Concubine questions

Farewell My Concubine, 1993 dir. Chen Kaige

  1. What (issues) did the director have in mind when he created the story in which the friendship of two stage brothers is formed, tested, betrayed and regained? 陈凯歌想说明什么,为什么让段小楼和程蝶衣之间的友谊遭到背叛,受到威胁,又得到修复?
  2. In what ways are the lives of Cheng Dieyi and Duan Xiaolou similar to or different from that of Yuji and Xiangyu, the king of Chu living over two millennia ago? 段小楼和程蝶衣的关系在哪些方面与楚霸王和虞姬的关系相同或者不同?
  3. What human conditions are becoming visible by the way Chen Kaige reconstructs episodes of modern Chinese history in the story to represent the War against Japanese Imperialism, 1931-1945, the Civil War between the communists and the nationalists (1945-1949), the Cultural Revolution, 1966-1976)? 导演陈凯歌在重新描述抗日战争,国共内战,和文革的过程中想让观众看到哪些人类社会的常态?
  4. List instances of betrayal and loyalty in this story in which China becomes a modern nation-state. 请指出故事中的忠诚与背叛的例子。
  5. What are the sources of duress to the modern individual who is often unable to stand up (as if on stage performing a cultural or personal identity) for what she or he believes in? Give examples. 请举例说明在故事中现代人都有哪些烦恼和焦虑;为什么?
  6. Who or which characters best represent what you believe is the perspective of the director within which to understand the story (social changes in modern China)? Why? 请指出哪个人物代表了导演的历史视角;为什么?
  7. What lesson can the viewer learn about a person’s individual identity or a nation’s cultural identity considering the fate of Cheng Dieyi doomed by his obsession about his stage persona as concubine Yuji? 程蝶衣对他戏台上虞姬角色的执着和痴迷让观众学到了哪些人们在文化认同上常常遇到的问题?
  8. Of what do you think the institution of Peking Opera is an emblem? Several times the audience is led to understand that this cultural tradition at the core of Chinese identity is dying out; what else is dying out with it? 你觉得京剧在这个电影中是什么的象征?随着它在新中国文化中地位的不断削弱和减低,还有哪些文化价值也受到挑战与质疑?
  9. The word fate may be synonymous with what modern man refers to as identity, something you cannot change that defines who you are as a person. Is cultural identity a detriment to the individual or a source of grace and calm in the context of the story? 一个人的命可能是一个人的文化认同的代名词,是一个不以个人的意志而转移的东西。在电影中,文化认同给一个人带来的东西是好的还是坏的?为什么?
  10. In what way does Chen Kaige interrogate and reshape modern Chinese identity? What is called into question and presented as problematic? 导演陈凯歌是如何审视现代人的文化价值观的?他的故事指出哪些现代社会的问题?