Theses (Pacific and Asian Studies)

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    Ecologizing the Chinese Countryside: The Rural Fix for Urban Sustainability in the Lower Yangzi Delta
    (2024) Zhang, Yucong; Marton, Andrew
    This dissertation examines the phenomenon of ecologization, the proliferating construction of ecological spaces (eco-spaces), which have emerged in densely populated rural areas of the lower Yangzi Delta mega-urban region in response to the sustainable development agenda and Chinese policies of ecological civilization. Drawn from the Chinese word shengtaihua (生态化), ecologization is used in this study to conceptualize the various ways ecology is interpreted and implemented in the Chinese context, as it challenges established discourses, practices and roles of spatial design disciplines which seek to address the goals of sustainable development and the ideologies of ecological civilization. The analysis of ecologization also provides a design perspective in understanding rural and urban transformation under strong environmental and cultural governance in China. Based on the interplay between environmental protection and urbanization, the process of ecologization is essentially a form of urbanization, modernization and civilization that radically transforms the spatial and social fabric of rural landscapes in the lower Yangzi Delta. As a national prototype for green and ecologically integrated development, ecologization in the lower Yangzi Delta may soon be widely adopted in the entire country, causing great loss of cultural landscapes, social sustainability and rurality in the Chinese countryside. Through extensive fieldwork, semi-structured interviews and document analysis, the dissertation illustrates how the interpretation of national environmental and ideological mandates among local planning elites in China has resulted in particular processes and patterns around the development and construction of eco-spaces. Detailed analysis of the ways spatial design disciplines interpret, implement, and govern eco-spaces highlight how ecologization across rural areas of the lower Yangzi Delta has become the fix for challenges of urban sustainability. A key finding of the research is that to fix urban sustainability statistically and aesthetically, two strategies—eco-metrics and eco-culture aesthetics —were devised by local planning elites to implement environmental and ideological tasks. Eco-metrics were achieved as top-down administrative tasks irrespective of spatial conditions, while eco-culture aesthetics composed new narratives of the rural landscapes as a continuation of culture and tradition. The evidence illustrates how ecologization is detrimental to social and environmental sustainability in rural areas. In the process, genuine social sustainability and pre-existing spatial conditions were largely disregarded, and village rationality, which maintains rurality and rural sustainability in the context of a globalized economy and rural urbanization, was lost. This outcome is inconsistent with the stated goals and rhetoric of indicator-based measurement methods of sustainable development and ecological civilization. Another key finding highlights strong cultural assertions in ecologization deliberately intended to reinforce the Party’s ideological influence, to ensure collective social value towards ecological civilization, and to harmonize conflicts between rural and urban, and local interests and national policies. Moreover, ecologization in the lower Yangzi Delta deployed spatial design disciplines as a tool to legitimize implementation of both environmental and ideological goals in eco-spaces and the surrounding countryside. Such forward-looking outcome-based approaches and the near total disregard of authentic local historical, social and cultural processes, is part of a spatial design approach that is consistent with the Party-state’s intention to wholly restructure spatial and social forms. The dissertation concludes by arguing that in-depth research and consideration of historical, contextual, and social processes must be undertaken to ensure spatial design disciplines can make meaningful contributions to genuine sustainability. Such sustainable planning and design should also be integrated into policy-making processes and be independent from administrative hierarchy and local power dynamics. The strategies and implications of ecologization in other parts of China, or in other cultural and political contexts could be further examined in comparative research.
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    Street food vendors in Indonesia: Conflicting representations under COVID-19
    (2023-09-06) Milligan, Maeve; Fox, Richard
    The COVID-19 pandemic and related restrictions on public life had a significant impact on street food vendors in Indonesia, with reports suggesting that vendors’ incomes decreased by 50% on average during this period. In the wake of the pandemic, scholars and organizations published statements and rolled out programs to support vendors or correct vendors’ behavior in light of changing requirements relating to the pandemic. These interventions aimed, among other things, to reduce the risk of vendors spreading the COVID-19 virus. They also hoped to support vendors as they navigated state-imposed restrictions on street food vending and changes to customers’ spending behavior. Statements and programs relating to street food vendors were informed by assumptions about street food vendors, such as that street food vendors help low-income consumers access food, contribute positively to employment and the economy, practice poor food hygiene, and are negatively impacted by state policies restricting street food vending. This thesis explores how these assumptions compare with street food vendors’ self-understanding. It also asks how assumptions about street food vendors informed interventions in street food vending before and during the Covid-19 pandemic. Drawing on 39 interviews with street food vendors, as well as program documents and public statements from relevant organizations, this thesis examines how street food vendors and the scholars and organizations involved in vendors’ activities represented vendors and the challenges they faced during the pandemic. It concludes that street food vendors understood themselves and their experiences differently from pertinent scholars and organizations. This thesis suggests that often taken-for-granted understandings of street food vendors appearing in academic literature and commentary from pertinent organizations should be considered critically, and the ways in which these representations inform interventions in street food vending should be carefully examined.
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    The “Myth of the First Three Years” and the Ideology of Motherhood in Japan
    (2023-05-01) Maruyama, Kaori; Lee, Sujin
    The “Myth of the First Three Years” (sansaiji shinwa, 三歳児神話) refers to a common belief among Japanese that mothers should stay with their children until they turn three years old to ensure children’s proper development. The widespread myth of mother-child bonding has played a crucial part in normalizing mothers’ child-rearing roles and creating social prejudice against working mothers in postwar Japan. This thesis deconstructs the “Myth of the First Three Years” by exploring its origin and structural and ideological dimensions. The history of the construction of motherhood in modern Japan reveals that the myth was not originated from centuries-old traditions, but derived from intersecting gendered practices in the postwar years, as evidenced by the dominant cultural discourse of full-time housewives (sengyō shufu, 専業主婦) and the popularity of child-rearing theories in the 1960s. The myth contributed to the popularization of the gendered idea that women were “naturally” mothers and primary caregivers for their children, as encapsulated in the notion of motherhood. Using feminist critiques of gender norms and Roland Barthes’ (1972) theory of myth-making, this thesis dissects the historical and cultural construction of motherhood as a women’s innate ability and discusses how the “Myth of the First Three Years” popularized the ideology of motherhood by normalizing the gender division of child-rearing labour in postwar Japan. My research also includes interviews with four working mothers in Japan. The experiences of each mother reveal the lingering impact of the myth on the gender division of labour in the workplace and at home from the 1980s to present-day Japan. This thesis concludes that the “Myth of the First Three Years” has served to naturalize women’s roles as primary caregivers for their children while sustaining the gender division of labour.
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    The Immigration Dilemma: trajectories and challenges of highly skilled migration in Japan
    (2023-04-27) Popova, Tatiana; Lee, Sujin
    Japan has long been perceived as a country with restrictive approach to immigration. However, due to staggering demographic changes now the Japanese government faces the dilemma between meeting the needs of the labour market by relying on the influx of migrant workers and addressing the public’s general opposition to immigration. Although the Japanese government is still hesitant to openly admit immigration, latest developments of the Japanese immigration law show a gradual shift in approach to the acceptance of foreign workers, which is particularly evident in the case of highly skilled migration. For highly skilled migrants (HSMs) Japan has adopted a more welcoming immigration policy, but the number of HSMs in Japan remains low. This suggests that current immigration policy alone is not enough to guarantee significant inflow of foreign workers and their retention. This research aims to fill the gaps in the existing studies on highly skilled migration in Japan by examining the development and limitations of the Japanese immigration policy and discussing main structural barriers and socio-cultural issues that HSMs face in Japan. Moreover, by analyzing trajectories and challenges of highly skilled migration in Japan the study also sheds light on the wider immigration dilemma that the country is dealing with. The main focus of this research is the examination of various factors affecting the attractiveness of Japan for highly skilled migration, with particular focus on the role of Japanese work culture among other work-related factors. Data collected through the online survey and interviews with HSMs and representatives of the Japanese HR reveals the impacts of Japanese employment practices and the Japanese work culture on foreign workers. In doing so, this study shows that Japanese work culture influences the experiences and mobility outcomes of HSMs as much as other work-related factors. Most importantly, the results of this research provide an insight into the interrelation of the Japanese work culture with ethnic nationalism and reveal the gap between multiculturalism in policy and in practice. 
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    Highlighting the Role of Traditional Spirituality in Independent Chinese Animation: Big Fish and Begonia
    (2022-12-19) Wang, Chenxi; Iles, Timothy
    Over the past two decades, Chinese independent animation has attracted much attention. The rise of Chinese independent animation is not only reflected in the expansion of its audience, but also in the depth and richness of its content. As a way of artistic expression, animated films not only carry the unique thinking of the authors themselves, but also realize the effective communication of the message, building a bridge between the creators and the audience across time, regions, and cultures. As a controversial and phenomenal work of Chinese independent animation, Big Fish and Begonia embodies the modern art creators' understanding of traditional Chinese aesthetics and religious beliefs through symbolic imagery. This thesis will uncover the interpretations and themes of Confucianism and Daoism in the context of modern China through analysis of the film’s music, setting, characters, and plots. Through this film, directors Liang Xuan and Zhang Chun attempt to convey the profound significance of Confucianism and Daoism to modern Chinese society.
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    Song of a Broken World: A Study on NieR: Automata's Presentation of Argument
    (2022-11-24) Tan, Xinlyu; Iles, Timothy
    This thesis examines NieR: Automata, a video game published in 2017 on PlayStation 4 from a narratological perspective to see how it composes its narrative elements to make an excellent argument about existence. The director Yōkō Tarō argues that, we could and should exert our agency to make the choice in our life, thus this is how we grant our life meaning. This thesis aims at providing a relatively comprehensive analysis on Automata’s profound understanding and presentation of Sartre's existentialism, its ingenious narrative construction, and the close association between them, through a contextualization on Sartre's existentialism, and a game components analysis. Yōkō takes his works as exploration on the usual themes and elements in the video games like violence and life, and Automata becomes his answer to one's life. From a comprehensive demonstration involving Automata’s game and narrative structure, we could clearly see that these two aspects are built so closely – all the game components are all associated with its central argument about existence and agency, and affirming or enhancing it from different perspectives, including its game systems, playthrough process, maps and stages, et cetera. Automata's argument shows a reflection on Japanese's collective recognition of self, which evidently received much influence from Sartre's Existentialism, a western philosophy view, suggesting a globalizing trend in the Japanese cultural context. Automata also gives a fine example for narrative game and illustrates that video game could be a persuasive lesson of argument in reality as well. By applying this literary study on Automata, this thesis also aims to provide an example for similar narrative studies on video games in the future.
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    Bai Juyi's (772-846) Poems on Women: A Narratological Approach
    (2022-08-31) Zhong, Qichen; Lin, Tsung-Cheng
    This thesis aims to explore the image of women in Bai Juyi’s (772-846) poetry with a narratological approach. It selects 108 of Bai’s poems about women as the research objects and divides them into two main categories: the poems written in a male voice and those written in a female voice. A total of 24 poems are examined as examples. Chapter one serves as a general introduction to the research background, providing information about the poet and the tradition of Chinese poetry. Chapter two outlines two narrative concepts, “narrator” and “focalization”. Also, it explores the image of women in the 14 example poems written in a male voice. Chapter three includes 10 example poems written in a female voice, investigating the differences between the image of women created in the male and female voices. This study finds that the use of the female voice presents the female characters’ thoughts and feelings to the reader and allows the reader to empathize with them easily.
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    Addressing Child Welfare Challenges in Rural China: An Assessment of the Child Welfare Director System and Possible Lessons from Japan
    (2022-08-31) Zhang, Rongxin; Marton, Andrew
    China’s rapid urbanization and mass migration over the past several decades has resulted in approximately 69 million children being left-behind in the countryside. Many of these children suffer from problems linked to a lack of parental care and emotional support, including physical and psychological abuse, neglect, truancy, and even malnutrition. In 2010, the Chinese Ministry of Civil Affairs and UNICEF piloted a “child welfare director (CWD)” model in Chinese 120 hinterland villages aimed at empowering community members to fill the gaps in child welfare provision and to improve the well-being of disadvantaged children in rural areas. Since 2019 the Chinese government has strived to implement the CWD system across the country. Informed by a theoretical framework that encompasses the concepts of child development, family support, and child welfare models in China and Japan, this study investigates the implementation and further development of the CWD system. A comparative analysis of the Japanese commissioned welfare volunteer and chief child welfare volunteer system is also utilized to explore possible lessons for the Chinese circumstances. The research findings highlight the crucial coordination function of the CWD system in incorporating families, schools, government bureaus, and various social sectors into a synergetic network to connect fragmented child welfare resources and services to support disadvantaged children and families. Analysis of the Japanese approach sheds light on the further development of the CWD system in terms of consolidating the partnership between CWDs and schools, promoting the cooperation between CWDs and social welfare institutions, as well as strengthening the professionalism of CWDs. This research also examines the involvement of civil society in child welfare provision in contemporary China. For program planners and policymakers, this thesis emphasizes the central role of governments at various levels, along with the important though limited contributions of non-government sectors, in providing more financial, human, and training resources to support the implementation of the CWD system to enhance child welfare provision in rural China. A key recommendation arising from this research is to establish a new specially designated government department with responsibility for all relevant child welfare issues. The thesis also speaks to the wider issue of promoting rural revitalization and rural-urban integration to address the specific challenges of left-behind children in the Chinese countryside.
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    Beyond an Illusion of Comfort: Two Examples of Chinese Healing Style Media
    (2022-08-30) Yao, Nan; Chau, Angie
    Healing style (zhiyu xi 治愈系 ) media refers to the various products and services labelled with a promise to comfort consumers, and the media category has gradually become viewed as a way to cope with the omnipresent stress and anxiety of modern life. However, there are widespread criticisms of healing style media regarding creating the illusion of comfort for temporary relaxation to avoid facing and addressing the problems that cause discomfort. To counter such biased accusations this thesis examines two types of Chinese healing style media, fiction and anime, to address two main research questions: 1) Whether and how Chinese healing style media respond to the problems people face in real life? 2) How do Chinese healing style media present healing? The textual analyses of the novel Rushan, Gushu and Me reveal that Chinese healing style literature is not creating the illusion of comfort but focuses on the emotional relationship crisis suffered by Chinese people and offers practical solutions with four main steps that integrate the theory and practice of psychotherapy. In the presentation of healing, Chinese healing style writers are inclined to utilize some typical healing elements like character settings that resonate with most people and adequate sensory descriptions. Interpretations combined with screenshots of the anime film The Legend of Hei reinforce the argument that Chinese healing style is not just a comforting fictional world but very concerned with the living space and environmental crises caused by rapid urbanization and emphasizes the importance of reliable intimate relationships in coping with the crises in modern life. In The Legend of Hei, the use of healing elements like natural scenery and colors, resonant characters, delicious foods and positive attitudes all contribute to presenting healing and cater to the psychological needs of the target viewers. Through critically analyzing Chinese healing style fiction and anime, this thesis affirms that they are not escaping but actively presenting the collective crises and providing solutions. This study defends the rationality and effectiveness of Chinese healing style media as one of the many ways to cope with numerous pressures of modern life, thus contributing to a more comprehensive understanding and more appropriate application of Chinese healing style media.
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    Teaching Chinese pronunciation in Canadian universities: an analysis of a textbook and teachers' perspectives
    (2021-09-28) Wang, Zhuangyuan; Nassaji, Hossein; Tian, Jun
    A long Canadian tradition has promoted the rise of multicultural education. In this multicultural society, ways to deal with the cultural differences in the teaching of Chinese to students with various backgrounds and needs have always been a challenging task. A review of the literature revealed that little research has focused on Chinese pronunciation teaching in Canada. In order to understand the teaching of Chinese pronunciation in Canadian universities, this study examines Integrated Chinese (Liu, Yao, et al., 2016), a Chinese textbook widely used in Canada. The study also qualitatively analyses two teachers' self-evaluations and their teaching experiences, as gathered from surveys and interviews. The results of the study aim to inform both seasoned and novice teachers in their work in the Canadian post-secondary context and to offer practical pedagogical recommendations for consideration.
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    Remembering in memoirs: collective memory and cultural trauma in Red Guard autobiographies
    (2021-08-30) Duan, Xuan; Chau, Angie
    China’s Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) deeply wounded the collective identity of the nation’s population, as it caused dramatic chaos and violence in every social arena, bringing the country into a decade-long crisis. In the 1980s and 1990s, a wave of autobiographical works was published in China and overseas, commemorating the authors’ (mainly former Red Guards) participation in the Cultural Revolution and post-1968 Rustication Movement (1968-1980). Focusing on the Red Guards, the main participants of the movements, this research inquiries how autobiographical works reflect the impacts of their direct engagement in the history on their self-identification. This study applies a theoretical framework combining Maurice Halbwachs’s insights into collective memory and Jeffrey C. Alexander’s conceptualization of cultural trauma, with trauma and identity as the cores of textual analysis. This research analyses two selected works in each region to observe how the different cultural and social contexts in China and North America affect former Red Guards’ self-identification and their navigation of the traumatic past. Textual analysis of the four selected works shows that Red Guard autobiographies embody the nexus between individual memory and the social framework of the collective memory of the Cultural Revolution and Rustication Movement, as the latter reveals itself in the forms of narrative chronology, verbal conventions, and recurring scenes in the texts. While the social framework of collective memory shapes the Red Guard writers’ textual representations, the Red Guard writers engage in the collective remembering process and construct a victimhood-oriented narrative of the two movements through concentrating on the narrator or other characters’ tragedies. In social and practical aspects, Red Guard autobiographies have multiple roles in the trauma process of the events: the channel for emotional catharsis, the discursive field for former Red Guard writers’ exploration of their memories, and the medium through which the former Red Guard writers articulate their identities. Published in distinctive cultural and political contexts, China and North America, the Red Guard autobiographies embody authors’ different claims: the domestic Red Guard writers remain ambiguous in attribution of the undesired outcomes of the two movements and provide no clear identity of the victims, whereas the expatriate Red Guard writers in North America claim the movements’ experimental nature with stress laid on the inner-party struggles and identify the generation of the Red Guards and educated youths as the victims. Concentrating on collective memory and cultural trauma, this thesis provides new angles to understand the relations among personal narratives, social and cultural contexts, and national history. This study analyzes Red Guard memoirs’ functions in the working-through process of the two unsuccessful mass movements, showing how literary representations assist individuals and collectives with trauma healing and self-reflection.
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    Family as a starting point: the kinship-based female poetry clubs between Late Ming and Early Qing Dynasties, 1550-1700
    (2021-02-15) Cai, Yuxuan; Chau, Angie; Bailey, C.D. Alison
    Poetry clubs composed of gentry women began to emerge during the late Ming and early Qing dynasties. The earliest female poetry clubs in this period were all kinship-based and organized within gentry families. This phenomenon shows that family was the major source for the foundation of female poetry clubs. The aim of this research is to investigate the impact of family on the formation of kinship-based female poetry clubs from a political, social, and cultural perspective and to examine these clubs within the context of geographical location, family learning and marriage relationships. This thesis treats the Mingyuan Poetry Club founded by female members of the Fang family in Tongcheng city, Anhui province as the main focus of research to illustrate the family’s influence on the formation of gentry women poetry clubs by translating and analyzing the members’ poetic works and family life.
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    Ode to Joy: pop cultural representation of white-collar migrant women in a Chinese megacity
    (2020-08-31) Yang, Linda; Marton, Andrew
    This thesis examines the pop cultural representation of white-collar migrant women (WCMW) through the popular Chinese TV series Ode to Joy. Focusing on various aspects of their lives, this TV series raises many issues about the experiences of WCMW, including perceptions of them as “outsiders” in the megacity, gender inequality, and the tensions between female migrant identity and urban status. This study analyzes those issues by drawing on intersectional theories which examine structural inequalities from the perspective of the interactions of multiple axes of social categories. This thesis asks three major questions: In what way does Ode to Joy represent the experiences of WCMW?; To what extent do issues raised in Ode to Joy impact the wellbeing of WCMW in large cities?, and; What are the “joys” in Ode to Joy for WCMW? In addition to collecting data from the TV series, this study interviewed WCMW informants to provide first-hand accounts of their experiences in an urban culture. By critically analyzing the representation of WCMW characters’ experiences in Ode to Joy, this thesis provides insights on understanding the status of those women in a contemporary Chinese urban setting, thereby filling a gap in academic literature on the pop cultural representation of China’s white-collar migrant women in a Chinese megacity.
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    The emergence of commercial marine ranching in Eastern China: an assessment of institutional frameworks
    (2020-08-28) Wang, Guodong; Marton, Andrew
    Based on research showing the serious environmental damage associated with conventional aquaculture, coastal marine ranching has been promoted by the Chinese government as an ecological and environmentally friendly way to produce aquatic products and simultaneously restore the marine environment. However, marine ranching is a general concept and there are significant differences among the three main types. This study initially focuses on commercial marine ranching to distinguish it from other types by identifying its unique features, functions and goals. Examining institutional frameworks of commercial marine ranching operations reveals the evolving interactions and interrelations between key actors in the network. The analysis adopts a modified social network theory approach that incorporates Chinese guanxi culture in a case study of the White Dragon Islet marine ranching project to research commercial marine ranching in China. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to collect details from each group of key actors, including the private sector, government, and local communities. Key outcomes of the research include developing a better understanding of the types of marine ranching in China and important insights into changing relationships developed from acquaintance to intimacy and then to trustworthiness within the institutional framework of a successful commercial marine ranching project. The thesis concludes by highlighting key practical implications for government policy and for commercial marine ranching practitioners to improve the implementation of such operations in China.
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    Student engagement with institutional governance in contemporary Chinese universities: an internationalization process
    (2019-08-13) Cheng, Siyi; Marton, Andrew
    In recent decades, China has stood out for its active social experiment with its state-market relations and educational reforms to build internationally competitive universities. Students, as recipients of and participants in these changes, showed stakeholder awareness, subjectivity, and agency in navigating the Chinese university system, but their influence on university decision-making was unclear. Informed by a theoretical framework that incorporated the study of higher education internationalization, the associated concepts of student engagement, and a social, cultural, and institutional examination of the global-local interactions, this study explored student engagement with institutional governance in Chinese universities. Grounded in an interpretivist perspective, the research employed qualitative methods to unpack students’ knowledge construction, referential framework, and constant negotiation. Research questions addressed action patterns, conceptual rationales, and the deciding powers in student engagement. This research provided a contextual analysis of policy practices, individual student experiences, and the possible impact on the international outlook of Chinese higher education. Findings pinpointed overarching power relations within the institutional foundations of Chinese university structures, as they were highly intertwined with the university’s political priorities to create a neutral and stable campus. This is evident in the monopoly of the Communist Youth League in student activities, the institutionalization of student leadership, and the daily supervision of student counsellors. While the students were invited to participate in the peripheral structure of university governance, this structure, in turn, assimilated student voices and dissolved student unrest in the process. In the meantime, the investigation found informal interactions inspired sporadic student actions in spaces with lower-level institutionalization to push against the administrative boundaries. Students demonstrated an exceptional understanding of university power relations and their ability to act purposefully and strategically. Despite substantive internationalization efforts of Chinese HEIs, the analysis did not suggest internationalization had a direct significant connection with student engagement in Chinese university governance. Nonetheless, Western influences on current student-university interactions were manifested in the use of instructional models, the increased use of the English language, and a vision shaped by external knowledge towards more progressive campuses. The significance of this thesis is both scholarly and practical. This study identified the realities of Chinese higher education and the paucity of academic discussion on the student experience in Chinese universities. This research responded to the challenge of accommodating an understanding of the non-Anglo-Saxon experience with student engagement in mainstream theories developed largely in Western contexts. For policymakers and educators, the thesis highlighted the under-explored political dimensions of internationalization and the conditions for meaningful learning and engagement.
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    Krishnamurti and the dance of dialogue: instigating insight in higher education
    (2019-08-01) Flexer, Jerry; Adam, Martin T.
    This study examines the dialogic approach of the Indian-born educational philosopher Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895 – 1986), who had developed his own unique approach to dialogue with small groups. The research considered two questions. First, whether Krishnamurti’s dialogic approach is one that could be described by specific strategies and techniques; and second, whether this approach and its strategies and techniques could be adapted, adopted, or emulated for use in higher education. In Chapter One of the paper, Krishnamurti’s general philosophy and his specific philosophy of education are reviewed, with the aim of placing his dialogic approach within the context of his educational philosophy. The second chapter addresses the study’s research questions by presenting a two-part analysis of a transcript of the one-hour dialogue that took place in California in 1981 between Krishnamurti and six American college students. First, even though he used no notes and no lesson plan, the thematic content analysis of this particular dialogue shows that relevant content had in fact been covered and learned, and that this content had emerged as a consequence of Krishnamurti’s direction as a facilitator of learning. Second, specific strategies and techniques employed by Krishnamurti in this dialogue were identified and described, with specific examples as presented from the transcript. The third chapter explores the context of Krishnamurti’s approach within a recent developing trend in educational philosophy; a trend described as holistic and transformative, focused as it is on encouraging change in learners’ thinking about concepts, rather than on transmitting knowledge from educators to learners. This exploration is done by describing several existing examples of holistic and transformative educational approaches. Some of these described existing approaches are expressly informed by Krishnamurti’s educational philosophy, while others, though not expressly informed by Krishnamurti, are nonetheless consistent with his approach. In the final chapter, it is proposed that the analysis of the dialogue in Chapter Two and the comparative context analysis in Chapter Three show that Krishnamurti’s dialogic approach both fits well within the general direction and nature of this existing and developing holistic and transformative trend in the philosophy of education, on the one hand, and is also uniquely distinguishable from existing approaches in meaningful ways, on the other. Chapter Four concludes, then, as a result, that Krishnamurti’s approach can be adapted, emulated, or adopted for beneficial results in higher education.
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    "Rotten Culture": from Japan to China
    (2019-05-01) Li, Nishang; Bodden, Michael
    A new sub-culture, “Rotten Culture (腐文化) ”, evolved from Japanese Boys’ Love (BL) manga, has rapidly spread in China and dramatically influenced many areas of Chinese artistic creation. “Rotten Culture” is an extension of Boys’ Love, which indicates that Boys’ Love elements not only existed in manga, but emerged in anime, movies, TV series, and so on. As a start of an analysis of this phenomenon, this thesis will focus on the core of “Rotten Culture”, Boys’ Love, which exists in Chinese manga and web fiction. The central issues addressed by this thesis are: exploring the circulation of Boys’ Love from Japan to China; examining the aesthetics and themes of some of these works; and analyzing the motivations that explain why such a huge amount of people, both professional and non-professional, have joined in creating Boys’ Love art works.
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    Performing the everyday life in ruined city: wife, mistress, and housemaid of a literary celebrity
    (2018-08-29) Cheng, Xiaomeng; King, Richard
    This thesis presents a study of “performing the everyday life” in the writer Jia Pingwa’s well-known novel Ruined City (Feidu 废都). By adopting the sociologist Erving Goffman’s idea of dramaturgical interactions in The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life, this thesis contends that the social interactions in Ruined City are all performed. I particularly pay attentions to the relationships involving the novel’s central character, the celebrity-writer and one of the four “cultural idlers” in Xijing, which is the ancient capital Xi’an the author lives in real life, Zhuang Zhidie, and the three women in his life— the wife Niu Yueqing, the mistress Tang Wan’er, and the housemaid Liu Yue. Considering Goffman’s idea, I consider Zhuang Zhidie performs various roles when he encounters with each of the women, and they in turn perform the corresponding role to fit in the performance environment Zhuang has regularized with his role and his definitions of situations. In a novel notorious for its graphic descriptions of sex, these relationships are also performed in sexual encounters, and presented with symbolic objects relevant to the characters' roles.
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    De-revolutionizing the “red classics”: a case study of Tracks in the Snowy Forest in fiction, model opera, television and film
    (2018-08-10) Wang, Liying; King, Richard
    “Red classics” generally refer to a collection of Chinese literary works produced from the late 1940s to the mid-1960s. Many of them were remade to film, opera, and television series in different periods. One of the “red classics” was the semi-autobiographical military romance Tracks in the Snowy Forest by Qu Bo. This novel and its many adaptations have been popular for more than half a century. This thesis takes Tracks in the Snowy Forest as a case study to explore how socialist “red classic” works have been “de-revolutionized,” reinvented for a new age and a new audience as products for popular consumption in post-Mao China, as compared to the sterner revolutionary works of the Mao era.
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    Technology and interactivity in modern/post-modern Japanese theatre
    (2018-04-30) Draker, Diana Lily; Poulton, Cody
    Multimedia technology in theatre is nothing new, but various companies in modern and post-modern Japan, such as Dumb Type, Hatsune Miku, and the robot theatre of Oriza Hirata and Hiroshi Ishiguro, have been experimenting with mediatized technology. This thesis hones in on these Japanese multimedia theatres. It studies the origins of mediatization in theatre, looking at the impact of the innovations made by Adolphe Appia. Furthermore, the growing impact of media technology can create a perception of ‘Liveness’ of these artificial actors. Liveness is a critically important concept, both on and off stage, affecting how one perceives the non-human and the type of relationships that are conveyed between the human and non-human actor, as well as the non-human actor and its human audience. This thesis covers the productions of “A One Woman Show” and a spoiler-heavy discussion on "Super Danganronpa 2 The Stage ~Sayonara Zetsubō Gakuen~" within the context of the impact of projections on stage. Robots and the uncanny valley are also reviewed, with the play "Sayonara" as the primary case study within this topic. Then the thesis analyzes the experimental human theatre of Dumb Type, focusing on their plays "S/N" and "pH," as well Vocaloid concerts and the impact of these characters, especially Hatsune Miku, upon the fans. In the course of this analysis, reasons are suggested as to why these technological innovations have found particular success in Japan.