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Andrew Field – Nightlife in Shanghai: From the Jazz Age 1920s to the Current Age of the Super-Wealthy

February 21 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

Speaker: Andrew Field, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs, Duke Kunshan University, China

In the 1920s, Shanghai became known worldwide for its nightlife as the city learned to dance to the rhythms of the American jazz age. The war years of the 1940s and the Communist Revolution of the 1950s put an end to the city’s dance halls and cabarets, but the reform era of the 1980s saw the revival of dancing in the city. By the 1990s, more sophisticated discos, bars, and lounges arose in the city as it internationalized. More recently, a caste of super-wealthy Chinese known as fu er dai (“wealthy second generation”) has taken over the most exclusive club spaces in the city, spending thousands of dollars per night, and signifying the growing gap between wealth and poverty in China.

Andrew Field (B.A., Asian Studies, Dartmouth College; Ph.D., East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia University) has taught at universities in America, Australia, China, and Korea, and is currently Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs at Duke Kunshan University in China. He is the author of Shanghai’s Dancing World: Cabaret Culture and Urban Politics (2010) and Mu Shiying: China’s Lost Modernist (2014), and co-author with James Farrer of Shanghai Nightscapes: A Nocturnal Biography of a Global City (2015).


February 21
7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
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Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies