Cumulus Seminar 2008
ChinaVine is a partnership project among three universities: The University of Central Florida, the University of Oregon, and Shandong University of Art and Design in Jinan, China. This paper describes the collaborative process involved in making the ChinaVine website that functions to teach English-speaking audiences about Chinese folk art in Shandong Province. The development of this website anticipates the likely interest in Chinese culture prior to, during, and after the 2008 Beijing Oylmpic Games. Using a nonhierarchical methodology for our teamwork, we address issues of cultural difference and cross-cultural learning.
THE MAKING OF CHINAVINE:
PARTNERING ACROSS COUNTRIES
Zhang Yi Gui is in her eighties and lives in Quan Bei Village within Shandong Province, China. Locally, Zhang is known for the shoes that she makes and embroiders for infants. Using multiple colors of thread, Zhang embroiders flower designs on shoes for girls and tiger heads on shoes for boys. The soles are embroidered with evenly placed minute white stitches. Zhang is passing on her craft to her daughter-in-law (personal communication, May 6, 2007).
Within Zhang’s lifetime extraordinary political and cultural changes have occurred in China. Born not long after the abdication of the last Qing emperor (1912), China would be ruled by warlords (early twentieth century), see the founding of the Communist Party (1921), be occupied by Japan (1931