Cultural policy between the state and the market: Regulation, creativity and contradiction

Q. S. Tong, Ruth Y Y HUNG

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


China's spectacular economic development has altered radically not only the accepted understanding of the relationship between cultural work and the state, but also the social foundation of state cultural policy. Cultural industries are subject to a set of new regulatory forces. This essay discusses the emergence of these new forces that govern cultural work and considers how cultural practice must respond to both the state's political demands and market imperatives. We will pay special attention to the new conditions under which the state ideology is forced to limit its traditional role and to seek to assert its legitimacy and authority in new forms. Thirty years after the reforms, it is no longer possible to insist on the total authority of cultural policy emanating from the state ideology. In addressing contradictions in the management of cultural work brought about by the reforms, this essay will consider challenges faced by the Chinese government, including such issues as national cultural identity, protection of regional and minority art forms, social responsibility of art and the tension between high and commercial culture.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)265-278
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Cultural Policy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Sociology and Political Science

User-Defined Keywords

  • cultural industries and cultural market
  • cultural policy and governmentality
  • socialism and marketisation


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