Shanghai: City of Strangers and Loss of Culture

Strangers: Upper,lower, middle classes, and foreigners included, only interact with one another if need be, such as upper requiring a service from the lower. The upper and some of the middle classes have formed an Elitist attitude. They believe they are the only true Shanghainese. They believe anyone inferior to them is not worth interacting with. It creates divisions and imbalance in a city instead of performing as a united whole. Elitists are generally people of a select group of people with a certain ancestry, intrinsic quality or worth, higher intellect, wealth, specialized training or experience, or other distinctive attributes. Power is concentrated in the hands of a limited number of people in this group and leaves out the rest of the population.  To make a pluralist city, there need to be more places where different groups can interact.

Loss of Culture: There has been a large loss of the traditional Shanghainese culture. As the city grew as an economical powerhouse, it also grew to become more westernized. It has become more about cultural production and competition with the world, and has lost grip on the individual Shanghainese culture. Shanghai has been better at imitating than creating is that it doesn’t have the grounding in local cultural traditions. There should be a blend of the two, East and West, making it a pluralist culture.

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