The urbanization of China and the disappearance of rural culture seem to me to be the most significant changes in recent decades. For thousands of years, Chinese society was almost exclusively rural, and it remained so until the early 1980s. The example of Nanking is typical of what happened : what was once a city with lots of character, a very nice place to live, was nearly ruined by modernization. The problem is partly due to the leaders , who only thought of creating a modern and international city, even if it was to the detriment of its historical singularity.
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