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Chinese TV Drama Production Mechanism and Mainstream Drama

  • The Journal of Chinese Cultural Studies
  • 2018, (41), pp.375-396
  • DOI : 10.18212/cccs.2018..41.016
  • Publisher : The Society For Chinese Cultural Studies
  • Research Area : Humanities > Chinese Language and Literature > Chinese Literature > Chinese Culture
  • Received : July 16, 2018
  • Accepted : August 17, 2018
  • Published : August 30, 2018

Ko Yoonsil 1

1숙명여자대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

After China’s economic reform, in order to meet the needs of the times, that is, promotion of economic recovery and modernization, the West that had been the enemy was changed to the object of learning and imitating, and thus the necessity of ideological security came to the fore. In addition, in order to adjust the various contradictions in the national policies, institutional arrangements came to be made. After the basis of China’s establishment, its socialism ideology and economic reform, the censorship regulation was formed in the middle of conflicts and contradictions between modernization and market ideology as well as various political and structural competences including maintenance of social orders and ideological security. Especially, in this age of post-socialism when it is certain that revolution idealism would vanish, the censorship regulation is working as the mechanism of regulations and prohibitions to conceal the ideological vacuum of drama contents, establish ideological security, and maintain social orders. The drama censorship regulation is at the core of the drama production system in China. As the influence of capital increased in the period of economic transition, Chinese officials have tried to protect mainstream ideology and give ideological identity to cultural contents. The formation and enhancement of the censorship regulation could be considered to be an ideological reaction against the fact that market ideology would dominate mainstream ideology in the period of economic transition. All the drama contents in China are adjusted by Chinese officials’ ideology through this censorship regulation. Particularly, as the example of standardization in the period of economic transition, mainstream dramas started to suggest the ideological standard of drama contents depending on the censorship regulation. Since the decline of revolution idealism, mainstream dramas have played the role of producing ‘universal ideology’ to conceal ideological vacuum, establish ideological security, and maintain social orders. The purpose of this study is, targeting the 1980s when the drama system started to be organized in earnest, to examine the process of the formation of the censorship regulation and grasp the ideological strained relations depending on the political and social changes in the contemporary society of China. Then, this study tries to analyze the narrations of typical mainstream dramas to examine how mainstream ideology would change and operate, because mainstream dramas are important in grasping the ideological effects and operating ways as they are important means of propagating ideology and are typically influenced by the regulatory mechanism of the censorship regulation in the whole stages of planning and production. Lastly, this study intends to examine how mainstream dramas would function ideologically. Although mainstream dramas are producing universal ideology for maintenance of social orders, they are also clearly concealing the functional vacuum of mainstream ideology, simultaneously.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.

This paper was written with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea.