- Registration time
- Last login
- Online time
- 71 Hour
- Reading permission
This is not a rhetorical post about how China can win a war against the USA. I am writing this post to underscore China's potential to become the world's most influential nation in terms of culture.|
The Europeans, like the French, British, and Spanish, have turned their relatively shorter periods of history into top tourist attractions, which have generated lots of cash. No doubt that their colonial past has helped expanding their sphere of cultural influence into other parts of the world, but European culture and history are fairly short and lack substance, compared to China's. In fact, modern European culture has been eroded by American influence via Hollywood and music. This trans-Atlantic influence is likely to continue to be a one-way traffic because for one the Europeans themselves don't have much culture to show for and for two whatever Europeans think is their own has already been incorporated into the American culture. There are many books and studies published on the above-mentioned, so I do not need to provide any more evidence.
China, on the other hand, has had a continuous flow of history, which was partly interrupted in the Qin Dynasty and during the cultural revolution but remained intact overall. The bond between the Chinese and their origin is so strong that short periods of abberations in history can hardly change them.
Quincy Jones, an established music producer, recently visited China and gave a speech on the Fong Huang Channel. In the speech he said that China's production of what he calls "hard products" like electronics is not sustainable because there will always be cheaper labor elsewhere, but China's potential "soft products," ie. the commercialization of China's culture and 5000 years of history will always be profitable. PricewaterhouseCoopers estimated that the media and entertainment industry will be worth $1.8 trillion by 2010. China can occupy a huge piece of the pie if the government is able to lift a lot of the unreasonable restrictions imposed on the movies, music, and publishing. In China's history, adverse political enviornments have inspired great poets and artists. Their works were not banned, thanks to the non-existence of information censoring technology used in the modern days. Now, looking at the present-day movie industry, if Taiwan and HK, two tiny territories of China, can produce world renowned film makers like Wang Kar Wei and Lee Ang, imagine what China can produce given its sheer size and huge pool of talents. India's Bollywood has been growing steadily, where is China's movie industry going during this transitional period?
America has achieved its sole superpower status in the world by means of cultural invasion and economic exploitation. The latter will take China decades to counter, but the former can be easily accomplished because all the firepower is already there. And movies and music are the best channels to launch this counter-attack. Now whether China will capitalize depends on its government's readiness to accept a diversity of opinions expressed in songs, movies, books, and other media channels.