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The Travelling of Ten Years: Imagined Spectatorships and Readerships of Hong Kong’s Local


Wu, Helena (2018). The Travelling of Ten Years: Imagined Spectatorships and Readerships of Hong Kong’s Local. Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies, 20(8):1121-1136.

Abstract

The omnibus production Ten Years is indubitably one of the most controversial films produced locally in post-millennial Hong Kong. Collaborated by five directors, the film portrays Hong Kong in ten years’ time through different imaginary scenarios in respect of political order, the demolition of familiar neighbourhoods, the marginalization of Cantonese language and culture, the authority’s violent suppression of dissent, and the strict implementation of censorship and state ideology. Greg Urban’s theory of “metaculture” provides a useful theoretical framework upon which my analysis of the circulation of Ten Years and its reception is based. With reference to how culture moves, I examine in this essay Ten Years as a cultural object and its travelling as a series of cultural movements. Inspired by Urban’s emphasis on the meta-level, I probe into not just the circulation of the film, but also how the circulation of the film is interpreted. Amidst the divided opinions and mixed criticisms on the film as well as its circulation, I locate what I call “imagined spectatorship” in the trajectories that are undertaken by the film across different textual and material realms. Inspired by Hans Robert Jauss’s reception theory and Benedict Anderson’s “imagined community”, the notion of “imagined spectatorship” offers a critical reflection on the actual effects generated by the travelling of Ten Years. In order to uncover the underlying forces in fuelling these rhizomatic trajectories and contrary readings, I explore at the intersection point of different “imagined spectatorships” the varying readerships of what one calls “local” in post-millennial Hong Kong. Finally, the travelling of Ten Years allows us to review Ackbar Abbas’s concept of “dis-appearance” in the context of post-handover Hong Kong.

Abstract

The omnibus production Ten Years is indubitably one of the most controversial films produced locally in post-millennial Hong Kong. Collaborated by five directors, the film portrays Hong Kong in ten years’ time through different imaginary scenarios in respect of political order, the demolition of familiar neighbourhoods, the marginalization of Cantonese language and culture, the authority’s violent suppression of dissent, and the strict implementation of censorship and state ideology. Greg Urban’s theory of “metaculture” provides a useful theoretical framework upon which my analysis of the circulation of Ten Years and its reception is based. With reference to how culture moves, I examine in this essay Ten Years as a cultural object and its travelling as a series of cultural movements. Inspired by Urban’s emphasis on the meta-level, I probe into not just the circulation of the film, but also how the circulation of the film is interpreted. Amidst the divided opinions and mixed criticisms on the film as well as its circulation, I locate what I call “imagined spectatorship” in the trajectories that are undertaken by the film across different textual and material realms. Inspired by Hans Robert Jauss’s reception theory and Benedict Anderson’s “imagined community”, the notion of “imagined spectatorship” offers a critical reflection on the actual effects generated by the travelling of Ten Years. In order to uncover the underlying forces in fuelling these rhizomatic trajectories and contrary readings, I explore at the intersection point of different “imagined spectatorships” the varying readerships of what one calls “local” in post-millennial Hong Kong. Finally, the travelling of Ten Years allows us to review Ackbar Abbas’s concept of “dis-appearance” in the context of post-handover Hong Kong.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Asian and Oriental Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:180 Ancient, medieval & eastern philosophy
290 Other religions
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > History
Social Sciences & Humanities > Anthropology
Language:English
Date:2018
Deposited On:06 Dec 2018 13:53
Last Modified:29 Jul 2020 08:16
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:1369-801X
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/1369801X.2018.1460220

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