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A changing image: feminist identity through generations of women in film

2019 DCCFF

Panel Discussion

2:00pm - 3:30pm

November 9, 2019


Film can be a valuable tool for looking at the cultural and historical contexts that generate a society's understanding of womanhood and femininity. The work of women directors and stories that center around the experiences of women can offer criticism and original commentary on the ways in which women, in a patriarchal society such as China, are imagined and portrayed.

The selection of films comprising this year’s DCCFF interrogate the nature of feminine identity and desire in a social arena that often privileges genderless political categories, looking at the ways in which maternal bonds, inheritance, and tradition play into modern-day identity building. With the creation of a new generation of Chinese and Chinese American filmmakers, how has feminist thought evolved and in what ways has cinema traced this evolution?


DCCFF invites you to a panel discussion featuring contemporary Chinese filmmakers and scholars to reflect on these questions and more.



Melissa Houghton

Melissa J. Houghton joined Women in Film & Video (WIFV) as Executive Director in August 2005. Since then, its membership has grown to more than 1,000 media professionals; the organization now averages 70 professional development offerings per year including the Image Makers program for high school students and the Kids World Film Festival for 5th graders. WIFV has provided fiscal sponsorship of independent media projects, spearheaded a web pilot mentoring initiative, developed Women in Film & Television International, among other initiatives that benefit its members. Houghton has served on the boards of the DC Architectural Foundation, the DC Film Alliance, and Wide Angle Youth Media. She is currently a member of the WETA Community Council, the FAVS Advisory Board at George Mason University, and the Advisory Board for The Actors’ Center.


Teng Congcong

Teng Congcong holds a Master’s degree from the Beijing Film Academy, where the filmmaker Xie Fei served as her mentor. Her short films have won awards at the Asian Film Awards and the “up-and-coming” International Film Festival Hanover, and have served as official selections in the Chinese Youth Film Forum and the Chinese College Student Film Festival. Since 2009, she has worked as an editor for a number of commercial films and completed two scripts. Send Me to the Clouds is her first feature.


Sydney Lee

Co founder and Curator, One International Women Film Festival.


Jenny Cho

Jenny Cho is the author of Chinatown in Los Angeles (2009), Chinatown and China City in Los Angeles (2011) and Chinese in Hollywood (2013). She is a professional television and digital editor and producer with credits on MotorTrend, Associated Press, Amazon’s 288 Studios, Fox Searchlight, and more. She served as a board member of OCA-DC for several years.