Reinventing the Nation in the Condition of Globalization in Contemporary Chinese Cinema and Visual Culture
The lecture draws on materials from a forthcoming monograph, Contemporary Chinese Cinema and Visual Culture: Envisioning the Nation (Bloomsbury, 2021). It first introduces the main themes and key issues of this interdisciplinary multimedia study, and then focuses on a couple of specific chapters in greater detail, “Projecting the Chinese Nation on Domestic and Global Screens,” and “Reshaping Beijing’s Space in Architecture, Art, Photography, and Video.” The lecture analyzes the changing strategies in the visual representation of China in the West as well as China’s self-representation in contemporary world cinema. The nation does not wither away in the condition of globalization. Rather, Chinese films and art forms have found ways of utilizing transnational resources to refashion, reinvent, and consolidate the Chinese nation and its position in the world.
Sheldon LU has been Professor of Comparative Literature at the University of California at Davis since 2002. He has served as the Chair of the Department of Comparative Literature, Director of the Graduate Program in Comparative Literature, and Founding Co-Director of Film Studies at UC Davis. His research, scholarship, and teaching lie at the intersection of literary studies, visual studies, film studies, China studies, and cultural theory. He is the author and editor of more than a dozen books in English and Chinese as well as the author of numerous journal articles. His representative publications in English include From Historicity to Fictionality: The Chinese Poetics of Narrative (Stanford, 1994, translated into Korean and Chinese); China, Transnational Visuality, Global Postmodernity (Stanford, 2001); Chinese Modernity and Global Biopolitics: Studies in Literature and Visual Culture (Hawaii, 2007); Transnational Chinese Cinemas: Identity, Nationhood, Gender (editor, Hawaii, 1997); Chinese-language Film: Historiography, Poetics, Politics (co-editor, Hawaii, Choice’s Award of Outstanding Academic Title of 2005); Ecology and Chinese-language Cinema: Reimagining a Field (co-editor, Routledge, 2020).