Undergraduate Research & Scholarships

Qiyue Zhao L&S Arts & Humanities

Rewriting the Female Form: Heterogeneity in the 1980s Chinese Cinema

The 1980s witnessed the rise of Women’s Studies in China as a critical response to previous female construction defined by ungendered socialist labor. Female corporeality became a charged field for allegory, anticipation, and criticism. This change projected onto the cinematic screen and brought new female figures beyond associations with the historically dominant socialist developmental propaganda. However, instead of receding into the background, such developmentalism enjoyed a neoliberal and capitalistic transformation. What complicated the screen was the entanglement between the heterogeneous representations of female liberation and an alternative force of neoliberal progressivism that shaped China’s (trans)formation. My project traces the coevality of these two ostensibly contesting narratives. While one continued to privilege developmental realism as national storytelling, integrating femininity into its agenda, the other espoused the novel imaginations of defiant and diversified female bodies. How did these two narratives push the boundaries of each other? Would such interaction lead to a new understanding of female corporeality and feminist discourse?

Message To Sponsor

I'd like to sincerely thank you for your generous support of my research project. The funding will enable me to continually pursue my interests and grow as a researcher through practical engagement. Without your support, my research can't explore its current depth.
Major: Film & Media and Gender and Women's Studies
Mentor: Andrew Jones
Sponsor: Anselm A&H Fund
Back to Listings
Back to Donor Reports