Cultural Ecology and City Image Shaping in Zhuhai

By Han, Ruihui | Asian Social Science, February 2014 | Go to article overview

Cultural Ecology and City Image Shaping in Zhuhai


Han, Ruihui, Asian Social Science


Abstract

Economic and commercial modernization does not mean the rise in the sense of happiness. This is a problem faced by many courtiers and regions in modern society. The city is the center of human civilization activities. The city is not just at economic and material layer, but also at cultural and spiritual layer. Protection, utilization and development of cultural ecology of a city provide the driving force for sustainable development. Zhuhai is a tourist city with beautiful scenery. In this city, immigrants occupy the overwhelming majority. Thus, it owns profound humanity history resources. During economic construction and development of cultural industry, it is required to maintain cultural ecology and build spiritual home of Zhuhai.

Keywords: cultural ecology, city image, Zhuhai

In 2011, Zhuhai successfully registered to be a "City of Happiness". According to the evaluation of city image by people out of Zhuhai, Zhuhai is mainly positioned to a tourist city; in accordance with the evaluation of Zhuhai citizens, city appearance, the quality of residents and government image gain the highest scores. (Yang, G., & Chen, 2005) Zhuhai is the sole national resort district named after the whole city in China.

In recent years, Zhuhai has obtained excellent results in urban planning and construction and natural environmental protection. Except natural material environment, a city must have socio-cultural environment. Optimization of socio-cultural environment plays a great role in improving Zhuhai city image. In current society, the increase in modern scientific and technological level and capital profit does not mean the rise in the sense of happiness. The sense of happiness is at spiritual level rather than at material level. The improvement of individual ad social quality at spiritual level not just can enhance the sense of happiness, but also is the driving force of sustainable development.

1. Doubts in Modern Time

In the 20th century, Adorno (the representative of Frankfurt school in Germany) considered: in modern society, culture had lost its criticism function and gradually degenerated to the toy of commodity rules; it could not resist rational erosion. Most scholars in Frankfurt school support the ideas similar to Adorno's. In their opinions, the arrival of modern industrial society forces culture to become industrialized increasingly. In the ear when commodity economy develops increasingly, consumerism prevails, thus leading to cultural dissimilation.

Adorno's idea is common in western cultural criticism history. For example, in the 19th century, Nietzsche considered modern culture was the product of "a morbid society" and that real culture had been nibbled by commercialism early; in the 18th century, Rousseau in the face of the emergence of modern civilization shouted the slogan of "return to nature". Besides, there were many voices in the literary circle. For example, British writers D.H. Lawrence and Hardy opposed erosion of traditional British social culture by industrialization. They disclosed disasters brought to the society and human by industrialized society in representative works such as Sons and Lovers and Tess of the d'Urbervilles.

A centenary ago, E.A. Ross, the founder of American sociologists, foresaw China's current social situations. In 1911, E.A. Ross published his works The Changing Chinese. In his opinion, future China might become rich, but China might encounter problems in moral consciousness. E.A. Ross found China at that time was canceling imperial examination system, but "whence will come the morality of tomorrow? In the reaction against the old classical education with its emphasis on ethics there has been a tendency to neglect instruction in morals."(Ross, 1911, p. 342) Thus, "What they covet is riches and power; and, perceiving that the wealth and martial prowess of the West rests immediately upon exact knowledge, the students are all for science. …

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