Vietnamese American filmmaking must be seen in the context of a community's diasporic formations. As such, it maps out a politics of representation that encapsulates the issues of community and history that invariably striate the ways in which Vietnamese American films and videos have been produced, distributed, received, and archived. This article focuses on the role of the Viet Film Fest, in Orange Country, California, as a major site for the archiving of South Vietnamese and Vietnamese American cinematic memory. In examining how this vital archive is shaped by both transnational politics and local practices of commemoration, Duong proposes its status as an archive of memory for a refugee community that wants to rectify how its members have been represented by U.S. and Vietnamese national cultures in film, both in the past and in the present moment.
Archives of Memory: Vietnamese American Films, Past and Present
Lan Duong is associate professor in Cinema & Media Studies at the University of Southern California. She is the author of Treacherous Subjects: Gender, Culture, and Trans-Vietnamese Feminism (Temple University Press, 2012) and has published work in Signs, MELUS, Journal of Southeast Asian Studies, Journal of Asian American Studies, Inter-Asia Cultural Studies, Amerasia, Asian Cinema, Discourse, Velvet Light Trap, and numerous anthologies, including the award-winning Southeast Asian Women in the Diaspora: Troubling Borders in Literature and Art (University of Washington Press, 2013). She is a founding member of the Critical Refugee Studies Collective and is co-editor for the series, Critical Refugee Studies, at the University of California Press.
Lan Duong; Archives of Memory: Vietnamese American Films, Past and Present. Film Quarterly 1 March 2020; 73 (3): 54–58. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/fq.2020.73.3.54
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