This essay explores the politics of remembering the Chinese Cultural Revolution through a study of two banned documentaries by Hu Jie that have circulated widely in cyberspace: Though I Am Gone (2006) and In Search of Lin Zhao's Soul (2004). Contextualizing them in discourses on the (still unrealized) Cultural Revolution Museum, I argue that these films manifest an intriguing tension between the traumatic past and the oblivious present, between the intimate confidentiality of interviews and their address of a larger public sphere, and between the courtroom-like “objectivity” of their photographic evidence and the passionate “subjectivity” of testimony.
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Copyright 2009 by Duke University Press
Issue Section:Arts in Circulation