After the Post–Cold War

The Future of Chinese History

Book Pages: 224 Illustrations: 2 illustrations Published: November 2018

Asian Studies > East Asia, Gender and Sexuality > Feminism and Women’s Studies, Media Studies > Film

In After the Post–Cold War eminent Chinese cultural critic Dai Jinhua interrogates history, memory, and the future of China as a global economic power in relation to its socialist past, profoundly shaped by the Cold War. Drawing on Marxism, post-structuralism, psychoanalysis, and feminist theory, Dai examines recent Chinese films that erase the country’s socialist history to show how such erasure resignifies socialism’s past as failure and thus forecloses the imagining of a future beyond that of globalized capitalism. She outlines the tension between China’s embrace of the free market and a regime dependent on a socialist imprimatur. She also offers a genealogy of China’s transformation from a source of revolutionary power into a fountainhead of globalized modernity. This narrative, Dai contends, leaves little hope of moving from the capitalist degradation of the present into a radical future that might offer a more socially just world.


"This volume is one of the best publications of its kind, not only because of the brilliance of the original essays, but also because of the excellent translation and editing that come across as judicious as one reads it." — Jessica Yeung, China Perspectives

"This is a challenging book by an author at the top of her game. Insightful and cosmpolitan in its range, the book shows that public intellectuals in China are managing to find a voice. The editors have done the author and readers a fine service." — Paul Clark, China Journal

“Many books aspire to be this book. None of them comes close. After the Post–Cold War, written by Dai Jinhua, an intellectual of global stature, stands alone as an analysis of contemporary Chinese culture and politics.” — Rebecca E. Karl, author of The Magic of Concepts: History and the Economic in Twentieth-Century China

“In a dazzling series of symptomatic readings of works by some of the key directors in contemporary Chinese cinema, Dai Jinhua uncovers the complicated disjunctive temporalities of China’s positionings in contemporary global capitalism. After the Post–Cold War provides an indispensable feminist perspective on the cultural and political dimensions of human existence in a world that can no longer say no to China and confirms Dai's status as an important voice of global new left thought.” — Pheng Cheah, author of What is a World? On Postcolonial Literature as World Literature

“An avant-garde figure in cultural criticism since the late 1980s, Dai Jinhua constantly integrates various theories and methodologies—from feminism and ideological analysis to psychoanalysis and cultural studies—into her work on film studies, literary history and criticism, and third-world social movements. She is one of the few Chinese scholars who traverse the boundary between the academy and the mass media, both domestically and internationally, and she continues to be an important critical voice of China and the contemporary world.” — Wang Hui


Availability: In stock
Price: $25.95

Open Access

Author/Editor Bios Back to Top

Dai Jinhua is Professor of Chinese Literature and Language at Peking University and the author of Cinema and Desire: Feminist Marxism and Cultural Politics in the Work of Dai Jinhua, as well as numerous other books in Chinese.

Lisa Rofel is Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and coauthor of Fabricating Transnational Capitalism: A Collaborative Ethnography of Italian-Chinese Global Fashion, also published by Duke University Press.

Table of Contents Back to Top
Series Editor's Preface / Carlos Rojas  vii
Acknowledgments  xi
Editor's Introduction / Lisa Rofel  xiii
Introduction / Translated by Jie Li  1
Part I. Trauma, Evacuated Memories, and Inverted Histories
1. I Want to Be Human: A Story of China and the Human / Translated by Shuang Shen  25
2. Hero and the Invisible Tianxia / Translated by Yajun Mo  47
Part II. Class, Still Lives, and Masculinity
3. Temporality, Nature Morte, and the Filmmaker: A Reconsideration of Still Life / Translated by Lennet Daigle  67
4. The Piano in a Factory: Class, in the Name of the Father / Translated by Jie Li  91
Part III. The Spy Genre
5. The Spy-Film Legacy: A Preliminary Cultural Analysis of the Spy Film / Translated by Christopher Connery  109
6. In Vogue: Politics and the Nation-State in Lust, Caution, and the Lust, Caution Phenomenon in China / Translated by Erebus Wong and Lisa Rofel  127
Finale. History, Memory, and the Politics of Representation / Translated by Rebecca E. Karl  141
Interview with Dai Jinhau, July 2014 / Lisa Rofel  160
Notes  167
Selected Works of Dai Jinhua  181
Bibliography  183
Translators' Biographies  189
Index  191
Sales/Territorial Rights: World

Rights and licensing
Additional InformationBack to Top
Paper ISBN: 978-1-4780-0051-8 / Cloth ISBN: 978-1-4780-0038-9
Publicity material