Project Proposal: Perspectives of Tai Chi

Tai Chi in Beijing

I am very excited to begin researching Tai Chi in China.  However, “Tai Chi” is a broad subject.  The martial art itself has multiple schools, multiple forms, and multiple legacies.  So then, what will I be researching? I am not necessarily researching Tai Chi per say.  What I am researching is individuals’ perspectives of Tai […]

Hollywood Themes Utilized to Create Sympathy from Western Audiences


The life of a geisha was not one of choice but of necessity for girls who had been sold to different okiya, or homes. With their other options being slavery or prostitution, the life of a geisha, where a wealthy patron would pull you from poverty, is desirable. However, the lifestyle required strict instruction in […]

Memoirs of a Geisha – Story of Another Kind

Chiyo's Eyes

Introduction Memoirs of a Geisha (Rob Marshall, 2005) is a Hollywood production which tells the life story of a geisha called Chiyo/Sayuri. An adaptation, the movie was based on the historical novel of the same name written by American author Arthur Golden, whose story was based on interviews with real geisha Mineko Iwasaki. The film […]

“Mao’s Last Dancer:” Section 2

Cunxin Photograph

Presentation: Introduction: The film, Mao’s Last Dancer, by Bruce Beresford, follows the life of Li Cunxin, a Chinese ballet dancer in the 1980s, and his subsequent defection to America. Li Cunxin was born in the Shandong Province and is selected to be a dancer at the Beijing Dance Academy at age 11. Eventually he is sent […]

The Man with the Iron Fists Section 2


Introduction: The film is set in the fictional town of “Jungle Village” during pseudo-Qing Dynasty, where the governor has tasked the Lion clan with the protection of his gold shipment through the village. When the head of the Lion clan is overthrown by a traitor, war erupts between rival clans for the gold. Caught in […]

The Last Samurai Section 2

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  Prezi Introduction: Set in Meiji era Japan, Edward Zwick’s The Last Samurai presents a conflict between traditional and modern Japanese culture.  The film centers around the character of Nathan Algren (Tom Cruise), who is hired by the Japanese government to train the Japanese national army in modern warfare. Haunted by his past experiences in […]

Lost In Translation – Section 2


                           The movie depicts the lives of Bob Harris, a middle-aged movie star, and Charlotte, a recent college graduate, and their struggle within current relationships as they dwell in the unknown, confusing world of Tokyo, Japan. Written by Sofia Coppola, the film stars […]

Memoirs of Geisha: Orientalism and the Limited Transformation of Chiyo


Memoirs of a Geisha Introduction Memoirs of a Geisha is a Hollywood film that was produced in 2005 based on a novel written by Arthur Golden. The film follow the main character, Chiyo, as she is sold to an okiya, separated from her sister, and through a strike of good fortune, transformed into the artful […]

Lost In Translation- Section 1

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Sophia Coppola’s “Lost In Translation” is, at first blush, a modern take on a theme that has been hashed out ad nauseam by filmmakers and writers for centuries.  Upon closer examination, though, “Lost In Translation” pursues a markedly different understanding of the concept of othering than similar works by portraying the westerners as the “other”.  […]

The Last Samurai Section 1


Introduction “The Last Samurai” is the story of Nathan Algren, an American  Army captain who is haunted by his previous military experiences fighting Native Americans. He becomes a mercenary for the Japanese Emperor and agrees to help train Japan’s new, modern army in the face of samurai rebellion. The untrained troops are overwhelmed in their […]