Children's television programs in China: A discourse of success and modernity

Kara Chan*, Fanny Chan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in book/report/conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

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Children's television programs in China are predominately produced locally. National channels carry many more children's programs than regional channels. Major themes of children's television programs reflected high aspiration for success, promotion of competition with peers, and submission to collective goals and authority. The television programs for children in China that we examined in this study largely reflected masculine values, collective values, and high power distance as discussed in Hofstede's (1994) framework of cultural values. It certainly does not reflect Western cultural values of low power distance where children are given a high level of autonomy and respect. If the values portrayed in children's television programs are matched to the list of modernization attributes proposed by Yang (1989), those that frequently occurred are motivation for high achievement, a high need for information and high educational aspirations. It is a pity that we could hardly find values that encouraged egalitarian attitudes towards others, independence, freedom of individual expression, and creativity embedded in the programs.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDiscourses of Cultural China in the Globalizing Age
EditorsDoreen D. Wu
Place of PublicationHong Kong
PublisherHong Kong University Press
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9789882206847
ISBN (Print)9789622099128
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2008

Publication series

NameStudying Multicultural Discourses
PublisherHong Kong University Press

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Arts and Humanities(all)

User-Defined Keywords

  • China
  • Four Modernizations
  • science and technology
  • television
  • children's programs
  • CCTV


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