Round table on Chinese identity in multicultural Canada
"General Tao, Kung Fu, Ching-chong: Chinese identity in multicultural Canada" is the official title of the round table. I've been co-organizing it with a couple of other volunteers at the Chinese Family Service (their server is currently kaputt, alas) for at least the past two weeks. The original idea came from speaking intensely and passionately with the volunteers' coordinator about ideas what it meant to be Chinese and what it meant in the Canadian context.
It is the least that I can do, I think, to try and reproduce those private talks that I often have with friends about the meaning of being a CBC (Canadian Born Chinese), FOB (Fresh Off the Boat) and other categorizations of people of Chinese descent in Canada, or abroad from their "original" country.
Perhaps the summarization of the most controversial point is: are Asians (in particular, the Chinese, as we are particularly, while not exclusively, interested in this discussion) considered perpetual immigrants, and/or is it a good/bad thing, and is it something that is desired? I can tell that within the organizing group, we had originally planned an hour meeting last Friday, which ended up being three hours long (and four and a half hours for those who went dinner afterwards). The answer is not easy, and multidimensional.
On Sunday, we went to see Cheuk Kwan's Chinese Restaurants, a movie that talks about the Chinese diaspora through the eyes of restaurant owners around the world, from places as exotic as Norway or Brazil. I mean, I think that this movie (or series of) is a fun way to give people some perspective about all the diasporas of this world. I'm not sure when, but we will be showing sections of the movie in the next month or so (perhaps even at the round table, if time allows). I saw a set of episodes last year too, and I love it when my posts rank high on Google.
Here is the info about the event:
Sunday, June 3rd, 2007 at 2PM (until 4-5PM, based on turnout)
987, Rue Côté, 4th Floor (basically the main hall of the Chinese Family Service).
Well, that's about it. There was the interesting bit that I got an interview on cultural television (aka CH-M), on Hu ZhiMin's show "Sino-Montréal". It was just a pure Cedric moment for eight minutes... It highlighted how pathetic my Cantonese indeed is (at least I think that my French and English are both close to flawless), the contradiction of being neither Chinese or Canadian or Québécois (but all three at once). It was hopefully not live, and would be aired in two weeks from now, at various times of the week.
Facebook (for publicity):
Google Groups (for people who want to help out organize):
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