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Volume 10, Issue 2-3
  • ISSN: 1474-2756
  • E-ISSN: 2040-0578



The objective of this study is to contextualize Chinese lesbian cinema that emerged in the twenty-first century in mainland China. By situating lesbian films in the context of globalization, particularly within the framework of the debate on global gayness, it traces the trajectory of a new Chinese discourse of homosexuality, developed since the 1990s and articulated through the dynamic interaction and assimilation between predatory Euro-American and resistant local forces. Being both a part and a product of the hybrid homosexual discourse, lesbian cinema subsists in the space of Chinese independent/underground film, bearing all the major characteristics of the marginalized subgenre. The article concludes with critical analysis of two films, Jinnian xiatian/Fish and Elephant (Li Yu) in 2001 and Lalala/Lost In You (Zhu Yiye) in 2006, to showcase how female same-sex love and relationships are defined and represented in Chinese lesbian cinema.


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