18. October 2023

Special Issue: Politics of Memory, Heritage, and Diversity in Modern China Special Issue: Politics of Memory, Heritage, and Diversity in Modern China

Prof. Dr. Maximilian Mayer (Guest Editor)

Under the editorship of Prof. Dr. Maximilian Mayer Guest, the Special Issue "Politics of Memory, Heritage, and Diversity in Modern China" was recently published in the Journal of Current Chinese Affairs. In various articles and in the introduction by Maximilian Mayer & Karolina Pawlik, the Special Issue addresses questions of the interaction between collective memory and Chinese identity, cultural modernisation and political mobilisation.

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Interpretations and memorialisations of China's long history, in service of political aspirations of the present and towards the future, have long attracted scholarly attention. This special issue addresses how the curation, performance, and consumption of collective memory provide valuable insight into the interplay between the reconstruction of Chinese identity, cultural modernisation, and the shifting role of heritage and memory in Chinese domestic and international politics. Touching on issues around diversity in, for instance, personal/collective memory or community-based/state-led heritage, we consider how state–society relations inform local memory practices. Furthermore, the articles enclosed discuss pertinent and far-reaching impacts of China's cultural-material changes, transformations, and destructions in service of memory re-formation. Investigating the politicisation of heritage and the material solidification of strategically selected representations of the past, we consider how the notion of “memory infrastructure” contributes to an academic understanding of the interaction between history, memory, and politics.

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