Post-Mao China has been characterized in literature and the media as a burgeoning consumer society. Consuming China investigates this characterization by examining the cultural significance of consumption and consumerism in the People’s Republic of China today. In questioning the notion of consumption, this impressive work suggests that it is not simply a symptom of economic reform within China neither a product of the emergence and transformation of contemporary Chinese capitalism. Rather, the essays offer a new perspective on Chinese consumption by focusing on more than just consumerism, looking at the practices of consumption in relation to different manifestations of social and cultural change.
Drawing on case studies from Taiwan, Hong Kong and the People’s Republic of China, Consuming China affords a greater understanding of the practice of Chinese consumption and will appeal to China scholars and anthropologists, and to those with an interest in cultural and gender studies.