Maritime Silk Road and cultural industries with special characteristics

By XIONG, Chengyu
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail, February 9, 2015
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The Maritime Silk Road is an overlapping but not identical notion with the application for world heritage listing of the Silk Road and maritime route. The application for world heritage listing is mainly about the inheritance and preservation of cultural heritage, and maritime route focuses more on the possibility and feasibility of seaborne transportation. The Maritime Silk Road, however, is a concept extended from its counterpart on the land; it is a social notion encompassing culture and economy.

The construction of the Maritime Silk Road is directly interactive with the development of cultural industries with special characteristics: the two are complementary and sustain each other. Take the Maritime Silk Road in the prosperous Song Dynasty and Yuan Dynasty as an example. China’s main exports at that time were silk, pottery, tea, spices and handicraft works. These goods not only demonstrated the cultural difference and economic status of a specific country, but also realized the cultural exchange and economic cooperation through trade.

The 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road proposed by Chinese leaders is a major national strategy, which includes the inheritance of historic legacy, the exchange of different cultures, the economic and trade cooperation and the innovation of world order. From the historic southeast Asia, the western hemisphere and east Asia to Australia -- which President Xi Jinping said was a natural extension of the Maritime Silk Road in October, 2014 -- all the land surrounded by seas belongs to the space to be expanded under the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road.

Against the new background, cultural industries with special characteristics are indispensable in building the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road into a road for the rejuvenation of Chinese culture. A linkage mechanism for seven provinces should be established with the coordination of the State Council, and a development plan for the cultural industries with special characteristics along the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road should be formulated to promote the development of such industries in the related regions and cities from the strategic and implementation level.

Xiong Chengyu received his doctoral degree from Brigham Young University. He works as Professor and Doctoral Supervisor at Tsinghua University and assumes the posts, including Director of National Research Center of Cultural Industries, Director of New Media Communication Research Center and Director of the Academic Board of Tsinghua School of Journalism and Communication, as well as Director of the Center for Global Creative Leadership under Peking University and Vice President of Communication Association of China.

He gave lectures on the development strategy of the cultural industry in China to the state leaders. Currently, he presides over drafting the strategic plan for the cultural industry in relation to the “One Belt and One Road” Initiatives. Over the last few years, he has published and translated more than ten books, such as Global Cultural Industries Studies, History of the Media and Encyclopedia of New Media.

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