China's Publishing Industry

China's Publishing Industry

From Mao to the Market

1st Edition - August 23, 2018

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  • Author: Qidong Yun
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780081009192
  • eBook ISBN: 9780081010037

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China's Publishing Industry presents a portrait of the contemporary Chinese publishing industry in its political and commercial contexts, and analyses how its structures are influenced by the state and by market forces. Starting with an overview of the publishing business in China, this book takes a long view of the profound changes in China's publishing industry, covering a period from the 'socialist transformation' under Mao to the more recent reforms, such as the conglomeration and corporatisation, of the industry. The book investigates the impact of the changing social, economic and ideological environment on the structure and operation of the publishing industry, and explores how the burgeoning digital publishing business is shaped by the broader social context. It reveals that the process of commercialisation in China's publishing industry has been marked by persistent tensions and contradictions, and demonstrates, through case studies, how these tensions have impacted everyday practices.

Key Features

  • Provides contemporary industry information about China's publishing.
  • Presents a clear overview of trends and explains the fundamental dynamics behind them.
  • Gives an analytic account of China’s publishing, demonstrating the interaction between the broader social context and the publishing industry.
  • Explains the legacies of the old system, the predicaments inherent in the current industry, and the limits of ongoing reforms.
  • Illustrates how a typical state publishing group operates and copes with the demands from the party, the pressures from the market and the challenges posed by digital technologies.


Researchers, students and practitioners in publishing studies, and in the publishing industry. Library and information science researchers and practitioners. Area studies scholars concentrating on China, and media studies scholars interested in state influence on cultural industries

Table of Contents

  • 1 Introduction

    1.1 Media Transformation in China

    1.2 Focus and Approach

    1.3 Organization of the Book

    2 Mapping Book Publishing in China

    2.1 Publishing as a Business

    2.2 Regulation, Administration, and Control

    2.3 Decentralization in Book Publishing

    2.4 Privatization and Internationalization

    2.5 Booksellers and the Supply Chain

    2.6 Problems of Chinese Book Publishing

    2.7 Recent State Policies

    2.8 Summary

    3 From Communization to Commercialization: China’s Publishing From 1949 to 1992

    3.1 Communization of Publishing: 1949-56

    3.2 Operation of Planned Book Publishing: 1956-79

    3.3 Commercialization of Book Publishing: 1979-92

    3.4 Summary

    4 Ideology and the Commercialization of Book Publishing in China

    4.1 China’s Shaky Ideology Before the Economic Reform

    4.2 China’s Ideology in Flux

    4.3 Ideology and Publications

    4.4 Commercialization of Publishing and Ideology

    4.5 Ideology, Intellectuals, and Politics

    4.6 Summary

    5 Conglomeration: The Formation of Publishing Groups

    5.1 The Different Stages of the Conglomeration of Publishing

    5.2 Institutional Organization

    5.3 Economic Advantages

    5.4 Globalization and Publishing Groups

    5.5 Summary

    6 Corporatization: The Transition to Enterprises

    6.1 Introduction

    6.2 The Status of Publishing Houses

    6.3 The Reform of Public Service Units and the Transformation of Publishing Houses

    6.4 Economic Sustainability and the Corporatization of Publishing Houses

    6.5 The Reform of State-Owned Enterprises and the Commercialization of Publishing Houses

    6.6 Summary

    7 Digital Publishing: Challenges and Opportunities

    7.1 Overview

    7.2 e-Books in Trade Publishing

    7.3 Online Fiction Publishing

    7.4 Summary

    8 Politics, Profit and Digital Prospect: Guangdong Provincial Publishing Group as a Case

    8.1 Background

    8.2 The Conglomeration of GDPG

    8.3 The Corporatization of GDPG

    8.4 Persistent Powers: GDPG and Party Politics

    8.5 Digital Publishing: New Technology, Old Business Model

    8.6 Summary


    Appendix 1: GDPG Activities in 2005

    Appendix 2: Intervention of the Party-State in the Activities of GDPG (2005)

Product details

  • No. of pages: 320
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Chandos Publishing 2018
  • Published: August 23, 2018
  • Imprint: Chandos Publishing
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780081009192
  • eBook ISBN: 9780081010037

About the Author

Qidong Yun

Qidong Yun is an Associate Professor in the Cheung Kong School of Journalism and Communication at Shantou University. He completed a PhD in the Department of Social Sciences at Loughborough University after receiving an MA with distinction in Publishing from Oxford Brookes University.

Affiliations and Expertise

Associate Professor in the Cheung Kong School of Journalism and Communication at Shantou University

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