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Contemporary Sino-French CinemasAbsent Fathers, Banned Books, and Red Balloons$
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Michelle E. Bloom

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780824851583

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824851583.001.0001

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The Sino-French as Métissage

The Sino-French as Métissage

Cheng Yu-chieh’s Yang Yang

(p.31) Chapter 1 The Sino-French as Métissage
Contemporary Sino-French Cinemas

Michelle E. Bloom

University of Hawai'i Press

Métissage, French for racial mixing, characterizes Cheng Yu-chieh’s feature Yang Yang, (2009) and its Franco-Taiwanese actress Sandrine Pinna, playing the same. The eponymous protagonist embodies physical métissage. Racial hybridity serves as a metaphor for aesthetic or textual métissage, including the Sino-French. As defined by Françoise Lionnet, textual métissage harks back to Edouard Glissant’s and Maryse Condé’s 1970s writing, with the Francophone providing a model for the Sinophone. Yang Yang’s absent French father explains her refusal to speak French in her acting roles, and her sprained ankle, resulting from a running accident, reflects her wounded psyche. The paternal lacuna also serves as a metaphor for French New Wave cinema, the absent father of Taiwanese New Wave film. Despite Yang Yang’s mainstream appeal, François Truffaut’s The 400 Blows and Jean-Luc Godard’s Breathless inform it, and particularly the conclusion, reflecting its auterist dimension. Sino-French cinema typically blurs mainstream/auteur boundaries.

Keywords:   Taiwan, métissage, race, Cheng Yu-Chieh, Sandrine Pinna, French New Wave, Truffaut, Dai Sijie, Kim Lefèvre

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