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LRCCS Noon Lecture Series | Propaganda as Viral Stunts: How Party Press in China Navigates Between Tradition and Innovation

Sheng Zou, Postdoctoral Fellow, Lieberthal-Rogel Center for Chinese Studies, University of Michigan
Tuesday, March 2, 2021
12:00-1:00 PM
Off Campus Location
This talk presents findings from Dr. Zou’s recent work that investigates the production of soft propaganda campaigns on China’s social media, where ideological persuasion is entwined with various forms of digital play, such as hip-hop music videos, memes/hashtags, and interactive mini-games. China’s state-run media play a crucial role in producing and distributing soft propaganda campaigns. This talk offers a glimpse of such campaigns and presents a nuanced mezzo-level analysis on the inter- and intra-organizational dynamics within the Party press system that contribute to the increasing output of soft propaganda. It shifts the emphasis from the effect of propaganda as a political instrument to the design of propaganda, which fashions an aesthetic and affective experience and opens up an ambient process of subject formation.

Sheng Zou is a postdoctoral research fellow at Lieberthal-Rogel Center for Chinese Studies of the University of Michigan. He received his PhD in Communication from Stanford University. His research interests include global media industries, digital politics and popular culture, platform economy and labor, and emergent technologies. His dissertation and book project: "The Engineering of Sentiment and Desire: Unraveling the Aestheticized Politics of Ideotainment in China" examines the shifting paradigm of propaganda and emotional governance in China, with emphasis on the entanglement of ideological persuasion and online entertainment.

If there is anything we can do to make this event accessible to you, please contact us. Please be aware that advance notice is necessary as some accommodations may require more time for the university to arrange.

Zoom webinar; attendance requires registration: https://umich.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_y_v9cJkeQM2fyVFZQlH3ZA
Building: Off Campus Location
Location: Virtual
Event Type: Livestream / Virtual
Tags: Asia, China, Communications
Source: Happening @ Michigan from Lieberthal-Rogel Center for Chinese Studies, International Institute, Asian Languages and Cultures

International Institute Programming

The International Institute’s centers sponsor numerous conferences, lectures, exhibits, and cultural performances throughout the year. These events are designed to educate the university community and the public about global issues and inspire discussion and dialogue. 

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