We had a tremendous time in Arizona for our screening at Arizona State University. Three co-sponsors, the Asian Pacific American Studies Program, the Confucius Institute and the Chinese Language Flagship Program pulled out all the stops for us on our two-day stay in Tempe, Arizona.
On Friday, we spoke at two of Professor Jeff Ow’s Intro to Asian Pacific American Studies classes. We went through a presentation that described our lives growing up as Chinese Americans and the forces that shaped us into the artists we are today. Our original goal with Autumn Gem was to introduce the story of Qiu Jin to western audiences. We did not anticipate that this project would also serve as a bridge between our generation and our parents’ generation. Older audience members frequently tell us how much they enjoyed the film and how it reminded them of their own childhood when they first learned about Qiu Jin. They are proud that two members of their children’s generation is bringing this story to a wider audience.
Lunch was spent with members from the Asian Student Coalition at this on-campus restaurant which served organic and locally-produced dishes; for dinner, we went to the House of Tricks just outside of the ASU campus, with Mia and Irene from the Chinese Language Flagship Program. It was great comparing with them their experiences growing up in Arizona with ours in California. We shared stories about our travels to Asia and our future desires to learn Chinese. Irene kept stressing that it’s not too late for us to learn Chinese, and as I mentioned in my previous post, it’s on our to-do list!