A Fraught Exchange? U.S. Media on Chinese International Undergraduates and the American University

Nancy Abelmann, Jiyeon Kang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In this article, we analyze the U.S. media discourse on Chinese international undergraduate students, the largest international student group since 2009. The discourse describes a market exchange, but reveals a struggle between: on the one hand, "a fair exchange"-between excellent Chinese students and world-class American liberal education; and, on the other hand, a "faltering exchange"-between ethically suspect and inassimilable Chinese students and a mercenary and possibly mediocre American university. We argue that this media reporting builds on long-standing seemingly contradictory images of an alluring China market and a threatening "Yellow Peril." We suggest that this media contest indexes the challenges of campus internationalization; just as the media questions real value on both sides of the exchange, so too is the campus encounter fragile and fraught.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)382-397
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Studies in International Education
Volume18
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2014

Fingerprint

student
mercenary
discourse
market
internationalization
China
university
education
Group

Keywords

  • Chinese international students
  • higher education
  • internationalization
  • media

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

Cite this

A Fraught Exchange? U.S. Media on Chinese International Undergraduates and the American University. / Abelmann, Nancy; Kang, Jiyeon.

In: Journal of Studies in International Education, Vol. 18, No. 4, 09.2014, p. 382-397.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{01ab53b29d9048f583f5eee34ace2391,
title = "A Fraught Exchange? U.S. Media on Chinese International Undergraduates and the American University",
abstract = "In this article, we analyze the U.S. media discourse on Chinese international undergraduate students, the largest international student group since 2009. The discourse describes a market exchange, but reveals a struggle between: on the one hand, {"}a fair exchange{"}-between excellent Chinese students and world-class American liberal education; and, on the other hand, a {"}faltering exchange{"}-between ethically suspect and inassimilable Chinese students and a mercenary and possibly mediocre American university. We argue that this media reporting builds on long-standing seemingly contradictory images of an alluring China market and a threatening {"}Yellow Peril.{"} We suggest that this media contest indexes the challenges of campus internationalization; just as the media questions real value on both sides of the exchange, so too is the campus encounter fragile and fraught.",
keywords = "Chinese international students, higher education, internationalization, media",
author = "Nancy Abelmann and Jiyeon Kang",
year = "2014",
month = "9",
doi = "10.1177/1028315313479852",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "18",
pages = "382--397",
journal = "Journal of Studies in International Education",
issn = "1028-3153",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Inc.",
number = "4",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - A Fraught Exchange? U.S. Media on Chinese International Undergraduates and the American University

AU - Abelmann, Nancy

AU - Kang, Jiyeon

PY - 2014/9

Y1 - 2014/9

N2 - In this article, we analyze the U.S. media discourse on Chinese international undergraduate students, the largest international student group since 2009. The discourse describes a market exchange, but reveals a struggle between: on the one hand, "a fair exchange"-between excellent Chinese students and world-class American liberal education; and, on the other hand, a "faltering exchange"-between ethically suspect and inassimilable Chinese students and a mercenary and possibly mediocre American university. We argue that this media reporting builds on long-standing seemingly contradictory images of an alluring China market and a threatening "Yellow Peril." We suggest that this media contest indexes the challenges of campus internationalization; just as the media questions real value on both sides of the exchange, so too is the campus encounter fragile and fraught.

AB - In this article, we analyze the U.S. media discourse on Chinese international undergraduate students, the largest international student group since 2009. The discourse describes a market exchange, but reveals a struggle between: on the one hand, "a fair exchange"-between excellent Chinese students and world-class American liberal education; and, on the other hand, a "faltering exchange"-between ethically suspect and inassimilable Chinese students and a mercenary and possibly mediocre American university. We argue that this media reporting builds on long-standing seemingly contradictory images of an alluring China market and a threatening "Yellow Peril." We suggest that this media contest indexes the challenges of campus internationalization; just as the media questions real value on both sides of the exchange, so too is the campus encounter fragile and fraught.

KW - Chinese international students

KW - higher education

KW - internationalization

KW - media

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84902510144&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84902510144&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/1028315313479852

DO - 10.1177/1028315313479852

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84902510144

VL - 18

SP - 382

EP - 397

JO - Journal of Studies in International Education

JF - Journal of Studies in International Education

SN - 1028-3153

IS - 4

ER -