Lessons in Dissent

In collaboration with ChinaFile

lessons in dissent

Lessons in Dissent. Dir. Matthew Torne. 2014. Hong Kong. 97 min.

Scenes of thousands of protesters filling the streets in the heart of Hong Kong, one of the world’s great business capitals, have captured international media attention in recent weeks. Young protesters, some as young as high school age, have taken center stage in acts of civil disobedience to protest the framework China's leaders in Beijing have set for the election of Hong Kong’s future Chief Executives.

The current demonstrations and this young generation’s political consciousness, however, did not come about overnight. Matthew Torne's Lessons in Dissent follows two key youngsters, Joshua Wong and Ma Jai, as they engage in political activism, particularly around the 2012 Hong Kong government’s attempt to institute the Moral and National Education curriculum, an initiative that set off massive protests decrying its ideological intent.

Join New America NYC, in collaboration with ChinaFile, for a screening of Lessons in Dissent, followed by a conversation that examines the new, young generation of Chinese activists and offers deep insights into the current situation in Hong Kong.


Matthew Torne
Director, Lessons in Dissent

Bay Fang
Senior Fellow, International Security Program, New America

Isaac Stone Fish
Asia Editor, Foreign Policy

La Frances Hui
Film Curator and Associate Director of Cultural Programs, Asia Society