Prof. dr. S.R. (Stefan) Landsberger

  • Lecturer
  • Society of modern China

Telephone number: +31 (0)71 527 2530
Faculty / Department: Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen, Leiden Institute for Area Studies, SAS China
Office Address: Arsenaal
Arsenaalstraat 1
2311 CT Leiden
Room number 1.25b
Personal Homepage:


- Olfert Dapper Professor of Contemporary Chinese Culture (University of Amsterdam) (2005-present)
- Honorary Fellow at International Insitute of Social History (2011-present)
- Invited researcher at Public Service Advertising Research Center, Communication University of China (2008-present)

Fields of interest

Contemporary China, social and political; political communication; (visual) propaganda; televised public service advertising.

Owner of the – possibly largest – private collection of Chinese propaganda posters in the world – outside of China (ca. 1937-present).


1974-75   Law Faculty, Leiden University (UL)
1975-82   Sinology, UL
1984-94   PhD research

- Communication studies (University of Amsterdam UvA) 
- Japanese (UL) 
- Modern Asian History (UvA) 
- Mass Psychology (UvA) 
- Cultural Antropology (UL)

MA thesis (1982): “After the Bumper Harvest”: China’s Socialist Education Movement as seen through short stories from the Sixties
PhD (1994): Visualizing the Future: Chinese Propaganda Posters from the ‘Four Modernizations’ Era, 1978 - 1988

· Research Assistant with the research project Sneevliet [Maring] in China (in cooperation with the International Institute of Social History) (1983‑1986)
· Researcher, Documentation and Research Centre for Modern China, Sinological Institute UL (1984-1991, 1994-1996)
· Researcher with the research project Science and Technology Policy of the PRC, Sinological Institute and the Ministry of Education and Sciences (1985-1986)
· Editor-in-chief China Information, published by the Documentation and Research Centre for Modern China, Sinological Institute UL (1986-1991)
· Project leader, Visual Documentation and Presentation of Chinese History, Sinological Institute (1991-1994
· Associate Professor, Dept. of Chinese Studies, UL (1 February 1996-present)
· Olfert Dapper Professor of Contemporary Chinese Culture, University of Amsterdam, (1 September 2005-present)

Key publications

Authored monographs
· Chinese Posters - The IISH/Landsberger Collections. München: Prestel Verlag 2009. 285 pp.
· Paint it red – Fifty years of Chinese Propaganda Posters (Groningen: Uitgeverij Intermed 1998), 80 pp
· Chinese Propaganda Posters – From Revolution to Modernization (Amsterdam, Singapore; Armonk: The Pepin Press; M.E. Sharpe 1995, 1998, 2001), 240 pp.

· “Die Vergötterung Maos: Bilder und Praktiken in der Kulturrevolution und darüber hinaus”, in: Helmut Opletal. (Ed.), Die Kultur der Kulturrevolution - Personenkult und politisches Design im China von Mao Zedong (Gent: Snoeck Publishers, 2011), pp. 93-103
· “National Image Management Begins at Home: Imagining the New Olympic Citizen”, in Jian (Jay) Wang (ed), Soft Power in China - Public Diplomacy through Communication (Global Public Diplomacy) (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), pp. 117-133, with Jeroen de Kloet and Gladys P.L. Chong
· “Harmony, Olympic Manners and Morals – Chinese Television and the ‘New Propaganda’”. European Journal of East Asian Studies(2009), 8 (2), pp. 331-355
· “Encountering the European and Western Other in Chinese Propaganda Posters”, in Michael Wintle (ed), Images of Europe: Europe and European civilization as seen from its margins  and by the rest of the world, in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Brussels: P.I.E. Peter Lang S.A., 2008, pp. 147-175
· “Designing Propaganda: The Business of Politics”. In H.X. Zhang & L. Parker (Eds.), ChinaDesign Now. London: V&A Publishing, 2008, pp. 53-56
· “Propaganda Posters in the Reform Era: Promoting Patriotism or Providing Public Information”, Frank Columbus (ed.), Asian Economic and Political Issues vol. 10 New York: Nova Science Publishers Inc., 2004), pp. 27-57
· “The Deification of Mao: Religious Imagery and Practices during the Cultural Revolution and Beyond”, Woei Lien Chong (ed.), China's Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution: Master Narratives and Post-Mao Counternarratives (Boulder, CO: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2002), pp. 139-184
· “Learning by What Example? Educational Propaganda in Twenty-first-Century China”, Critical Asian Studies, vol. 33, No. 4 (December 2001), pp. 541-571
· “Role Modelling in Mainland China During the ‘Four Modernizations’ Era: The Visual Dimension”, Chun‑chieh Huang and Erik Zürcher (eds), Norms and the State in China (Leiden, etc.: E.J. Brill, 1993), pp. 359‑376
· “A Chinese Future with Western Characteristics: Chinese Visual Propaganda During the ‘Four Modernizations’ (1978‑1988)”, K.W. Radtke and A.J. Saich (eds), China’s Modernisation: Westernisation and Acculturation (Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag, 1993), pp. 177-194.

Editorial work
· Editor-in-chief China Information, published by the Documentation and Research Centre for Modern China, Sinological Institute UL (1986-1991; 1994-1997)
· Member Editorial board China Information (1997-present)
· Member Editorial board Parthenon Press (2011-present)


A range of courses related to (social developments in) contemporary China, including
- Introduction to Modern Chinese History
- Introduction to Contemporary China
- Modern Chinese Society – social developments
- Shop till u drop – buy till u die – emerging urban consumer culture in China
- Contemporary Chinese Culture
- China Unlimited – contemporary Chinese culture s - Chinese Foreign and Security Policy

PhD supervision

· Chunyan Shu, Behind China’s Self-portrait: Contesting Perceptions of a Reforming Nation, degree expected in 2012 (with Axel Schneider)
· Qiaoqi Zhang, Chinese National Identity and Propaganda, degree expected in 2014 (with Florian Schneider)

Administration and service to the profession

· 1978‑80, member subfaculty board Non-Western Cultures and Societies (UL);
· 1979‑80, member standing committee subfaculty board Non-Western Cultures and Societies (UL);
· 1980‑82, member Education Committee, Humanities Faculty Board UL;
· 1986‑1991, member department board China Studies (UL);
· 1987‑1991, member standing committee department board China Studies (UL);
· 1995-1998, member standing committee department board China Studies (UL);
· 1995-1996, 1997-2001, secretary standing committee department board China Studies (UL);
· 2001-2003, member Education Committee department China Studies (UL);
· 2003-2005, secretary Examinations Committee department China Studies (UL);
· 2007-2009, member Education Committee department China Studies (UL)
· 2009-2010, head Modern China section, department China Studies (UL)
· 2009-2010, member exploratory committee EAS BA (UL)
· 2009-2010, member exploratory committee BAIS (UL);
· 2009-present, chair Examinations Committee department China Studies (UL).  

· Webmaster of Stefan Landsberger’s Chinese Propaganda Poster Pages () (1997-2010); over 2 million visitors;
· Webmaster of ( (1 January 2008-present)
· Secretary, Chinese Posters Foundation (2010-present)

Last Modified: 11-12-2015