One Child Nation

One Child Nation

Saturday, May 11, 2019 - 4:00pm
Sunday, May 12, 2019 - 12:00pm
Community Partner(s)
Nanfu Wang and Jialing Zhang
85 minutes

From 1979 to 2015, the Chinese government implemented a strict one-child policy, restricting families from having more than a single child in an attempt to curb a booming population. Nanfu Wang and Jialing Zhang’s deeply personal film exposes the collective trauma caused by the policy. Wang, a first-time mother, returns home to China to interview her family and uncovers harrowing stories of abandoned infant girls, state-forced sterilization, and twins separated at birth. While propaganda in the form of songs, posters, and large-scale performances permeate public space, One Child Nation bravely exposes decades of silence on the disturbing social experiment that impacted generations. -SC

“The film is a valuable record and a sober but frightening illustration of the dark side of this government-controlled experiment…. The bitter irony, after absorbing so much evidence of lives scarred or destroyed with no official accountability, is the shift since the policy was discontinued to a two child society in an effort to address the shortage of young people to look after China’s aging population. All traces of one child propaganda have been erased, replaced by images of happy families with two beaming kids apiece.” - THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER



The Saturday, May 11 screening is part of the Justice Forum Series and will include a post-film discussion.


Justice Forum Panelist

Yue Qian

Yue Qian is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of British Columbia. She received her PhD in Sociology from the Ohio State University. Her research and teaching interests focus on social demography, family, and gender. She has published research papers, op-eds, and media releases about Chinese families under China's changing fertility policy regimes.

Justice Forum Panelist

Dongchen Hou

Dongchen Hou is a lecturer in Chinese language, literature, and film in the Department of Asian Studies at the University of British Columbia. She received her BA in Chinese linguistics from Xiamen University, M.A. in comparative literature from Beijing Normal University, and Ph.D. in East Asian Studies from the University of Arizona. Her teaching and research interests include literacy and writings; visual culture and media studies; affect and embodiment; digital humanities; human-machine interaction; translation studies; Chinese sociolinguistics; and Chinese culture, media, and literary criticism.