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postgraduate thesis: A Japanese adult video actress in mainland China : a case study of Aoi Sola

TitleA Japanese adult video actress in mainland China : a case study of Aoi Sola
Authors
Issue Date2017
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Citation
Zhang, M. [張梅]. (2017). A Japanese adult video actress in mainland China : a case study of Aoi Sola. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR.
AbstractThe migration of cultural products can be readily observed in recent decades because so many products are produced in one country and consumed in another. On the cultural effects of the migration of cultural products, the debate between the global homogenization paradigm and the creolization paradigm predominates in academia. For the most part, scholars either assume that the values within global products are accepted completely unchanged by local consumers or attribute the emergence of all their new meanings to the creativity of local consumers. Moreover, studies on the functions of intermediaries that mediate between foreign products and local consumers and the intermediate processes of the migration remain limited. This thesis aims to fill this research gap through a thorough examination of the case of Aoi Sola, a Japanese adult video (AV) actress who has achieved amazing popularity in mainland China since 2010. Combining the approaches of field work, the analysis of media texts, and in-depth interview, this thesis shows a rounded picture of Sola, as she crossed cultural borders as a cultural product, underwent foundational transformations in the social meanings ascribed to her by the intermediaries and other local groups, and returned back to her original country, Japan. Through fifteen-month participant observation in the celebrity’s two Chinese agencies, this study reveals that the intermediaries, Orchid and Sakura, played a significant role in the transformation of Sola in the Chinese context, even though their operations are usually invisible to outsiders. They not only assign new meanings to Sola but also attempt to remove Sola’s previous image as an AV actress and to weaken the politically sensitive meaning created by Chinese Internet users. The findings challenge the conventional scholarly assumption that foreign products produced by global producers are consumed “directly” by local consumers or that the significance of these intermediaries can be ignored. The thesis demonstrates that it is inaccurate to assume that all the meanings of global products in their local contexts are created by foreign corporations or local consumers. The thesis further demonstrates that multiple local groups, including intermediaries, the Chinese media, and Chinese Internet users, reinterpret Sola in different, even contradictory, ways. These groups respond to the dominant beliefs on “pornography” and “Japaneseness” in Chinese society according to their own interests and social positions. Thus, this research refutes the presumption that a local society is a coherent monolith in the acceptance of foreign cultural products. It argues that the competition and contestation between different local groups should be taken into account when conceptualizing the migration of cultural goods. Finally, through its examination of the ways Chinese Internet users identify with Sola, this thesis shows that they regard Sola as a safe weapon with which to express their resistance against government censorship and also as a model of upward mobility. This finding challenges the perception of some scholars that Chinese Internet users merely seek “online entertainment,” “sexual freedom,” or “escape” from real life in their viewing of foreign popular culture.
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy
SubjectActresses - Japan
Dept/ProgramModern Languages and Cultures
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/250352
HKU Library Item IDb5838462

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorZhang, Mei-
dc.contributor.author張梅-
dc.date.accessioned2017-12-30T15:01:04Z-
dc.date.available2017-12-30T15:01:04Z-
dc.date.issued2017-
dc.identifier.citationZhang, M. [張梅]. (2017). A Japanese adult video actress in mainland China : a case study of Aoi Sola. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR.-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/250352-
dc.description.abstractThe migration of cultural products can be readily observed in recent decades because so many products are produced in one country and consumed in another. On the cultural effects of the migration of cultural products, the debate between the global homogenization paradigm and the creolization paradigm predominates in academia. For the most part, scholars either assume that the values within global products are accepted completely unchanged by local consumers or attribute the emergence of all their new meanings to the creativity of local consumers. Moreover, studies on the functions of intermediaries that mediate between foreign products and local consumers and the intermediate processes of the migration remain limited. This thesis aims to fill this research gap through a thorough examination of the case of Aoi Sola, a Japanese adult video (AV) actress who has achieved amazing popularity in mainland China since 2010. Combining the approaches of field work, the analysis of media texts, and in-depth interview, this thesis shows a rounded picture of Sola, as she crossed cultural borders as a cultural product, underwent foundational transformations in the social meanings ascribed to her by the intermediaries and other local groups, and returned back to her original country, Japan. Through fifteen-month participant observation in the celebrity’s two Chinese agencies, this study reveals that the intermediaries, Orchid and Sakura, played a significant role in the transformation of Sola in the Chinese context, even though their operations are usually invisible to outsiders. They not only assign new meanings to Sola but also attempt to remove Sola’s previous image as an AV actress and to weaken the politically sensitive meaning created by Chinese Internet users. The findings challenge the conventional scholarly assumption that foreign products produced by global producers are consumed “directly” by local consumers or that the significance of these intermediaries can be ignored. The thesis demonstrates that it is inaccurate to assume that all the meanings of global products in their local contexts are created by foreign corporations or local consumers. The thesis further demonstrates that multiple local groups, including intermediaries, the Chinese media, and Chinese Internet users, reinterpret Sola in different, even contradictory, ways. These groups respond to the dominant beliefs on “pornography” and “Japaneseness” in Chinese society according to their own interests and social positions. Thus, this research refutes the presumption that a local society is a coherent monolith in the acceptance of foreign cultural products. It argues that the competition and contestation between different local groups should be taken into account when conceptualizing the migration of cultural goods. Finally, through its examination of the ways Chinese Internet users identify with Sola, this thesis shows that they regard Sola as a safe weapon with which to express their resistance against government censorship and also as a model of upward mobility. This finding challenges the perception of some scholars that Chinese Internet users merely seek “online entertainment,” “sexual freedom,” or “escape” from real life in their viewing of foreign popular culture.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.subject.lcshActresses - Japan-
dc.titleA Japanese adult video actress in mainland China : a case study of Aoi Sola-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.identifier.hkulb5838462-
dc.description.thesisnameDoctor of Philosophy-
dc.description.thesislevelDoctoral-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineModern Languages and Cultures-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-

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