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Cosmopolitan Cinema: Imagining the Cross-cultural in East Asian Film

Cosmopolitan Cinema: Imagining the Cross-cultural in East Asian Film
Felicia Chan

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Films are produced, reviewed and watched worldwide, often circulating between cultural contexts. The book explores cosmopolitanism and its debates through the lens of East Asian cinemas from Hong Kong, China, Malaysia and Singapore, throwing doubt on the validity of national cinemas or definitive cultural boundaries. Case studies illuminate the ambiguously gendered star persona of Taiwanese-Hong Kong actress Brigitte Lin, the fictional realism of director Jia Zhangke, the arcane process of selection for the Best Foreign Film Oscar and the intimate connection between cinema and identity in Hirokazu Koreeda s Afterlife (1998). Considering films, their audiences and tastemaking institutions, the book argues that cosmopolitan cinema does not smooth over difference, but rather puts it on display."

Author Info

Felicia Chan is Lecturer in Screen Studies at the University of Manchester, where she was previously Research Councils UK Fellow in Film, Media and Transnational Cultures. She has contributed to the journals Television, Inter-Asia Cultural Studies and New Cinemas: Journal of Contemporary Film, among others, and is co-editor of the collection Genre in Asian Film and Television: New Approaches (2011).


‘Felicia Chan’s book offers a critical reflection on the imperative of acknowledging and embracing difference and foreignness at the interface of cinema’s textual and extra-textual levels. This call for critical cosmopolitanism – rooted in an ethos of “learning to live with paradox” – is especially urgent during these post-Brexit, Trump-triumphant times.’ – Song Hwee Lim, The Chinese University of Hong Kong and author of Tsai Ming-liang and a Cinema of Slowness
‘Cosmopolitan Cinema argues that “world” or transnational cinema is underwritten by the commodification of difference, and articulates a project of cinematic cosmopolitanism based on the critical experience and affective negotiation of linguistic and cultural limits. An admirable book.’ – Pheng Cheah, University of California, Berkeley
‘As much of the world retreats behind national walls, Cosmopolitan Cinema turns to globally recognised East and Southeast Asian films. Its originality lies in the acknowledgement of the pitfalls that can make cosmopolitanism complicit with hubris and neglect of the local, together with a call for critically engaged cosmopolitanism that interrogates how local specificity is globally connected.’ – Chris Berry, King’s College London

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: I.B.Tauris
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.
Series: Tauris World Cinema Series

ISBN: 9781780767222
Publication Date: 27 Apr 2017
Number of Pages: 256
Height: 234
Width: 156
Illustrations: 26 integrated bw

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