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A Study on Spatial Practice of Shanghai - Centering around the Plaza in Urban Area

  • The Journal of Chinese Cultural Studies
  • 2015, (28), pp.101-124
  • DOI : 10.18212/cccs.2015..28.005
  • Publisher : The Society For Chinese Cultural Studies
  • Research Area : Humanities > Chinese Language and Literature > Chinese Literature > Chinese Culture
  • Published : May 30, 2015

Ko Yoonsil 1

1上海大學

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This paper is about the city space and spectacle of Shanghai, along with the spatial practice happening inside its “Circle of Life”. Shanghai’s spectacle, which is composed of urban planning, capital and various senses spanning three decades, reconstituted humans as subjects of capitalism, that is, subjects of consumption, using the commercial desire as an instrument. Department stores are a key apparatus of Prominent Shanghai People’s Capitalistic subjectivation that pioneers consumption and trend, life and culture, along with entertainment and leisure. The term Guangchang (Plaza), which refers to a department store, first made its appearance in the 1990s and became overwhelmingly abundant after the start of the 21st century. During this process, the original meaning of Guangchang(Plaza) as a public space has diminished. Due to capitalism, the ‘Plaza’ became private space but the people of Shanghai has appropriated the private ‘plaza’, designated by politics and capital, to a square of the citizen. If a square privatized by capital was reclaimed to an amusement square for everyone, through the case of Guangchangwu, the transition from mourners for the Apartment Fire of 11.15 to demonstrators caused the sense of individual ownership to change into “community ownership”. For the first time, the people living in Shanghai experienced the common emotional bond as “Shanghai People”, and through this process, the true meaning of the Square was resurrected. This strategy of everyday life is constantly realized in the “Circle of Life”, originally formed from the authorities and capital, and it is beginning to generate new meaning. The objective of the Tactics of Everyday Life is not aimed at the mere neutralization of the authorities. Through endless trial and effort, it’s purpose is to restore the area once dominated by capital and power into the property of the public.

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