Market Entanglements: Fortune and Risk in a Chinese Bubble

Colloquium: Center for Chinese Studies | November 9 | 4-6 p.m. | 180 Doe Library

 Bryna Goodman, History, University of Oregon, Eugene

 Wen-hsin Yeh, History, UC Berkeley

 Center for Chinese Studies (CCS)

In 1921-2 Chinese entrepreneurs established more than one hundred and fifty stock exchanges in Shanghai and several other cities, more exchanges than existed in the rest of the world at that time. Nearly all of these new, Western-styled financial institutions collapsed within a year. What were people thinking? Using a variety of sources—financial texts, newspaper advertisement, satirical essays, fiction, graphic art, and popular pedagogies of the market—this talk examines visions of fortune and risk in the market bubble. The copious representations of stock market practices in print culture suggest how developing understandings of finance were intertwined with dynamic understandings of both Chinese gambling and Chinese governance under global capitalism.

 ccs@berkeley.edu, 510-643-6321