Disney’s new China conundrum

The American entertainment behemoth’s apolitical approach has seen it flourish in China—but that era may be coming to an end

Steve and Dalila Xi, a Shanghainese couple in their thirties, are a pair of self-professed Disney fanatics. They’ve held season passes to Shanghai Disney Resort since its gates first opened in 2016, and at least once a month, they head to the theme park with their children in tow for a day of magic. It is entirely possible that these visits to the massive 3.9 square kilometre theme park are more fun for them than for their toddlers.

“When I go to Disney park, it transports me back to my childhood,” says Steve.

“Watching Disney cartoons were the most wonderful …


Frankie Huang

Frankie Huang is a Chinese American cultural writer, illustrator and strategist based in Shanghai. Her work has appeared in publications such as Foreign Policy, The New York Times and SupChina, and explores feminism, diaspora identity, and social issues in China and beyond. You can follow her on Twitter @ourobororoboruo.