Sunday, November 30, 2008

Shanghai’s Real “Pig Cage Stronghold”

Source: chinaSMACK

The “Pig Cage Stronghold” in “Kung Fu Hustle” is a building that surrounds a courtyard. In this small little courtyard, people do everything, and many generations live together. This here is Shanghai’s real “Pig Cage Stronghold”– Longchang Apartments on 362 Longchang Road. It is very characteristic!

Life in the “Pig Cage Stronghold” remained the same for several decades after the establishment of the new China. However, it is no longer called “Pig Cage Stronghold”, and is now called “Tongzilou”: a building with a long corridor with balconies on one side and uniform single-roomed apartments on the other. The corridors/hallways are shared, the balconies are open, and the apartments do not have kitchens or bathrooms. The people who live here are employees of state-owned enterprises, singles get one room, while those with families get two rooms, and not far is a kitchen.

The doors are across from the balconies and the balconies are the length of each room. People hang their washed clothes to dry around the balconies as well as placing potted flowers and plants, and are careful not to infringe one inch upon their neighbor’s boundaries. These are all unwritten rules, because there is a shortage of private and public space, and everyone will fight for it.

The public toilet is overcrowded, and , and peeking incidents easily happen. Whatever a neighbor eats today, whatever guests come, whatever nice things are purchased, whatever happens are all things that cannot be hidden [from others]. Children crying or screaming from being punished or scolded, and two people quarreling are daily sounds, like listening to popular music.


For the complete set of pictures, go to chinaSMACK.

Trailer Kung Fu Hustle:

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