Graduate School of East Asian Studies
Ying Du received her PhD degree at Chinese Academy of Social Sciences at 2007. From 2012, she joined the Institute of Chinese Studies at Freie Universität Berlin as a COFUND-DRS fellow. From 2010 to 2011, Ying was a visiting scholar in the department of East Asian Language and Civilization at Harvard. Since 2007, Ying has been an assistant professor in Chinese Language and Literature at East China Normal University.
Her research over the past seven years has focused on cultural changes in mainland China before and after the foundation of the P.R.C in 1949. It includes her research project “Mainland China Cultural Transformation, 1949-1956”, which is funded by P.R.C’s National Social Science Foundation and was finished in 2010, and her book titled Reconstructing Literary Institution and Literary Paradigm after the Foundation of P.R.C: Shanghai (1949-1956) published in 2011. During her time as a COFUND fellow at Freie Universität Berlin, she worked on the postdoctoral project titled “Diaspora - Cultural Transformation and Cultural Identity in the Frame of the Cold War: Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan (1945-1960)”.
Current research focus
Postdoctoral Research Project during the time as a COFUND Fellow
Outline by Ying Du
Diaspora - Cultural Transformation and Cultural Identity in the frame of the Cold War: Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan (1945-1960)
The immediate post-World War II was a crucial transition time for the politics and culture of mainland China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. In the aftermath of WWII, Taiwan attained political independence from Japanese colonial rule and was taken over by the government of the Republic of China in 1945. At the same time, Hong Kong was liberated from Japanese occupation and returned to British control. In 1949, the Communist party of China established the People’s Republic of China on the mainland and the governement of the Republic of China retreated to Taiwan. Because of the Chinese Civil War and the subsequent establishment of the PRC, a massive migration flow occurred from mainland China to Hong Kong, Taiwan and other areas. Contemporaneously, some Chinese elites returned from overseas to mainland China to participate in the building of the new state. The rapid onset of the Cold War increased competition and tensions between the cultural fields based in these different locations.
In this research, I use the term “diaspora” to mean both forced and voluntary massive movement, displacement and resettlement. It includes not only intellectual dislocated from their native land through migration and exile to Taiwan, Hong Kong or America, but also to those displaced from their home cities to the countryside, Manchuria, the frontier and other places within the PRC through the “Re-education Movement” and the “Strengthening the Border” Movement during the period from 1949 to the 1960s. Those migrants who were intellectuals served as agents of cultural transfer in each local region, and bridged the political and geographical schism among the PRC, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
This research will propose migration as a new approach to understanding the evolution of Chinese literature in the PRC, Taiwan and Hong Kong after WWII. It will investigate how migration contributed to cultural transformations, including the transition from Japanese colonial literture to the Chinese literature in Taiwan, the transition from Left-wing literature to a more diversified literature in Hong Kong, and the transition from diversified literature (before 1949) to socialist literature (after 1949) in the P.R.C. And it will also explore how the geographical dislocation and resettlement which resulted from the Chinese Civil War and the Cold War served as a social process for the intelligentsia to reconstruct their own political and cultural identities through their representation of and interpretation of this dislocation in their works.
My research will update the existing methodologies and the narrative modes of the history of modern Chinese literature from 1945 to 1960 from the “nation-state” perspective in the PRC, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Because of current geopolitics and official ideologies, researchers from these areas have difficulties in objectively analyzing cultural divergence and convergence during the transitional period from 1945 to the 1950s. They tended to subordinate past literature to present politics which includes “Localization” (e.g. “Taiwanization”) and “Chinese Reunification”. To question the legitimacy of the prevalent discourses in these studies, I will analyze the trans-regional and inter-regional cultural interaction between these areas during this period from the perspective of migration in the framework of the Cold War.
1. “Shanghaiing the Press Gang: the Maoist Regimentation of the Popular Shanghai Publishing Industry in the Early PRC (1949-1956)”, Modern Chinese Literature and Culture, 2014, vol. 26, no.2 (Fall 2014), pp. 89-141.
2. “Reconstructing literary Filed and literary Institution(1949-1956)”, Chinese Literature Studies, 2012, forthcoming
3. “Experiencing Proletarian Life: Geographical Dislocation, Identity Reconstruction and Writing”, Theoretical Studies in Literature and Art, 5(2011),116-120.
4. “Landscape, Lyricism and Other: Congwen Shen before and after 1949”Studies of Ethnic Literature, 4(2011), 129-138.
5. “The Study of Works of Literature and Art around 1949” Literary Review (Bimonthly), 2(2010):83-90.
6. “Transformation of Little-Known Writers Led by Socialist Cultural Reformation in 1949-1952”Journal of Modern Chinese Studies, 4.1(2010):110-120.
7. “The Reform of the Media Industry in Shanghai (1949-1956)” Journal of East China Normal University, 4(2010): 44-50.
8. “The Takeover and Reform of the Radio Industry in Shanghai” Twenty-First Century Bimonthly, 115.10(2009): 65-74.
9. “Mainland Cultural Transformation in the Mid-20th Century” Modern Chinese Literature Researcher, 3.2(2009): 122-130.
10. “When Literature Encounters the Empirical World: Breath by Ganlu Sun” Journal of Capital Normal University, 184.5(2008): 102-109.
Included in Research On Modern And Contemporary Chinese Literature, 4(2009):150-156.
11. “A Critique of Eileen Chang’s Performance during the Early Period of the P.R.C from the Amendment of Eighteen Spring”, Modern Chinese Literature Studies, 108.1(2006): 204-220.
Included in Re-reading Eileen Chang, ed. Zishan Chen. Shanghai: Shanghai Bookstore Publishing House, 2008, 351-378.
12. “The Reestablishment of the Cultural System and Cultural Production: the Takeover and Reconstruction of Shanghai’s Minor Newspapers Soon after the Foundation of the P.R.C” Modern Chinese Literature Studies, 115.2(2007): 129-149.
In Modernization and Socialism of China: the 7th Annual Academic Conference of Shanghai, Shanghai: Shanghai People Press, 2009, 45-61.
13. “Vision of Shanghai in 1949” Literary and Artistic Debate, 118.2(2005): 111-121.
Included byResearch On Modern and Contemporary Chinese Literature, 5(2005): 49-59.
14. “Review on Biyun Huang’s Novel Pink Peach Blossom” Hong Kong Literary Circles, 39.6(2005): 45-51.
15. “Research on Writers of the 70's Generation” Novelistic Review, 106.4(2002): 23-30.
“A Review of the Television Show Big Family”, Chinese TV 177.10(2001), 37-40.
“A Review on Marie Claire Be’s Histoire de Shanghai”, Studies of Modern China 8(2007), 243-248.
Reconstructing Literary Institution and Literary Paradigm after the Foundation of PRC: Shanghai (1949-1956), Shanghai: Sanlian Press, 2011.
Guide to Classic Readings of Chinese Language and Literature, Shanghai: Fudan University Press, 2010, 125-130, 150-163.
Urban Memory: the Diverse Tradition of Shanghai Culture, Shanghai Press, 2011, Chapter Five.
“Mainland Cultural Transformation in the Mid 20th Century”
Sponsored by China’s National Social Science Foundation
“Mainland Writers and Their Cultural Activity in HK, 1949-1956”
Sponsored by Shanghai Social Science Research Foundation for Outstanding Young Scholars
Selected Conference and Workshop Presentations
1. “Constructing a ‘New Literary’ Paradigm: On Works Written around 1949 in China”, A workshop of “In Quest of the Chinese Literary Canon”, Harvard University, April 8, 2011
Panel Chair for “cultural politics and the canon” at the workshop
2. “‘Imperialism’ in Chinese Literature before and after 1949”, International Conference on “Nostalgia of the Empire, Recollections of Colonial Times/Language, Literature, and Religion of East Asia in the Colonial Days”, Inha University, South Korea, December 3-4, 2009.
3. “The Transformation of Shanghai’s Urban Culture, 1949-1952”, Annual Meeting of Shanghai Association of Social Sciences, December 5, 2009.
4. “New Shanghai: Cultural Space and Urban Imagination from 1949 to 1954”, International Summer Seminar on “Research on Chinese Modern Literature with Global Cultural Production”, East China Normal University, June 28 to July 2, 2006”.