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Ien Ang, ‘Chinatowns and the rise of China’
This paper discusses how Chinatowns today are increasingly contested sites where older diasporic understandings of Chineseness are unsettled by newer, neoliberal ones, dominated by the pull of China’s newly found economic might. In particular, the so-called ‘rise of China’ has spawned a globalisation of the idea of ‘Chinatown’ itself, with its actual uptake in urban development projects the world over, or backlash against it, determined by varying perceptions of China’s global ascendancy as an amalgam of ‘threat’ and ‘opportunity’.
IEN ANG (FAHA) is a Distinguished Professor of Cultural Studies at Western Sydney University and was the founding Director of the university’s Institute for Culture and Society. Her wideranging interdisciplinary work deals broadly with patterns of cultural flow and exchange in our globalised world, focusing on issues such as the formation of audiences and publics; the cultural politics of identity and difference; migration, ethnicity and multiculturalism in Australia and Asia, especially related to Chinese diasporas; and issues of representation in contemporary cultural institutions.