Lecture to Explore Politics, Passion in Chinese Film

Sept. 9, 2008

Few pursuits are more public than politics, or more private than love.

A Confucius Institute lecture next week will explain how these seemingly disparate themes work together in the Chinese cinematic tradition.

The Institute will present Ban Wang, Stanford professor of Chinese literature and culture, in a public lecture, “What Love Has Got to Do with Politics: Passion and Love in Chinese Film,” on Wednesday, Sept. 17. The lecture is at 7:30 p.m. in the Jonsson Performance Hall.

Drawing examples from Chinese films, Wang challenges the view that private affection and political structures are themes played out in entirely different spheres.

“I argue that private love may find a public or political way of working itself out,” Wang says.

“When love becomes love of one’s community, of one’s fellow countrymen, of one’s flag and anthem, it does not automatically mean that the individual’s love is sacrificed for an empty or crude political feeling or duty,” he says. “It very often means individual love is enlarged, becomes richer with political consciousness; one can enjoy one’s country as oneself, as one’s own body.”

Wang is a professor of Chinese literature at Stanford University. He received a Ph.D. in comparative literature at UCLA. In addition to his research on Chinese and comparative literature, he has written on English and French literature, psychoanalysis, international politics and cinema. He has also taught at Beijing Foreign Studies University, SUNY-Stony Brook, Harvard University and Rutgers University.

Admission is free. Jonsson Performance Hall is near Drive C on the UT Dallas campus.

Media Contact: Karah Hosek, UT Dallas, 972-883-4329, [email protected]
or the Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected]

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The Confucius Institute of the University of Texas at Dallas was established to develop a mutually beneficial relationship with China Three Gorges University and to enhance understanding of Chinese language and culture.

The Institute promotes international communication and understanding through programs uniquely appropriate to its structure and environment.


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June 21, 2018