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Shadow Modernism By William Schaefer

Shadow Modernism by William Schaefer

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Summary

William Schaefer traces how early twentieth century photographic practices in Shanghai provided artists, writers, and intellectuals a forum within which to debate culture, ethnicity, history, and the very nature of images, thereby showing how artists and writers used such practices to make visible the shadows of modernity in Shanghai.

Shadow Modernism Summary

Shadow Modernism: Photography, Writing, and Space in Shanghai, 1925-1937 by William Schaefer

During the early twentieth century, Shanghai was the center of China's new media culture. Described by the modernist writer Mu Shiying as transplanted from Europe and paved with shadows, for many of its residents Shanghai was a city without a past paradoxically haunted by the absent past's traces. In Shadow Modernism William Schaefer traces how photographic practices in Shanghai provided a forum within which to debate culture, ethnicity, history, and the very nature of images. The central modernist form in China, photography was neither understood nor practiced as primarily a medium for realist representation; rather, photo layouts, shadow photography, and photomontage rearranged and recomposed time and space, cutting apart and stitching places, people, and periods together in novel and surreal ways. Analyzing unknown and overlooked photographs, photomontages, cartoons, paintings, and experimental fiction and poetry, Schaefer shows how artists and writers used such fragmentation and juxtaposition to make visible the shadows of modernity in Shanghai: the violence, the past, the ethnic and cultural multiplicity excluded and repressed by the prevailing cultural politics of the era and yet hidden in plain sight.

Shadow Modernism Reviews

The book is smart and rigorously researched, and the prose is immaculate. By sticking close to his objects of study, no matter how ambiguous, difficult, and distant, Schaefer shows us how Shanghai's shadows strangely illuminate the cultural history of the city-and the practices of art history. -- Lisa Claypool * CAA Reviews *

About William Schaefer

William Schaefer teaches Chinese in the School of Modern Languages and Cultures at Durham University.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii
Introduction 1
Part I. Modernism and Photography's Places
1. Picturing Photography, Abstracting Pictures 25
2. False Portals 61
Part II. Landscapes of Images
3. Projected Pasts 113
4. Montage Landscapes 145
5. Shanghai Savage 180
Notes 221
Bibliography 263
Index 279

Additional information

NPB9780822369196
9780822369196
0822369192
Shadow Modernism: Photography, Writing, and Space in Shanghai, 1925-1937 by William Schaefer
New
Paperback
Duke University Press
20170929
304
N/A
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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