The New China: Big Brother, Brave New World or Harmonious Society?

by Marcus Anthony

ABSTRACT

In this paper I examine three textual mythologies regarding China’s evolving present. These are an Orwellian world of covert and overt state control; a Brave New World dystopia where the spirit of the people is subsumed in hedonistic distractions; and finally I assess the progress towards the official vision of the current Beijing authorities: the “harmonious society”. These three “pulls” of the future are juxtaposed with certain key “pushes” and “weights”, and I explore their interplay within a “futures triangle”. Finally, I suggest whether any of these mythologies is likely play a significant role in the possible futures of China.

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