At the PSFK Conference Asia 2008, Floydd Wood and Jerry Clode (Flamingo International) look at the specific ways Chinese youth are creatively re-working their identity – an emerging trend vital to those wanting to address this demographic on their own terms.
Focusing on ‘retro’ and ‘youth identity,’ the two researchers explain how Chinese youth are re-interpreting their past to construct new identities. Drawing upon historical events and traditional lifestyles for inspiration, today’s youth are carefully extracting aspects of the their past to form their own identity. But as Jerry states, “looking back [in China] is not always a comfortable process. Tumultuous events like The Great Leap Forward, the demographic effect of the one-child policy, and the current economic and social transformation have all contributed to influencing this unique generation who are delicately balancing an enormous sense of national pride with a growing influx of global culture.