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Concession Era
Preserved Roads (1)

Shanghai’s Preserved Heritage Roads

In 2007, the Shanghai government implemented a plan for the preservation of heritage roads within the city. A total of 144 roads, including lilongs, in 12 historic areas were identified for protection. These included 64 ‘first class roads’ which were ‘never to be widened’ in order to protect both historic buildings ...

Langston Hughes

Roar, China! Langston Hughes in Shanghai

When Langston Hughes, the poet laureate of the Harlem Renaissance, visited Shanghai in 1934, he found it not unlike his home country. With barbed wire and guards separating the International Settlement and French Concession from the Chinese sections of Shanghai, and with American race laws (i.e. segregation) applying in the ...

Gulangyu and Amoy

Gulangyu: The Story of China’s Other International Settlement

From March 24-26, we will explore the historic architecture of Xiamen and Gulangyu Island on Amoy Art Deco Weekend. For more on the itinerary and to book, click here. [caption id="attachment_1098" align="alignnone" width="750"] The Gulangyu International Settlement, 1908.[/caption] “For situation and natural ...

wild rose

Old Shanghai Film Weekend

Our upcoming weekend of old Shanghai film fun (June 3-5 2016) will include a visit to the Shanghai Film Museum, a trip to see the old Shanghai sets at the Shanghai Chedun Film Park, but the heart of it all are the screenings and discussions of movies from the golden age of Shanghai film. Linda Johnson (bio below), an expert ...

Sikh group

Sikhs in Shanghai

The Sikh policeman was ubiquitous in old Shanghai - we see him in photographs of old Shanghai street scenes, depicted in cartoons, and we hear about him from old Shanghainese and Shanghailanders, who remember their parents threatening them with "hong tou Ah-San" if they misbehaved. But who was he? Where did he live? What he ...

Death-book

Bookshelf: Death in Shanghai

MJ Lee’s Death in Shanghai is a delicious crime novel set in old Shanghai. Terrific plot, great characters, superb writing – and oh, the historical detail! It truly brings old Shanghai to life, infusing the characters, and even the crime. We wanted to know more, and author Martin Lee obliged us with an ...

Katya photo-bw

The Interview: Katya Knyazeva on Shanghai’s Old Town

The original Shanghai – the “old town” – is hidden in plain sight, in center of China’s wealthiest city. Yet it is but a shadow, unexplored territory for both foreigners and locals. And it's vanishing quickly. Journalist, photographer, and tour guide Katya Knyazeva has spent six years painstakingly documenting the ...