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Joan Judge

Jan 19, 2016

Republican Lens

Gender, Visuality, and Experience in the Early Chinese Periodical Press

University of California Press 2015

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Joan Judge's wonderful new book takes readers into the pages of the Funu shibao (the Women's Eastern Times), a "Shanghai-based, nationally distributed, protocommercial, gendered journal that was closely attuned to the concerns of its readers, the rhythm of everyday life, and the shifting global conjuncture" and a wonderfully rich historical source. Republican Lens: Gender, Visuality, and Experience in the Early Chinese Periodical Press (University of California Press, 2015) uses the Funu shibao as a lens into early Republican China (1911-1917) and its commercial print culture, paying careful attention to the interplay of texts, visual elements, and advertisements on its pages. Among the many fascinating figures we learn about are the journal's activist editor, Bao Tianxiao; the cosmopolitan and public-oriented "Republican Ladies" who constituted a significant part of the journal's targeted readership and pool of authors; and the flying women who help bring the book to its conclusion. A must-read for historians of print culture and gender in modern China, Republican Lens also explores issues of interest to historians of health and biomedicine, education, sexuality, and aviation.

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