Networking China: The digital transformation of the Chinese economy. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2017. 238 pp. isbn 9780252082399. Price: $28.00.The past two decades of development of the internet in China have been the subject of countless volumes and research articles, ranging from historical overviews and technical examinations to sociological inquiries and ethnographic reports. Yu Hong’s Networking China, the fifth volume in the Geopolitics of Information series published by the University of Illinois Press, makes a point of taking both a step back toward the broader scope of communication studies and a step forward toward the rigorous application of a political economy perspective to the infrastructural networking of the People’s Republic of China. Hong’s focus is introduced in the very title of this volume: The Digital Transformation of the Chinese Economy, a process that, in her view, brings together continuous efforts at economic restructuring and the global pull of digital capitalism. Historically, this book reaches back to the early stages of communications development in Maoist China but is clearly dedicated to a narrower examination of the role of information and communications technology (ict) in the decade following the 2008 economic crisis (p. 1) and culminating in the ‘Internet Plus’
Asiascape: Digital Asia – Brill
Published: Feb 14, 2018
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