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Resistance within Contexts:A Study of University BBS Youth Culture in China
Unformatted Document Text:  15 system… Only when you go out of the system, you can find how ugly it is; it is corrupting your minds; this kind of education is actually hocusing you. Pulpfiction might think that he is out of the ‘system’ now, thus he can have an insightful glance on the existing problems of the educational system. But if we follow his logic, he is still inside the system of high-education; so he would not have insights on his university education. One interviewee, who is now working in a media organization, said: Letitbeba: After graduation I always feel that our four-year university lives have wasted our times. If we had known how ‘real’ the society is, we might not only concentrate so many in our ‘useless’ assignments. If I could live my lives one more time, I would do many other things, for example, to think thoroughly about my future. But this is a false supposition, only a supposition. When you were a university student, you will never think that this is a question… University students have no faith today. You can say that they have been ‘lost’. In the 1980s, they could appropriate their passions onto politics, they could display their passions, and they might take ‘responsibility’ as a very serious question. But now, there is no faith, not only among the young people but also among all the Chinese people. ‘Money’ is at the first place…… Letitbeba might point out some sticking points in my research. If the style in the Chinese university BBSs represents some kind of resistance, this resistance may have nothing to do with ‘class struggle.’ Contemporary Chinese youth BBS cultures are not the British youth cultures in the 1960s and 1970s. The Chinese youth cultural members seem unwilling to display their styles in public spaces, unlike the British ones who often aggregated in the streets or pubs. Do the Chinese university students conceal their resistance? I believe so. However, I argue that the resistance still can be observed by articulating the broader sociocultural context and the university context with the university BBS context where the students practice their own cultural style. University BBS Context: Totemized New Technology BBS is more than a communicative tool. BBS users have strong emotional attachments to their on-line activities (Jones 1998) because the BBSs provide them a new way to communicate with other people. This is also one of the reasons why so many Chinese students choose to participate in

Authors: Dong, Dong.
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15
system… Only when you go out of the system, you can find how ugly it is; it is corrupting your
minds; this kind of education is actually hocusing you.
Pulpfiction might think that he is out of the ‘system’ now, thus he can have an insightful glance
on the existing problems of the educational system. But if we follow his logic, he is still inside the
system of high-education; so he would not have insights on his university education. One
interviewee, who is now working in a media organization, said:
Letitbeba: After graduation I always feel that our four-year university lives have wasted
our times. If we had known how ‘real’ the society is, we might not only concentrate so many in
our ‘useless’ assignments. If I could live my lives one more time, I would do many other things,
for example, to think thoroughly about my future. But this is a false supposition, only a
supposition. When you were a university student, you will never think that this is a question…
University students have no faith today. You can say that they have been ‘lost’. In the 1980s,
they could appropriate their passions onto politics, they could display their passions, and they
might take ‘responsibility’ as a very serious question. But now, there is no faith, not only
among the young people but also among all the Chinese people. ‘Money’ is at the first
place……
Letitbeba might point out some sticking points in my research. If the style in the Chinese
university BBSs represents some kind of resistance, this resistance may have nothing to do with
‘class struggle.’ Contemporary Chinese youth BBS cultures are not the British youth cultures in the
1960s and 1970s. The Chinese youth cultural members seem unwilling to display their styles in
public spaces, unlike the British ones who often aggregated in the streets or pubs. Do the Chinese
university students conceal their resistance? I believe so. However, I argue that the resistance still
can be observed by articulating the broader sociocultural context and the university context with
the university BBS context where the students practice their own cultural style.
University BBS Context: Totemized New Technology
BBS is more than a communicative tool. BBS users have strong emotional attachments to their
on-line activities (Jones 1998) because the BBSs provide them a new way to communicate with
other people. This is also one of the reasons why so many Chinese students choose to participate in


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