Society of Fellows in the Humanities Lecture Series 2022–2023
I Will Find You a Shanghai Home: A Video Essay Workshop
Date: 6 December 2022 (Tuesday) Time: 4PM (HKT) Delivery: CPD-3.04, 3/F, Run Run Shaw Tower, Centennial Campus, HKU
Details and registration: All are welcome. Please register. https://bit.ly/22SoFSuher
Dylan Suher, Fellow, Society of Fellows in the Humanities, HKU
Discussants: Elizabeth LaCouture, Programme Director, School of Humanities (Gender Studies Programme), HKU
Linda Chiu-han Lai, Associate Professor, School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong
This workshop will center on the screening of “I Will Find You a Private Home: Shanghai Real Estate on Television, 1997–2020,” a video essay work-in-progress by Dylan SUHER on the representation of Shanghai housing in three Chinese television dramas: New 72 Tenants 《新72家房客》(1997), Dwelling Narrowness 《蜗居》(2009), and I Will Find You a Better Home 《安家》(2020). Examined together, these three series, each airing roughly a decade apart, offer insight into the co-production of contemporary Chinese television drama and the neoliberal ideal of a private home, contentions over the meaning of private space and the right to the city, and the virtuality that powers fantasies of a paradoxically private urban life. In the panel discussion following the screening, the essayist will be joined by Elizabeth LACOUTURE, a historian of the home and the quotidian in modern China, and Linda Chiu-han LAI, a transdisciplinary video essayist whose feminist-grounded work explores Hong Kong urbanism and historiography. The panel will address questions of both form and content raised by the video essay: the long history of representations of homes in Chinese media, as well as the potential of – and problems involved with – using video essays and other related digital humanities approaches to communicate research.
Dylan SUHER is a postdoctoral fellow in the Society of Fellows in the Humanities at the University of Hong Kong. His research focuses on the articulation of problems of creative labor and postsocialist culture as problems of media in 1990s China. His work has appeared in Modern Chinese Literature and Culture, Journal of Chinese Cinemas, as well as in Asymptote, The White Review, and Popula.
Elizabeth LACOUTURE is the founding director of the HKU Gender Studies Programme and a historian of modern China. She is the author of the award-winning book Dwelling in the World: Family, House, and Home in Tianjin, China, 1860-1960.
Linda Chiu-han LAI (PhD, NYU Cinema Studies), Associate Professor at the School of Creative Media (CityU, HK), is a transdisciplinary artist, academic, and curator of contemporary media arts. Her video works have been exhibited at the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, Rencontres Internationales Paris/Berlin, Women Make Waves (Taipei), and different experimental film/video festivals. Her video works are archived by M+ and Video Bureau, and D-Normal/V-Essay, an online video zine that innovates on the video essay form, won Ars Electronica’s “State of the ART(ist) 2022” initiative.