One family. Three generations. Three women.
Hidden stories from the Coventry Chinese community.
The project is based on three audio interviews with three generations of British Chinese women, growing up, living and working in Coventry.
Late 60s – 70s
But being here, I learn about British culture, respect the culture. For one, when you are out and about, greet people in English, you can’t just speak Cantonese. Need to adapt (適應) to their culture.
No, women couldn’t speak (back then). Now it is different, when we sit together, we can have fun together, talk together. Back then it was not this way…
70s – 80s childhood
In fact I have been lucky all my life, I haven’t experience first-hand racial discrimination, discriminate based on my race. On the contrary, people have been looking after me. Maybe because I was quite small physically, when they see the ‘small’ me, they tend to look after me.
80s – 00s the Chinese takeaway life
Now you talk about different roles, I have had been a daughter-in-law (新抱), now I’m someone else’s mother-in-law (奶奶), also grandma (Ah Ma 啊嘛). I think the key is to be tolerant (忍耐). If you don’t tolerate, then there won’t be any peace (天下太平).
…we were brought up by traditional Chinese values. Back then, parents were stricter and more reserved. I wasn’t involved in many after school activities, …it was difficult for them to give us that many opportunities. They often reminded us “don’t hang out late at night”, “don’t stay overnight at friend’s house”, their teachings were stricter.
90s – present day
When I was little, I saw more grandparents than my own parents
My grandma take me to school, pick me up from school. everyday.. (she’s) the one who cook dinner
You like that intimate relationship with your grandma? Yes
Above videos and pull-quotes are snippets of an on-going cultural identity project carried out by Coventry based artist Frances Yeung. Her practice focuses on shining spotlight on marginalised communities, attempts to open up more dialogues and perhaps reclaim the narrative.
Find out more about the artist and the project, please visit:
To listen to the full interviews, visit:
Loi the grandma
Interview with Loi – read the full transcript
Interview with Emy – read the full transcript
Read the transcription of Emy’s interview
Special thanks to the three participants, for their valuable time and generosity of story sharing.