three students in a row wearing headphones

A Research Futures webinar with He Yuan

2 min read

Join the 25th session in the University of Portsmouth's Interdisciplinary Webinar Series, chaired by  Leïla Choukroune, Professor of International Law and Director of the University of Portsmouth Thematic Area in Democratic Citizenship, and presented by He Yuan, PhD Candidate at the University of Portsmouth.

Since the wide introduction of English films and TV programmes in China around the early 2000s, Chinese "fansubbers" have translated numerous English materials and posted their work online for other fans.

In China, "fansubbers" have become increasingly popular. They have indeed provided a large audience with a variety of English films and TV programmes with good quality subtitles.

Since Chinese film and TV censorship only allows the licensed translation studios productions to be shown in cinemas or public channels, Chinese fansub products can only be downloaded or watched online. Interestingly, this seems to be a way to bypass censorship as fansubbing translation is not strictly monitored or censored by the Chinese government.

Over the last decade, in China, fansubbers translation has created its own style as a distinctive genre from professional subtitle translation. While some would argue that fansubbers are breaking the cultural silos and rules, others would say that they also abuse professional translation principles. Because of copyright issues, Chinese fansubbing is still wandering in the grey zone of Chinese film and TV censorship.

This presentation will discuss the social context of fansubbing in China, explore how fansubbers could survive under the pressure of Chinese film censorship, and address the future of Chinese fansubbing.