Thursday, November 2nd: Robert Burgos “Local Discourses of Identity and ‘Ruralness’ in the Yuri Region of Akita, Japan”

Robert Burgos

PhD Student, University of Chicago

“Local Discourses of Identity and ‘Ruralness’ in the Yuri Region of Akita, Japan”

Thursday, November 2nd, 4:00-6:00 PM

John Hope Franklin Room [SSR 224]

Discussant: Dan Knorr, PhD Candidate, University of Chicago

Please join the East Asia: Transregional Histories Workshop as we welcome Robert Burgos, who will be presenting a work in progress titled “Local Discourses of Identity and ‘Ruralness’ in the Yuri Region of Akita, Japan.” This piece considers the development in the 1930s of a local historical discourse by amateur Yuri historians and its implications on the understanding of ‘rural’ community and identity formation in Japan through the 20th century.

Robert’s Paper can be found in the post below.

As always, first-time attendees are welcome. Light refreshments and snacks will be served. If you have any questions or require assistance to attend, please contact Robert Burgos at rburgos@uchicago.edu or Spencer Stewart at sdstewart@uchicago.edu.

Thursday, Oct. 5th : Karl Gerth “The Mao Badge Fad: How a State-Sponsored Consumer Fad undermined a Revolution”

Karl Gerth

Hwei-Chih and Julia Hsiu Chair in Chinese Studies and Professor of History, UC San Diego

“The Mao Badge Fad: How a State-Sponsored Consumer Fad undermined a Revolution”

Thursday, October 5th, 4:00-6:00 PM

John Hope Franklin Room [SSR 224]

Discussant: Jake Werner, Collegiate Assistant Professor, University of Chicago

Please join the East Asia: Transregional Histories Workshop in welcoming Karl Gerth [University of California, San Diego] as he presents a part of his new manuscript focused on Consumption in Maoist-era China. Titled “The Mao Badge Fad: How a State-Sponsored Consumer Fad undermined a Revolution,” Professor Gerth provides the following abstract for his paper:

This paper reinterprets one of the most famous phenomena of the Cultural Revolution, the Mao badge fad, when tens of millions of Chinese collected billions of badges of Chairman Mao. The Cultural Revolution was intended to be the single greatest anti-bourgeois campaign of the Mao era. But in its most famous activities such as badge collecting, the Cultural Revolution also nourished a thriving bourgeois consumer culture that encouraged consumer desire, production outside of state planning, and inequality though unequal distribution and conspicuous consumption. Badge collecting was, to use Mao’s expression, the negation rather than the fulfillment of the Socialist Revolution.

Professor Gerth’s paper can be found at this post.

As always, first-time attendees are welcome. Light refreshments and snacks will be served. This event is sponsored by the Committee for Chinese Studies at the Center for East Asian Studies.

If you have any questions or require assistance to attend, please contact Spencer Stewart at sdstewart@uchicago.edu or Robert Burgos at rburgos@uchicago.edu

 

Thursday, April 27th 4-6 PM : Amy Borovoy “Japan Studies in the Postwar Era: Reflections on Modernity and Society in American Social Thought”

Amy Borovoy

Associate Professor of East Asian Studies, Princeton University

“Japan Studies in the Postwar Era: Reflections on Modernity and Society in American Social Thought”

Thursday, April 27

4-6 PM

CEAS 319 (Harris School, 1155 E 60th St.)

Please join the East Asia: Transregional Histories Workshop and the Committee on Japanese Studies in welcoming Professor Amy Borovoy (Princeton University) as she presents a section of her new project. Professor Borovoy has provided the following abstract for her talk:

In the decades following World War II, Japan emerged as a “place to think with” for American social scientists. Until 1945, Japan studies had been centered in Europe. Although understanding “total war” was the initial provocation for American social science research, as in the 1946 classic, The Chrysanthemum and the Sword, not long after, social scientists began to see in Japan compelling forms of socio-centrism, social community and cultural identity. By the 1970s, Japan studies had become fruitful terrain for reflecting on the excesses of American liberal individualism. In this project, I analyze this process through a series of canonical texts in anthropology and sociology, from Benedict, to occupation-era village studies, to Thomas P. Rohlen’s ethnography of a Japanese bank and Ezra Vogel’s Japan as Number One. Japan’s modernity offered powerful insights for those wrestling with American post-industrial society, but it was an experiment made possible by a particular historical moment, and one that raised as many questions as it answered.

As always, first-time attendees are welcome. Light refreshments and snacks will be served. This event is sponsored by the Committee on Japanese Studies at the Center for East Asian Studies.

If you have any questions or require assistance to attend, please contact Jessa Dahl at jdahl@uchicago.edu or Erin Newton at emnewton@uchicago.edu.

Thursday, March 9 : Jessa Dahl

Please join us next week as the East Asia: Transregional Histories Workshop welcomes our own

 

Jessa Dahl

PhD Student, University of Chicago

“After Dejima: Nagasaki’s ‘Heroic Women’ and Networks of International Exchange, 1827-1899”

Thursday, March 9th

4:00PM – 6:00PM

John Hope Franklin Room (SSR 224)

 

Jessa will be presenting an early draft of her dissertation proposal, which centers on personal and professional networks managed by women in nineteenth century Nagasaki. Jessa describes her project as follows:

 

As a treaty port community, Nagasaki experienced the dynamism of Japan’s entry into the nineteenth century international system first hand. Unlike the other treaty ports, however, Nagasaki was built upon already extant personal and professional networks of intercultural exchange that were over two hundred years old. It was also the only treaty port in which a small cohort of women participated prominently the most vital networks of exchange including international trade, the exchange of ideas and technology, diplomacy and even prostitution. My research will show that these two developments are not coincidental. I will argue that Nagasaki’s history as an established site of international exchange provided a base for the subsequent dynamic transformation that allowed these women to capitalize on the opportunities that were afforded to them. By showing how these women and their networks adapted to and transformed under the new treaty port system, I hope to explore what conditions made their success possible and illustrate how kaikoku (lit. “opening of the country”) and Japan’s subsequent modernization transformed local sites of international exchange.

 

As always, first-time attendees are welcome. Light refreshments and snacks will be served.

 

If you have any questions or require assistance to attend, please contact Jessa Dahl at jdahl@uchicago.edu or Erin Newton at emnewton@uchicago.edu.

WED 11/30 5 PM : Kyle Gardner

Kyle Gardner

University of Chicago

“The Space Between: Trade, Cosmology, and Modes of Seeing in Independent Ladakh”

WED, Nov. 30th 5:00-7:00 PM

John Hope Franklin Room, SSR 224

Discussants:

Matthew Lowenstein, University of Chicago History Department

Please join us for Kyle Gardner’s presentation of a chapter from his dissertation on Wednesday, November 30th at 4 PM in the John Hope Franklin Room (SSR 224). In addition to providing historical background of the making and demise of Ladakh (a region in the northwest Himalayan mountain range), “The Space Between: Trade, Cosmology and Modes of Seeing in Independent Ladakh” explores how four indigenous modes of viewing space–cosmological, political, linguistic, and material–created multiple modes of seeing that space.

Kyle’s paper can be accessed through at the East Asia: Transregional Histories workshop website. The password is “cosmology”

As always, first-time attendees are welcome. Light refreshments and snacks will be served.

If you have any questions or require assistance to attend, please contact Jessa Dahl at jdahl@uchicago.edu or Erin Newton at emnewton@uchicago.edu.

Thursday Nov 17 at 4PM : Liping Wang

Liping Wang

Assistant Professor, University of Hong Kong

“Legal Pluralism or Jurisdictional Nexuses: The Transformation of Jurisdictional Boundaries in China-Inner Mongolia, 1900-1930”

Thursday, November 17 4:00-6:00 PM

John Hope Franklin Room, (SSR 224)

Discussant:

Yuan Tian (PhD Student, Department of History)

The East Asia: Transregional Histories workshop is delighted to host Professor Liping Wang of the University of Hong Kong next Thursday, November 17. Please see the below abstract for the work.

“This presentation comes from one chapter in my book under work. In this chapter, historical examples from eastern Inner Mongolia will illustrate the hazy jurisdictional boundaries between Mongol banners and Han Chinese migrant communities, a structure that formed under the Qing Empire. Multiple frontier agents, including banner nobles, civilian county magistrates, frontier governors, and local representatives of Lifan yuan, all participated in judicial processes that sometimes involved Mongols and sometimes mixed ethnic groups. Frontier legal jurisdiction was therefore not a whole cloth. Frontier agents, who represented the state or the local Mongolian interests to varying degrees, diversified the expression of legal authority. This structure evokes the question: can we conceptualize the multiple legal orders operating/cooperating in the Qing Empire as a case of legal pluralism? Legal pluralism is a term introduced in colonial studies and reformulated to stress the multiplicity of legal practices in empires as opposed to the legal uniformity characterizing nation-states. Moreover, these rather diversified legal jurisdictions in the frontier were being shattered in the early twentieth century. System decay started with the transformation of Lifan yuan, which destabilized the balance between different agents, and triggered their competitions to augment their respective jurisdictional scopes. Based upon a variety of sources (including the official memorials, local gazetteers, the archives of the Department of Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs, and sources collected from the Archives of the Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region), this chapter pinpoints the most important changes that transformed the frontier jurisdictional divisions, which directly propelled the formation of confrontational ethnic relationship in China-Inner Mongolia in the early 20th century.”

As always, first-time attendees are welcome. Light refreshments and snacks will be served.

If you have any questions or require assistance to attend, please contact Jessa Dahl at jdahl@uchicago.edu or Erin Newton at emnewton@uchicago.edu.

Friday, November 4 at 4PM: Jamie Monson

Jamie Monson

Professor, Michigan State University

“Learning by Heart: Practice as knowledge building along the TAZARA Railway in late Twentieth Century Mang’ula”

Friday, November 4, 4:00 – 6:00 PM

CEAS Room 319 (1155 E 60th St)

Professor Monson’s presentation will include photographs and video clips demonstrating her ethno-historical methodology. Her paper can be found on the East Asia: Transregional Histories Website. 

This paper explores the transmission of knowledge from Chinese experts to African workers during the construction of the TAZARA railway in Mang’ula, Tanzania. Using a practice called shou ba shou (literally “hand holding hand”), the Chinese experts taught local workers how to use drills and lathes to build railroads. Monson’s ethno-historical research reveals that such processes “spanned and charted major upheavals of the mid-twentieth century in the global history of work, technology and politics.” This railway project bridged the divide between China’s socialist internationalism and Cultural Revolution, on the one hand, and Tanzania’s socialist experiment on the other. As Monson states, “the meeting of Chinese experts and African workers in the secluded mountain stronghold of Mang’ula formed a connection between two frontline landscapes of railway building during the Cold War – from the frontiers of Sichuan and Yunnan to the rugged escarpment of the Udzungwa mountains.“

As always, first-time attendees are welcome. Light refreshments and snacks will be served.

If you have any questions or require assistance to attend, please contact Jessa Dahl at jdahl@uchicago.edu or Erin Newton at emnewton@uchicago.edu.