Language, Culture, and Identity: Chinese Immigrant Families in Gainesville

For the past two years of my graduate study at the University of Florida, I’ve interacted with many ABC (American Born Chinese) friends. I’ve noticed that most of them speak English much better than Chinese. Only a few of them can speak Chinese fluently.

More interestingly, when they introduce themselves to me, they will say:”I am American, but my parents are from China”, most of the time. So, I can tell that there is a clear difference between their perceptions of social identities of themselves and their parents.

I’ve been wondering for a long time that how these things happen because those ABCs were born and raised in Chinese families where their parents are both from China! So, I decided to see what on earth is going on among these immigrant families.

After one month of searching information, two months of shooting, and plus one month editing, I finally finished this 20 minutes documentary from nearly 300GB raw materials. And this documentary also became my project in lieu of thesis.

The first version of the documentary was played more than 300 times within 24 hours at China’s largest online video website – Youku.com, it was the most popular documentary of the day. Because of its popularity, I decided to make small changes to make it even better and the second version is on the way. It also has been played more than 100 times on Youtube, even though it is unlisted now. When the second version is finished, I’ll publicize the documentary officially online.

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