eCite Digital Repository

Anxious Dreams of Imperial Might in the City of Changchun


Hartley, BT, Anxious Dreams of Imperial Might in the City of Changchun, ASAA Knowing Asia: Asian Studies in an Asian Century, July 2012, Sydney, pp. 95. (2012) [Conference Extract]


Established as the capital of the puppet state of Manchukuo and operated under the auspices of an administration obsessed with creating a model modern city that would convey the brilliance of the Japanese Imperial project to friend and foe alike, the north-eastern Chinese city of Changchun was the site of an intensive building program between late 1932 and the Japanese defeat in 1945. Japanese discourse on the puppet state and its capital—both uptopic and dystopic—repeatedly invokes tropes of ‗dream‘ and ‗fantasy.‘ Drawing on Freud‘s Interpretation of Dreams, this paper will ‗read‘ the architecture of the Japanese administrative buildings of Changchun as an attempt to give ‗wish fulfilment‘ to an imperial longing for ascendency and also as a mark of Japan‘s deep anxieties regarding its place as the ‗Other‘ in the global order. Particular emphasis will be given to the so-called ‗Eight Great Buildings,‘ the often chaotic architectural styles of which speak to a paradoxical alignment in the imperial space of the heterotopic and the hegemonic.

Item Details

Item Type:Conference Extract
Research Division:Language, Communication and Culture
Research Group:Cultural studies
Research Field:Asian cultural studies
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in language, communication and culture
UTAS Author:Hartley, BT (Dr Barbara Hartley)
ID Code:78678
Year Published:2012
Deposited By:Asian Languages and Studies
Deposited On:2012-07-17
Last Modified:2012-07-17

Repository Staff Only: item control page