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Grasslands as transitional spaces of play: Mongol children’s reimagination of the world in cinematic representation


Zhenhui Yan

Corresponding authors: Zhenhui Yan, email: yanzhenhui@cau.edu.cn

Children's Geographies, 2019(Published online)

 

Abtract: This article examineschildren’s geographies in cinematic representation. It argues that cinematic landscape that intimates what D. W. Winnicott conceives as ‘transitional space’ contributes to a cinematic rendering of the otherness of childhood. Taking the Chinese movie Mongolian PingPong (2005, dir. Ning Hao) as a case study, this article illustrates how the cinematic space of the grasslands is transformed into multiple transitional spaces of play for the Mongol child protagonists owing to the ?lmmaker’s employment of cinematic landscape, while a ping-pong ball discovered by one of the children becomes their ‘transitional object’. In transitional spaces, the children safely and creatively manipulate cultural resources of diverse scales to understand the socialcultural identity of the ball. Consequently, their unique vision of the world unfolds. The ?lmmaker’s cinematic treatment reveals his celebration of the children’s creativity. He sympathises that they cannot escape from acculturation once they start formal schooling in a Handominated society.

Keywords: Transition; otherness; ?lm; ethnicity; representation; childrens geographies

 

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To link to this article: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14733285.2019.1598544


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