This introductory chapter defines art film in the Chinese context and describes its properties, including its aesthetic and institutional dual characteristics, relation to Western art cinema, and relation to Chinese commercial cinema. A synthetic methodology, based on Pierre Bourdieu’s theories of the field of cultural production, is employed to conduct the systematic investigation of the formation of Chinese art cinema in the Reform Era, by examining both external institutional conditions and internal stylistic features. The chapter lays out three general developmental phases of Chinese art film before arriving at the main thesis of the book—that it is the second art wave of the 1990s that fundamentally defined the Chinese art cinema.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Li Yang
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures Lafayette CollegeEastonUSA

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