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This lecture introduces internet literature (wangluo wenxue 网络文学) and its widespread popularity in the People's Republic of China. The speakers will focus on two discrete aspects of the phenomenon: the rise of online popular fiction and its impact on other media, and the significance of online practices for more marginal genres of poetry.

Michel Hockx is Professor of Chinese at SOAS, University of London. Born and raised in The Netherlands, he obtained his PhD in 1994 from Leiden University for a thesis on modern Chinese poetry. His later work has dealt with various aspects of the sociology of modern Chinese literature, including the study of early modern literary societies and literary magazines and, more recently, the study of Internet Literature. His monograph Internet Literature in China is forthcoming with Columbia University Press.

Mei Hong is an Assistant Professor of Communication Department of Art and Communication College, Southwest Jiaotong University, China. She obtained her PHD in 2006 from Sichuan University for a thesis on Culture and Communication. She is working on media and society and has published a book on internet literature.

David Gauntlett is Professor of Media and Communications, and Co-Director of the Communications and Media Research Institute, at the University of Westminster. His teaching and research concerns people’s use of media in their everyday lives, with a particular focus on creative uses of digital media. He is the author of several books, including Creative Explorations (2007) and Making is Connecting: The social meaning of creativity, from DIY and knitting to YouTube and Web 2.0 (2011). He has made several popular YouTube videos, and produces the website about media and identities, He has conducted collaborative research with a number of the world’s leading creative organisations, including the BBC, Lego, and Tate.

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