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At the Crossroads of EmpiresMiddlemen, Social Networks, and State-Building in Republican Shanghai$
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Nara Dillon and Jean C. Oi

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780804756198

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804756198.001.0001

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Middlemen, Social Networks, and State-Building in Republican Shanghai

Middlemen, Social Networks, and State-Building in Republican Shanghai

(p.3) Chapter 1 Middlemen, Social Networks, and State-Building in Republican Shanghai
At the Crossroads of Empires

Nara Dillon

Jean C. Oi

Stanford University Press

This chapter, which provides a discussion on middlemen, social networks, and state-building in Shanghai of the Republican period, focuses on three middlemen: activist Huang Yanpei, comprador Wang Yiting, and gangster Du Yuesheng. The differences in the nature of military power and the role of the masses in politics had led in a clearly different pattern of development in Shanghai that shows both the vulnerabilities and the interdependence of city and state in the modern world. It is noted that the three middlemen played prominent roles in Shanghai's political and social circles, emerging again and again as key players at critical points in the city's history. They also helped foster a distinctive hybrid urban elite culture that created commonality where none existed before. An overview of the chapters included in this book is also given.

Keywords:   middlemen, social networks, state-building, Shanghai, Huang Yanpei, Wang Yiting, Du Yuesheng, military power

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