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English Essay on Contemporary Chinese Society & Popular Culture


Task: Review “Popular Culture: Introductory Perspectives (3rd Edition) by Marcel Danesi” and write a 2,500-word English essay to meet the course’s ER and EW requirements. In writing the review essay, students will review one theme of the book and present individual views to assess the selected theme with a case study of Greater China.


While pundits in each time have criticized the media and popular culture as presenting genuine risks to all features of society, not many have attempted to comprehend the implications and social structures that they have made in our regular daily existences. What is the popular cultural society? For what reason do we so regularly prefer not to cherish it and love to detest it? What makes us grasp portions of it and not others? Marcel Danesi investigates our human craving for significance and the need to represent it in music, language, craftsmanship, and other imaginative structures. He offers an assortment of viewpoints to assist us with understanding the results of popular culture- from music and sites to prevailing fashions, famous people, and that's just the beginning(Ruddock, 2019).

Marcel Danesi is a notable semiotician, etymologist and anthropologist, who stamp all his skills in these fields and as of now instructing at The University of Toronto. This book presents the colourful assortment of the collection so that popular culture comes out as being intelligent of the always changing living arrangement called contemporary Chinese culture(Thussu et al., 2017). Consistent with his words the book, Danesi, in the Preface, has broadly reconsidered the parts in this third book edition, "considering the ascent and predominance of advanced media and new settings for the conveyance of popular culture."

This book investigates our human longing for significance and the need to represent it in music, language, craftsmanship, and other inventive structures. It offers an assortment of points of view to assist us with understanding the results of popular culture. Popular culture encompasses us. The music we tune in to, the films we watch, and the books we read are his items; they are also on our TVs, telephones, and PCschallenge(Xiang & Hsieh, 2018).

In each part, under each heading, the writer underscores on the carefully changed social orders seeing changed organizations of making, spreading, getting to and reacting to the substance/patterns of popular culture. The keep going part ponders solely on the moving scenes of popular culture in modern times where lines among genuine and hyperreal have obscured and business structure has changed(Xiang & Hsieh, 2018). In spite of the fact that he appropriately observes it to a test for the endurance of popular culture in its customary structures, yet is positive as well(Po Sang, 2020). It is correct that "Popular culture propagates itself and has consistently sustained itself by adjusting to the innovatively changing media that convey it to enormous masses of individuals.

Television Theme:
The main theme that I selected from chapter 8 which was demonstrating the importance of Television and the relationship between its culture and the sense of identity of Hong Kong people.

Part 1
Chapter eight is a very informative part related to the main theme as it gives a lot of insights to the TV culture from its invention and development to the usage of TV(Xu et al., 2019). This essay will first discuss the reason why television became so important in early decades such as in the 80s and 90s in Hong Kong. It will be then followed by the waytelevision helped in forming the sense of identity of Hong Kong people while affecting their consciousness. The essay will be concluded on a note to prove that TV culture is deteriorating and it has much less influence on people than before.

The main reason that accounts for the popularity of television in the early decades was because it was the sole means of visual entertainment in terms of mass media(Zeng& Sparks, 2017). Since the technology was not as highly developed as it is now, people did not have the option to use the high-tech products that people use nowadays such as, smartphones, electronic games and toys, and computers. Therefore, they did not have alternatives in terms of entertainment so they only had TV to enjoy their leisure time.Another reason why it was popular in the early days is because it relates to its audience. For instance, the show The Little Sisters in GrassLand (1965) was demonstrating the typical models of ordinary people in China while appreciating the advanced methods of doing things in life in considerably the “new” socialist China(Zhang, 2015). Also, TV was considered as an effective means for reaching the mass number of people, to explain, it was able to reach more than 96% of the Chinese audience. Thus, as people enjoyed watching TV since they felt a connection, the TV culture constantly grew.

There were many TV dramas that showed the ordinary life of people with ordinary dreams and ambitions in order to let people feel the real connection and thus, make sense of their own self(W. Lui, 2018). However, unlike China, Hong Kong TV and movie industry were able to receive much higher levels of autonomy as they were under British colonial government. Therefore, they were able to produce many varieties and genres of shows from romantic dramas to reality shows. As the author mentioned that there is a very fine imaginary line between the reality and the fiction of the reality show, people till now are still not able to differentiate it and still consider them as the “reality” shows. The author demonstrated his point using the example of the reality show The Temptation Island where people shown as “ordinary” were left on an island in their swimsuits(T. Lui et al., 2018). This show was clearly showing how ordinary people would handle temptation. It is obvious that people who were left on a deserted island would be tempted to each other, hence allowing the audience to ponder on the thought whether they would be doing the same in that situation as it is very hard for them to distinguish the scripted and unscripted shows(Chen et al., 2016). Therefore, such shows really affect people and generate their thoughts to think how they would react in that particular situation.

It additionally is captivating of the Chinese character in Hong Kong on the submersion under provincial principle and its re-visitation of Chinaanother entrancing and significant knowledge into TV in HK from this correlation. The trouble obviously is that— even channels, the Chinese ones, appear to have HK TV so Americanised moved thusly, while keeping a positive Chinese flavor to the amusement, Hong Kong news and dramatization programs. Furthermore, it was so too. One very prominent example of how TV culture helped forming identities is by watching at the style shift of people or the audience. In order to relate, people would like to experience it and to be included and accepted. That is the one particular reason why western culture has become so popular all around the world especially, in Asian countries too. To explain, you will not see Asians wearing their traditional clothes but instead they will be wearing the jeans and shirts since they think they are a part of global village now and in order to be accepted they have to behave like one. There is no doubt that western media has a great soft power in terms of attracting people from around the globe towards them, to accept their cultures and ideologies. Therefore, it is evident that TV culture really affects one's mind and how they interpret the world.

Part 2
Chapter eight, television chapter, has been coordinated according to the media that has sent popular cultureto the majority. The conversation was on disconnected/ radio culture, popular music, film//video(Rawnsley&Rawnsley, 2015). TV, publicizing/marking, pop language, online print culture, online popular culturealsodeliver the reader faced with the topic of things to come of popular culturein the advanced age, which the creator redirects onto a way of expectation.

While breaking down the entire popular cultureindustry, he convincingly proves his contentions on popular culturecalculating viable primary changes in the social texture through joining references like Elvis Presley, the flappers, Marlin Monroe, (Tang, 2015). It very well might be Marlon Brando, Cabbage Patch doll, Marcel Duchamp, the juke box, Louis Armstrong, the Cadillac, Ford Mustang, Disney's Fantasyland, Barbie dolls, South Park (TV arrangement), The dramas, Charles Schulz, Rubik's Cube, Fast food, YouTube, Decameron (fiction), Park Jae-Sang (Psy), twitter, et cetera. Hence it is upsetting for a not many that Danesi doesn't to the negative elements, give enough space of the egalitarian idea of popular culture. In any case, it can't be rejected that he perceives its perspectives, positive and negative, yet purposefully harps much on the reformist and supporting part of it. This book is a captivating understanding into the manner in which the brain of Hong Kong, it works. It has a brilliant recorded improvement of TV, in Hong Kong preand post media terms and in handover since the 1960s. It has profoundly important contextual investigations in Hong Kong attracted from TV projects to show the present and the brain of the past (and somewhat the future)(Yadav, n.d.).

It is a work of grant, unquestionably, and this occasionally gives it a quality of trouble and periodic invulnerability which will likely interest Hong Kong media researchers the world over. However, that is a little cost to pay to a broad reader, for the more to become familiar with some significant realities about media in Hong Kong.

The book moves past the undeniable media toward examinations of the life of the Hong Kongers. It is fairly a model of how to in the work of the MainlandChinese and contemplate the media in a specific area. Hong Kong obviously is a decent spot to do such an investigation due to its general homogeneity and size (Yadav, n.d.). He portrays this as the extension among scholastics and experts and as such it is proposed to be a "multi-dimensional investigation of HK TV programs".

Case Study: The Little Sisters in Grassland 1965
This book maintains the Chinese TV in the soul of "Yan'an Talk" 1949-70s which is The Little Sisters in Grassland 1965. The animation depends on the genuine story of Heroic Little Sisters of the Grassland, two sisters from Mongolia, who in 1964 nearly relinquished their lives to secure the sheep of individuals' cooperative in a blizzard in February.

The two sisters were promptly advanced as public models for kids to copy. Learning the story,of the two courageous Mongolian sisters,in news report, the illustrators quickly left on creation Heroic Little Sisters residing in the Grassland, as though making an opportune narrative. The pictures of the two sisters in this energized film were likewise founded on their genuine photographs, giving the photographic film cases to bodily credibility empowered by authenticity.

Gallant Little Sisters of the Grassland is the temporary film throughout the entire existence of Chinese liveliness. Courageous,this movie based on courage was the main energized movie that straightforwardly depicted, applauded. Mao's representation shows up at the outset and revered by Chairman Mao the signature melody of this movie and end of the movie; additionally straightforwardly commends Mao. This film filled in as the model energized film movies to copy during the 10 years in Cultural Revolution, portrayed by reiteration of the pragmatist film styles and progressive stories for later.

I would maybe have enjoyed a greater amount of this flavor to turn out in the book, yet then you cannot behaving anything and everything. Moreover, I would have enjoyed some more social examinations between English and the Chinese and stationsrun by the two significant Chinese TV organizations (Tang, 2015). It is acceptable however that the creator incorporates the reality-based drama and social disclosure albeit again more on this would have been welcome.

This book begins with an inside and out and keen glance at personality, culture and the media, which I discovered especially intriguing and unique. It is a book immovably established and changeover and is resolved to seeing what has occurred from that point forward. In that capacity, it is a significant expansion to any library rack and media course; however wherever due to the relationship, in Asia or Australia, it works between these occasions and the way of life of the media(Leslie, 2016).

Have no dread that this is nearby just as in Hong Kong, thusly a parochial book.A contextual analysis, it is utilized top to bottom. Its exercises and suggestions are absolutely global. As Ma calls attention to in this part why an investigation identified with the particulars of Hong Kong should be any extraordinary to an examination identified with the points of reality-based drama and social disclosure (Currier, 2008).Also, he is totally correct.

The exercises that can be gained from this sort of study are all inclusive and worldwide. This is certainly not a neighborhood book in any sense; it just uses the nearby to produce the worldwide(Boyle, 2019). The verifiable methodology features the TV measurement in a captivating manner. Moreover,the conversation of what is depicted (who know no other nation than Hong Kong) and those Hong Kongers who have seen the effect on nearby TV is additionally exceptionally intriguing. He additionally accepts that the new social character that arose had an immediate relationship to HK TV and he follows the advancement of TV in Hong Kong completely.

Perusing this book resembles being on a visit which begins with navigation, Danesi acclimating the reader installed with the smaller schedule, considering the overall anxieties and doubts about popular culture(Cai et al., 2018).Following its starting point in the reality-based drama, entertainment, films and social disclosure as a libertarian culture, "solidified as another type of recreational way of life and a gigantic business venture", Danesiensures that the reader go back so as to observe how the consistently reformist, always advancing and truly adjusting popular culture’s nature has endure the trial of times and preliminaries by cognoscenti and promoters of supposed high culture.

Popular culture and contemporary Chinese society are too expansive and too misjudged a term, particularly when set in opposition to our regular comprehension of culture of what all it envelops, that the complete comprehension has been past the mindscapes of even intelligent people. Marcel Danesi, in the third release of his bookonpopularculture has made a gigantic showing in giving the perusers a comprehensive record of media in popular culture with a viewpoint that makes it a fair report. Evidently focused on the television chapter of this book and adept too for aiding the understudy network, it is without a doubt a decent reference book for educators as well. The book appears to be interesting however the idea of the point and the writer's association of the television substance by adding and refreshing the course of events/features/delineations for each type of popular culture and contemporary Chinese society.

1964 Heroic Little Sisters of the Grasslands | The Effects of Politics and Society on Chinese Animation.(n.d.). You.Stonybrook.Edu. Retrieved from

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Cai, H., Zou, X., Feng, Y., Liu, Y., & Jing, Y. (2018). Increasing Need for Uniqueness in Contemporary China: Empirical Evidence. Frontiers in Psychology, 9.

Chen, H.-T., Chan, M., & Lee, F. L. F. (2016). Social media use and democratic engagement: a comparative study of Hong Kong, Taiwan, and China. Chinese Journal of Communication, 9(4), 348–366.

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Lui, W. (2018).Analysis of the development path of radio, film and television culture in China. 2018 1st International Conference on Education, Art, Management and Social Sciences (EAMSS 2018).

Po Sang, Y. (2020). Citizen curation and the online communication of folk economics: the China collapse theory in Hong Kong social media. Media, Culture & Society, 016344372094802. Rawnsley, G. D., &Rawnsley, M. T. (2015).Routledge Handbook of Chinese Media.In Google Books.Routledge.

Ruddock, A. (2019). The Rap of China: communication versus culture in Chinese media studies. Journal of Multicultural Discourses, 14(2), 107–114. Tang, X. (2015).Visual Culture in Contemporary China.In Google Books.Cambridge University Press.

Thussu, D. K., Burgh, H. de, & Shi, A. (2017). China’s Media Go Global. In Google Books.Routledge.

Xiang, Y., & Hsieh, H. (2018b, July 1). A study on the present-situation analysis and feasible path of the elderly TV programs in mainland China. IEEE Xplore.

Xu, M., Reijnders, S., & Kim, S. (2019). ‘Mingren are the respectable ones’: an analysis of everyday engagements with contemporary celebrity culture in China. Celebrity Studies, 1–18.

Yadav, S. (n.d.). REVIEW: SumatiYadav, “From Public to Publics to Purveyors,” Marcel Danesi, Popular Culture, Introductory Perspectives (4th Edition).

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Zeng, W., & Sparks, C. (2017). Localization as negotiation: Producing a Korean format in contemporary China. International Journal of Digital Television, 8(1), 81–98.

Zhang, W. (2015). No cultural revolution? Continuity and change in consumption patterns in contemporary China. Journal of Consumer Culture, 17(3), 639–658.


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