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Situating the 1980s Cultural Fever in a global westernization context and as one of the three major waves of the Chinese intellectual movement in the last two centuries, this paper attempts to analyze the complexities and nuances of the cultural reckoning process in the mid-1980s by examining how such process is manifested in academia, a magazine called Reading, a TV-series documentary titled River Elegy (Heshang), and movie Red Sorghum (Honggaoliang). Although different in their schools of affiliation, areas of expertise, and intended audience, in hope of a shared utopian future, Chinese intellectuals in the 1980s carried out their self-proclaimed duty to contribute to the transformation by producing different theoretical reformulations of national identity.

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