chapter
Introduction
Pages 11

This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book focuses on the urban transformations of China's first-tier cities: Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou. Beijing is the nation's political and cultural capital, Shanghai is the economic and financial powerhouse, and Guangzhou is the capital of Guangdong Province and the regional center of South China. All are historical cities with rich imperial, colonial, and regional heritages, and all have been drastically transformed in the last six decades. The book aims to theorize the model of spatial production and chart their shared trajectory of urban change as well as to examine differences in their urbanization trajectories. It examines the rise of new urban culture associated with the production of space. Henri Lefebvre contends that there are different modes of production of space from natural space to more complex spatialities whose significance is socially produced.