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Martial Arts Cinema and Hong Kong ModernityAesthetics, Representation, Circulation$
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Man-Fung Yip

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9789888390717

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888390717.001.0001

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Marginal Cinema, Minor Transnationalism

Marginal Cinema, Minor Transnationalism

(p.145) 5 Marginal Cinema, Minor Transnationalism
Martial Arts Cinema and Hong Kong Modernity

Man-Fung Yip

Hong Kong University Press

In contrast to the hegemonic operations of “global Hollywood,” Hong Kong martial arts films of the late 1960s and 1970s exemplify a case of “minor transnationalism” in adhering to more “lateral” and nonhierarchical network structures and modes of exchange. This can be seen not just in the way Hong Kong’s cosmopolitan film culture in the period, one with a strong presence of American, Japanese, and European cinema, provided an array of ideas and styles which local martial arts films drew upon in developing a new idiom for the articulation of the complex experience of modern life. No less important are the micropractices of transnationality in the other direction: the efforts to open up regional/international markets, and the interactions with other “minor” action genres. As a “contact zone,” martial arts/action cinema of the era constituted a symbolic space of exchange in which films from diverse national origins, often with different textual, cultural, and ideological materials, met and acted upon one another to produce not only new hybrid texts but also new forms of identification that actively negotiated with national, racial, and other types of identity boundaries.

Keywords:   minor cinema, minor transnationalism, contact zone, creative transposition, physical impairment, racial/class solidarity

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