How Chinese cinema and global Chinese culture intersect over questions of identity
Critical Perspectives on Film, Identity, and Diaspora
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edited by Tan See-Kam, Peter X Feng and Gina Marchetti
Chinese Connections is a valuable new anthology that provides a prismatic look at the cross-fertilization between Chinese film and global popular culture. Leading film scholars consider the influence of world cinema on China-related and Chinese-related cinema over the last five decades. Highlighting the neglected connections between Chinese films and American and European cinema, the editors and contributors examine popular works such as Ang Lee’s The Hulk and Olivier Assayas’ Irma Vep to show the nexus of international film production and how national, political, social and sexual identities are represented in the Chinese diaspora.
With talent flowing back and forth between East and West, Chinese Connections explores how issues of immigration, class, race and economic displacement are viewed on a global level, ultimately providing a greater understanding of the impact of Chinese filmmaking at home and abroad.
Contributors include: Grace An, Aaron Anderson, Chris Berry, Evans Chan, Li-Mei Chang, Frances Gateward, Andrew Grossman, Peter Hitchcock, Chuck Kleinhans, Jenny Kwok Wah Lau, Helen Leung, Aaron Magnan-Park, Gayle Wald, Esther C.M. Yau, Emilie Yueh-yu Yeh, Xuelin Zhou and the editors.
"According to its editors…Chinese Connections blazes a new trail, and it is easy to agree with them.... At times, the eclecticism of the contributions threatens to thwart the attempts of the book’s editors to impose order; but in a sense, it is the sheer scope and number of its essays which furnish this volume with its core strength. Chinese Connections contains 19 chapters in a volume just shy of 300 pages; and these pieces manage to cover essential films and essential filmmakers at the same time as straying into less tried terrain in stimulating ways. The result is a volume that has something to say to everyone from undergraduates to film specialists. Indeed, although the last few years have seen the publication of several high-quality, broad-sweep volumes on Chinese film – both nationally and transnationally – few have quite the reach and range of this one."
"Overall, using 'transnational' China as the overarching framework, Chinese Connections touches on many key questions of Chinese culture, nation, and geopolitics....[The editors] point out important issues regarding the kinds of analytical frameworks we may use in analyzing global mediated culture."
"The book presents various perspectives of Chinese films, showing a multiplicity of approaches in studying Chinese cinema in general. The essays are insightful and well written and they all go a long way in helping the reader to understand the many facets of Chinese cinema."
Part I: Global Connections
Part II: Questions of Gender
Part III: At the Millennium and Beyond
Appendix A: On Chinese Names
Tan See-Kam is Associate Professor, Department of Communication, University of Macau, Macao SAR, China. His research mainly focuses on gender and Chinese-language cinema and he has published widely in this area. He is co-editor of Hong Kong Film, Hollywood and the New Global Cinema (2007) and also Hong Kong Alternative Cinema Through the Global Lens (forthcoming).