Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Internet II: Alternative Media guest lecture at Australian National University

Joseph Hieu (JH) & Maria Tran (Emtee) had an early burly road trip to Canberra for our first ever Vietlish lecture. We’ve done books launch, stamp launch, feature film launch, radio launch, weddings, funerals, protests, commorations, tennis awards, national concerts and now we hit the Australian National University with special thanks to Dr Ashley Carruthers.

Its funny that it was only a year ago that the adventures of two Australian-Vietnamese buddies decided to “go against the grain” and activate their minds and “voices” in as many realms of life.

With a small intimate crowd of 50 studying academics at one of the world’s prestigious universities, JH & Emtee tag teamed it out to deliver some of their introspection of their beloved community and showcasing both “Vietnamese Stories” & “Vietnamese Storycubes” – an Australian, and most likely world first intergenerational projects.

Joseph Hieu (JH) informatively highlights some of the Vietnamese media landscape: both in mainland Vietnam and the Vietnamese diaspora. With particular references to recent controversies such as the Don Ho communist entertainment star (double meaning to these words written so please read again) and also the outline of the main media honchos and the effects of government controlled vs non government controlled media. He also took an extra step to highlight the diasporic sensitivities and symbolic taboos that are still prominent; almost 35 years since the aftermath.

Maria Tran (Emtee) focus of the lecture were all things “digital” and showcased 3 mini-films made by her students Ook, Huyen & Vinh from the “Vietnamese Stories” program. She also retold the Vietlish journey and what this accidental formation and its effects that has “narrowcasted” itself on a global scale.
In addition, Maria showed the Vietlish episode featuring “Don Ho” and the gungho approach in interviewing and braving out the silly questions that has been received as a refreshing approach.

She was honest to point out Vietlish’s haphazard beginnings and online and social networking experiments that put them on the radars of Vietnamese media landscape worldwide.

“Yup, we are gungho & guerrilla!” confirms Maria.

“But at the same time, still focus on the bigger picture, that is all the Vietnamesey people worldwide” adds Joseph.

A shout out to Shaun Cheng who took some work time out to come check us out. Big apologies that we couldn’t stay back to have lunch which he so kindly insisted on ANU’s famous chicken burgers.

Nevertheless, we left on a good note with the promise to meet and again. Shaun suggested that we drop in on The Bakery of Goulburn – thanks for the advice – we did.

Yo! Vietlish back at Uni!

Obeying all University rules

Joseph Hieu Dinh is always a lost case
Joseph Hieu Dinh loves Arabic. He know a few pick up lines too! Ask him.
BMW: Be My Wife - Chong (Vietnamese for "Husband") - So lame!
Jumping for joy! AZN PRIDE!

Joseph's love for "languages" & Maria's love for the "arts"

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