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No business like show business
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An area in which China has yet to see as much development as its overall economy is the business of entertainment and culture.

This is a symptom of, as commentators often call it, "the GDP fetish" meaning that officials are only enthusiastic about chasing higher numbers in infrastructure building and manufacturing, while caring for little else.

An irony is that culture does generate GDP. In a broader sense, what people call "entertainment" has the potential to generate huge amounts of money in a nation of 1.3 billion.

Economists would be wrong to suggest that Chinese lack a propensity for fun and entertainment.

From the black-and-white photo taken by photographer Wang Wenlan at a rural temple fair (a mixture of business and folk art) you can tell how people would try to watch a traditional opera. At least, that was the way it was in 1987 in central China's Henan province.

(China Daily October 23, 2008)


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