Poshek Fu essay wins award

MCLC is proud to announce that Poshek Fu’s essay, “More than Just Entertaining: Cinematic Containment and Asia’s Cold War in Hong Kong, 1949-1950,” published in MCLC 30.2 (Fall 2018), has been recommended as one of the Hong Kong Studies Annual Conference’s outstanding papers. Here’s the announcement.–Kirk

On behalf of The Academy of Hong Kong Studies (AHKS), we are very pleased to inform you that your paper entitled “More than Just Entertaining: Cinematic Containment and Asia’s Cold War in Hong Kong, 1949-1959” has been recommended as one of the outstanding papers for the 2019 Hong Kong Studies Annual Conference (HKSAC) to be held on 5 and 6 December 2019. Continue reading

Cornell postdoc in transnational experience

The Department of Asian Studies at Cornell University invites applications for the Sanford H. Taylor Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. It seeks a scholar whose research and publications investigate the migration of peoples and technologies across Asia, especially those whose work illuminates migrant experiences invisible to projects that take the nation as their frame of reference. We anticipate the selection of a scholar who focuses on contested or shared regions (such as Hong Kong, Okinawa, or Kashmir), cultural practices that cross political, ethnic and linguistic borders (visual culture, texts in translation, the Chinese character), and non-national histories of movement and affiliation (like Uyghur, Tibetan, or Rohingya). The geographic focus of research in Asia is open; an ideal candidate will have multiple research languages. All candidates must have been awarded their Ph.D. in 2018, 2019, or expect it to be conferred no later than August 1st, 2020.

Taylor Fellows are appointed for two years and are expected to teach three courses during that time, one course each in the first three semesters, with the last semester completely free for research and writing. For more information and to apply, please visit the full announcement at our departmental website.

Nick Admussen
Associate Professor of Chinese Literature
Cornell University

China sharpens hacking to hound its minorities

Source: NYT (10/22/19)
China Sharpens Hacking to Hound Its Minorities, Far and Wide
阅读简体中文版 | 閱讀繁體中文版
By Nicole Perlroth, Kate Conger, Paul Mozur

Uighur teenagers on their phones in Kashgar in China’s Xinjiang region. Chinese hackers have secretly monitored the cellphones of Uighurs and Tibetans around the globe. Credit: Gilles Sabrié for The New York Times

SAN FRANCISCO — China’s state-sponsored hackers have drastically changed how they operate over the last three years, substituting selectivity for what had been a scattershot approach to their targets and showing a new determination by Beijing to push its surveillance state beyond its borders.

The government has poured considerable resources into the change, which is part of a reorganization of the national People’s Liberation Army that President Xi Jinping initiated in 2016, security researchers and intelligence officials said.

China’s hackers have since built up a new arsenal of techniques, such as elaborate hacks of iPhone and Android software, pushing them beyond email attacks and the other, more basic tactics that they had previously employed. Continue reading

Huang Yong Ping dead at 65

Source: Art News (10/20/19)
Huang Yong Ping, Provocateur Artist Who Pushed Chinese Art in New Directions, Has Died at 65
BY Alex Greenberger

Huang Yong Ping.


Huang Yong Ping, the Chinese artist whose propensity for provocation allowed him to address taboo subjects in China and beyond with audacity and wit, has died at 65. His death on Saturday was confirmed by Gladstone Gallery, which represented him in New York and Brussels. A representative for the gallery did not immediately state a cause of death.

In his sly installations and sculptural work, Huang often melded techniques derived from the history of Chinese art and international avant-garde movements alike. His ability to deftly combine seemingly opposed methods of art-making made him one of the foremost artists in an emergent group of Chinese artists during the late 1980s. Continue reading

Notes on the Pekingese

List members may be interested in my translation of a novella by Takbum Gyel, a writer from Qinghai who is well established in the Tibetan literary world. “Notes on the Pekingese” is a surrealist story about ethnic politics and social climbing set in a local government office in Tibet. You can find it here, published as an ebook by Ploughshares Solos:

Christopher Peacock <>


Dartmouth Comp Lit MA

Comparative Literature MA Program
Dartmouth College


The Comparative Literature Master of Arts Program is a one-year interdisciplinary program that approaches literary study from a variety of theoretical and interpretative perspectives. More than 25 members from different departments actively participate in the program, including Asian and Middle Eastern Languages and Literatures, Classics, English, Film and Media Studies, German Studies, French and Italian, Russian, and Spanish and Portuguese. The special focus of the M.A. is both to give graduate students the methodological, cultural, linguistic, and pedagogical training they need for advanced work in Comparative Literature and to encourage them to pursue their independent research interests. Continue reading

China India–cfp

Call For Papers
China India: Comparisons, Connections, Convergence
22nd Annual Comparative Literature Conference
March 26-28, 2020, The University of South Carolina

The emergent field of China India studies approaches the study of Asia in an integrated fashion, allowing scholars to exceed limits imposed by national boundaries. Engaging recent debates over world literature, global cinema, transnational history, the history and future of area studies programs, and cross-cultural anthropology, scholars engaged in China India studies examine connections and convergences between the two spaces. This conference, hosted by the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC, invites paper and panel submissions that put China and India into conversation. The conference will feature keynotes by Tansen Sen (NYU Shanghai), and Engseng Ho (Duke University). We welcome papers from various disciplines, including but not limited to comparative literature, film studies, anthropology, religious studies, history, and political science. Continue reading

Chinese Individualisation and Confucian Revival

Lecture Title: “Chinese individualisation and Confucian revival: Parental actions in emerging Confucian education”
Speaker: Dr Canglong Wang (University of Hull)
Date: 6 Nov 2019 Wednesday
Time: 6-730pm
Venue: Room 152, 309 Regent Street, University of Westminster W1B 2HW


The current research on the individualisation of Chinese society in relation to the recent Confucian revival has remained a relatively unexplored topic. This talk offers a theoretically informed analysis of interview data with parents involved in a Confucian school, and contributes to offering insight into the scholarly gaps in both theory and evidence by exploring how the parental actors arise as critical individuals in the emerging domain of Confucian education, their disembedding actions from the mainstream state school system, and the paradox of regaining ‘safety’ in struggling to return. Continue reading

Testimony from a Xinjiang reeducation camp (1)

On the enforced confessions in the camps: I think of it as an “identity conversion therapy”: Detainees are forced to reject their ethnic and cultural identity and stop speaking their native language, on pain of extra punishment. They are forced to find fault in themselves, and reject themselves, including especially their personal everyday faith, by way of interpreting the “faults” (= doing things like eating halal food) as would-be extremism. The procedure could be called “anti-religious,” rather than religious – but then detainees are also forced to endlessly chant Xi Jinping’s words, which also could be seen as a kind of religious worship.

It is of course the Chinese regime that is extremist here. As regards the violence, I think there is a spiral of violence involved, begetting more and more violence and cruelty. There is nothing blocking violence from festering and escalating, when the leader’s permit it, encourage it, and, cover it up. I wrote about this aspect here: Continue reading

China detains 2 Americans (1)

It’s a good article – Still, I feel it’s strange that the NYT makes no mention of our Swedish citizen Gui Minhai, the Hong Kong bookseller and publisher abducted by China – even though the date of the article, Oct. 17, marks exactly 4 years, or 1,461 days, since the Chinese regime kidnapped Gui from his home, on Oct 17, 2015.

We have no news of him after they last paraded our fellow citizen on their TV, last year. Instead, the Chinese authorities just continue to detain him extra-legally – refusing consular visits, even though under international agreements they are obligated to allow our side to visit our citizen.

At the same time the Chinese “ambassador” in Stockholm continues his ultra-nasty campaign attacking anyone in Sweden and any Swedish media that defends Gui Minhai, or criticizes China in any way. Continue reading

Jia Zhangke to make Momo-produced drama

Source: Hollywood Reporter (10/15/19)
Jia Zhangke, China’s Biggest Dating App Team for Beijing-Set Drama
By Mathew Scott

Getty: Jia Zhangke

The Chinese auteur revealed details of the project, a first for “China’s Tinder” Momo, at the Pingyao International Film Festival.

Chinese social media giant Momo, often referred to as “China’s Tinder,” has reached a deal with acclaimed director Jia Zhangke for its first foray into the world of feature films.

The deal was announced at the Jia-led Pingyao International Film Festival (PYIFF), which is currently underway in the historic central Chinese city. The Beijing-based company is one of the financial backers behind PYIFF and will expand its footprint in film with a move into production. Continue reading

China detains 2 Americans

Source: NYT (10/17/19)
China Detains 2 Americans Amid Growing Scrutiny of Foreigners
Two Americans who ran an English-language teaching company are being held on charges of organizing illegal border crossings, a Chinese government spokesman said.
By Amy Qin

BEIJING — The authorities in southern China have detained two Americans who led an Idaho-based English-language teaching company, the latest sign of the Chinese government’s growing scrutiny of foreigners working and traveling in the country.

The two Americans, Jacob Harlan and Alyssa Petersen, were detained late last month and are being held in Zhenjiang, a town in Jiangsu Province, according to GoFundMe pages set up by friends and relatives.

Mr. Harlan, a father of five, is the owner of China Horizons, a company he founded in 2004 that arranges for Americans to teach English in China, according to the company’s website. Ms. Petersen, who has lived in China periodically for the past eight years, is the director of the company, according to a GoFundMe page set up to raise money for her legal fees. Continue reading

Testimony from a Xinjiang reeducation camp

Ha-Aretz has published a remarkable testimony from an ethnic-Kazakh woman who claims to have escaped from a re-education camp and has found asylum in Sweden.

The article, by David Stavrou, includes extended quotations from Professor Fiskesjö, and alludes to accounts published elsewhere that paint a consistent picture.

Some nuances may have been obscured by serial translation.For example, she says that inmates were frequently required to write out confessions of their “sins.” The word “sins” suggests that standard CCP self-criticism was given a religious tinge — but by whom? The guards (adapting their message to the culture of their victims) or the prisoners (interpreting the requirement in terms of their religious experience)?

Concerning the atrocities (especially the widespread rapes), I have to wonder where the dividing line runs between high-level policies of cultural extermination and a low-level lack of discipline among the police.

The article also describes an employment contract with Chinese characteristics:

She was told she had been brought there in order to teach Chinese and was immediately made to sign a document that set forth her duties and the camp’s rules.  “I was very much afraid to sign,” Sauytbay recalls. “It said there that if I did not fulfill my task, or if I did not obey the rules, I would get the death penalty. The document stated that it was forbidden to speak with the prisoners, forbidden to laugh, forbidden to cry and forbidden to answer questions from anyone.

A. E. Clark <>

AAS-in-Asia 2020–cfp

Call for Proposals
Hong Kong 2020
June 22-24, 2020

There is still time to submit. Two weeks remaining until the deadline

The Association for Asian Studies (AAS) in partnership with The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), are pleased to invite colleagues in Asian studies to submit proposals for Organized Panels, Roundtables and Workshops for consideration for the upcoming AAS-in-Asia 2020 Conference scheduled to take place June 22-24, 2020, The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Asianists interested in participating at  AAS-in-Asia 2020 Hong Kong may submit proposals via the electronic application. No Individual Papers will be considered for this conference.  The program committee seeks sessions that will engage panelists and audiences in the consideration of ideas, information, and interpretations that will advance knowledge about Asian regions and, by extension, will enrich teaching about Asia at all levels. AAS Membership is not a requirement for the submission of a proposal or participation.

Proposal Submission DeadlineThursday, October 31, 2019

All proposals should be submitted via the online abstract submission application link posted on the AAS website.  Please make sure to review ALL instructions and guidelines carefully prior to submitting a proposal.

Call for Proposals

Nostalgia from the West: China in Western Collections–cfp

Call For Papers
Nostalgia from the West: “China” in Western Collections
Date: May 22-25, 2020 Location: Guangzhou, China


Boya College, Sun Yat-sen University
Advanced Institute for Humanities, Sun Yat-sen University
School of Art and Archaeology, Zhejiang University
Advanced Institute of Image and History, Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts


Advanced Institute for Humanities, Sun Yat-sen University
Advanced Institute of Image and History, Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts

Conference Theme:

Museum collections may be considered as ultimate presentations of a culture or nation to which the items belong. Therefore, visitors gain not only an aesthetic experience from artistic works and knowledge about the exhibits, but also understanding about the very culture or nation to which they belong.

For people living in Western societies, perceptions about non-Western cultures or nations is largely shaped by museum collections. Likewise, collected and displayed images of “China” play a significant role in the formation of knowledge about China. Based on an interweaved image of “civilization” and “politics” which are collected as well as exhibited in the West, understandings of China sometimes overlap with images of China conveyed through mass media, but sometimes they diverge, even conflicting with each other. The tensions between them invite further scrutiny. Continue reading