"Buddha, Shiva, Mudra" Weedon Lecture on the Arts of Asia with Janice Leoshko

September 19, 2022

Buddha, Shiva, Mudra: On Understanding the Development of Ananda Coomaraswamy

with Janice Leoshko, Associate Professor of South Asian Art, University of Texas, Austin

Thursday, October 6, 5–6 pm

UVA Harrison Small Auditorium

The transformational role of Ananda Coomaraswamy (1877-1947) in the study of South Asian culture has long drawn attention, but much about his development remains unclear. Especially not understood is how he turned to studying art and religion after he abandoned a promising scientific career. This lecture identifies his experiences in Sri Lanka where he worked as a geologist as the pivot, shaping the trajectory of his scholarly practice. The lecture also considers how the intertwined character of various influences upon him demonstrates that he was very much part of a larger world that sought a new order of things.

Janice Leoshko, PhD (The Ohio State University), 1987, teaches in the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Texas at Austin. Her research has long focused on assumptions about the significance of artistic production at Bodhgayā, the Indian site where the Buddha achieved enlightenment (Sacred Traces: British Explorations of Buddhism in South Asia [Aldershot: Ashgate, 2003]). She also writes about the influence of museums and exhibitions, partly a result of time spent as a curator at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Recent focus on Sri Lankan art has led to her current book project on the significance of the early writings of Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy, which will be published by University of Chicago Press.

Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program Information Session 9/28

September 19, 2022

The Japanese language program will be hosting an online information session for the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program on Wed., Sep. 28, from 5 to 6 pm. A JET Program Coordinator will talk about the application process, his working experience in Japan, and the support available (e.g., grants and Japanese language training) for the ALT (Assistant Language Teacher) position.  

Pre-register for this event by visiting the following site:

Fall Film Series in Hotel A

September 8, 2022

UVA's "Assessment of China's Belt and Road Initiative" Project Fall 2022 Speaker Series

August 29, 2022

6th International Seminar of Young Tibetologists

July 18, 2022

The 6th International Seminar of Young Tibetologists is being held at the University of Virginia from August 1–5th, 2022. Friends of the East Asia Center are warmly invited to attend the opening and closing ceremonies, as well as the keynote addresses by Leonard van der Kuijp (Harvard University) and Department of Religious Studies PhD Candidate Ngawang Sonam (University of Virginia). Please see attached poster for further details. RSVP to by July 24th.

Summer 2022 Newsletter

July 7, 2022

Making Merit: East Asian Buddhist Material Culture of the Seventh and Eighth Centuries

May 31, 2022


Making Merit: East Asian Buddhist Material Culture of the Seventh and Eighth Centuries 

Rare Book School – NEH-GBHI Lecture 

Date: Monday, June 6 2022

Time: 5:30 p.m.

Location: Dome Room, UVA Rotunda

Lecturer: Dorothy C. Wong - Professor of East Asian Art, Department of Art History, University of Virginia


As Buddhism spread broadly across East Asia during the seventh and eighth centuries, the rich records of Buddhist material culture from that period demonstrate the use of a broad range of materials and a variety of methods in producing devotional and ritual artifacts. These include sculptures in wood, metal, stone, dry lacquer, and two-dimensional images and Buddhist narratives on wall murals, silk, paper, and embroideries. Buddhist sacred texts were translated into Chinese and copied. A key teaching in Mahāyāna Buddhism, the form of Buddhism that prevailed in East Asia, advocates devotional acts, such as the making of images, recitation of Buddha names or copying of sutras to accrue merit for the next life or to transfer the merit to others. Devotees and donors of a broad social background commissioned whatever they could afford to express their piety through image-making or copying of Buddhist sūtras. Such a desire to dedicate vast quantities of images and texts contributed to innovations in techniques that were pre-cursors to mass production and printing. This talk examines the religious and cultural milieu of the period, with a focus on the practices and evidence of efforts to mass produce Buddhist images as well as texts.

Making Merit: East Asian Buddhist Material Culture of the Seventh and Eighth Centuries – NEH-GBHI Lecture | Rare Book School

Promoting Kindness, Community, and an Exploration of Imperfection to Enhance Learning

May 11, 2022

In 2021 Associate Professor of Chinese Ran Zhao joined the inaugural Contemplative Institute for Teaching and Learning with an aim to help students overcome obstacles to new language acquisition and to foster an atmosphere wherein students could practice with authenticity and self-acceptance. Co-facilitated by Karolyn Kinane of the Contemplative Sciences Center and Dorothe Bach, of the Center for Teaching Excellence, the second annual institute will be held August 8-12, 2022. Please find the feature story on the institute at the Contemplative Sciences Center's webpage here.

The Tactile and Playful World of Tang Fashion

April 14, 2022

BuYun Chen, Associate Professor of History at Swarthmore College, will be delivering the Ellen Bayard Weedon Lecture on the Arts of Asia "The Tactile and Playful World of Tang Fashion," Thursday, April 14, from 6:00 - 7:00 p.m. EST.

Professor Chen is the author of Empire of Style: Silk and Fashion in Tang China (University of Washington Press, 2019). Her current research explores the relationship between craft production and statecraft practices in the independent Ryukyu Kingdom (modern-day Okinawa, Japan) from the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries. She is an external faculty fellow at the Stanford Humanities Center this academic year.

To register for the online talk, please visit

Zainichi Koreans and Post-imperial Japan through the Lens of Chongryon

April 5, 2022

The UVA Language Commons Speaker Series, "Race and Society in Global Contexts," will be hosting a talk by Dr. Sayaka Chatani, Assistant Professor of History at the National University of Singapore, "Zainichi Koreans and Post-imperial Japan through the Lens of Chongryon."

The event will be held online via Zoom: April 12, 7:00pm ET

Register here:


Tibetan Women Writing Symposium

April 5, 2022

Tibetan Women Writing Symposium 

༄༅། ། གངས་ཅན་སྐྱེས་མས་རྩོམ་རིག་གླེང་བ།

This symposium focuses on exploring and celebrating the recent emergence of Tibetan female writers in their Himalayan homelands and in the broader global diaspora. Prominent Tibetan authors from across the globe will come to Charlottesville to share their creative essays, short stories, memoirs, and poems in person. The symposium is a public event featuring readings of their original works, including translation, as well as scholarly discussions of their compositions with scholars from across North America and Europe.  

This symposium is generously supported by the Page-Barbour funds, the Center for Global Inquiry + Innovation, the Tibet Center, the East Asia Center, Virginia Center for the Study of Religion, the Race, Religion, and Democracy Lab, and the Department of Religious Studies at University of Virginia. 

Please find the full event program and more details here:

A border, a bazaar, and a port: Parsing BRI from a distant corner in Asia

February 15, 2022

National Chengchi University Foreign Exchange Info Session

February 8, 2022


Interested students, please join the International Studies Office for an information session about opportunities to study abroad in Taiwan. Professor Syaru Shirley Lin and Professor Harry Harding will be available to share information about National Chengchi University in Taiwan at the session.

Information Session: UVA Exchange: National Chengchi University

Wednesday, February 23, 5-6pm

Hotel A Conference Room

Join us in person or via Zoom


Visit the program brochure for more details.

Asian Urbanism Collaborative Research Platform Launch

February 8, 2022

AUC Inaugural Workshops
Friday, February 18, 1pm-4:30pm, and Saturday, February 19, 8am-4:40pm 
Rotunda Dome Room, University of Virginia

The set of workshops, convened by Shiqiao Li and Esther Lorenz, launches the research platform Asian Urbanism Collaborative (AUC) through engaged debate on three thematic areas that we identified as crucial for the thinking about the future city, and the role the Asian City may play in our understanding and shaping of it: Geopolitics, Culture, and Ecology.  

The workshops bring together scholars from Asian studies, political science, history, sociology, anthropology, environmental science, urban planning, and practitioners of landscape and architectural design, and are open to all interested faculty, students, and the public to join the conversation. The interdisciplinary group of speakers include Lawrence Chua, Christian de Pee, Camille Frazier, María González Aranguren, Tom Leader, Zhongjie Lin, Gordon Mathews, Paul Rabé, Anne Rademacher, Peter Rowe, Brantly Womack, and Weiping Wu. 

For more information and a full schedule, please visit
More information about the AUC can be found here:  

Funded by the Buckner W. Clay Endowment for the Humanities (IHGC, UVA) and the Center for Global Inquiry & Innovation (UVA). 

"Typological Drift: Emerging Cities in China" Book Launch

February 8, 2022

Typological Drift: Emerging Cities in China

Friday, February 18, 5pm 

Campbell Hall, UVA School of Architecture, Naug 1/F 

Neither derivatives of Western cities nor isolated from them, Chinese cities in the past four decades are perhaps best captured in their characteristic complexity through a concept in biological evolution: drift. Unlike mutation, adaptation, and migration, drift of phenotypes takes place when chance events terminate some features and allow other features to flourish. The Chinese culture, structurally divergent from the common Indo-European civilizational roots of Western cultures, can be seen to function as a set of “chance events” in the normative processes of urban change. The consequences of these “bottlenecks” of urban evolution are both fascinating and instructive: Chinese cities, when studied with this framework, begin to acquire an entirely different order of significance, injecting urban theory and practice with fresh vigor and insights.

Through thirteen case studies, more than 60 original maps and drawings, and extensive photographic documentation, the book reveals how three “drift triggers” – ten thousand things, figuration, and group action – have altered typological development in Chinese cities in recent decades.

UVA bookstore will be offering copies of the book at a discounted price during the launch. More information on the book can be found here:

Krishan Kumar and William R. Kenan Jr. publish "What can the Chinese experience of empire tell us about the Belt and Road Initiative?"

December 1, 2021

University Professor Krishan Kumar and William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor of Sociology at the University of Virginia, have recently published a paper in the journal Theory and Society titled:

"What can the Chinese experience of empire tell us about the Belt and Road Initiative?"

The paper’s abstract is given below:

China’s “Belt and Road Initiative” (BRI), first announced by President Xi Jinping in 2013, has attracted widespread attention, with much discussion as to its meaning and intention. This article argues that one of the best ways to understand the BRI is to see it in the context of China’s two-thousand-year history as an empire. What kind of empire was the Chinese Empire? How did it see itself, and what was its characteristic mode of action? What was the meaning of the “tribute system”? The celebrated voyages (1405–1433) of the Ming admiral Zheng He are taken as a typical example of Chinese imperial behaviour (rather than being seen, as is common, as an aberrant and exceptional episode). By examining this and other aspects of Chinese imperial history, it is hoped that some light might be shed on what the Chinese leadership as in mind with its Belt and Road Initiative, and what the rest of the world should expect from it.

The paper is open access and can be viewed here.

Weinstein Collection Now in VIRGO

November 3, 2021

Global Democracy Series – Fight for Myanmar’s Democracy

October 21, 2021

UVA Global will be hosting a Global Week Keynote on Myanmar’s struggle for Democracy. All are welcome to join; the event is available in person and also streaming online.

Global Democracy Series – Fight for Myanmar’s Democracy

Monday, October 25, 2021 at 5:00 PM EDT

One West Range, Charlottesville, VA 22903

It has been almost six months since Burma’s military seized power in a coup, overthrowing and imprisoning leaders of the elected government. A keynote panel during #uvaglobalweek2021 looks at the history of Myanmar's struggle for democracy. 

Panelists include: Myo Yan Naung Thein - a Burmese pro-democracy activist, Erik Braun - Associate Professor of Religious Studies at UVA, and Ambassador Scott Marciel -who served as U.S. Ambassador to Myanmar from March 2016 through May 2020. It will be moderated by Ambassador Steve Mull, Vice Provost for Global Affairs.

In-person: To sign up to come to this discussion, please use this link:

Online: If you are not able to make it in-person, watch the conversation online:

Demons and Angels — Can Ásia Survive the Return of Geopolitics?

October 7, 2021

Amitav Acharya, Distinguished Professor of International Relations and the UNESCO Chair in Transnational Challenges and Governance at the School of International Service, American University, will lead a lunch seminar entitled "Demons and Angels — Can Ásia Survive the Return of Geopolitics?" Friday, October 8 beginning at 12:00 p.m. The seminar, part of UVA's "Assessment of China's Belt and Road Initiative" Project, will be livestreaming on Zoom. The invitation link can be found below.

Zoom meeting invitation link:
Meeting ID: 965 5835 1731
Passcode: 849097

"China and the Re-Centering of East Asia" Special Lecture Series with Brantly Womack

August 5, 2021

China and the Re-Centering of East Asia

A Special Lecture Series

Overview: China’s emergence in this century is historic in two senses. It is currently transforming international relationships, especially in East Asia. Secondly, these developments have deep resonance with the central role of China in the pre-modern era. Understanding future global prospects requires an appreciation of the continuities of East Asian geopolitics as well as the changing structure of current relationships.

The University of Virginia is sponsoring a special series of four lectures by Professor Emeritus Brantly Womack that will present a comprehensive analysis of China’s once and future centrality in East Asia. The lectures will cover: 1. The basic elements of China’s centrality and their evolution in the pre-modern era; 2. The decentering of Asia in the era of Western modernization, putting China on the periphery of the modern globalized world; 3. The reemergence of China as a central modern force in East Asia; 4. The global implications of a China-centered East Asia, including effects on the U.S.-China relationship.

After each lecture there will be a commentary by a distinguished Asian scholar: Wang Gungwu of National University of Singapore; Wu Yushan of Taiwan’s Academia Sinica; Qin Yaqing of Shandong University; and Evelyn Goh of Australian National University. The commentaries will followed by audience Q&A.

The program will occur on successive Thursday evenings starting September 16 from 8:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. EST. The first session will be on September 16, the second on September 23, the third September 30, and the final session on October 7. They will be held on Grounds, but they will also be available on Zoom and Youtube Live. The Asia-based commentators will present their remarks on livestream. All are welcome to both the on-Grounds and the Zoom or Youtube Live programs. 

Zoom Registration Links

September 16 - Introduction and China’s Premodern Centricity

September 23 - Modernization and the Decentering of Asia

September 30 - Convergence and Asian Recentering

October 7 - China, East Asia, and the Reconfiguration of a Multinodal World

Youtube Live Links

September 16 - Introduction and China's Pre-Modern Centricity (Livestream recording)

September 23 - Modernization and the Decentering of Asia (Livestream recording)

September 30 - Convergence and Asian Recentering

October 7 - China, East Asia, and the Reconfiguration of a Multinodal World

The Idea

This project is a rethinking of the obvious: China was the center of the traditional Sinitic world of East Asia; China was marginalized during the era of Western modernization; in the current era China has returned to a central position in East Asia broadly defined; and the transformation of East Asia has important consequences for the global configuration. But why the discontinuity between the three eras? What linkage is there? What difference does it make for China, for East Asia, and for the world? Is the current fixation on the U.S.-China rivalry too uniformed about history and too narrow in its bipolar focus?

The reason that the obvious begs rethinking is that the depth of current changes in regional and global dynamics requires a reconsideration of the general framework of our perceptions. China is not simply returning to its past glory, nor is it simply becoming the majority stakeholder in existing regional structures. And what is happening in East Asia is increasingly vital to the rest of the world. Despite the grand disjunctions between China’s traditional centrality, its decentering in the modern era, and its present increasingly central role, are there underlying factors of continuity? What is the salience of the different characteristics of each era?

The key mysteries are those of the resilience of China’s centrality in the pre-modern era, the loss of that resilience during Western modernization, and its return in the global present. Culture and power, though important, are inadequate explanations. Rather, three more basic structural realities underlie traditional China’s resilience, its marginalization, and its current return. They are its presence, its population, and its production. These have changed drastically in salience over the three eras, and China’s current integration with East Asia is producing a complex and major node of global reality. The cohesiveness of the node will depend on whether China can be credible in its respect for the autonomy of its neighbors.

Since this is a study of relationships, special attention will be paid to the transformations of connectivity among the three eras. The traditional era was characterized by thin connectivity. Connectivity is necessarily thinner given the agrarian subsistence and transportation of the era, but just as important was China’s prioritization of maintaining official control of the relationship rather than expanding contact. By the Ming dynasty this had evolved into the tribute system, a mechanism for managing disparities of interests and perceptions. East Asia’s geopolitics was characterized by resilient asymmetry centered on China rather than international conquest or balance among presumptive equals. But even well-managed asymmetry involves quite different exposures and perceptions between center and localities.

Western powers came to East Asia with sharp connectivity. Colonization and the Western presence more generally was intensely focused on global profit and ownership. Sharp connectivity fractured Asia and targeted its productivity toward distant global service. By 1880 China was no longer the primary concern of any of its neighbors. China became a non-presence except as a target of opportunity, and as a non-colony its population and production were largely irrelevant. China became confused periphery of an Asia directed elsewhere.

The return of China’s centrality was a complex process, and the pre-reform period 1949 to 1980 played a foundational role. Nevertheless, until the unfolding of the era of reform and openness no one would have thought of China as central to East Asia—except, perhaps, as a problem. Then the era of thick connectivity began to emerge, first within China itself as marketization, urbanization, and transportation developed, and then externally through the cumulative momentum of its economy and trade. The domestic priority of maximum growth metastasized since 2008 into a general drive toward massive, multidimensional international contact. A modern, unitary, and globally enmeshed China became a central presence to its neighbors. Its population became the most organized one-fifth of the global market, and the scale of its production transformed the global economy, most intensely in East Asia. As in the pre-reform era, the neighbors’ vulnerability to China gives them a more jaundiced view of China’s success, and China has yet to demonstrate a credible acknowledgement of their autonomy.

China’s rise and integration into its region are leading parts of a general reshaping of global reality in this century. Although global media tends to focus on China as a national actor in tension with the United States, the general success of East Asia and its matrix of asymmetric relationships suggest a different paradigm for the global political economy. Rather than a bipolar hegemon-challenger model, a pattern has emerged in which the negotiated management of disparities creates a multinodal web of asymmetric relationships. States are aligned by partnerships rather than by alliances because their task of securing a variety of international prospects becomes more pressing than that of defending against a specific enemy. However, regardless of China’s new centrality to East Asia, the region is not united around China, and the prerequisite of smooth regional functioning is global inclusivity.

The dynamics of East Asia are not the only major current of this century. More generally, the faster relative growth of productivity in the developing world increases the weight of demographic power vis-à-vis the wealth power of the developed world. Meanwhile, the COVID pandemic as well as global warming highlight the general challenges of ecological sustainability. But in these new venues of cooperation and conflict the shape and mass of East Asia will be increasingly important.

The Participants

A broad analytic narrative benefits from different perspectives, and this series includes instant “peer reviews” by some of Asia’s leading scholars. The questions to be addressed are larger than any one answer, and the views of the discussants will open new fields of discussion.


Brantly Womack is Professor Emeritus of Politics at the University of Virginia and Senior Faculty Fellow at the Miller Center. His interest in the general dynamics of Chinese domestic development and international relationships has led to a number of books including Asymmetry and International Relationships, China among Unequals, China’s Rise in Historical Perspective, and China and Vietnam: The Politics of Asymmetry. Most recently his research has focused on China’s re-emergence and its implications.




Session 1: Wang Gungwu is a legendary historian of China and of its external relationships. He began his studies with research on the evolving structure of power between the Tang and Song dynasties, and his later research encompassed the Chinese diaspora, and the linkage of traditional and contemporary notions of China’s role. His recent autobiography, Home is Not Here, relates his personal experience growing up as an overseas Chinese in Southeast Asia, and another recent work is China Reconnects: Joining a Deep-rooted Past to a New World Order. Wang is the founding director of the East Asia Institute of National University of Singapore and University Professor there. Before moving to Singapore he was Vice-Chancellor of Hong Kong University, and before that Director of Australian National University’s Research School of Asian and Pacific Studies.


Session 2: Wu Yu-Shan is Academician and Distinguished Research Fellow of Taiwan’s Academia Sinica and founding director of its Institute of Political Science, as well as professor of political science at National Taiwan University. He is a leading scholar on comparative political development in Asian politics, European communism, and cross-Strait politics. Recent books include The Chinese Models of Development: Global, Local and Comparative Perspectives and Resurgence of China: A Dialogue Between History and International Relations (in Chinese).



Session 3: Qin Yaqing is emeritus President of China Foreign Affairs University, Chancellor of the Diplomatic Academy, and one of China’s pre-eminent theorists of international relationships. He is a member of the Foreign Policy Advisory Group of Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Qin translated Wendt’s Social Theory of International Politics into Chinese. His book, A Relational Theory of International Politics, was published by Princeton in 2018. Qin is particularly interested in the globalization of international relations theory.




Session 4: Evelyn Goh is the Shedden Professor of Strategic Policy Studies and Director of Research at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre at Australian National University. She is a leading expert on the changing political and diplomatic contours of East Asia. Her work on the hedging strategies of China’s neighbors is well known. Goh recently co-authored with Barry Buzan Re-thinking Sino-Japanese Alienation: History Problems and Historical Opportunities, and current projects include 'Strategic Diplomacy' for the 21st Century.




Session 1: Ambassador Stephen Mull is UVA’s Vice Provost for Global Affairs. Before coming to UVA he was Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs, and ambassador to Poland and to Lithuania. Under President Obama Mull was lead coordinator of Iran nuclear implementation. He holds the rank of Career Ambassador.




Session 2: Harry Harding is University Professor at UVA and founding dean of the Batten School. He is also a Yushan scholar at National Chengchi University in Taipei, and before that a visiting professor at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. He is the author of several classic works on China’s domestic and international politics, including China's Second Revolution: Reform After Mao and A Fragile Relationship: The United States and China Since 1972. He is currently completing work on the evolution of American China policy from the Clinton Administration to the Trump Administration.



Session 3: Leonard Schoppa is Professor of Politics at UVA and an expert on Japan, China’s most diffident neighbor. He is the author of Bargaining with Japan: What American pressure can and cannot do, Education reform in Japan: A case of immobilist politics, and Race for the Exits, and is currently working on the politics of aging societies.




Session 4: Amitav Acharya is the UNESCO Chair in Transnational Challenges and Governance and Distinguished Professor at the School of International Service, American University. He is the first non-Western scholar to be elected President of the International Studies Association. His recent books include The Making of Global International Relations (with Barry Buzan), Constructing Global Order, and The End of American World Order. In 2020, he received American University’s highest honor: Scholar-Teacher of the Year Award.




The primary sponsor is the East Asia Center. Co-sponsors are: The Miller Center, UVA Global, and the Politics Department.

Spring 2021 Newsletter

July 5, 2021

Sharp Elbows: Competition in China's Internet and Investor Implications

May 17, 2021

Rick Carew, visiting lecturer at the University of Virginia and former veteran Wall Street Journal reporter, will discuss the state of competition in China’s internet sector and its implications for investors and innovation in the years ahead in his talk "Sharp Elbows: Competition in China’s Internet and Investor Implications," Thursday, May 20, 4:00 p.m. EST for UC-San Diego’s 21st Century China Center. He argues that China’s technology giants have engaged in a fierce winner-takes-all battle for dominance in industries ranging from e-commerce to ride-hailing and messaging. Now, Chinese regulators are looking more closely at how they oversee national champions like Tencent and Alibaba by stepping up anti-trust enforcement and expanding oversight for tech firms.

This growing power of Big Tech and calls for a stronger government role in oversight is part of a global trend that includes U.S. investigations into Big Tech leaders like Google and Amazon. China’s decision to halt the record-breaking $34 billion initial public offering of Jack Ma’s fintech giant Ant Group epitomizes changing attitudes at senior levels of the Chinese government.

Carew considers what we can expect in terms of new regulation and evolving business practices as China’s tech firms adapt to change. He also shares what these changes mean for investors and executives involved in China’s tech world. This webinar is moderated by UC San Diego professor Victor Shih.

Event registration is available here.

Recovering First Patients: De-perilizing the Anglophone Pandemic Archive on SARS

April 29, 2021

Rethinking World Literature: China as Method

Sponsored by the Asian Cosmopolitanisms Lab of IHGC at the University of Virginia

Belinda Kong (Bowdoin College), May 14, 2021, 12:00 pm–1:30 pm EST

Recovering First Patients: De-perilizing the Anglophone Pandemic Archive on SARS 

As the first global pandemic of the 21st century, the 2003 SARS outbreak was as an uncanny precursor to the current COVID-19 pandemic. Who were its first patients, how were they narrated by the anglophone media, and what alternative archives can we look to to reconstruct their stories? Focusing on three SARS index cases—the first patients in China, Hong Kong, and Singapore—this talk examines anglophone formations of sinophobic racism and bioorientalism as they intersect with contemporary global discourses of infectious disease crisis. 

Belinda Kong is John F. and Dorothy H. Magee Associate Professor of Asian Studies and English at Bowdoin College. She is author of Tiananmen Fictions Outside the Square: The Chinese Literary Diaspora and the Politics of Global Culture (Temple University Press 2012) and is working on a new book project, What Lived Through SARS: Chronicles of Pandemic Resilience, which examines global pandemic discourses around the 2003 SARS epidemic, with focus on everyday cultures of epidemic life that emerged from the outbreak’s epicenters in China and Hong Kong. 

Please join the event with the following link:

Meeting ID: 954 1521 3770

Passcode: 547362

"The Subjectivity of the Translator" with Jeremy Tiang

April 16, 2021

Please join us Wednesday evening, April 21, at 7pm EST for a special talk by author and translator Jeremy Tiang. 


The Subjectivity of the Translator

Jeremy Tiang discusses the process of translating the late Yeng Pway Ngon's Unrest (available from, and what it means to be a Singaporean Chinese translator working within his own community and culture. What happens to the metaphor of translation as a 'bridge' when both ends of the bridge are located in the same place? Can the translator truly be neutral, or should we pay more attention to who is doing the translating?

Jeremy Tiang is a novelist, playwright and translator from Chinese. His translations include novels by Yeng Pway Ngon, Su Wei-Chen, Yan Ge, Zhang Yueran, Lo Yi-Chin, Chan Ho-Kei and Li Er. His plays include Salesman之死, A Dream of Red Pavilions, and translations of scripts by Chen Si’an, Wei Yu-Chia, Quah Sy Ren and others. His novel State of Emergency won the Singapore Literature Prize in 2018. He lives in Flushing, Queens, and is a member of the translation collective Cedilla & Co.


Apr 21, 2021 07:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Follow this link to the registration page!

East Asian Cultural Responses to the Covid-19 Pandemic

April 16, 2021

All are welcome to join the "East Asian Cultural Responses to the Covid-19 Pandemic" webinar, scheduled for Monday, April 26, 7:00- 8:30 PM EST. 

Event registration is available at:

The event is sponsored by the Buckner W. Clay Endowment for the Humanities through the Institute of the Humanities and Global Culture.

While policy and strategy decisions have dominated mainstream media coverage of other nations’ handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is also important to consider how at the level of everyday life, societies and individuals have been experiencing the upheavals caused by the pandemic. This panel focuses on East Asian cultural reactions to the worldwide crisis. 

Jaeho Kang (Seoul National University) will describe how South Korean responses to the pandemic have been shaped by a confluence of technological and traditional cultural factors, and are interpreted along these rubrics. Chenshu Zhou (University of Pennsylvania) will be examining online video representations of Wuhan under lockdown that make use of drone footage. Anri Yasuda (University of Virginia) will analyze how works of Japanese literature written during the pandemic underscore a pervasive ‘crisis ordinary’ mentality that precedes Covid-19. After the presentations, there will be time for dialogue and exchanges about the shared themes, as well as the marked differences, amongst the contemporary East Asian socio-cultural contexts under discussion. 

If you have any questions, please contact Professor Anri Yasuda