern postcolonial studies and Marxism, he directs critical attention to the peripheries, where figures including Chinese coolies, Japanese pimps, trafficked Japanese women, and Korean tenant farmers supplied the vital energy that drove Japan's empire. He identifies three phases of Japan's capitalist expansion, each powered by distinct modes of capturing and expropriating life and labor: biopolitics (1895–1914), neuropolitics (1920–32), and necropolitics (1935-45). During the first phase, Japanese elites harnessed the labor of marginalized subjects as Japan colonized Taiwan, Korea, and south Manchuria, and sent hustlers and sex workers into China to expand its market hegemony. Linking the deformed bodies laboring in the peripheries with the "erotic-grotesque" media in the metropole, Driscoll centers the second phase on commercial sexology, pornography, and detective stories in Tokyo to argue that by 1930, capitalism had colonized all aspects of human life: not just labor practices but also consumers’ attention and leisure time. Focusing on Japan's Manchukuo colony in the third phase, he shows what happens to the central figures of biopolitics as they are subsumed under necropolitical capitalism: coolies become forced laborers, pimps turn into state officials and authorized narcotraffickers, and sex workers become "comfort women". Driscoll concludes by discussing Chinese fiction written inside Manchukuo, describing the everyday violence unleashed by necropolitics.

Personal Voices

Author: Emily Honig
Publisher: Alhoda UK
ISBN: 9780804714310
Size: 16.63 MB
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Dramatic and far-reaching changes have occurred in the lives of Chinese women in the years since the death of Mao and the fall of the Gang of Four During the decade of the Cultural Revolution, attention to personal life was regarded as 'bourgeois'; in the post-Mao decade, abrupt turns in public policy made discussion of personal life imperative, and nowhere has this been more evident than in the debate about the role of women in Chinese society. This book is based on extensive personal viewing of urban women and study of contemporary literature and articles in the periodical press that touched on the problems of rural women. It is not only about the changes in women's lives but also about the excitement, confusion, and anxieties that Chinese women express as they contemplate the future of their society and their own place in it. Each chapter is devoted to one aspect of women's Lives: girlhood, adornment and sexuality, courtship, marriage, family relations, divorce, work, violence against women, and gender inequality. Giving a personal dimension to the issues discussed, the chapters close with a rich sampling of excerpts from the newly thriving women's press and other contemporary publications. Although many women in China still suffer discrimination in working life and mistreatment in the family, they can now raise questions that would have been unthinkable even ten years ago. Most notably, they can and do use the press to voice complaints, expose injustices, seek advice, and support or deplore the social changes of the 1980's.