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Cinema and Media Studies Chinese Cinema
by
Yingjin Zhang

Introduction

Chinese cinema in this bibliography covers Chinese-language cinema, including films in Mandarin, Cantonese, and Taiwanese (or Minnan dialect) as well as Sinophone productions by the Chinese diasporas. To save space, hereafter “China” refers to mainland China, also known as the People’s Republic of China (PRC) since 1949. Chinese cinema has become an important player in world cinema since the 1980s for several reasons. First, three new-wave film movements emerged in three geopolitical territories during the 1980s: the Hong Kong New Wave, Taiwan New Cinema, and China’s Fifth Generation. Second, leading international film festivals have regularly awarded top prizes to Chinese cinema since the 1980s, and some Chinese films have entered art-house theaters in the West. Third, academic interests in Chinese studies and film studies have increased in recent decades as new theories and methodologies have gradually transformed disciplinary scholarship. Nonetheless, the development of Chinese cinema does not follow a straight line of progress; rather, it has seen ups and downs and unexpected turns. From the early 1990s to the late 1990s, a previously vibrant Taiwan film industry quickly disappeared in the face of Hollywood advancement. Also during the 1990s, Hong Kong cinema lost much of its market share in Taiwan, and its annual feature productions dropped from 242 in 1993 to 143 in 1994; the average number has stayed around fifty in 2006–2009. By contrast, feature productions in China increased from 88 per year in 2001 to 526 in 2010. What is most impressive is the growth of China’s exhibition market. Its annual total box office revenues skyrocketed from RMB 840 million in 2001 to RMB 10,200 million in 2010. Much of this growth has come from Chinese blockbuster films, almost always involving coproductions with Hong Kong. The spectacular growth of Chinese cinema explains recent attention to research in Industry and Market, but other exciting areas of Chinese film studies include film history (especially China before 1949), Gender and Sexuality, and Genre and Types. Martial arts films are considered a significant Chinese contribution to world cinema, and recent independent productions of Documentary films in China have received multidisciplinary attention. As scholars and filmmakers extend their vision beyond national borders, a new area has emerged in Diaspora, Sinophone, Transregional, which further complicates the question of Nation and Nationalism in Chinese cinema.

Anthologies

Books listed in this section often cover all three geopolitical territories—China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. For works outside these areas, see the subsection Diaspora, Sinophone, Transregional. Most anthologies make good textbooks for upper-division undergraduate and graduate classes, for they often include thematic clusters such as poetics, politics, identity, gender, and nation. Anthologies on Hong Kong and Taiwan are listed in separate subsections under History and Geography. In this section, Center for Documentation 1982 is one of the earliest books on Chinese cinema in a Western language. Berry 1991 and Browne, et al. 1994 represent the emergent phase of Chinese film studies in the West, while Lu and Yeh 2005 as well as Zhu and Rosen 2010 include the latest developments. Luo 2003 is perhaps the most comprehensive volume of Chinese film theory and criticism and has no English rival as yet.

  • Berry, Chris, ed. Perspectives on Chinese Cinema. 2d ed. London: British Film Institute, 1991.

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    This pioneering work helped establish the academic status of Chinese cinema in Euro-America. While not as coherent as subsequent anthologies, it champions a cross-interdisciplinary approach and broaches various subjects.

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  • Browne, Nick, Paul G. Pickowicz, Vivian Sobchak, and Esther Yau, eds. New Chinese Cinemas: Forms, Identities, Politics. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1994.

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    An important early anthology with wide coverage of contemporary China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan by leading scholars (e.g., Fredric Jameson) on issues of melodrama, postsocialism, and postmodernism.

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  • Center for Documentation, Paris, ed. Ombres électriques: Panorama du cinéma chinois, 1925–1982. Paris: Centre de Documentation sur le Cinéma Chinois (CDCC), 1982.

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    One of the earliest books on Chinese cinema in Europe, this French anthology presents sixty film synopses and five essays on early Chinese cinema, film politics, and realism.

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  • Lu, Sheldon H., and Emilie Yueh-Yu Yeh, eds. Chinese-Language Film: Historiography, Poetics, Politics. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2005.

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    Another important comprehensive anthology offering insights into China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, again focusing on contemporary films, with an introduction foregrounding the issues of language and dialects. Previously published as a double issue on Chinese cinema in the journal Post Script (20.2–3 ([2001]).

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  • Luo, Yijun, ed. 20 Shiji Zhongguo dianying lilun wenxuan. 2 vols. Beijing: Zhongguo Dianying Chubanshe, 2003.

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    An authoritative Chinese anthology of key texts of film theory and criticism in Chinese arranged in chronological order.

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  • Zhu, Ying, and Stanley Rosen, eds. Art, Politics, and Commerce in Chinese Cinema. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2010.

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    An anthology celebrating the centennial of Chinese cinema, with a focus on the film industry and market (e.g., Hollywood impact, piracy). Also includes articles on animation, adaptation, documentary, and martial arts films.

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Textbooks

Many items listed in Anthologies, Thematic Exploration of Hong Kong Cinema, and Taiwan serve as good sources for course readings, but the following three are particularly useful because of their wide coverage. While Berry 2008 offers provocative readings of individual films, Berry 2005 provides candid opinions from individual directors, and Zhang 2004 furnishes a comprehensive but concise overview of Chinese film history.

  • Berry, Michael. Speaking in Images: Interviews with Contemporary Chinese Filmmakers. Global Chinese Culture. New York: Columbia University Press, 2005.

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    An impressive anthology of in-depth interviews with leading filmmakers—some of them listed under Auteurs and Films—from China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, with a critical introduction.

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  • Berry, Chris, ed. Chinese Films in Focus II. London: British Film Institute, 2008.

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    A second, expanded edition containing thirty-four close analyses of individual films from China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan throughout film history. This ideal textbook for a theoretically informed film class was first published as Chinese Films in Focus: 25 New Takes (London: BFI, 2003).

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  • Zhang, Yingjin. Chinese National Cinema. London: Routledge, 2004.

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    This ideal introductory reading is the only English-language film history that incorporates the accomplishments of China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan from early cinema to globalization in a comparative framework.

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Reference Works

This section lists bibliographic and encyclopedia works. While Zhang and Xiao 1998 offers encyclopedic information, Cheng 2004 and MCLC Resource Centers both provide detailed bibliographies, with the latter enjoying the online benefit of periodic updates. Zhang and Cheng 1995 is the most convenient one-volume reference in Chinese. Filmographies are listed under a separate heading.

Filmographies

The following are three standard sets of filmographies. While Hong Kong Film Archive, et al. 1997–2007 is the most comprehensive work on Hong Kong, Marion 2008 provides the English equivalent to what Zhongguo Dianying Ziliaoguan 1996 covers in Chinese. The reader can also consult Zhang and Xiao 1998 as well as Zhang and Cheng 1995 (both listed under Reference Works) for entries on individual films.

  • Hong Kong Film Archive, et al. eds. Hong Kong Filmography. 6 vols. Hong Kong: Hong Kong Film Archive, 1997–2007.

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    The most comprehensive listing of Hong Kong films, available in bilingual or separate Chinese and English volumes, with details on cast. Indices with Chinese characters make it convenient to verify different, often-confusing Chinese and English titles for the same film.

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  • Marion, Donald J. The Chinese Filmography: The 2444 Feature Films Produced by Studios in the People’s Republic of China from 1949 through 1995. 2 vols. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2008.

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    First published in 1997, this 752-page English reference for individual Chinese films includes bibliography and index for easy use.

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  • Zhongguo Dianying Ziliaoguan, ed. Zhongguo yingpian dadian. 4 vols. Beijing: Zhongguo dianying chubanshe, 1996.

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    A comprehensive listing of Chinese films produced in mainland China from 1905 to 1994, with substantial plot summaries and details on cast (except for some early productions).

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Journals

For journals focused on Chinese cinema, Dangdai dianying and Dianying yishu are the two leading bimonthly publications in Chinese. Journal of Chinese Cinemas is a new English periodical devoted exclusively to the field. Asian Cinema also carries a large number of articles on China, Hong Kong, and occasionally Taiwan, and Modern Chinese Literature and Culture features articles on Chinese cinema from time to time.

  • Asian Cinema.

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    US journal affiliated with the Asian Cinema Studies Society, regularly publishes articles on Chinese cinema and carries bibliographic listings of recent works, including information from nonacademic sources. Published semiannually since 1988.

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  • Dangdai dianying.

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    One of two key journals in Chinese devoted to film, media, and cultural studies, copublished by Communication University of China and Chinese Film Art Research Center. It often publishes special clusters on individual films and directors. Published since 1989.

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  • Dianying yishu.

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    One of two key publications in Chinese devoted to film theory, criticism, and cultural studies. Sponsored by China Film Association, it also tracks the latest cultural policy and market development in China. Published since 1965.

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  • Journal of Chinese Cinemas.

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    The only refereed English academic journal devoted exclusively to Chinese cinemas. Theoretical in orientation, it often launches guest-edited special issues on new research topics and provides an updated bibliography on book-length studies on Chinese cinema. Published three times a year in United Kingdom since 2007.

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  • Modern Chinese Literature and Culture.

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    US journal regularly publishes articles on Chinese cinema and media culture. Published semiannually since 1999.

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History and Geography

Books covering issues related to two or three geopolitical territories are listed here, followed by sections dealing specifically with China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Books in this subsection address thematic issues such as trauma (Berry 2008), memory (Braester 2003), sentiments (Chow 2007), and stardom (Farquhar and Zhang 2010). In terms of historical coverage, Fu 2003 focuses on wartime cinema, while Sibergeld 2004 and Xu 2007 deal with the 1990s and later. Lu 2002 groups contemporary China and Taiwan together, while Kong and Lent 2006 analyzes different generations of Chinese directors.

  • Berry, Michael. A History of Pain: Trauma in Modern Chinese Literature and Film. Global Chinese Culture. New York: Columbia University Press, 2008.

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    An extensive survey of literary and cinematic representations of trauma and pain in 20th-century China, focusing on major historical events like the Nanjing Massacre of 1937, the February 28 Massacre of 1947 in Taiwan, and the Tiananmen Square demonstration of 1989 in Beijing.

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  • Braester, Yomi. Witness against History: Literature, Film, and Public Discourse in Twentieth-Century China. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2003.

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    This critical book on modern Chinese literature and culture contains three chapters on film: on monstrosity in the 1930s, Maoist discourse in the 1950s, and the challenge to Maohistory since the 1980s.

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  • Chow, Rey. Sentimental Fabulations, Contemporary Chinese Films: Attachment in the Age of Global Visibility. Film and Culture. New York: Columbia University Press, 2007.

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    Chow offers close readings of films from China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Chinese Americans and problematizes issues such as nostalgia, homecoming, exile, migration, biopolitics, kinship, and commodification.

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  • Farquhar, Mary, and Yingjin Zhang, eds. Chinese Film Stars. Routledge Contemporary China series 51. London: Routledge, 2010.

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    The first book-length study of Chinese film stars and stardom, this anthology consists of fifteen chapters on individual stars ranging from early cinema (Anna May Wong, Ruan Lingyu) through socialist cinema (Mei Lanfang, Zhao Dan) to Hong Kong (Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Leslie Cheung, Chow Yun-fat, Jet Li), and Taiwan (Brigitte Lin).

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  • Fu, Poshek. Between Shanghai and Hong Kong: The Politics of Chinese Cinemas. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2003.

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    Based on archival research, this book represents what the author sees as revisionist historiography that challenges the orthodox political interpretation (e.g., Cheng, et al. 1980, cited under China before 1949) of Chinese films in the late 1930s to the mid-1940s.

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  • Kong, Haili, and John A. Lent, eds. 100 Years of Chinese Cinema: A Generational Dialogue. Norwalk, CT: EastBridge, 2006.

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    An anthology covering a wide range of topics, from the 1930s visual style to a 1948 Hong Kong historical drama, from socialist cinema to the postsocialist rewriting of history, and from the Fifth Generation to the Sixth Generation. It ends with three interviews with directors from three generations.

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  • Lu, Tonglin. Confronting Modernity in the Cinemas of Taiwan and Mainland China. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2002.

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    The author places Taiwan’s New Cinema and China’s Fifth Generation in a parallel trajectory whereby Western modernity is negotiated in society and on screen. Chapters deal with individual directors like Hou Hsiao-hsien, Edward Yang, and Wu Nianzhen in Taiwan and Chen Kaige, Li Shaohong, Tian Zhuangzhuang, and Zhang Yimou in China.

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  • Sibergeld, Jerome. Hitchcock with a Chinese Face: Cinematic Doubles, Oedipal Triangles, and China’s Moral Voice. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2004.

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    An art historian, Sibergeld offers close readings of three contemporary films: Lou Ye’s Suzhou River from China, Yim Ho’s The Day the Sun Turned Cold from Hong Kong, and Hou Hsiao-hsien’s Good Men, Good Women from Taiwan.

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  • Xu, Gary G. Sinascape: Contemporary Chinese Cinema. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2007.

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    Drawing examples from China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, this book intervenes in debates on copyright, censorship, realism, and memory as they are negotiated in cinematic terms in an increasingly overlapping Sinascape around the world.

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China before 1949

Most books in this subsection deal with the Leftwing Film movement under the Communist leadership.Whereas Cheng, et al. 1980 (originally published in 1963) represents the official view from China, Leyda 1972 is the first attempt to challenge that tradition. Recent books point to new directions that have broadened the scope of research and reinterpreted the 1930s in new frameworks of nationhood (see Hu 2003), gender (see Hansen 2000 and Pang 2002), and modernity (see Lee 1991, Zhang 1999, and Zhang 2005). Dai 1996 is a rich source for scattered Chinese publications on early Chinese cinema.

  • Cheng Jihua, Li Shaobai, and Xing Zuwen. Zhongguo dianying fazhan shi. 2d ed. 2 vols. Beijing: Zhongguo Dianying Chubanshe, 1980.

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    First published in Chinese in 1963, this is the best example of official Chinese film history. The book has influenced all subsequent Chinese film histories, and its comprehensive filmography and index are still useful for locating hard-to-find information.

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  • Dai, Xiaolan, ed. Zhong guo wu sheng dian ying. Beijing: Zhongguo Dianying Chubanshe, 1996.

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    The most substantial single volume of primary materials in Chinese on early Chinese cinema, gathered from a variety of print sources.

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  • Hansen, Miriam Bratu. “Fallen Women, Rising Stars, New Horizons: Shanghai Silent Film as Vernacular Modernism.” Film Quarterly 54.1 (Fall 2000): 10–22.

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    This award-winning article brings the author’s own theory of vernacular modernism to bear on Shanghai film of the early 1930s, with particular attention to gender performance.

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  • Hu, Jubin. Projecting a Nation: Chinese Cinema before 1949. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2003.

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    Based on the author’s previous work at China Film Archive, this book extends the parameters of nationalism from political to cultural and industrial realms, thereby offering a more balanced account than do previous film histories in Chinese.

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  • Lee, Leo Ou-fan. “The Tradition of Modern Chinese Cinema: Some Preliminary Explorations and Hypotheses.” In Perspectives on Chinese Cinema. Edited by Chris Berry, 6–20. London: British Film Institute, 1991.

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    An early attempt to situate Chinese cinema in relation to Chinese literature and drama in the first half of the 20th century.

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  • Leyda, Jay. Dianying: An Account of Films and the Film Audience in China. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1972.

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    Based on the author’s work experience at China Film Archive around 1960, this is perhaps the first English book to offer a historical overview of Chinese cinema. However, the book lacks a consistent historical vision and its account may not be always reliable because the author did not know the Chinese language.

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  • Pang, Laikwan. Building a New China in Cinema: The Chinese Left-Wing Cinema Movement, 1932–1937. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2002.

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    Pang rethinks issues of left-wing Chinese film by offering critical analysis of its representative artists and films through the lens of critical theory.

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  • Zhang, Yingjin, ed. Cinema and Urban Culture in Shanghai, 1922–1943. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1999.

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    An anthology of original articles establishing cinema as a vital force of urban culture and foregrounding the rich layers of film, print, and entertainment cultures in Republican-era Shanghai. A valuable text for a class on the cultural history of modern China.

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  • Zhang, Zhen. An Amorous History of the Silver Screen: Shanghai Cinema 1896–1937. Cinema and Modernity. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005.

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    Based on years of archival research, this is the most ambitious attempt to recount early Chinese cinema from the perspective of cultural history informed by the theory of vernacular modernism. It offers provocative discussions of martial arts film and melodrama, as well as intermedia and intercultural practices.

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China after 1949, Fourth and Fifth Generations

Except for Clark 1987 and Berry 2004, which cover the socialist period of the 1950s–1960s (mostly the Third Generation) and the immediate post-Mao period (mostly the Fourth Generation), respectively, this subsection explores films from China’s Fifth Generation directors who were active during the 1980s–1990s. Chow 1993 and Zhang 1997 are both known for their engagement with Western theory. Clark 2005 provides a historical account, while Ni 2002 offers an insider’s look. Donald 2000 draws on social theory, and Zhang 2002 reviews the rise of Chinese film studies in the West.

  • Berry, Chris. Postsocialist Cinema in Post-Mao China: The Cultural Revolution after the Cultural Revolution. East Asia. New York: Routledge, 2004.

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    Berry examines an oft-neglected period from the late 1970s to the early 1980s, a period of transition from socialist cinema to postsocialist cinema accompanied by major changes in artistic and ideological representations.

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  • Chow, Rey. Primitive Passions: Visuality, Sexuality, Ethnography, and Contemporary Chinese Cinema. Film and Culture. New York: Columbia University Press, 1993.

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    This theoretical intervention places Fifth Generation films in global perspective and analyzes the avant-garde filmmaking’s challenge to and complicity with the Chinese state and transnational capitalism.

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  • Clark, Paul. Chinese Cinema: Culture and Politics since 1949. Cambridge Studies in Film. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1987.

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    The first book in English from a China specialist to treat Chinese cinema as a legitimate academic subject in Euro-America. With special attention to the dynamics among the party-state, artists, and audience, it surveys the development of socialist cinema from Yan’an to Shanghai.

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  • Clark, Paul. Reinventing China: A Generation and Its Films. Hong Kong: Chinese University Press, 2005.

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    Following Clark 1987, this book studies the Fifth Generation in China from their early years during the Cultural Revolution through their emergence in the mid-1980s to their subsequent transformation in the 1990s and beyond.

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  • Donald, Stephanie Hemelryk. Public Secrets, Public Spaces: Cinema and Civility in China. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2000.

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    The author engages critical issues such as authenticity, agency, gender, and publicness through mostly contemporary cinematic examples.

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  • Ni, Zhen. Memoirs from the Beijing Film Academy: The Genesis of China’s Fifth Generation. Translated by Chris Berry. Asia-Pacific. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2002.

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    An account of the student years of the Fifth Generation from one of its professors, a noted screenwriter and scholar. It offers details on admission, curriculum, student works, and graduation.

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  • Zhang, Xudong. Chinese Modernism in the Era of Reforms: Cultural Fever, Avant-garde Fiction, and the New Chinese Cinema. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1997.

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    The second part of this theoretical book investigates the Fifth Generation and their representations of allegory, landscape, and subjectivity, with close readings of two films by Chen Kaige and Zhang Yimou, respectively.

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  • Zhang, Yingjin. Screening China: Critical Interventions, Cinematic Reconfigurations, and the Transnational Imaginary in Contemporary Chinese Cinema. Michigan Monographs in Chinese Studies 92. Ann Arbor: Center for Chinese Studies, University of Michigan, 2002.

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    A historical survey of the rise of Chinese film studies in the West as a result of international film festivals; examines several genres (ethnicity, minority, war film, ethnographic cinema, urban cinema) and issues (cultural politics, Eurocentrism, postsocialism).

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China after 1949, Sixth Generation and Beyond

This subsection tracks the development of the Sixth Generation and independent filmmaking in China since the early 1990s. Pickowicz and Zhang 2006, Zhang 2010, and Zhang 2007 approach different aspects of independent fiction and documentary filmmaking. McGrath 2008 situates its analysis of films in a larger context of literary and cultural production. Lu and Mi 2009 focus on the environmental issues, while Sun and Li 2008 offer opinions from independent filmmakers themselves. More work on independent documentary is listed under Documentary.

  • Lu, Sheldon H., and Jiayan Mi, eds. Chinese Ecocinema in the Age of Environmental Challenge. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2009.

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    The first to broach a timely topic, this anthology addresses issues of hydropolitics, eco-aesthetics, manufactured landscape, and bioethics and establishes cinema as a vital force in renegotiating fractured relations among nature, history, technology, and culture.

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  • McGrath, Jason. Postsocialist Modernity: Chinese Cinema, Literature, and Criticism in the Market Age. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2008.

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    McGrath places contemporary Chinese cinema in the framework of postsocialist modernity and investigates postsocialist realism in Jia Zhangke, filmic representation of infidelity, and the entertainment genre of New Year’s Films.

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  • Pickowicz, Paul G., and Yingjin Zhang, eds. From Underground to Independent: Alternative Film Culture in Contemporary China. Asia/Pacific/Perspectives. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2006.

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    This first English anthology to tackle the emergent independent filmmaking in China since the late 1980s contains a cluster on independent documentary as well as studies of popular and critical receptions of independent works inside and outside of China.

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  • Sun, Shaoyi, and Li Xun, eds. Lights! Camera! Kai Shi! In Depth Interviews with China’s New Generation of Movie Directors. Norwalk, CT: Eastbridge, 2008.

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    Instead of following one filmmaker at a time, this anthology divides interviews with the Sixth Generation into nine topical chapters, addressing issues of education, self-definition, censorship, narcissism, gender representation, box office, international film culture, globalization, and postcinema.

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  • Zhang, Yingjin. Cinema, Space, and Polylocality in a Globalizing China. Critical Interventions. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2010.

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    Taking up challenges posed by globalization, Zhang rethinks key notions of space, place, and locality as they inform contemporary Chinese film culture, especially in its independent sector, including both fiction and documentary productions.

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  • Zhang, Zhen, ed. The Urban Generation: Chinese Cinema and Society at the Turn of the Twenty-First Century. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2007.

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    The most comprehensive account of Sixth Generation filmmakers, who prefer urban images and narratives and whose works document and problematize China in the midst of a radical transformation.

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Hong Kong Cinema History

This subsection covers all periods of Hong Kong cinema. Chu 2003, Law and Bren 2004, and Teo 1997 offer overviews of the entire history. Lee and Teo 2010 directs attention to the often-neglected period of the 1950s–1970s before the Hong Kong New Wave, which flourished in the 1980s–1990s and is the subject of Cheuk 2008. Lee 2009 explores the post-1997 development, while Zhong 2007 focuses more on industry and market. Works dealing primarily with Hong Kong studios are listed under Industry and Market.

  • Cheuk, Pak Tong. Hong Kong New Wave Cinema (1978–2000). Bristol, UK: Intellect Books, 2008.

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    A comprehensive examination of aesthetic, cultural, and industrial dimensions of the Hong Kong New Wave, its prehistory in television, and its subsequent transformation and diversification.

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  • Chu, Yingchi. Hong Kong Cinema: Coloniser, Motherland and Self. London: RoutledgeCurzon, 2003.

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    A historical account of Hong Kong cinema from its early years to the 1990s, with special attention to its connections with China and Southeast Asia.

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  • Law, Kar, and Frank Bren. Hong Kong Cinema: A Cross-Cultural View. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow, 2004.

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    This historical account contains valuable information regarding early Hong Kong cinema and its relationship with Hollywood. The emphasis is on cultural history rather than on theoretical or ideological criticism.

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  • Lee, Vivian P. Y. Hong Kong Cinema since 1997: The Post-Nostalgic Imagination. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009.

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    This critical book explores post-1997 Hong Kong cinema in terms of the post-nostalgic, confronting issues of time, memory, and schizophrenia across different genres such as art film, kung fu, and action thrillers. It also tracks a recent Pan-Asian trajectory through Applause Pictures in Hong Kong.

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  • Teo, Stephen. Hong Kong Cinema: The Extra Dimensions. London: British Film Institute, 1997.

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    A succinct overview of Hong Kong cinema up to the 1990s, this book offers an incisive reading of cultural contexts, artistic trends, and auteurist accomplishments. An ideal textbook.

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  • Teo, Stephen, and Vivian Lee, eds. Special Issue: Placing Value in the Missing and the Lost. Journal of Chinese Cinemas 4.2 (August 2010).

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    A timely special issue that moves beyond the concentration of scholarship on the Hong Kong New Wave by exploring gambling films, New Year’s films, the female knight-errant, the clash between King Hu and Run Run Shaw, and the images of Nanyang Chinese in Hong Kong films from the previous decades.

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  • Zhong, Baoxian. Xianggang yingshiye bainian. Rev. ed. Hong Kong: Sanlian, 2007.

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    First published in 2004, this is a comprehensive account in Chinese of the development of film and television in Hong Kong.

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Thematic Exploration of Hong Kong Cinema

This subsection explores different aspects of Hong Kong cinema. While Abbas 1997 brings a theoretical perspective to a culture of disappearance, Bordwell 2000 illustrates the aesthetic dimension of Hong Kong screen entertainment. Cheung and Chu 2004, Fore 1999, Fu and Desser 2000, Marchetti and Tan 2007, and Yau 2001 contain critical articles on a variety of issues, and Lo 2005 concentrates on identity issues involving a transnational culture in Hong Kong.

  • Abbas, Ackbar. Hong Kong: Culture and the Politics of Disappearance. Public Worlds. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1997.

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    Published at the time of Hong Kong’s return to China’s sovereignty, this highly theoretical book maps Hong Kong as a postculture caught in the midst of déjà-disparu and nonrecognition. After the introduction, one chapter examines the Hong Kong New Wave and another analyzes the films of Wong Kar-wai.

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  • Bordwell, David. Planet Hong Kong: Popular Cinema and the Art of Entertainment. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2000.

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    An internationally renowned film scholar argues that Hong Kong cinema has developed its own poetics of representation in close dialogue with Hollywood. Action and martial arts films receive the most attention.

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  • Cheung, Esther M. K., and Chu Yiu-Wai, eds. Between Home and World: A Reader in Hong Kong Cinema. Xianggang Du Ben Xi Lie. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004.

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    A comprehensive anthology with selected critical studies of Hong Kong cinema covering a wide range of topics and issues. A good textbook for a class exclusively on Hong Kong cinema.

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  • Fore, Steve, ed. Special Edition: Hong Kong Cinema. Post Script 19.1 (Fall 1999).

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    This special issue covers topics such as the Hong Kong New Wave, media industry, femininity, action heroines, transnational audiences, and music.

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  • Fu, Poshek, and David Desser, eds. The Cinema of Hong Kong: History, Arts, Identity. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2000.

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    This anthology represents a serious academic investment in Hong Kong cinema. Under three thematic headings are articles dealing with film history, directors (King Hu, John Woo, Michael Hui, Ann Hui), and identity politics.

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  • Lo, Kwai-Cheung. Chinese Face/Off: The Transnational Popular Culture of Hong Kong. Popular Culture and Politics in Asia Pacific. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2005.

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    A critical examination of the “Chineseness” in Hong Kong’s visual culture. Chapters on film and television subtitles, masculine subjectivity, transnationalization of the local, Charlie Chan and Jackie Chan, racial passing, and new trans-Chinese cinema.

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  • Marchetti, Gina, and Tan See Kam, eds. Hong Kong Film, Hollywood and the New Global Cinema: No Film Is an Island. Media, Culture, and Social Change in Asia. New York: Routledge, 2007.

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    This anthology tracks the transnational, multidirectional flows of Hong Kong film around the world, extending attention beyond Hollywood to places like Australia and Thailand and addressing issues of genres, distribution, marketing, and tourism.

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  • Yau, Esther C. M., ed. At Full Speed: Hong Kong Cinema in a Borderless World. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2001.

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    Yau’s anthology focuses on the transnational dimension of contemporary Hong Kong cinema and addresses various directors (Ann Hui, Tsui Hark, Stanley Kwan, Wong Kar-wai, John Woo) and topics (nostalgia, overseas reception). The introduction confronts issues of globalization and Hong Kong.

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Taiwan

Historical overviews are available in Lu 1998 as well as the first two chapters of Yeh and Davis 2005, while Hong 2010 and Wicks 2009 direct attention to the pre-New Cinema productions of the 1950s–1970s. Berry and Lu 2005, Braester and Huang 2003, and Davis and Chen 2007 are three anthologies focusing on critical issues and individual directors/films in Taiwan New Cinema of the 1980s–1990s, but Kellner 1998 differs from them with its emphasis on the uniqueness of Taiwan style in world cinema.

  • Berry, Chris, and Feii Lu, eds. Island on the Edge: Taiwan New Cinema and After. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2005.

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    This anthology tackles issues problematized in Taiwan New Cinema from the early 1980s onward. Each article here focuses on an individual film, so the anthology makes a good textbook for Taiwan cinema.

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  • Braester, Yomi, and Nicole Huang, eds. Special Issue: Taiwan Film. Modern Chinese Literature and Culture 15.1 (Spring 2003).

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    A rare special issue devoted exclusively to Taiwan cinema that addresses topics of urban demolition, displacement, neocolonialism, globalization, and popular cinema.

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  • Davis, Darrell William, and Ru-Shou Robert Chen, eds. Cinema Taiwan: Politics, Popularity and State of the Arts. London: Routledge, 2007.

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    Like Berry and Lu 2005, this anthology includes articles dealing with various aspects of Taiwan New Cinema and beyond, including documentary, realism, urban cinema, film festivals, auteurist style, and narration.

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  • Hong, Guo-Juin, ed. Special Issue: Taiwan Cinema before New Cinema 1982. Journal of Chinese Cinemas 4.1 (March 2010).

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    This timely special issue on pre-1980s Taiwan cinema moves beyond the concentration of scholarship on the New Cinema by returning to key players (Bai Jinrui, Qiong Yao) and issues (healthy realism) that dominated the 1960s–1970s. Available online to subscribers.

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  • Kellner, Douglas. “New Taiwan Cinema in the 80s.” Jump Cut 42 (1998): 101–115.

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    An early discussion from a film studies specialist outlining the significance of the aesthetics of New Taiwan Cinema in world film history.

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  • Lu, Feiyi. Taiwan dianying: zhengzhi, jingji, meixue 1949–1994. Dian Ying Guan 81. Taipei: Yuanliu, 1998.

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    This Chinese book is a balanced account of the development of Taiwan cinema in the second half of the 20th century, paying equal attention to textual and contextual issues and carrying useful information in its extensive tables of statistics.

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  • Wicks, James. “Two Stage Brothers: Tracing a Common Heritage in Early Films by Xie Jin and Li Xing.” Modern Chinese Literature and Culture 21.1 (Spring 2009): 174–212.

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    A rare comparative study of two popular Chinese directors whose careers were separated by the geopolitics of the cold war but whose films exhibit similar aesthetic features traceable to Shanghai cinema of the 1930s.

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  • Yeh, Emilie Yueh-Yu, and Darrell William Davis. Taiwan Film Directors: A Treasure Island. Film and Culture. New York: Columbia University Press, 2005.

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    A detailed analysis of leading Taiwan New Cinema directors—Edward Yang, Hou Hsiao-hsien, Ang Lee, and Tsai Ming-liang—preceded by two historical chapters.

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Diaspora, Sinophone, Transregional

This subsection explores connections between Chinese cinema and Chinese diaspora or Sinophone films in other regions. Chan 2009 addresses Hollywood remakes, while Shih 2007 theorizes the Sinophone as a new model. Kleinhans 2007 and Marchetti 2006 both track the transnational flows of Chinese screen products around the world.

  • Chan, Kenneth. Remade in Hollywood: The Global Chinese Presence in Transnational Cinemas. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2009.

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    Concentrating on transnational flows between Chinese film and Hollywood, the book contains chapters on the Chinese diasporic responses to Hong Kong’s 1997 handover, the global interest in martial arts, and Hollywood’s play with Sino-chic through its remakes and borrowings.

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  • Kleinhans, Chuck, ed. Special Issue: China and China Diaspora Film—A New Stage. Jump Cut 49 (Spring 2007).

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    A special issue exploring issues problematized by films from Fruit Chan, Stephen Chow, Wong Kar-wai, and Zhang Yimou, as well as Hong Kong films of the 1950s–1960s and questions of Sinophone cinema, independent filmmaking, and cultural globalization.

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  • Marchetti, Gina. From Tian’anmen to Times Square: Transnational China and the Chinese Diaspora on Global Screens, 1989–1997. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2006.

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    Like Marchetti and Tan 2007 (cited under Thematic Exploration of Hong Kong Cinema), this book views Chinese cinema from a global perspective, tracing its transnational, diasporic formation over a century. Chapter topics include consumer culture, diasporic filmmakers, working women, and postmodern Singapore.

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  • Shih, Shu-mei. Visuality and Identity: Sinophone Articulations across the Pacific. Asia Pacific Modern. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007.

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    An ambitious attempt to redefine the geopolitical maps of China studies, ethnic studies, and area studies by theorizing the Sinophone as an interdisciplinary, translocal practice outside China. Some chapters discuss Ang Lee and Fruit Chan, while others examine artworks and television programs.

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In Relation to Asian and World Cinema

This subsection examines Chinese cinema in relation to regional cinema and rethinks issues of world cinema. While Davis and Yeh 2008 concentrates on specific industries, Hunt and Leung 2008 aims at exploring mutual connections. Lau 2003 and Eleftheriotis and Needham 2006 both place Chinese cinema in the Asian context. Except for Yau 2010, most of these works focus on the contemporary period, but their frameworks may not be comparative.

  • Davis, Darrell William, and Emilie Yueh-yu Yeh. East Asian Screen Industries. International Screen Industries. London: British Film Institute, 2008.

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    A succinct account of film industries and markets in China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, along with Korea and Japan, focusing mostly on recent decades and transnational flows within East Asia.

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  • Hunt, Leon, and Leung Wing-fai, eds. East Asian Cinemas: Exploring Transnational Connections on Film. Tauris World Cinema series. London: I. B. Tauris, 2008.

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    This anthology covers a wide range of topics, such as Hollywood and the Hong Kong musical of the 1950s–1960s, Hong Kong cinema and world cinema, Hollywood remakes of Asian hits, as well as the impact of gatekeeper auteurs Tarantino and Besson.

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  • Lau, Jenny Kwok Wah, ed. Multiple Modernities: Cinemas and Popular Media in Transcultural East Asia. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2003.

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    Lau’s anthology contains chapters on the Sixth Generation, rock culture, postmodernism, alternative arts, action cinema, and gender performance in China and Hong Kong as well as East Asia’s impacts on the American imaginary.

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  • Eleftheriotis, Dimitris, and Gary Needham, eds. Asian Cinemas: A Reader and Guide. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2006.

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    Contains sections devoted to films from Japan, Hong Kong (focused on the New Wave and kung fu), China (focused on gender, ethnicity, and theory), Turkey, Indian, Taiwan (focused on Hou Hsia-hsien, Edward Yang, and Ang Lee), as well as Bruce Lee as a case of stardom (focused on narcissism, cult, race, and masculinity).

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  • Yau, Kinnia Shuk-ting. Japanese and Hong Kong Film Industries: Understanding the Origins of East Asian Film Networks. Routledge Studies in the Modern History of Asia 57. London: Routledge, 2010.

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    The first English book to track Japanese and Hong Kong film connections through the 20th century, paying particular attention to wartime Japanese operations in China and postwar collaboration in Hong Kong.

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Nation and Nationalism

While Dissanayake 1994 problematizes issues of nationhood, Lu 1997 departs from the national cinema model by instilling a transnational perspective, which is further expanded in Berry and Farquhar 2006 as well as Pang and Berry 2008. Yip 2004 similarly challenges the nation-state in Taiwan. In addition, works on nationhood, nationalism, and national cinema are often found in anthologies, journals, and monographs (e.g., Zhang 2004, cited under Textbooks).

  • Berry, Chris, and Mary Ann Farquhar. China on Screen: Cinema and Nation. Film and Culture. New York: Columbia University Press, 2006.

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    The authors argue for a switch from national cinema to cinema and the national, a new conception of the national as projects undertaken in different historical periods and geopolitical contexts. Its topics range from genre (opera, martial arts, melodrama) to gender and ethnicity.

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  • Dissanayake, Wimal, ed. Colonialism and Nationalism in Asian Cinema. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1994.

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    Two chapters on Chinese cinema, respectively dealing with the national allegory in China and the reimagined nationhood in Taiwan.

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  • Lu, Sheldon Hsiao-Peng, ed. Transnational Chinese Cinemas: Identity, Nationhood, Gender. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1997.

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    This anthology signifies the turn from the national cinema model to that of transnational film studies, with selected works on China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, mostly addressing contemporary films.

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  • Pang, Laikwan, and Chris Berry, eds. Special Issue: Transnational Chinese Cinemas. Journal of Chinese Cinemas 2.1 (Spring 2008).

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    A special issue interrogating “Chineseness” and the necessity of pluralizing “Chinese cinemas” and examining aspects of transnationalization, renationalization through blockbuster filmmaking, and diasporic formations like Malaysian Chinese cinema.

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  • Yip, June. Envisioning Taiwan: Fiction, Cinema, and the Nation in the Cultural Imaginary. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2004.

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    Yip’s critical book deals with Taiwan literature and film. Chapter 2 focuses on Taiwan New Cinema in terms of postmodernity, and chapter 4 covers Hou Hsiao-hsien’s Taiwan trilogy in terms of memory.

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Auteurs and Films

Many edited anthologies and single-authored books contain focused studies on individual directors and their representative films. The following subsections feature a few auteurs who have received the most attention in book-length studies in English. Further information is available in MCLC Resource Centers: Media, cited under Reference Works.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien

The world-renowned leading figure of Taiwan New Cinema, Hou Hsiao-hsien, has appeared in almost all journals, anthologies, and monographs dealing with Taiwan cinema. Frodon and Assayas 1999 is an early book devoted to Hou. Chen, et al. 2008 and Lin, et al. 2000 are collections of critical articles, while Ma 2010 deals in part with the concept of time in Hou’s films. Udden 2009 explores Hou’s film style, and Reynaud 2002 analyzes Hou’s most historically significant film.

Jia Zhangke

Among China’s Sixth Generation directors who have navigated between underground and independent filmmaking, Jia Zhangke has received most attention in recent years. Berry 2009 analyzes Jia’s first trilogy, Cui 2006 places him in the independent group, Wang 2007 tackles the question of realism, and Zhang 2010 offers a perceptive overview of Jia’s significance.

  • Berry, Michael. Xiao Wu, Platform, Unknown Pleasures: Jia Zhangke’s “Hometown Trilogy.” BFI Film Classics. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009.

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    A title in BFI Film Classics, this small book offers a critical reading of Jia Zhangke’s first three independent films and includes an interview. A good textbook.

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  • Cui, Shuqin. “Negotiating In-Between: On New-Generation Filmmaking and Jia Zhangke’s Films.” Modern Chinese Literature and Culture 18.2 (Fall 2006): 98–130.

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    An analysis of Jia Zhangke’s early films in the context of the emergent independent filmmaking in contemporary China.

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  • Wang, Ban. “Epic Narrative, Authenticity, and the Memory of Realism: Reflections on Jia Zhangke’s Platform.” In Re-envisioning the Chinese Revolution: The Politics and Poetics of Collective Memories in Reform China. Edited by Ching Kwan Lee and Guobin Yang, 193–216. Washington, DC: Woodrow Wilson Center, 2007.

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    A critical discussion of how realism is radically refashioned by a leading director of China’s Sixth Generation to retrieve different traces of authenticity and memory.

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  • Zhang, Xudong. “Poetics of Vanishing: The Cinema of Jia Zhangke.” New Left Review 63 (May–June 2010): 71–88.

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    A good overview of Jia Zhangke with attention to the trope of disappearance, documentary aesthetics, and the social environment of China’s xiancheng (county-level city).

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Ang Lee

As a Chinese and Chinese-American director, Ang Lee has received much attention in journals, anthologies, and monographs. Dilley 2007 analyzes Lee’s major films, Lee 2008 focuses on a controversial Chinese production, and Schamus 2004 defends Lee’s aesthetic in a globally popular martial arts film. White 2007 offers a variety of engaging views on Lee’s Brokeback Mountain, while Needham 2010 evaluates the same film in relation to the American indie film tradition.

Tsai Ming-Liang

Like Hou Hsiao-hsien, Tsai Ming-liang is another favorite Taiwan director who has received substantial critical attention overseas, often discussed in terms of time, space, and sexuality. Apart from the delineation of Tsai’s aesthetics in Joyard, et al. 1999, Lim 2007 revisits auteur theory, and Martin 2007 illustrates the relevance of Tsai’s works to film theory and social issues.

Wong Kar-Wai

An internationally renowned Hong Kong director, Wong Kar-wai has received much critical attention, often in terms of time, space, and sexuality. While Brunette 2005 and Lalanne, et al. 1997 represent a widespread appreciation of Wong’s film aesthetics internationally, Teo 2005 studies Wong’s major films one by one.

John Woo

A Hong Kong action film director who made it successfully into Hollywood, John Woo has received critical attention, often in terms of his screen masculinity. While Elder 2005 provides a good source of interviews, Bliss 2002 and Hall 1999 contain analyses of Woo’s individual films.

Zhang Yimou

A representative of China’s Fifth Generation directors, Zhang Yimou appeared in most publications on postsocialist cinema and has been linked to blockbuster films of the new century. Gateward 2001 contains assorted interviews, Larson 1995 summarizes Zhang’s early films, and Rawnsley and Rawnsley 2010 investigates Zhang’s recent turn toward blockbuster filmmaking.

  • Gateward, Frances, ed. Zhang Yimou: Interviews. Conversations with Filmmakers series. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2001.

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    Several interviews with Zhang Yimou from various occasions.

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  • Larson, Wendy. “Zhang Yimou: Inter/National Aesthetics and Erotics.” In Cultural Encounters: China, Japan, and the West: Essays Commemorating 25 Years of East Asian Studies at the University of Aarhus. Edited by Soren Clausen, Roy Starrs, and Anne Wedell-Wedellsborg, 215–226. Aarhus, Denmark: Aarhus University Press, 1995.

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    This critical article delineates the narrative pattern as well as visual and ideological attraction of Zhang Yimou’s films up to the early 1990s, especially his “red trilogy.”

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  • Rawnsley, Gary D., and Ming-Yeh T. Rawnsley, eds. Global Chinese Cinema: The Culture and Politics of Hero. Media, Culture, and Social Change in Asia 18. London: Routledge, 2010.

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    An anthology examining various aspects of Zhang Yimou’s controversial blockbusters, such as nationalism, masculinity, stardom, genre, music, visual effects, and reception.

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Gender and Sexuality

Cui 2003 and Kaplan 1991 both work on male representation of women, while Dai 2002 contains a chapter on Chinese women directors. Lim 2006 and Martin 2003 both investigate homosexuality, and Pang and Wong 2005 focuses on masculinity in Hong Kong.

  • Cui, Shuqin. Women through the Lens: Gender and Nation in a Century of Chinese Cinema. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2003.

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    A comprehensive examination of gender issues in Chinese film history with close readings of individual films by Xie Jin, Chen Kaige, Zhang Yimou, Hu Mei, and Huang Shuqin, as well as Stanley Kwan.

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  • Dai, Jinhua. Cinema and Desire: Feminist Marxism and Cultural Studies in the Work of Dai Jinhua. Edited by Jing Wang and Tani E. Barlow. London: Verso, 2002.

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    Translated essays from a leading feminist critic in China offer insights into Fifth and Sixth Generation directors, women filmmakers, and the changing cultural scenes in the 1990s.

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  • Kaplan, E. Ann. “Problematizing Cross-Cultural Analysis: The Case of Women in the Recent Chinese Cinema.” In Perspectives on Chinese Cinema. 2d ed. Edited by Chris Berry, 141–155. London: British Film Institute, 1991.

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    This early theoretical intervention exposes the dangers of cross-cultural criticism and highlights gender representation as a key to understanding Chinese cinema.

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  • Lim, Song Hwee. Celluloid Comrades: Representations of Male Homosexuality in Contemporary Chinese Cinemas. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2006.

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    The first book-length study of male homosexuality as represented in films from Chen Kaige, Stanley Kwan, Ang Lee, Tsai Ming-liang, Wong Kar-wai, and Zhang Yuan.

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  • Martin, Fran. Situating Sexualities: Queer Representation in Taiwanese Fiction, Film and Public Culture. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2003.

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    A critical book that renegotiates terms of the national, the global, and the local in Taiwan and offers readings of homosexuality, queer cultures, and urban space in films like The Wedding Banquet and The River.

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  • Pang, Laikwan, and Day Wong, eds. Masculinities and Hong Kong Cinema. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2005.

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    Twelve essays on various aspects of screen masculinity from Hong Kong and their production, circulation, and reception around the world from the 1960s onward.

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Genres and Types

Genre issues are frequently explored in connection with Hong Kong cinema and included in various anthologies, while emerging documentary studies tend to focus on China.

Action and Martial Arts

The most internationally popular genre from Chinese cinema, martial arts films have received much attention recently. While most books in this subsection concentrate on contemporary Hong Kong, Teo 2009 introduces earlier practices in Shanghai. Bordwell 2000 presents a compelling analysis of major Hong Kong directors of the genre. Ho and Ho 2002 focuses on Tsui Hark, Hunt 2003 investigates star images, and Morris, et al. 2006 places the martial arts genre in a larger category of action cinema.

  • Bordwell, David. Planet Hong Kong: Popular Cinema and the Art of Entertainment. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2000.

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    Bordwell focuses on major Hong Kong directors of action and martial arts and offers detailed analysis of aesthetic features and stylistic accomplishments.

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  • Ho, Sam, and Wai-leng Ho, eds. The Swordsman and His Jianghu: Tsui Hark and Hong Kong Film. Hong Kong: Hong Kong Film Archive, 2002.

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    Articles on numerous aspects of Tsui Hark’s film, especially his contribution to Hong Kong action cinema.

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  • Hunt, Leon. Kung Fu Cult Masters: From Bruce Lee to Crouching Tiger. London: Wallflower, 2003.

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    The author examines various aspects of the kung fu fever around the world, focusing on Hong Kong but including transnational and diasporic scenes. Topics range from masculinity, femininity, and kung fu comedy, to digital reproduction.

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  • Morris, Meaghan, Siu Leung Li, and Stephen Ching-Kiu Chan, eds. Hong Kong Connections: Transnational Imagination in Action Cinema. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2006.

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    This anthology represents the first comprehensive effort to read Hong Kong action cinema through the latest theoretical lenses, tracing connections to Japan, Korea, India, France, and Hollywood and tackling issues such as identity, race, and embodiment.

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  • Teo, Stephen. Chinese Martial Arts Cinema: The Wuxia Tradition. Traditions in World Cinema. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2009.

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    An historical account of wuxia narratives from literature to cinema, with particular attention to reactions against the genre, its traditions from Wong Fei-hong to Bruce Lee, King Hu, and beyond, as well as questions of nationalism and transnationalism.

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Documentary

Scholarship on Chinese documentary has only recently begun to appear in English. While Chu 2007 approaches the subject mostly from an institutional perspective, Berry, et al. 2010 and Lü 2003 evaluate the significance of Chinese independent documentary.

  • Berry, Chris, Xinyu Lü, and Lisa Rofel, eds. The New Chinese Documentary Film Movement: For the Public Record. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2010.

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    The first English anthology devoted exclusively to the new documentary from China, it includes historical information (updated on Lü 2003) and critical interpretations.

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  • Chu, Yingchi. Chinese Documentaries: From Dogma to Polyphony. Media, Culture, and Social Change in Asia 8. London: Routledge, 2007.

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    This book traces the history of Chinese documentary but focuses on the recent media reform that has opened up the space for television documentary as well as independent documentary. It is more institutional analysis than textual interpretation.

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  • Lü, Xinyu. Jilu Zhongguo: Dangdai Zhongguo xin jilu yundong. Beijing: Sanlian, 2003.

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    A Chinese book with a critical introduction and extensive interviews with major players in what the author calls the new documentary movement. It generated public interest in China and has led the author to projects like Berry, et al. 2010.

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Melodrama

Melodrama is often explored in connection with subjectivity in Chinese films of the 1980s, as in Browne 1994, Dissaynayake 1993, and Ma 1994. But Teo 2006 breaks new ground by linking “melodrama” to a longstanding Chinese wenyi “genre.”

  • Browne, Nick. “Society and Subjectivity: On the Political Economy of Chinese Melodrama.” In New Chinese Cinemas: Forms, Identities, Politics. Edited by Nick Browne, Paul G. Pickowicz, Vivian Sobchack, and Esther Yau, 40–56. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1994.

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    Like Kaplan 1991 (cited under Gender and Sexuality), this article summarizes Western theories of melodrama and uses Xie Jin’s films of the 1980s as an example of political melodrama to tackle issues of subjectivity in post-Mao China.

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  • Dissaynayake, Wimal, ed. Melodrama and Asian Cinema. Cambridge Studies in Film. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1993.

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    This anthology contains articles addressing the relevance of Western theories to Chinese cinema, The Goddess from the 1930s, Chinese family melodrama of the 1980s and, also during that decade, melodrama as a mode of historical understanding.

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  • Ma, Ning. “Spatiality and Subjectivity in Xie Jin’s Film Melodrama of the New Period.” In New Chinese Cinemas. Edited by Nick Browne, Paul G. Pickowicz, Vivian Sobchak, and Esther Yau, 15–39. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1994.

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    A semiotic analysis of spatial compositions in post-Mao films and their cultural significance in a transitional period.

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  • Teo, Stephen. “Chinese Melodrama.” In Traditions in World Cinema. Edited by Linda Badley, R. Barton Palmer, and Steven Jay Schneider, 203–213. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2006.

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    Teo argues that what is known in Chinese as wenyi pian is a special type of melodrama that has persisted through the entire history of Chinese cinema in different geopolitical contexts.

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Industry and Market

As with genre, works on industry and market are often related to Hong Kong cinema and collected in various anthologies, although recently more attention has been given to China (see, for instance, Zhu and Rosen 2010, cited under Anthologies). While Chen 2000 provides a rich source of statistics for Hong Kong, Fu 2008 revisits the Shaw movie empire and its diasporic networks. The Shaw Brothers is one of three studios that receive individual attention in Wong 2002, Wong 2003, and Wong 2006. Zhu 2003 is an overview of the industry reform in China since the 1980s, and Yin 2007 tracks such reform measures through the 1990s into the new century. Finally, Pickowicz and Johnson 2009 directs attention to the neglected topic of Chinese film exhibition.

  • Chen, Qingwei. Xianggang dianying gongye jiegou ji shichang fenxi. Hong Kong: Dianying shuangzhoukan Chubanshe, 2000.

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    This Chinese book contains a great deal of information and statistics related to the Hong Kong film industry and its market. Topics include directors, genres, stars, studios, and box office in various categories.

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  • Fu, Poshek, ed. China Forever: The Shaw Brothers and Diasporic Cinema. Popular Culture and Politics in Asia Pacific. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2008.

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    An anthology that explores the Hong Kong film giant from different perspectives, tracking its transregional industry practices (North America, Southeast Asia) and its major genres (kung fu, musical, wenyi).

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  • Pickowicz, Paul G., and Matthew D. Johnson, eds. Special Issue: Exhibiting Chinese Cinemas, Reconstructing Reception. Journal of Chinese Cinemas 3.2 (June 2009).

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    A special issue on film exhibition in prewar China, interwar New York, wartime Chongqing, the socialist international block of the 1950s–1970s, and contemporary transnational flows. Available online to subscribers.

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  • Wong, Ain-ling, ed. The Cathay Story. Hong Kong: Hong Kong Film Archive, 2002.

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    Also available in a separate Chinese edition, this anthology explores a film giant rivaling the Shaw Brothers in the 1950s–1960s and includes short articles, biographies, filmographies, and glossaries pairing pinyin romanization, Chinese characters, and English names for easy reference.

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  • Wong, Ain-ling, ed. The Shaw Screen: A Preliminary Study. Hong Kong: Hong Kong Film Archive, 2003.

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    Before Fu 2008, this anthology was the first English anthology to explore the Shaw Brothers movie empire and, like Wong 2002, it is available in a separate Chinese edition, titled Shaoshi dianying chutan.

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  • Wong, Ain-ling, ed. The Glorious Modernity of Kong Ngee. Hong Kong: Hong Kong Film Archive, 2006.

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    This anthology investigates a major Hong Kong studio and, like Wong 2002 and Wong 2003, it is available in a separate Chinese edition, titled Xiandai wansui: Guangyi de dushi Fenghua.

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  • Yin, Hong. Kuayue bainian: quanqiuhua Beijing xiade Zhongguo dianying. Beijing: Qinghua Daxue Chubanshe, 2007.

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    Presenting the best of recent Chinese film industry research, the author tracks changes in cultural policy and film productions in response to Hollywood, listing annual market reports from 2002 to 2006, as well as case studies of independent filmmaking, Feng Xiaogang’s commercial cinema, and Zhang Yimou’s The House of Flying Daggers.

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  • Zhu, Ying. Chinese Cinema during the Era of Reform: The Ingenuity of the System. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2003.

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    One of the earliest book-length explorations of Chinese film industry since the 1980s, Zhu examines its systematic transformation in terms of cultural policy and New Wave filmmaking.

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Urban Cinema

A relatively new topic in Chinese film studies, urban cinema emerged in the late 1980s and has been a dominant trend of filmmaking in China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Braester 2010 and Visser 2010 both bring Chinese cinema and the city together, while Braester and Tweedie 2010 places the same topic in an East Asian context.

  • Braester, Yomi. Painting the City Red: Chinese Cinema and the Urban Contract. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010.

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    Braester explores the imbrication of cinema and the city in China since the mid-20th century and analyzes the cinematic (including documentary) and the postcinematic in anticipation of the postspatial (video gaming).

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  • Braester, Yomi, and James Tweedie, eds. Cinema at the City’s Edge: Film and Urban Networks in East Asia. TransAsia: Screen Cultures. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2010.

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    This anthology offers innovative works on the city in East Asia, exploring affective space, ghost town, mirror image, experimental video, and exhibition venues.

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  • Visser, Robin. Cities Surround the Countryside: Urban Aesthetics in Post-Socialist China. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010.

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    Along with art, fiction, and urban design, cinema aids in the study of the postsocialist city in China, especially Beijing and Shanghai.

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Film and Other Arts

This section explores the relationships between Chinese cinema and other arts such as fiction, poetry, painting, and avant-garde art. Deppman 2010 approaches film and literature, Lin 2009 connects film and art, and Erlich and Desser 1994 explores film and traditional aesthetics. While Silbergeld 1999 reads Chinese films via art history, Lu 2002 includes other visual practices.

  • Deppman, Hsiu-Chuang. Adapted for the Screen: The Cultural Politics of Modern Chinese Fiction and Film. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2010.

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    The first book-length study in English of adaptation and interaction between modern Chinese fiction and film sheds light on the aesthetic as well as the ideological dimensions of cross-media practices. It covers authors and directors from China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, including Eileen Chang, Zhang Yimou, and Zhu Tianwen.

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  • Erlich, Linda, and David Desser, eds. Cinematic Landscapes: Observations on the Visual Arts and Cinema of China and Japan. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1994.

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    The anthology’s China section represents a rare collective attempt at examining Chinese cinema from the perspective of traditional Chinese aesthetics. A good source for inter-arts studies.

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  • Lin, Xiaoping. Children of Marx and Coca-Cola: Chinese Avant-garde Art and Independent Cinema. Critical Interventions. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2009.

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    This book investigates two areas of unofficial cultural production in contemporary China: avant-garde art and independent filmmaking. It includes chapters on the Sixth Generation and the works of its key member, Jia Zhangke.

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  • Lu, Sheldon H. China, Transnational Visuality, Global Postmodernity. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2002.

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    A theoretical book divided into four parts, addressing theory, cinema, avant-garde art, and popular culture, respectively. A few chapters analyze Zhou Xiaowen’s Ermo, Hong Kong female action stars, and television soap operas in China.

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  • Silbergeld, Jerome. China into Film: Frames of Reference in Contemporary Chinese Cinema. Envisioning Asia. London: Reaktion, 1999.

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    The author adds a critical voice from art history and takes Western theory to task by engaging visual interpretations informed by traditional Chinese art and aesthetics, with ample comparisons between traditional Chinese painting and contemporary Chinese film.

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Film and Other Media

This section situates Chinese cinema in relation to the changing global media culture and examines issues such as intellectual property and new media technologies. Like Lu 2002 (cited under Film and Other Arts), Lu 2007 continues to investigate film along with literature and visual culture. Pang 2006 touches on policy issues, while Voci 2010 and Yue and Leung 2009 venture into new modes of screen culture and new media platforms.

  • Lu, Sheldon H. Chinese Modernity and Global Bio-Politics: Studies in Literature and Visual Culture. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2007.

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    Lu examines biopolitical issues in postsocialist China and offers chapters on memory and nostalgia in film and television; dialect and the Sinophone; and urban space in cinema, photography, and video.

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  • Pang, Laikwan. Cultural Control and Globalization in Asia: Copyright, Piracy, and Cinema. Media, Culture, and Social Change in Asia 3. New York: Routledge, 2006.

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    A provocative book with chapters problematizing issues of copyright, piracy, and globalization’s impact on the nation-state.

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  • Voci, Paola. China on Video: Smaller-Screen Realities. Asia’s Transformations. New York: Routledge, 2010.

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    This is the first book to extend critical attention beyond the big screen to various small screens, including videos and cell phones, with particular attention to documentary and experimental productions.

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  • Yue, Audrey, and Helen Hok-sze Leung, eds. Special Issue: Chinese Cinemas as New Media. Journal of Chinese Cinemas 3.1 (June 2009).

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    This special issue investigates Chinese cinema in relation to new media platforms, such as streaming digital cinema, massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORG), as well as new problems of DV culture, digitization of films, and Internet sex scandals.

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LAST MODIFIED: 10/28/2011

DOI: 10.1093/OBO/9780199791286-0016

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