Despite being products of the same historical moment in Chinese culture, Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan approached the kung fu genre with radically different methods that effectually developed two contrasting kung fu identities: that of tragedy, and that of comedy, respectively. Lee and Chan’s embracement of these distinct kung fu identities helped them to engage with transnational issues in Chinese history in ways that were easily accessible to global audiences. While Bruce Lee’s films present Lee as a victor who successfully resists the imperial oppression that victimized China during the Century of Humiliation, Jackie Chan’s represent 21st century China’s rise to power on the international stage. In this paper, I argue that the films of Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan can be deployed as a lens to demonstrate their engagement with the fluidity and evolution of the masculinity and national identity of the Chinese people.
"Fist of Fury or Drunken Master: Masculinity, National Identity, and Contemporary China,"
Proceedings of GREAT Day: Vol. 2016, Article 14.
Available at: https://knightscholar.geneseo.edu/proceedings-of-great-day/vol2016/iss1/14