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Keywords of Post-Tiananmen Intellectual Discourse: Social Change and Intellectual Independence in the “ Debate on the Spirit of the Humanities ” (1993-1995)

2013/2014 School of Chinese Research Seminar

Keywords of Post-Tiananmen Intellectual Discourse: Social Change and Intellectual Independence in the“ Debate on the Spirit of the Humanities ” (1993-1995)

Dr. Giorgio Strafella

Date and Time: August 6, 2014 (Wednesday); 5:30pm-6:45pm
Venue: Room 730, Run Run Shaw Tower, Centennial Campus, HKU
Language : English

This paper examines how Chinese intellectuals in the 1990s framed and discussed the issues of professional/ethical choice and intellectual independence. It is based on my analysis of a corpus of articles from the “debate on the spirit of the Humanities”, a discussion on cultural and political issues that unfolded throughout mainland China from 1993 to 1995. Drawing on a critical discursive approach, I will argue that the keywords used in this debate point at a re-examination of the relationship between culture and power in the crucial phase that followed the 1989 crackdown and the post-1992 roll-out of a new wave of market reforms. The paper will also invite the participants to reflect on the issue of political and economic independence in the Humanities in today’s China.

Giorgio Strafella is a researcher for the Chair of Chinese Culture and Society, University of St. Gallen (Switzerland), where he has worked since 2011. He has recently obtained a PhD from the School of Contemporary Chinese Studies of the University of Nottingham with a thesis on intellectual debates in China. His research interests include intellectual and political discourses, contemporary art and micro/blogging. Strafella has also published on the external corporate communication of Chinese companies.

All are welcome

Poster:
https://web-archive.chinese.hku.hk/poster/20140806.pdf