Spring in a Small Town (1948)
Friday, March 6, 3:00-5:00PM in CEAS 319 (1155 E 60th St)
Ling Zhang (PhD Candidate in Cinema and Media Studies, University of Chicago)
“An Operatic and Poetic Atmosphere (kongqi): Female Voice-over and
Transmediality in Fei Mu’s Spring in a Small Town”
On Friday, March 6, the Art and Politics of East Asia Workshop will meet for a presentation by Ling Zhang, PhD candidate in the Department of Cinema and Media Studies, on a draft of a chapter from her dissertation. The chapter examines the idiosyncratic omniscient female voice-over and audiovisual aesthetic of Fei Mu’s film Spring in a Small Town (1948) in the context of the transmedial milieu of 1940s China, arguing that the voice-over and perspective not only draw inspirations from traditional Chinese opera (xiqu) and folk storytelling conventions, but also coincide with the prevailing trend of voice-over narration in 1940s American film noir and melodrama. The paper further argues that such transmedial and transcultural connections enrich and refresh our understanding of not only the audiovisual aesthetic of Spring in a Small Town, but also broader questions of female subjectivity and gender discourse and the intricate interplay between traditional and modernist art.
A draft of the paper will be available later today at this link. If you have not received the password for the post, please feel free to contact Nicholas Lambrecht at lambrecht at uchicago.edu. Light refreshments will be served at the workshop. We look forward to seeing you on Friday.
Satellite image of sandstorm over China
Friday, January 23, 3:00-5:00PM in CEAS 319 (1155 E 60th St)
Douglas Berman (Asst. Dean of Graduate Programs, University of Wisconsin-Madison)
“Chinese Ecocriticism: The Recent Past & Today–Cultural & Political Negotiations in China”
This Friday, January 23, please join the Art and Politics of East Asia Workshop to discuss a paper on trends in China’s ecocritical movement presented by Douglas Berman, Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs at the University of Wisconsin. After earning his PhD in English Language and Literature from the University of Wisconsin and a JD in Law from Indiana University, Dean Berman spent several years as a law associate in Hong Kong and Beijing before returning to Madison. His interests include modern Chinese literature and interdisciplinary approaches to law and literature.
A draft of the paper will be circulated on Monday via this link. Please do not circulate or cite this paper without the author’s permission. After the workshop we will be having a dinner in Hyde Park, and both graduate students and faculty are welcome to attend. Please contact Nicholas Lambrecht at lambrecht at uchicago.edu to RSVP for the dinner, if you need assistance in downloading the paper, or if you have concerns about accessibility. We look forward to seeing you on Friday.
Friday, December 5, 3:00-5:00PM in CEAS 319 (1155 E 60th St)
Katherine Alexander (PhD Candidate in EALC, University of Chicago)
“Reading for Women: Chinese Popular Religious Culture and Literature in the Late Qing”
On Friday, December 5, please join us in welcoming Katherine Alexander, who will present a chapter draft from her dissertation The Business of Being Good: Baojuan in Late Qing Jiangnan. Background reading materials and the chapter draft will be available here on Wednesday (please do not circulate or cite the draft).
Light refreshments will be served at this meeting of the workshop, which will be the last meeting of Art and Politics for the fall quarter. We’ll look forward to seeing you there, and please keep an eye on this space for the announcement of the APEA winter schedule.
“Green Seedlings” (Photo courtesy of the China Disabled People’s Performing Art Troupe)
Monday, December 1, 4:30-6:00PM
Logan Center Seminar Terrace Room, 801 (915 E 60th Street)
Yan Haiping (Chair of Foreign Languages and Literatures, Tsinghua University)
“My Dream: The Intermedial Turn in Contemporary Chinese Performing Arts”
On Monday, December 1, please join APEA and the Theater and Performance Studies Workshop for a discussion of Yan Haiping’s article “My Dream: The Intermedial Turn in Contemporary Chinese Performing Arts.” The article is available here.
Yan Haiping is a former full professor of Critical Studies in the School of Theatre, Film and Television at UCLA and professor of Theatre, Comparative Literature, and East Asian Studies at Cornell University, and has also been a University Professor of Cross-Cultural Studies at Shanghai Jiaotong University and a Fellow at the Cornell Institute for the Study of Economy and Society, Cornell University. She is currently the Chair of Foreign Languages and Literatures, Vice Dean of the College of the Humanities, and Dean of the Tsinghua Institute for World Literatures and Cultures at Tsinghua University.
Please note the special day, time, and location of this meeting. The Theater and Performance Studies Workshop is also hosting a dinner at the Snail following the presentation. To RSVP, please contact Amy Stebbins (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Anne Rebull (email@example.com) by Saturday evening at 5PM. We look forward to seeing you there!
Wang Renmei, “the wildcat of Shanghai”
Thursday, November 6, 4:30-6:30PM in CEAS 319 (1155 E 60th St)
Richard J. Meyer (President Emeritus, San Francisco Silent Film Festival)
“Politics in the Shanghai Film Industry in Republican China: The Case of Wang Renmei”
On Thursday, November 6, please join us for a presentation by Richard Meyer, author of Ruan Ling-yu: The Goddess of Shanghai and Jin Yan: The Rudolph Valentino of Shanghai. Meyer’s recent work on Wang Renmei “explores her artistic achievements amid the prevalent anti-feminist and feudal society in China prior to the founding of the People’s Republic in 1949,” and shows that “[her] life is emblematic of the experiences of many left-wing and Communist Party members from the Shanghai film community who were viewed with suspicion and enmity by the Yan’an clique headed by Mao and later the Gang of Four” (Columbia University Press).
Please note the special day and time of this presentation. Light refreshments will be served at the workshop.