Cultural Geography

Cultural Geography - Kirk F. Kaupke Cultural Geography...

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Kirk F. Kaupke Cultural Geography November 7, 2005 Shanghai’s Western Integration Over the past few decades, China has seen a reshaping of its cultural landscapes. Many reasons contribute to the evolution of China, but westernization and modern technology can also be held responsible for a multitude of changes. Shanghai has become the “country’s commercial and entertainment mecca,” and harbors many of the world’s largest retailers and manufacturers (Lynch). This industrialization onslaught “has produced a fast-growing middle class estimated at more than 130 million people amid a population that was once united in poverty and uniformity.” (Lynch). This new middle class wants the amenities of western culture, and in the process is severely changing its once scared cultural landscapes (Lynch). With every car bought and every meal eaten- out, the Chinese are redesigning several centuries of cultural landscapes in a couple of decades. The reformation of Shanghai’s cultural landscapes can be related to the new middle class in nearly every way. One of the most prominent distinctions is the populations yearning for new cars, “China’s new middle class is hurrying to trade in bicycles for four wheels and the government is encouraging private car ownership, once strictly limited to the elite.” (Madden 1). Shanghai’s population is just recently experiencing what Americans have been taking for granted for almost 75 years. The Chinese car market produced 1.1 million sedans in China last year, a number that is expected to reach 1.8 million this year, and will over take America as the No. 1 car market in the world by 2020 (Madden 1). The increased driving population will place a
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great demand on the current roads, and any new roads created will change the contour of China’s landscape. The 63% percent increase in car production has been extravagant for the nearly two dozen car companies who have now developed a vast arrangement of automobiles meeting anyone’s needs (Madden 1). These car companies are building
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Cultural Geography - Kirk F. Kaupke Cultural Geography...

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