“Esther Eng and Other Challenges to Women and World Cinema,” February 4-6, 2016, Columbia University

 

Esther Eng and Other Challenges to Women and World Cinema

A conference co-organized by: M.A. in Film & Media Studies Program, School of the Arts & The Center for the Study of Ethnicity & Race

Columbia University, New York

February 4-6, 2016

Dorothy Arzner has long provided the paradigm for subversive feminist filmmaking and the inspiration for a number of key questions concerning the (in)visibility and agency of female filmmakers in 20th century Hollywood. However, as S. Louisa Wei’s documentary Golden Gate Girls (2013) reveals, Arzner’s contemporary Esther Eng, a Chinese-American, openly-lesbian director, producer, and distributor working in Hong Kong, San Francisco, and New York, offers a new paradigm for world feminist theory and filmmaking. Eng represents an intervention in the study of female film pioneers through the questions that her career poses surrounding immigration and queer theory, Chinese feminism, transnational filmmaking, and more. This conference will celebrate Eng’s legacy and reconsider feminist theory and world cinema in light of her contribution through keynote talks, panels, screenings, and roundtable discussions.  No registration required. 

 

  Esther Eng poster Jpg

 

 

 

 

Wednesday, February 3

Conference “preview” event at New York University, Dept. of Cinema Studies 

(Michelson Theater, 721 Broadway, 6th Floor)

6:15pm- Screening and discussionGolden Gate Girls (dir. S. Louisa Wei, 2013)

 

Thursday, February 4

Columbia University, Dodge Hall, Room 411

12pm-1pm: “How to Make Your Research into a Film”

Lunch/talk with S. Louisa Wei (School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong; Director, Golden Gate Girls)

 

Columbia Faculty House

7:30: Conference Introduction: Eugenia Lean (East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia Univ.)

 

7:30-9:30pm: Sites of Cinema: Round Table                                                                                

Topic: “Esther Eng: Challenges to World Feminism” 

Chair: Zhen Zhang (Cinema Studies, New York University)

Yvonne Tasker (Film and Television Studies, University of East Anglia)

Patricia White (Film and Media Studies, Swarthmore College)

Lingzhen Wang (East Asian Studies, Brown University)

 

Friday, February 5 

Butler Library 522-23- Conference Room

9:30-10:00am: Continental Breakfast/Coffee

 

10:00-11:30am: Keynote #1 

Yvonne Tasker (Film and Television Studies, University of East Anglia)

Introduced by Jane Gaines (Film & Media Studies, Columbia University) 

 

11:45am-1:15pm: Queer Theory and Feminism: How Esther Eng Changes Everything

Chair: Aaron Boalick (Film & Media Studies, Columbia University)

Patricia White (Film and Media Studies, Swarthmore College)

E. K. Tan (Dept. of Cultural Analysis and Theory, Stony Brook University) 

Respondent: Yuka Kanno (Graduate School of Global Studies, Doshisha University)

 

2:45-4:15pm Archival Challenges to Global Feminism

Chair: Kate Saccone (Film & Media Studies, Columbia University)

Paulina Suárez-Hesketh (Cinema Studies, New York University)

Debashree Mukherjee (MESAAS, Columbia University): 

Respondent: Ying Qian (East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia University) 

 

Conference moves from Butler Library across quad to Dodge Hall 

 

4:30-6pm: Round Table Discussion – 511 Dodge Hall, School of the Arts

Topic: “Mapping Transnational Media Diversities”

Chair: Deirdre Boyle (School of Media Studies, The New School)

DeeDee Halleck (Founder, Paper Tiger Television)

Frances Negrón-Muntaner (English and CSER, Columbia University)

S. Louisa Wei  (School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong; Director, 
Golden Gate Girls)
Debra Zimmerman (Executive Director, Women Make Movies)
 

7:30- 9:30pm: Screening – 511 Dodge Hall

Lost in Beijing  (Li Yu, 2007) RT: 112 min

Introduced by Liu Yang (Film and Theater, Nanjing University)

 

Saturday, February 6 

Butler Library 522-23 – Conference Room                                                                                                     

9:00-9:30am: Continental Breakfast/Coffee

 

9:30-11:00am: More Asian Cinema History Discoveries 

Chair: Emily Yao (French and Romance Philology, Columbia University)

Weihong Bao (Film & Media Studies/East Asian Languages & Cultures, UC Berkeley)

Hikari Hori (East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia University)

Respondent: Hilary Hallett (History, Columbia University) 

 

11:00am-12:30pm Keynote #2

Lingzhen Wang (East Asian Studies, Brown University)

Introduced by Liu Yang (Film and Theater, Nanjing University)

 

 

Co-Sponsors: Weatherhead East Asian Institute; Columbia University Libraries/Information Services; C.V. Starr East Asian Library/Dragon Summit Culture Endowment Fund; School of the Arts; Department of English and Comparative Literature; Institute for Research on Women, Gender, and Sexuality; Institute for Comparative Literature and Society; Heyman Center for the Humanities; East Asian Languages and Cultures; Sites of Cinema/Columbia University Seminars. 

 

 

Esther Eng (d/w/p/o), 1946. PC

Esther Eng (d/w/p/o), 1946. PC

 
Dorothy Arzner (d/w/e). BFI

Dorothy Arzner (d/w/e). BFI