In Visual Political Communication in Popular Chinese Television Series, Florian Schneider analyses political discourses in Chinese TV dramas, the most popular entertainment format in China today. The book shows that despite their often nationalist stories of glorious emperors and courageous officials, such programmes should not be mistaken for official propaganda. Instead, the highly didactical messages of such series are the outcome of complex cultural governance practices, which are influenced by diffuse political interests, commercial considerations, viewing habits, and ideological assumptions. Florian Schneider argues that these interlinking factors lead to a highly restrictive creative environment and to conservative entertainment content that ultimately risks creating precisely the kind of passive masses that Chinese media workers and government officials are trying so hard to emancipate.

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