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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Merry Laughter and Angry Curses

The Shanghai Tabloid Press, 1897-1911

Merry Laughter and Angry Curses reveals how the late-Qing-era tabloid press became the voice of the people. As periodical publishing reached a fever pitch, tabloids had free rein to criticize officials, mock the elite, and scandalize readers. Tabloid writers produced a massive amount of anti-establishment literature, whose distinctive humour and satirical style were both potent and popular. This book shows the tabloid community to be both a producer of meanings and a participant in the social and cultural dialogue that would shake the foundations of imperial China and lead to the 1911 Republican Revolution.

Table of Contents


1 Community of Fun

2 Officialdom Unmasked

3 Imagining the Nation

4 Confronting the β€œNew”

5 Questioning the Appropriators

6 The Market, Populism, and Aesthetics



Glossary of Chinese Terms and Names



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