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From Old London to New Milton Keynes: Chinese Identities in Britain: SACU Free Talks and Film

July 20, 2019 @ 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm

From Old London to New Milton Keynes: Chinese Identities in Britain; SACU Free Talks and Film



The Society for Anglo-Chinese Understanding (SACU) is delighted to invite you to this afternoon of talks and a film, timed to coincide with the Lao She symposium held this year in Beijing to commemorate the 120th anniversary of the birth of novelist and playwright Lao She, one of  20th century China’s most significant literary figures.


Dr Amy Matthewson: Loitering through London with Lao She

SACU member Dr Amy Matthewson talks about her really exciting project in conjunction with the Museum of London Docklands to develop an interactive app based on Lao She and his years in London. The app will work in conjunction with the museum, combining places Lao She mentions in his novel Mr. Ma and Sonalong with visual and material cultures from the Museum’s permanent collection. It will allow visitors to engage with Lao She’s London and the broader issues and experiences of the Chinese community in London.

Amy uses Lao She’s Mr. Ma and Son to frame the history of the Chinese community living and working in London. Her aim is to explore the experiences of the Chinese and probe into areas of race relations and identity politics, the production of social and cultural processes in which community identities are shaped, with the objective of understanding community interactions as well as the formation of a sense of identity, whether in terms of ‘Chineseness’, ‘Britishness’, or a complex mix of both.


Dr Frances Wood, SACU Vice President: A Blue Plaque for the Silent Traveller

Chiang Yee came to London in 1934, escaping from the difficulties of serving as an official in the warlord era in China. He left his family behind, intending to study at LSE. With the Japanese invasion, he found himself unable to return to China and struggled to survive until he found his voice in a long series of books, beginning with The Silent Traveller in Lakeland. His 15 year stay in Oxford was commemorated recently with the unveiling of a Blue Plaque.


Please note: This talk is a change to our original programme. We regret Dr Jenny Clegg cannot now join us for this event. We are delighted that Dr Frances Wood has offered to talk instead about ‘The Silent Traveller’ and we will invite Dr Jenny Clegg to give her talk on ‘Fu Manchu and the Yellow Peril’ at a future event. 


Michael Ho: From HK to MK (film)

“What does it mean to be British? Gabriel, a dentist originally from Hong Kong, has lived in Milton Keynes for nearly 50 years. His mixed-race son Michael couldn’t wait to leave. Now a film-maker, he returns to the city to discover how his father feels about the place he has made home.” (British Film Institute)


This afternoon event is held jointly with The Meridian Society (TMS) and follows the AGMs of both SACU and TMS to be held during the morning 11.30am – 1.00pm. All members are invited to their society’s AGM, then join other members for a ‘bring your own lunch’ or just come along to the afternoon presentations.


The afternoon is a free event, open to everyone, but registration is required.

Book your free place: https://sacu-from-old-london.eventbrite.co.uk


Do come and join us!


Directions: Our venue is the Upper Hall at St Columba’s Church, which is located on Pont Street in Knightsbridge in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. The Church is within easy reach of three London Underground stations – Knightsbridge (Piccadilly Line), South Kensington (Piccadilly, Circle and District Lines) and Sloane Square (Circle and District Lines).

Any questions? Please email events@sacu.org.uk

We look forward to welcoming you on Saturday 20th July!



July 20, 2019
2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
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St Columba’s Church of Scotland
Pont Street
London, SW1X 0BD United Kingdom
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