European Studies SMLC HKU School of Modern Languages and Cultures HKU

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25 January 2017

SMLC Seminar
“The Slippery are Very Crafty”: The Politics of Translation in David Henry Hwang’s Chinglish

Dr. Grace Wang

25 Jan, 2017 (Wed) 4:30-6:00 pm
Room 4.36, Run Run Shaw Tower, Centennial Campus, HKU

click to see poster

How do we imagine China in the United States, where longstanding Orientalist and Yellow Peril paradigms of structuring Asian difference collide with and become unevenly incorporated into discourses of China’s rise? This talk engages this question through an analysis David Henry Hwang’s play Chinglish. Exploring how the playwright inserts a critical Chinese American perspective into ongoing conversations of U.S.-China relations, the talk examines how Chinglish offers a template of cultural understanding rooted in inaccessibility and the instability of translation.

Grace Wang is Associate Professor of American Studies at the University of California, Davis and is currently a Fulbright Visiting Associate Professor of American Studies at HKU (2016-17). Her research focuses on Asian American literary and expressive cultures, transnationalism, music, and popular culture. She is the author of Soundtracks of Asian America: Navigating Race through Musical Performance (Duke University Press, 2015) and is at work on a new project on transnational Asian American cultural productions.

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