Published on November 22, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
Dr. Fachun Du of Yunnan Agricultural University visited YCAR earlier this month. His research focuses on ecological resettlement, sedentarization of Tibetan nomads in the Qinghai Tibetan Plateau, urbanization and socio-economic development of ethnic minorities in China. He is also the Vice President of the Association for Canadian Studies in China.
Published on November 21, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
Alicia Turner’s new book, Saving Buddhism has just been published by University of Hawai’i Press.
Saving Buddhism explores the dissonance between the goals of the colonial state and the Buddhist worldview that animated Burmese Buddhism at the turn of the twentieth century. For many Burmese, the salient and ordering discourse was not nation or modernity but sāsana, the life of the Buddha’s teachings. Burmese Buddhists interpreted the political and social changes between 1890 and 1920 as signs that the Buddha’s sāsana was deteriorating. This fear of decline drove waves of activity and organizing to prevent the loss of the Buddha’s teachings. Burmese set out to save Buddhism, but achieved much more: they took advantage of the indeterminacy of the moment to challenge the colonial frameworks that were beginning to shape their world.
Dr. Turner has examined thousands of rarely used sources—newspapers and Buddhist journals, donation lists, and colonial reports—to trace three discourses set in motion by the colonial encounter: the evolving understanding of sāsana as an orienting framework for change, the adaptive modes of identity made possible in the moral community, and the ongoing definition of religion as a site of conflict and negotiation of autonomy.
Saving Buddhism intervenes not just in scholarly conversations about religion and colonialism, but in theoretical work in religious studies on the categories of “religion” and “secular.” It contributes to ongoing studies of colonialism, nation, and identity in Southeast Asian studies by working to denaturalize nationalist histories. It also engages conversations on millennialism and the construction of identity in Buddhist studies by tracing the fluid nature of sāsana as a discourse. The layers of Buddhist history that emerge challenge us to see multiple modes of identity in colonial modernity and offer insights into the instabilities of categories we too often take for granted.
Assistant Professor in the Department of Humanities at York University, Dr. Turner specializes in the study of Buddhism in Burma/Myanmar and the intersections of religion, colonialism and nationalism. Her work on Buddhist movements from 1890 to 1920 studies issues of education, respect and moral reform.
For more information: http://www.uhpress.hawaii.edu/p-9235-9780824839376.aspx
Published on November 20, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
Professor Zarrow, from the University of Connecticut, is also adjunct research fellow at the Institute of Modern History, Academia Sinica, where he worked for many years.
His research deals with the intellectual history of modern China, focusing on political thought and movements in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
He also presented a paper on Utopian Impulse in Chinese Political Thought, 1890-1940 at the Critical China Studies Group seminar during his visit.
Published on November 14, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
YCAR welcomed Dr. Hagen Koo to York University earlier this month as part of the Centre’s Heterogeneity and Korean Identity in the Twentieth-First Century speaker series. Dr. Koo, from the University of Hawai’I, Manoa, spoke on Korea’s global middle class.
Published on November 12, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
Malathi de Alwis gave the 2014 Asia Lecture at York University on 4 November 2014, Trauma, Memory and Forgetting. In post-war Sri Lanka, the battle for memory and forgetting plays a central role in the state’s fraught relationship with its Tamil population who have borne the brunt of a 3-decade long war. Her lecture delineated certain contours of this festering wound while exploring an alternative politics of bereavement and memorialization encompassed in the work of one of Sri Lanka’s foremost artists, T. Shanaathanan.
Published on November 11, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
The recently-published Human Rights and the Arts in Global Asia: An Anthology, co-edited by Theodore (Ted) Goossen (Humanities, YCAR) and Anindo Hazra (English, YCAR) will be featured in the INSPIRE Toronto Book Fair, at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, on Sunday 16 November, 2014, between 12 noon and 1 PM.
The editors have selected readings from the anthology during this hour, with some of our many international contributors in attendance. One of the readings that they hope to have will be a joint Tamil/English reading of poems with Tamil poet, Cheran, and his English translator, Nedra Rodrigo (Humanities, YCAR).
The booth in which the volume will be present is FP9 (International Pavilion).
Further information about the INSPIRE Toronto Book Fair or to purchase tickets to the Fair, visit http://www.torontobookfair.ca
The e-brochure with a description of our anthology can be found here.
Published on November 10, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
Janice C.H. Kim (History) will be at the AGO Jackman Hall, Wednesday November 12, 2014 at 1:00 pm, to serve as discussant following screenings of three documentaries concerning the Korean War and its afterlives at this year’s Reel Asian Film Festival.
Daniel Yong | Canada 2014 | 18:30 |English, Korean with English Subtitles
Leftover follows the daily life of a North Korean family struggling to come to terms with the memories of their past. The protagonists act as themselves within a fictional narrative, exploring issues of shifting identities, cultural and intergenerational conflicts, and family.
Kim Jung-in | South Korea 2012 | 30:00 | Korean, Mandarin with English subtitles
The subtle yet suspenseful cinematography of Choongshim, Soso grasps the harsh reality of illegal North Korean immigrants in Dandong, China, a neighbouring city of Shinuiju, North Korea. With danger at every turn, the protagonist perseveres with resilience and determination to seek refuge.
Memory of Forgotten War
Deann Borshay Liem, Ramsay Liem | USA 2013 | 38:00 | English, Korean with English subtitles
Memory of Forgotten War tells a remarkably touching story of long lost siblings reuniting in North Korea after several decades of separation, since the 38th parallel division. With rare archival footage of the Korean War, this moving story gives a comprehensive and insightful historical understanding into Korean War that continues to sever the country.
Further details can be found here: http://www.reelasian.com/festival-events/reaching-beyond-the-38th-parallel/
Published on November 8, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
YCAR was pleased to host Dr. Dong-choon Kim as the first speaker in the Heterogeneity and Korean Identity in the Twentieth-First Century speaker series at York University.
The speaker series will focus on the works of both established senior and groundbreaking junior scholars in the fields of globalization, transnational labour and class in South Korea. It is organized by Professor Janice C.H. Kim (History).
Dong-choon Kim’s presentation on October 22, “Venues to Heaven’ in a Heartless World: Colleges and Churches in South Korea in the 1950s,” examined the rise of family-centricism in 1950s South Korea. As the end of the Korean War ushered in a period of authoritarianism and only nominal forms of political participation, Koreans invested exclusively in their nuclear families – a trend that can be seen with the expansion of universities and evangelistic churches in South Korea from the 1950s onward. These developments, along with diaspora and US-centric subimperialism, have been formative in shaping South Korean identity in the twenty-first century.
As former Standing Commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Republic of Korea, Professor Kim is an activist and public intellectual. His research has focused on historical sociology of Korean politics, working class formation and the Korean War. As an activist, Professor Kim has been at the center of progressive academic movements since the 1980s. He was also awarded the 20th Dan Je Prize in 2005 for his academic achievements and activism. Professor Kim is the author of, among other publications, Social Movements in 1960s Korea (1991), A Study of Korea’s Working Class (1995), Shadow of Modernity (2000), War and Society (2000) and Engine of America-Market and War (2004). War and Society has been translated into German, Japanese, and English (The English language title is The Unending Korean War).
The next speaker in the series is Dr. Hagen Koo (University of Hawai’i, Manoa) who will speak on Korea’s global middle class on 11 November 2014.
Published on November 5, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
Kevin M. Woods was the inaugural speaker in the Critical Asian Political Ecologies Seminars series. In “Race and Territorial Politics in Making Agro-capitalism in Asia’s “final frontier” in Burma,” Woods discussed how the making of agro-capitalism in Burma during this current neoliberal reform period is borne through violent regional histories defined by contested and racialized territorial politics.
Kevin’s research is situated on the Burma-China border where he initially investigated cross-border timber trade in the mid-2000s. His current dissertation project follows emerging post-war land governance changes in northern Burma’s uplands with the arrival of Chinese agribusiness subsidized by China’s opium substitution program.
More about the series, organized by Peter Vandergeest and Robin Roth, can be found here.
Published on November 4, 2014 and filed as Uncategorized.
A reminder that the deadline for abstracts for the third YCAR International Graduate Student Conference is Thursday, 20 November 2014.
CALL FOR PAPERS
Changing Asia in the Globalizing World: Boundaries, Identity, and Transnationalism
York Centre for Asian Research (YCAR) Third International Graduate Student Conference
May 1-2, 2015
York University, Glendon Campus, Toronto, Canada
The concept of “Asia” implies a fixed geographical, demographic, economic, political, and cultural region. However, viewed from multiple perspectives, its “essence” becomes indeterminate and boundaries fuzzy. From colonization to decolonization, from military invasion to cultural inter-penetration, from international power struggle to regional association, Asia and Asian Diasporas are affected by and affecting globalization in various ways. YCAR’s Third International Graduate Student Conference will explore three interconnected themes related to the changing landscape and redefinition of Asia and Asian Diasporas:
– How do immigration, transportation, communication, cooperation, and other forms of interaction create, maintain, rupture, and transcend the cultural, political, geographical and historical boundaries of Asia?
– How do we research the “in-between” spaces and concepts such as diasporas and borderlands, which, while premised on the existence of boundaries, contain a subversive potential?
– How has globalization shaped Asia’s identities?
– How are place-bound identities constructed within the diaspora?
– Within the context of transnationalism, how do flows of people, ideas, goods, capital, and technologies subvert or stabilize the center-periphery relations?
– How is the geography of knowledge implicated in the geography of politics beyond the boundary of the nation state?
The conference is multidisciplinary, and we encourage submissions that bring together various theories, methods, and empirical findings in new and creative ways. We welcome submissions from area studies, cultural studies, literary studies, media studies, history, religious studies, women’s studies, disability studies, urban studies, communication studies, art history, philosophy, geography, sociology, anthropology, political science, and other academic disciplines.
Topics or perspective may include, but are not limited to:
– Epistemology and methodology
– Globalization and indigenization
– Governance and development
– History and theory
– Migration and diaspora
– Political ecology
– Race, gender, and class
– Social movements and social justice
– Cultural contact and identity
– Acculturation, assimilation, transculturation, and hybridization
Interested participants should submit by email a paper title, abstract with keywords (250 words maximum) along with brief biographical information (name, affiliation, stage of graduate study) by November 20, 2014.
All information should be included in one Word document attached to the email. Please save the Word document with your name as the file name.
Please email submissions to the conference organizers at: email@example.com. There may be an opportunity to collaborate on a common peer-reviewed publication, which will be discussed at the conference.
More information about the conference can be found on the web site: http://www.yorku.ca/ycar/Events/reconstructions_graduate_conference.html