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The Markedness of an Oriental Woman as a Sign in the Chinese and Western Contexts---A Semiotic Study of the Early Chinese American Movie Star Anna May Wong
Author(s): 
Pages: 76-83
Year: Issue:  5
Journal: Journal of Sichuan University(Social Science Edition)

Keyword:  Anna May WongChinese and Western contextscultural signmarkednesssemiotic communication;
Abstract: Anna May Wong may still be one of the oriental women that the Western mainstream film circle is most familiar with.However people's perceptions about her both in China and in the West have been constantly changing during the nearly one hundred years since she first tried her hand at film at a young age. According to the semiotic point of view the markedness of a sign resulting from the asymmetry between two opposing cultures will evolve with the development of culture and may even encounter big flips.A semiotic analysis of Anna May Wong indicates that in the Western context the markedness of Wong as a symbol of oriental women experienced a strong-to-weak evolution whereas in China people flipped back and forth in their attitude towards this markedness.It is undeniable that today under the joint gaze of both China and the West Anna May Wong is becoming more and more appealing giving rise to a more objective and multifaceted image of an early female Chinese American movie star and cultural celebrity.
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