JOURNAL OF CONTEMPORARY CHINA vol. 27, no. 114, pp. 956 - 972
ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR &
This article explores how the Chinese socialist media censorship system was established and operated without losing legitimacy at the local level in 1950s Shanghai, and why media workers complied with the censorship in daily journalistic practice. Under the strong influence of the liberal model of media in the West that assumes the relations between the state and media as antagonistic and often reduces state-media relations to a struggle between the state repression and media compliance/resistance, media or media workers in the PRC are portrayed either as victims of the strict and repressive media censorship without much agency or as ready to resist censorship whenever possible. This research demonstrates that media workers complied with the censorship procedure because they saw it as a process of legitimization of the news reporting and commentaries in the absence of formal institutions for media censorship and heavy reliance on self-censorship in the People's Republic of China (PRC).