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Alumni Graduate Students

Jianqing Chen


Dissertation: “Touchscreen Media: The Touch and User-Spectators in Twenty-First Century China”




Jianqing Chen is a Doreen B. Townsend Dissertation Fellow and a PhD candidate in Film and Media with a Designated Emphasis on Critical Theory. She holds a MA in Film and Media Studies from Columbia University (2014). Her dissertation, “Touchscreen Media: The Touch and User-Spectators in Twenty-First Century China,” examines changes in media and sensory perception caused by the touchscreen as a new viewing technology and platform through the lens of everyday media practices in contemporary China. This study of touchscreen and its mobilization of touch offers a corrective to the ocular-centric conception of the screen as an optical apparatus. Her secondary project studies global mobile media networks and their deeper environmental intervention in contemporary China. Her research has been funded by the Townsend Center for the Humanities, the Berkeley Graduate Division, and the Center for Chinese Studies.

Her writing appears in the Journal of Chinese Cinemas, the edited volume Erotic Literature in Adaption and Translation (Legenda, 2018), and Chinese journals Dianying Yishu (Film Art), Dangdai Dianying (Contemporary Cinema), and Shanghai Wenhua. She is the Chinese co-translator of Thomas Elsaesser’s book Film Theory: An Introduction Through the Senses, forthcoming from Peking University Press. She served as the co-organizer and the student Chair for the Berkeley-Stanford Graduate Student Conferences in Modern Chinese Humanities in 2017 and 2020, and co-organized Berkeley Film and Media’s 4th biennial conference: Medium/Environment. She is the 2020-21 Graduate Student Liaison for the Center of Chinese Studies.