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B5 Rise of dan Actors (project completed)

The Stuff Stars are made of: International Politics, Mass Media and the Rise of dan Actors in the Republican Era (1910s–1930s)

Koordination: Catherine Vance Yeh

Zusammenfassung

The Stuff Stars are made of: International Politics, Mass Media and the Rise of dan Actors in the Republican Era (1910s–1930s)

The project was concluded in 2009.

The explosive development of Chinese urban entertainment culture in the first decades of the Republic after 1912 produced a most unlikely emblem for the new nation: Male actors playing women’s roles [dan] with Mei Lanfang as the most famous example. Once ‘call boys’ of the mighty at court, the young dan actors - without slogans, organization, or artillery - were upstaging men with power, cultural capital, or wealth. Mei Lanfang’s performances in China itself, in Japan, the US, and the USSR were interacting with politics, Western-style mass media, and the international avant-garde. They projected a “cultural China” through a man playing with great artistic sophistication a “weak” woman, who nonetheless stands her moral ground. The project will explore the dramatic impact of a marginal area (opera entertainment), marginal figures (the dan), and marginal media (entertainment papers) on the international image of the Chinese nation.

Picture: Mei lanfang as Meng Yuehua in “The Pavilion of Royal Monument 禦碑亭”(1930?).

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Koordination

Catherine Vance Yeh

Mitglieder

Rui Jiang

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