Monday, November 10, 2014

[Upcoming Seminar] Exploring Accounts of Chinese Air Pollution

Exploring Accounts of Chinese Air Pollution

Speaker: Alex COCKAIN  
(Teaching Fellow, Department of Applied Social Sciences, Hong Kong Polytechnic University)
Time: 12:30 p.m., Friday, 14 November, 2014  
Venue: Room 12 Humanities Building, New Asia College, CUHK


This paper explores pictures of Shanghai residents emerging through various accounts of a weekend in December 2013 when the city experienced high levels of air pollution. Although this paper deals significantly with texts appearing in foreign media, I attempt to focus more concertedly upon texts appearing on weixin (a micromessaging service which also permits sharing of photographs and videos) and commentary generated by virtue of semi-structured interviews and being there at the time. My aim is not so much to engage with issues regarding what Shanghai residents “really feel” about air pollution (although I do, perhaps inadvertently, seem to impose a definitive reading) but rather to explore how journalists, residents and myself all seem to be engaged in constructing rhetorical performances determined by the need to tell an effective story.



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