The Great Diversity: Trajectories of Asian Development
Ole Jacob Madsen har sammen med Simen Andersen Øyen skrevet kapittelet “The second cultural revolution? Individualization and the emergence of psychology in late modern China” i Camilla Brautaset, Christopher Dent (Eds): The Great Diversity: Trajectories of Asian Development
This article gives a partial overview over the research literature on individualization in contemporary China, and examines shifts in the ideals of the Chinese subjectivity. Over the last couple of decades China has evolved from an authoritarian State into a late neoliberal capitalist economy. This development has also set off deep structural changes regarding the ideals and strains on selfhood, comparable to previously observed cultural revolutions in the West in the wake of the sexual uprising and birth of countercultures throughout the 1960s. Of particular interest is the subjective turn which has led to the eruption of a booming psychological market targeted both to the promises and pitfalls of the newly exposed Chinese Enterprise Self. The results of the analysis from the therapeutic culture in China reveal that Chinese style individualization is both similar and different to previous investigations in Western countries.
This book brings together scholars from the universities of Bergen and Leeds who explore on how we may understand different trajectories of development in Asia, arguably the most dynamic and certainly the most diverse part of our world. It asserts that there is no one singular ‘truth’ on understanding development, or universal model on prescribing future paths of development. Evidence from Asia reminds us that the importance of locality in shaping development has not diminished despite deepening globalisation in the modern era. Furthermore, by accepting the prevalence of diversity we are able to learn certain lessons of development from each other, both within and across scholarly disciplines. The book explores how the concept of ‘development’ is itself highly contested, and there exist multiple narratives and discourses on the subject as demonstrated in this book. This book does not seek to define development, or prescribe a particular method of understanding it in an Asian context. Rather, it presents a number of works that in their own way touch on the subject of development, and it lays bare the inherent diversity of development as an idea, practice and experience. It is up to the reader to reflect on how the evidence and arguments presented in each chapter resonates, or not, on their own understanding of development.