Professor of English | Director of Film Studies
Department of English
University of Northern Colorado
Kenneth Chan is Professor of English and Director of Film Studies in the Department of English at the University of Northern Colorado. He received his PhD degree from the University of Florida. His research and teaching interests include transnational Chinese cinemas, Asians in Hollywood, Asian American film, Singapore cultural studies, gender and sexuality studies, queer cinemas, and contemporary film genres such as melodramas, musicals, action films, and science fiction. He is the author of two books: Yonfan's Bugis Street (Hong Kong University Press, 2015) and Remade in Hollywood: The Global Chinese Presence in Transnational Cinemas (Hong Kong University Press, 2009). He has also published more than twenty full-length peer-reviewed essays, which have appeared in various book-length collections and academic journals, including Cinema Journal, Tulsa Studies in Women's Literature, Asian Cinema, Journal of Chinese Cinemas, Mediascape, Discourse, and Camera Obscura. Chan's latest project is on cosmopolitanism, ethics, and contemporary science fiction cinema. Dr. Chan sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Chinese Cinemas and is the Managing Editor of The CEA Critic. He further volunteers as the Chair of the International Advisory Board of the Asian Film Archive, Singapore. Professor Chan represented UNC as a network partner of the international project "Chinese Cinemas in the 21st Century: Production, Consumption, Imagination," which was funded by the Leverhulme Trust's International Networks scheme. The project spanned two years (2012-2013), where the seven network partners and other invited scholars in the field of Chinese cinema studies met in Exeter (UK), Amsterdam, Singapore, and Taipei, for conferences, symposia, roundtables, and research. Chan received the College Scholar award in 2010-2011 from UNC's College of Humanities and Social Sciences. As an ardent figure skater, he has attained the USFS (United States Figure Skating) Adult Bronze Moves in the Field level.
Chan, Kenneth. Yonfan's Bugis Street. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2015.
Bugis Street was famous (or notorious) for being a haunt of transgender prostitution in the early decades of postcolonial Singapore. Since then the site has been a source of touristic obsession and local cultural anxiety. In his 1995 film Bugis Street, director Yonfan brings the short lane back to vivid cinematic life. By focusing on the film's representations of queer sexualities and transgender experience, this book contends that the under-appreciated Bugis Street is a significant instance of queer transnational cinema. The film's playful yet nuanced articulations of queer embodiment, spatiality, and temporality provide an unexpected intervention in the public discourses on LGBT politics, activism, and cultures in Singapore today. This book's arrival at a much more complicated and contradictory picture of the discursive Bugis Street, through the examination of Yonfan's film and a range of other cultural and literary texts, adds a new critical dimension to the ongoing historical, geographical, sociological, ethnographic, and artistic analyses of this controversial space.
"Grounded in rigorous research that places the film in nuanced historical and cultural contexts, this adventurous study of Bugis Street brings timely attention to an iconic yet persistently under-appreciated film. Superbly written in a clear and personable style, this engaging book will be welcome by scholars and film buffs alike." — Helen Hok-Sze Leung, author of Undercurrents: Queer Culture and Postcolonial Hong Kong and Farewell My Concubine: A Queer Film Classic
Chan, Kenneth. Remade in Hollywood: The Global Chinese Presence in Transnational Cinemas. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2009.
The dramatic surge in Chinese visibility in Hollywood has been spurred by Sino-chic talents such as directors Ang Lee, John Woo, Wong Kar-wai, Wayne Wang, and Zhang Yimou, and stars such as Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Chow Yun-fat, Gong Li, Zhang Ziyi, and Michelle Yeoh. Analyzing well-known films by Chinese stars and crew, and the influence they have had on Hollywood directors, Kenneth Chan describes how post-1997 notions of Chinese identity and cultural genres have been reinvented and repackaged by major US studios. Highlighting numerous contradictions and cultural anxieties evident in transnational Hollywood films, Chan suggests that many Chinese stars and directors have made painful compromises to get their films successfully launched into the global capitalist stream of cultural commodities.
"Remade in Hollywood impressively updates the cross-cultural flow of capital, cast, and crew between cinemas to highlight the global Chinese presence in post-1997 American films. Erudite and sophisticated in its analysis, this book is a timely contribution, no only as a study of Chinese cinemas in an era when the People's Republic of China is poised to become the next global superpower, but also as an understanding of Hollywood as a magnet that continues to attract talent from abroad and, in the process, facilitates a global cultural flow that runs in many directions between locales. This accessible volume will be valuable resource for scholars and students in film studies, cultural studies, and Asian-American studies." — Song Hwee Lim, author of Celluloid Comrades: Representations of Male Homosexuality in Contemporary Chinese Cinemas
Short Essays, Encyclopedia Entries, Published Interviews
Fall 2016 Courses
Courses Previously Taught
Read news article about the Science Fiction Cinema course in the UNC Mirror.
(University of Northern Colorado)
Honors and Awards
Honors and Awards
Figure Skating & Ice Dancing