Shanzhai in the Context of Consumer Culture in China: The Case of Shanzhai Movies

ContributorsGruber, Rahel
DirectorsZhang, Laure
  • mémoire
Master program titleMaîtrise Spécialisée Pluridisciplinaire en Études Asiatiques
Defense date2016

This paper introduces the reader to the Chinese contemporary phenomenon shanzhai. At least since 2006, the Chinese term shanzhai has become an epitome for copycat and imitation, but also parody. The author retraces the origins of shanzhai and its development from an economic to a cultural phenomenon. Shanzhai has been an object of study to scholars in the East and West, the most relevant viewpoints being presented and discussed in this paper. The author particularly highlights how shanzhai has emerged in the special context of consumer culture and authoritative discourses in China. Taking shanzhai movies as a case in point, the author exemplifies how cultural shanzhai objects, while being deeply embedded in the system of mainstream culture, can be viewed as an expression of alternative culture. Overall, the interdisciplinary approach undertaken by the author contributes to a better understanding of the correlation between culture, politics, economics and globalization.

  • Alternative culture
  • Anthropology
  • Anti-authority
  • Anti-establishment
  • Art
  • Authenticity
  • China
  • China Central
  • Television CCTV
  • Chinese film
  • Commodification
  • Confucianism
  • Consumer culture
  • Consumerism
  • Consumption
  • Contemporary China
  • Copy
  • Copycat
  • Counterculture
  • Counterfeit
  • Crazy Stone
  • 疯狂的石头
  • Creative economy
  • Creative industries
  • Creativity
  • Cultural industries cultural phenomenon
  • Cultural studies
  • Deconstruction
  • Elite culture
  • Fake
  • Film studies
  • Globalization
  • Grassroots
  • Imitation
  • Innovation
  • Intellectual property rights
  • Internet
  • Mainstream culture
  • Market economy
  • Mobile phone industry
  • Ning Hao宁浩
  • Originality
  • Parody
  • Politics
  • Popular culture
  • Postmodern studies
  • Robin Hood
  • Shanzhai 山寨
  • Shanzhai ji 山寨机
  • Shanzhai movies
  • Shuihu Zhuan 水浒传
  • Social movement
  • Social studies
  • Socioeconomics
  • Sociology
  • Spring Festival Gala
  • The Marshes of Mount Liang
  • Textual analysis
  • Tradition
  • 2006-21st century
  • Egao 恶搞
Citation (ISO format)
GRUBER, Rahel. Shanzhai in the Context of Consumer Culture in China: The Case of Shanzhai Movies. 2016.
Main files (1)
Master thesis
  • PID : unige:89049

Technical informations

Creation11/09/2016 10:11:00 AM
First validation11/09/2016 10:11:00 AM
Update time06/27/2023 3:27:14 PM
Status update06/27/2023 3:27:14 PM
Last indexation01/29/2024 8:56:00 PM
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