News & Events Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs Macalester College


Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs


Program and Abstracts

Call for Papers

General Conference Info

Conference Registration


Restaurants and Dining




Annual Prizes and Awards

Program and Abstracts

60th Annual Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs (MCAA)

October 28-30, 2011
Macalester College, St. Paul, MN


Held jointly with 1st  Himalaya Studies Conference, website:

MCAA Plenary sessions: Saturday, October 29

3:45 - 5:15 p.m.: Presidential Plenary Speaker: Prof. Karma Lekshe Tsomo
"Changes and Challenges: Women in Asian Buddhist Cultures"

8:00 p.m.: Keynote address: Prof. K. Sivaramakrishnan, Past President, Association for Asian Studies
"Forests and the Environmental History of India"

Download the program

Abstracts: Click on the links to display abstracts

October 28,

Session II, Panel 8
Kamikaze, Hiroshima, and Manchuria: Historical Memory and National Identity
Room 205

Chair: Hiromi Mizuno, University of Minnesota
Discussant: Hiromi Mizuno

1. Purdy, R.W., John Carroll University

» Men, Martyrs and Myth: Kamikaze and Islamist Suicide Bombers

While there are many differences between the Japanese kamikaze pilots of the Pacific War and contemporary Islamist suicide bombers, in both cases the proponents of these acts must justify their tactics to the parents, family and friends of the bombers as a positive and rational strategy which leads to ultimately victory.  In Japan’s case this meant the kamikaze pilot’s life and final mission had to be presented as an example of courage, loyalty, and the personification of national and cultural values.  Seki Yukio, the squadron leader of one of the first kamikaze attacks became the archetype hero of Japan’s final military effort.  Mass media coverage of his life and mission in poems, newsreels and especially in magazines oriented for youth made him a wartime celebrity and his squad the epitome of imperial loyalty.  He not only became a source for national admiration and inspiration, but a model to which the Japanese people should strive.  Examining Seki’s wartime myth and reality may help illuminate how today’s fundamentalist Islamists recruit suicide bombers and shape their home-front image. 

2. Shibata, Yuko, Saint John's University/College of Saint Benedict

» Spectacle Excess and the Volatility of Gaze: Subverting Atomic Bomb Victimhood

This paper considers the atomic bomb victimhood of Kikkawa Kiyoshi (1911-1986), one of the first kataribe in Hiroshima: the citizen volunteers who talk about their bomb experience to posterity and visitors. Kikkawa’s approach, however, was radically different from that of other hibakusha. He was an exceptional figure who willingly displayed the injuries derived from radioactivity to anyone who requested to see them, and sometimes forced people to look at them. The paper argues that his radical gesture suggests a self-conscious attempt to intervene in the signifying process and subvert the position of the seen and the seer. As such, he was a seducer, agitator, and provoker of the emotions of the people who got in touch with him, in so much as his performance converted them into spectators, and even objectified them as a constituent of his “show.” While the display of his disfigured body necessarily debunks the obscenity of spectatorship, he himself also becomes the unseemly spectator. This paper explores the volatile and complex relationship between object, gaze, and spectatorship, as well as the historical contingency that subsumes his performance as a resistance to the ongoing reconstruction and transformation of the city and the urban space of Hiroshima.

3. Shan, Lianying, Gustavus Adolphus College

» Nostalgia and Identity Formation in Postwar Japan: a Study of Popular and Literary Accounts of Manchuria

Japan’s overseas population (3,100,000 civilians and 3,500,000 soldiers) in Asia returned to their homeland at the end of WWII.  Since then, Manchuria has stood out among all the former Japanese colonies as the most important object of nostalgia in Japan’s literary and popular accounts of the imperial past.  This phenomenon reflects Japanese society’s collective memory of Manchukuo and the strong emotional connection between the physical place of Manchuria and those Japanese who once lived there.  Postwar accounts of Manchuria are commonly seen as a personal reflection of the events in the colony and the war—a historical past, to which postwar Japan relates only through imagination and memory.  This understanding, however, is inaccurate as it ignores the rhetorical aspects of the texts and the authors’ diverse individual responses to the past and their different narratives.  My project explores literary and popular accounts of Manchuria written after the war as a discursive site for the complex identity formation in the postwar present.  I argue that in nostalgia discourse the past in Manchuria functions not as an interruption but as an affirmation of the individual identification with Japan and its collective consciousness.  In this sense, nostalgia for Manchuria is in fact nostalgia for an imaginary Japan. 

October 28,
10:30a.m. -

Session II, Panel 9
Configuring Chinese Cinema and Literature: Cross-culture perspectives
Room 300

Chair: Frederik Greene, Macalester College

1. Hong Zeng, Carleton College

» Female doubling and cultural identities of Hong Kong and Shanghai

Lou Ye's "Suzhou River," Stanley Kwan's "Center Stage," and Wayne Wang's "Chinese Box" establish at the center of the film a self-split, enigmatic, iconic female image, projected into female doppelganger that represents the complex cultural identities of Shanghai and Hong Kong.
In the doppelganger of Meimei- Moudan in "Suzhou River," Meimei incarnates city sphinx and seductress in tune with the flourishing economy in the age of world market and globalization, and Moudan represents the innocent victim of the new economy with its byproduct of criminal gangsters. The doubling represents both the lure and peril, nostalgia and alienation in Shanghai's globalization.
In "Center Stage," the uprooted, self split and exiled image of Ruan Lingyu, with her plaintive dependence and emotional vulnerability and various men's exploitation and betrayal of her beneath her roles of empowered new women, represents the same vulnerable, uprooted status of Hong Kong as a city once leased out, colonized and returning to a disparate system that might threaten its freedom and integrity.
The heavy-handed use of doppelganger in "Chinese Box" reveals also Hong Kong's split allegiance and identity crisis as clamped between its motherland and its colonizer. Wayne's projection of Hong Kong into the disempowered, self-split image of a woman who has to sell herself in return for her reliance on man suggests Hong Kong's vulnerability as the colonized beneath its facade of economic power.

2. Hongmei Yu, Luther College

» Between Orientalism and Occidentalism: The Cinematic Ambivalence of Chinese Masculinity

Gender discourse of both men and women has always been constructed socio-historically.  By revealing the interrelation between discourse of masculinity and nationalism in two Chinese language films, Grief over the Yellow River (????, 1997)and Charging out Amazon (?????, 2001), this paper attempts to sketch a small part of the complicated gender discourse and its ideological significance in a globalized cinema market.  The interweaving of Occidentalism and Orientalism, as a salient feature of many Chinese “main melody” films, reflects an uncertainty of China in the reconfiguration of the world order. On the one hand, it tries to get rid of the Orientalist discourses to present a powerful China; on the other hand, it always has to resort to the acknowledgment of the Westerners, which shows the uneven power relations between China and Western countries. The masculine-nationalist connection in Chinese cinema has to be considered in a larger socio-economic context in which China is asserting its newly acquired superpower status.

3. Jessica Ka Yee Chan
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities

» Cinematic Encounter: Lu Xun, Douglas Fairbanks, and The Thief of Bagdad (1924)

Lu Xun is considered by many as the father of modern Chinese literature. However, his role as a film critic and a translator is often neglected. Using the episode of the Hollywood renowned actor Douglas Fairbanks’s visit to Shanghai in 1929 as a case study, my essay articulates a significant moment when Lu Xun, as a film critic and a translator, encountered the figure of the foreign, the imperial, the global, and the universal, embodied by Douglas Fairbanks in The Thief of Bagdad (Yuegong baohe) (1924).  Fairbanks’s visit to Shanghai in 1929 triggered concerns over the insulting depiction of Chinese people in The Thief of Bagdad. In his afterword to his translation of Iwasaki Akira’s “Film as a Tool of Propaganda and Provocation” (1931), Lu Xun dramatizes Fairbanks’s visit and the response of the Shanghai Film Association as a cinematic encounter and a civilizational competition. My essay explores Lu Xun’s translations and critical writings on film—an overlooked archive whose retrieval sheds light on cinematic modernity, as well as Lu Xun’s pioneering attempt to introduce Marxist perspectives on film into China through the work of translation.

October 28,
10:30 a.m.-
12:15 p.m.

Session II, Panel 10
Education in Asia
Room 170

Chair: Ruthanne Kurth-Schai, Macalester College

1. Sangsook Lee-Chung
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

» Personalized Globalization, Vicarious Cosmopolitans: South Korean “Geese-dad” Academics

This paper explores how South Korean “geese-dad” professors, a symbolic subset of South Korean intellectuals, individually and personally experience globalization through their children’s transnational educational experiences and how new meanings are being fashioned in this process. “Geese-dads” are fathers who sent their wives and children overseas for pre-college education while they stay in South Korea to support them, and this phenomenon has emerged as a new educational strategy of middle class since the mid 1990s. Based on my fieldwork, I argue that many of these professors undergo paradigm shift in their thoughts on their nation and the global via the experiences of their children. Their “geese-family making” reveals something larger than familial social reproduction through the accrual of cultural capital (Bourdieu 1984) or the making of “flexible citizens”-- children who can survive the changing global political economy (Ong 1999). Their thoughts and practices also demonstrate how intellectuals themselves are transforming in response to globalization beyond the traditional norms and boundaries. They actually become vicarious cosmopolitans through their adventurous, personalized globalization project for the children. I show how their thoughts develop as they negotiate the gap between the ideals and reality of nurturing and identifying with their children abroad. 

2. Zhini Zeng, The Ohio State University

» Second-Culture Worldview Construction: Culture Gains during Study Abroad

A study abroad program generally consists of an instructional setting within the classroom as well as informal extracurricular contact with the target community. How does each of these settings facilitate the learning process and overall success of the program? What pedagogical shift should language instructors and program designers make in order to utilize the unique and important learning resources presented by the in-country study context to facilitate more sophisticated learning outcomes?
To answer these questions, this case study looked at the performance of two Americans within a 9-week in-China study program. Through interviewing learners, instructors and the program director, observing learners’ performance both in and out of the class, and analyzing their writing journals, this study aims to shed light on advanced learners’ language and culture learning context and process during an in-China study.
Findings from the collected data show that a unit of a carefully designed formal instruction encouraging a “paradigm shifting” in learners’ mind and a guided participation within an identified community outside the classroom not only contribute to maximizing learners’ linguistic but also facilitate the construction of learners’ second-culture worldview by adding a set of new skills to their existing cognitive system.

3. Annelies Ollieuz, University of Oslo, Norway

» ‘Politicians and other educated people’: Political parties as arenas of informal learning

Whenever I observe and discuss local leadership in my fieldwork area in the south-eastern tarai, education comes up in different ways. Some people explain that when they were selected to take a leading position in a community organisation, they protested, saying ‘but I am not educated’. Others say ‘I wasn’t interested, but I am educated, so they chose me’. In this paper, I analyse local meanings of ‘being educated’ in the context of leadership. I examine the qualities which are implicitly understood when this expression is used, including at least 10 years of formal education, speaking skills, and the ability to convince others. I go on to show that some people however are referred to as educated, even though they do not have any formal education. These exceptions are usually politicians. Using Lave and Wenger’s analytical framework on social learning, I therefore propose to approach party membership as a form of informal apprenticeship. Political parties are thus arenas of informal learning, where qualities which villagers generally see as a result of formal education can be acquired.

October 28,

1:30 - 3:15 p.m.

Session III, Panel 12
Religion, Politics and Ritual in India, China and Japan
Room 370

Chair: Roger Jackson, Carleton College

1. Michelle Folk, Concordia University/University of Regina

» Food for Thought:  The Ritual Activities of Mathas in Medieval Tamilnadu India

The term matha is commonly translated into English as “monastery” or “seminary” and has been applied to a diversity of historical and contemporary religious institutions in Hinduism such as hermitages, feeding houses, choultries, religious learning centers, and monastic sites, with these institutions united under the term matha because of their emphasis on lineage and the preceptor-disciple relationship.  Epigraphical evidence from medieval Tamilnadu suggests that mathas served a range of functions (e.g., feeding and housing) for a diversity of people (e.g., ascetics and pilgrims) and that these social service activities may have had religious purposes.  Temple inscriptions reveal that mathas undertook burning lamps, reciting sacred texts, and feeding devotees, activities that paralleled those of temples during this same period.  Why would centers traditionally associated with asceticism undertake activities similar to those of temples and take on the role of feeding people as one of their responsibilities?  In this paper, I will examine the activities of mathas in Tamilnadu from the ninth to thirteenth century.  Using evidence from temple inscriptions from this period, I hope to add to our understanding of these centers by suggesting that feeding was an important component of religion at religious institutions in medieval Tamilnadu.

2. Jesse Palmer, Lawrence University

» Ennin as Transmitter of Mountain Religion Practices from China to Japan

Although much research has been done on the mountain religion traditions of China, Japan, and Korea, there has been much less research looking for the connections between these traditions.  One potential entry into this field is an examination of Japanese monks who traveled to the continent and visited Chinese sacred mountains.  Among the first of these was the Heian monk Ennin, who traveled to Mt. Wutai and kept a record of his travels there.  Although Mt. Wutai was not part of Ennin's original itinerary, Ennin brought many of Mt. Wutai's ritual practices and their accompanying architecture back to Japan.  In this paper I argue that the new ideas about sacred space embodied in these practices become the foundation for some of the most iconic Tendai practices, such as the kaihogyo (???), a ritual circumambulation of Mt. Hiei.  By connecting Ennin’s time on Mt. Wutai to the esoteric development of the Tendai sect and the development of Mt. Hiei as sacred space, this paper begins to map out some connections between the mountain religious traditions of different East Asian states.

3. Amy McNair, University of Kansas

» On the Origin of the Medieval Chinese Buddhist Sculpted Grottoes at Yungang

Current opinion holds that the sculpted Buddhist cave-shrines at Yungang, west of Datong, Shanxi Province, were inaugurated with the excavation of Caves 16-20 by the Northern Wei (386-534) emperor Wencheng beginning in the year 460.  I argue the site was actually designated “Vulture Peak” by Emperor Daowu in 398 and the making of cave-shrines was started by Emperor Mingyuan around 415 with the creation of the matched pair of Caves 7 and 8.  A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Yungang has the largest and most important fifth-century Buddhist cave-shrines in China, and its origins have been a significant subject of scholarly debate in China, Japan and the West for the last hundred years, due to its political, religious and artistic influence.  Using the relevant epigraphic and historical documents and a thorough examination of the architecture and sculptural program in these paired grottoes, I present a case for Emperor Mingyuan’s 415 marriage of state to the daughter of Yao Xing, ruler of the Later Qin dynasty (384-417), as the motivating event for the creation of cave-shrines at the site, specifically Caves 7 and 8. 

4. Xi He, University of Chicago

» Glorifying and Worshipping the Bodhisattva: An Analysis of the Devotional Emotion in the Lalitavistara

The Lalitavistara, as its title indicates, is the extensive account of the plays of (the Bodhisattva). The extensive and marvelous plays (lalita and kri?a or vikri?ita) of the Bodhisattva in the Lalitavistara that reveal his sublimity and omniscience as a result of his numerous great deeds in past lives function as extraordinary illustrations for the karmic truth and set up a role model for the pursuit of final liberation. Meanwhile, the marvelous plays of the Bodhisattva, similar to those by the Hindu gods (lila), intends to evoke faith inspired by the sense of wonder and awe and calls forth “a response of devotional attachment that is transformative, liberative.” The Lalitavistara dedicates a great deal of time and space in the narrative to eulogizing the Bodhisattva and to portraying the devotional attitude and reaction of gods and human beings towards the Bodhisattva’s wondrous plays. I argue that demonstrating reverence and awe whereby evoking the devotional emotion of the audience or readers is one of the most important characteristics of this Mahavaipulyasutra, and it also signifies one of the most significant differences of the Lalitavistara from other Buddha biographies such as the Buddhacarita.

October 28,
1:30 - 3:15 p.m.

Session III, Panel 13
Videos: “Experiencing Jingdezhen: The Porcelain City of China” and “All the Roads to Lhasa”
Room 150

1. Gary Erickson, Macalester College

» Experiencing Jingdezhen: The Porcelain City of China

Jingdezhen, China (Jiangxi Province) has historical significance as a porcelain production city for over one thousand years and continues to be an active ceramic center.  The video begins with a narrated history of Jingdezhen as being home to the Imperial kilns during the Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties, then showcases workshops continuing to use many traditional techniques today.  Shot while visiting workshops throughout the city over the past five years while Artist-in-Residence at the Sanbao Ceramic Art Institute, Professor Gary Erickson, Art Department, Macalester College, St. Paul, MN has captured workers in action at their craft.  Footage includes:  water-powered hammer mills crushing Chinastone feldspar, double throwers using over 300 pounds of clay while making sections for vases up to fifteen feet tall, qinghua, blue on white underglaze decorators, an eggshell thin slipcast bowl studio, porcelain tiles being made at one-quarter inch thick and up to twelve feet long and a Mao Zedong figurine workshop.  Because of the unique properties of Jingdezhen porcelain work at this scale and quality could be made in no other place in the world.  What began as an academic tool for teaching Macalester College students about different cultural approaches to working with clay has grown into a project of preservation as Jingdezhen experiences the rapid changes prevalent throughout China.

2. Wang Ping, Macalester College

» All the Roads to Lhasa

The Qinghai-Tibetan railway is hailed as a steel dragon flying across the roof of the world, a wonder of the 21st century technology that will bring prosperity to Tibet. What lies in the shadow of the steel dragon? What economic, cultural and ecological impacts will it have over the highest plateau on earth, the last “pure” land for the natives and non-natives alike? And how will it affect the extremely fragile eco-system of the land that serves as the water-tower for China and part of Asia? This video, “All Roads to Lhasa,” explores the questions through interviews, travelogues, visual images, and music from the people and land.

October 28,

1:30 - 3:15 p.m.

Session III, Panel 14
Classical Chinese Literature and Art
Room 301

Chair: Hong Zeng, Carleton College
Discussant: Hong Zeng

1. Jane Parish Yang, Lawrence University

» Hegemonic Dreams/Fictive Dialogues: Channeling Chinese Literati in 16th century Vietnamese 'Narratives of the Strange'

That Vietnamese literati were obsessed with Chinese literary culture is well documented in recent scholarship on Vietnamese envoy poetry. The sixteenth century Vietnamese prose narratives under study, Truyen Ki Man Luc (Ch. Chuanqi man lu ????[Record of Leisurely Transmitting the Strange]), which purport to record strange events that unfold both inside and outside Vietnam, are similarly larded with Chinese literary and historical allusions. This study, a preliminary look at a Vietnamese collection of  ‘narratives of the strange’ written in classical Chinese, will focus on two stories in the collection, one derivative of Tang ‘narratives of the strange’ genre, the other a satiric persuasion with the ghost of Xiang Yu, the hegemon of the civil war at the end of the Qin.  While other collections of Vietnamese writings in Chinese exhibit much more interest in local folklore and legends, these writings tie Vietnamese literati closely to Chinese literary and historical traditions as the authors display knowledge of the Chinese poetic canon and their own poetic talents as well as their deep understanding of Chinese political history.

2. Elizabeth Kindall, University of St. Thomas

» A Painted Geo-Narrative as Quest Toward Sagehood

In 1651, amidst the Ming-Qing conflict, Huang Xiangjian (1609-1673) left his native Suzhou for Yunnan Province to find his father, who had been serving there as an official.  Despite almost impossible odds, he found Huang Kongzhao amidst the mountainous province of Yunnan and brought him home to Suzhou.  After his return, Huang Xiangjian created a variety of paintings picturing himself and his parents on this odyssey that offered viewers dramatic views of that rugged landscape.  This talk examines one of Huang’s most complex painted albums, his 1658 The Scenic Border of Diannan, as a geo-narrative.  I argue this eight-leaf album presents the life story of an individual as a written and visually narrated journey through a set of unique sites filled with topographical metaphors for personal growth and illumination.  Each of the leaves presents a carefully delineated journey through the exotic countryside and limitless vistas of southwest China.  The geo-narrative of the album as a whole explicates the life of Huang Kongzhao as a journey through the southwest.  Landscape iconographies of specific sites and occasions, remembered feelings and views and personal relationships share the path with more universal symbols of the southwest, officialdom, Confucian precepts, Buddhist beliefs, and loyalist sentiment. 

3. Qing Ye, University of Oregon

» Microcosmic and Macrocosmic Reading of Backyards (Hou Ting) in Jin Ping Mei

Andrew Plaks, Keith McMahon and Naifei Ding systematically discuss the microcosmic/macrocosmic representation of the corporeal body, the household, and the body politic in the late-Ming  novel, Jin Ping Mei. They have discussed corporeal issues such as illness, the bound foot, and the phallus. However, perhaps because of its obscene nature, the “backyard” (hou ting) of the individual, related to anal sex has not gained deserved attention. This paper takes a metaphorical reading of the backyard to argue that it demonstrates the fragility of the social order that relies so heavily on the back door exchanges of Ximen Qing’s sexual favors. First, I claim that through the juxtaposition of Ximen Qing’s anal sex and the back door graft used to resolve a court case, the novel symbolically presents a decadent juridical system that is easily manipulated by a catamite. Furthermore, this paper explores women’s responses to anal sex, a form of sexual intimacy which brings them pain and humiliation but also financial benefits. And although Ximen Qing is good at handling the transformation of sex and money, his own backyard is always vulnerable to (in)visible attacks. Finally, I argue that several intellectuals and officials in this novel also demonstrate a paired predeliction for anal sex and sexual bribery, implying the inescapable corruption of the whole bureaucratic system. I conclude that the motif of the backyard in the novel highlights the precariousness of a social order vulnerable to the actions of single individuals and doomed in the absence of moral leadership.

October 28,
1:30 - 3:15 p.m.

Session III, Panel 15
Japanese Linguistics: Different Perspectives and Implications for Japanese Language Instruction
Room 205

Organizer and Chair: Satoko Suzuki, Macalester College

This panel pulls together four linguists who are also engaged in teaching Japanese as a foreign language in Minnesota (Ito co-authored her paper with her student, Dmytrenko). Their topics and data are quite diverse. The first presentation by Michiko Todokoro Buchanan investigates the ellipsis (omission) of verbs which involves the copula da. Natalie Dmytrenko and Rika Ito’s paper look into the sound alteration of Japanese numerals and classifiers. Ritsuko Narita’s paper compares the use of hearsay evidential expressions by Japanese native speakers and that by English learners of Japanese. Finally, the presentation by Satoko Suzuki examines the utilization of linguistic stereotypes in Japanese fiction.

Despite these differences, the four presentations have a common theme. They are all concerned with how the findings of the studies could benefit the instruction of Japanese as a foreign language. This panel provides an opportunity in which linguists/educators will present the results of their linguistic scholarship as well as discuss practical implications of their research for language instruction with each other and with audience members.

1. Michiko Todokoro Buchanan, University of Minnesota

» Verb Ellipsis in Japanese

This paper presents a study of Japanese verb ellipsis that involves the copula da.  My focus is on the copula structures where a sequence of elements including a verb is missing, yet the meaning of the sequence is recoverble.  The second part of (1) exemplifies the structure.
(1) A: Taro-wa sushi-o tabeta. ‘Taro ate sushi.’
B: Hanako-mo da.  ‘Hanako did too.’
I address the following questions: how is the presence of the copula accounted for; what conditions allow this phenomenon?

I investigate three types of verb ellipsis.  (i) Structures where a DP with a marker (e.g., focus markers) is followed by the copula.  (ii) Structures where an adverbial is followed by the copula.  (iii) Structures where a DP without a marker is followed by the copula.  The appearance of the copula suggests that clefting is involved in the ellipsis in question.  Building on previous studies on Japanese Sluicing (e.g., Nishiyama 1995, Hiraiwa and Ishihara 2000), I propose that (i) and (ii) are derived from it’s that-cleft (Complementizer Phrase (CP) Focused Cleft), and that (iii) is derived from wh-cleft (Determiner Phrase (DP) Focused Cleft).  The former type of ellipsis is referred to as CP-focused Clefted Ellipsis, the latter DP-focused Clefted Ellipsis.

2. Natalie Dmyterenko and Rika Ito, St. Olaf College

» Japanese numerals and classifiers: The case of number four and seven

The Japanese lexicon has three strata: the native yamato, Sino-Japanese of Chinese origin, and foreign loanwords from European languages (Shibatani 1990; Yamaguchi 2007). Thus, Japanese has two sets of numerals: the native one (hito-, futa-, mi-, etc.) and Sino-Japanese (ichi, ni, san, etc.). The use of Sino-Japanese numerals is predominant in modern Japanese and in the classifier constructions. Sino-Japanese classifiers tend to co-occur with Sino-Japanese numerals and indigenous classifiers with indigenous numerals (Downing 1996: 46). However, numeral 4 and 7 seem to be exempt from this tendency. The Sino-Japanese shi and shichi are often replaced by the native yo(n) and nana, respectively. The avoidance of shi can be attributed to the fact that shi is homophonous with the Sino-Japanese morpheme meaning 'death.' (Downing 1996: 271). However, the context in which the sound alternation between yo and yon occurs, the context in which shichi is replaced by nana, and interchangeability between shichi and nana have not been addressed. This paper analyzes these alternations with respect to the phonemes of the numerals and classifiers, types of classifiers, and ondoku vs. kundoku reading of Sino-Japanese classifiers (Downing 1996: 44). We also address how to use this kind of information to Japanese language instruction.

3. Ritsuko Narita, Macalester College,

» Transferability of the use of hearsay evidential markers in L1 Japanese and L2 Japanese

This study investigates the use of Japanese hearsay evidential markers(-rashii “it seems,” –soo “I hear”) by native speakers of Japanese (NJs in L1 Japanese) and English speaking learners of Japanese (JFL learners in L1 English and L2 Japanese). Trent (1998) found that English speakers used fewer hearsay evidential markers than Japanese speakers in their hearsay reports. Therefore, this study investigates L2 Japanese use of hearsay evidential markers in hearsay reports.

The participants were 40 NJs and 28 JFL learners. They were asked to report news and gossip/rumors that they heard. The JFL learners first reported hearsay information in L1 English and then in L2 Japanese.

This study shows that the JFL learners were likely to use hearsay evidential markers in L2 Japanese less frequently than the NJSs in L1 Japanese. The JFL learners seemed to transfer their L1 pragmatic knowledge into their L2 Japanese pragmatics. This study also shows that  the JFL learners were likely to use reported speech, e.g., to kiita ‘I heard’ and to yonda ‘I read’, and they seemed to not use auxiliary expressions such as rashii or mitai, which were frequently used by the NJS in L1 Japanese.

4. Satoko Suzuki, Macalester College,

» Linguistic Stereotypes and Style Manipulation in Japanese Fiction

The notion of yakuwari-go ‘role language’ introduced by Kinsui (2003) is useful in understanding style variation in Japanese. Defined as linguistic stereotypes, “role language” refers to the set of linguistic features that are associated with particular types of people. For example, a self-referent term washi and a copula form ja are stereotypically associated with wise old men. Kinsui observes that stereotypically speaking characters tend to appear in childrens’ literature and comic books and that more peripheral characters tend to engage in speaking stereotypically. Although such a tendency may be prominent, this study demonstrates that even with main characters in fiction for adults, the notion of linguistic stereotyping is an important tool in understanding and interpreting fiction.

As a case study, I examine a novel by Haruki Murakami, Sekai no owari to haado boirudo wandaarand (‘Hard-boiled Wonderland and the End of the World’). This novel is told in alternating chapters narrated by two different main characters. At least initially, readers are led to believe that the two narrators/protagonists are different individuals. I demonstrate that the author effectively misleads readers to dramatic effect towards the end of the novel by taking advantage of linguistic stereotypes associated with personal pronouns and other stylistic elements.

October 28,
1:30 - 3:15 p.m.

Session III, Panel 16
State Power and Spatiality in Inland Tai Urban Spaces
Room 243

Organizer: Taylor M Easum,University of Wisconsin, Madison,

This panel brings together new research on the exercise of state power in the inland Tai polities of mainland Southeast Asia, both in history and in more recent times. States, in their various forms, have always been crucial to the growth, development, and transformation of cities and urban spaces throughout Asia. However, most scholarship has focused on political capitals and coastal primate cities such as Bangkok or Jakarta, often at the expense of smaller, inland centers. Likewise, scholarship on the Tai city-states of mainland Southeast Asia have often focused narrowly on the origins of urbanism on one hand, or their eventual consolidation into the great mainland kingdoms on the other (Lieberman 2004). This panel, therefore, tries to bring these smaller, intermediate centers back into the ‘big questions’ of state power and urban spaces, while bringing theories and questions of space and spatiality to our understanding of these inland cities. How have states been able to mediate local interests and external forces to create ‘the state’ in urban spaces/centers? How, in turn, have the traditions of urban spaces, cities, and towns shaped the extension of the state? This panel centers around these ‘big’ questions concerning the shifting role of the state in making and shaping urban space, through the lens of pre-modern Luang Prabang, colonial Chiang Mai, and modern Vientianne.

1. Ryan Ford, UW-Madison

» “Tracing the Phrabang Image in upland and lowland spaces: A local history of Northern Laos”

The story of the Phrabang image in the spread of Theravada Buddhism to Laos is well known, as is its legitimizing link to royal authority, enshrined as the palladium of the realm. Yet at pivotal moments, it became much more than these static representations by refiguring the muang broadly in the region and immediately within the hinterlands. For the diverse populations of Northern Laos, ritual practice and historical narrative reshaped the Phrabang image as a locus for incorporating them within the muang. This was most significant for maintaining a relationship with people outside the city limits, and specifically people living in the upland zones, on whom the lowlanders depended. In the wider world, the Phrabang image was important in ordering the muang’s relations with other centers who were conversely resisted or approached. Finally, the image’s removal in the 18th century came shortly before the onset of a merciless war. Only in the 19th century was it returned with the hope that it might save the muang on the eve of colonialism. This presentation seeks to challenge the interpretations of nationalist history while resituating Laos within a region of stark geography and diverse people, all of which had a major influence on history that remains unappreciated to the present.

2. Taylor M. Easum, University of Wisconsin, Madison

» ‘Micro-Colonization’: Scale and State Power in a Thai Provincial City

This paper addresses the history of the integration of ‘the north’ into modern Siam (Thailand), as viewed through the lens of urban space of Chiang Mai.  From a national perspective, the integration of the north has been explained as the result of regional economic shifts and political strategies employed by outside groups (Siamese, British, etc.) to manage these changes.  Spatially, these changes manifested themselves in new patterns of economic production and exchange, and in new political spaces (i.e. ‘geo-body’) resulting from the bounding and mapping of Siam.

Looking at national integration at the urban scale encourages us to see a different set of spatial strategies that were also key to the integration of Siam’s northern periphery.  Using displacement, disenchantment, and re-inscription of space, the Siamese enacted their control in the space of the city.  While the geo-body was formed at the national level, a complex ‘micro-colonization’ was carried out at the local, urban level.  Thus, Chiang Mai’s urban space can be seen as a ‘micro-colonial’ reflection of the formation of the modern Siamese state in its northern periphery.  The essay concludes by highlighting the complicated spatial memory of this history in the monuments, architecture, and streetscape of Chiang Mai.

3. Jose Rafael Martinez, Ohio University

» Mallification of Space: The Globalization of Landmarks in Vientiane

Based on a comparative study of postcards, this paper discusses how a globalization related phenomenon has influenced the way a state sponsored transformation of public spaces has taken place in the last decade in Vientiane, capital of Laos. According to some scholars, space could serve power as a stage upon which to be represented. Such representation could take place, for instance, through emblematic edifices or spaces. Power, then, has an aesthetic expression within space. I argue that power does not limit its spatial representation to brand new buildings or spaces. Power could also be represented through the incorporation of some symbolic elements associated with power in either buildings or spaces already existing, such as city landmarks. My study focuses on one particular landmark in Vientiane, the That Luang area, and I discuss some government-sponsored changes within that space. I explain the state sponsored transformation of That Luang in terms of what C. Boyer (1996) calls mallification. I argue here that the image the Laotian government has printed onto this landmark is inspired by the aesthetics of “global cities” rather than an official interpretation of national culture.

October 28,
3:30 - 5:15 p.m.

Session IV, Panel 17
Buddhism in China and Japan
Room 370

Chair: Erik W. Davis, Macalester College

1. Yeonjoo Park, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

» Buddhist Construction of Kami-Buddha Discourse in Early Medieval Japan: The Logic of the Kami-Buddha Combination in the Keiran shuyoshu

Medieval Japanese religions featured discourses which drew correspondences between Buddhist figures and non-Buddhist folk religious deities called Kami. Scholars have typically viewed these discourses as expressions of a larger development called shinbutsu shugo (Kami-Buddha combinatory discourse). However, despite the pervasive presence and influence of the Kami-Buddha discourse in medieval Japan, there have been few significant studies that examine the logic and structure of the Kami-Buddha combinatory discourse in detail.
My primary goal is to examine the rationale of the honji suijaku (essence-trace) logic, which is the representative logical scheme operating the shinbutsu shugo paradigm. This logic appears in the Keiran shuyoshu (1348), a Japanese Tendai encyclopedic text that provides a fully developed incorporation of Kami-Buddha discourse in the era marked by the maturity of “Shinto” lineages in the major Buddhist temple complexes.
In my analysis of this invaluable text, I focus on the symbolism of Kami, a unique homology among the dragon-serpent symbol, Kami, and Buddha(s), and the mechanism of the association?all interwoven with the problem of the original enlightenment and the Tendai theory of mind and consciousness. In doing so, I discuss the way the Keiran shuyoshu constructs the logic of the Kami-Buddha relationship under the high medieval Buddhist philosophical framework developed in Mt. Hiei.

2. Chen Qin, The Ohio State University

» Sinification of Buddhism in the Transformation Text of Mulian Rescuing His Mother from the Underworld

It is widely accepted that the Buddhist salvation story of Mulian Rescues His Mother [from Hell] in the Yu-lan-pen Sutra, was first adapted to a chantefable story in the form of bianwen (the transformation text) in the Tang dynasty and subsequently adopted into the zaju repertoire in the Song-Yuan period and remains a popular staple of certain regional operas till today.

This paper seeks to examine the role of bianwen played in this evolution, and how it contributed to the popularization of the original Buddhist story in the mediaeval China. In terms of materials, besides comparisons between texts of the original sutra and the bianwen, the paper will also take into account the traditional Chinese view about the hell system before Buddhism spread into China and the dominant Confucian concepts about filial piety. The methodology applied in this paper is close reading and analysis based on the social and cultural context in mediaeval China. In particular, this paper will examine how the bianwen articulated concepts and images unprecedented in Chinese religion and a grand bureaucracy rarely seen in original Buddhism together, as well as offered a dramatic and convincing solution for the dilemma between harmonious family life and monasticism through a mixed filial piety. In short, this paper seeks to discuss the Sinification of Buddhism in the bianwen of Mulian Rescues His Mother [from Hell], and how this assimilation contributed to the development of Buddhism and literature.

3. Tomoko Yoshida, Independent scholar

» “Respect the Gods, Even If You Do Not Worship Them”:  Medieval Buddhists’ Advice on Living in a Religiously Plural World

During the religious fervor of medieval Japan, the emergence of Buddhist sectarianism caused conflicts among various parties, including new and established Buddhist schools, Shinto shrines, and their civil and military supporters.  At times disputes among these different parties erupted into violence.  In the end, none of the conflicts escalated into a prolonged or devastating religious wars or severe persecutions.  Despite their animosities, religious groups managed to coexist, and authorities largely tolerated diverse beliefs and practices.  One of the contributing factors to this relative peace was the discourse of tolerance developed among some Buddhists.  My talk focuses on Pure Land Buddhism, the most popular form of Buddhism during the medieval period, and analyzes the advice given by masters Honen (1133-1212), Shinran (1173-1262), and Rennyo (1415-99) to their followers on how people should relate to religious others as well as to political authorities.

4. Mark Graham, College of Wooster

» Fu De: Translating the Perfection of the Buddha into Chinese Discourses of Virtue (De) and Sagehood

In the Scripture in Forty-Two Sections, arguably the earliest Chinese Buddhist text, the Buddha expresses his sage-like virtue (de) as fu de ("beneficent virtue"). Here we have a crucial moment of cultural translation: For this newly arrived perfected person to participate in the Chinese discourses of sagehood, his perfection must resonate with native discourses, and offer a clear alternative to already accepted possibilities. This paper studies this component of the transmission of Buddhism into China: The virtue of the Buddha required not just translation into the Chinese language, but also broader "cultural translation" into terms that resonated with native categories of sage-like virtue and contrasted the nature of the Buddha as sage with ideas of sage-like perfection already prominent in Han-era China. Those were ming de ("bright/illustrious virtue") and xuan de ("dark/mysterious virtue"), which reflect the discourses of yin-yang theories and the rhetorics of sagehood in so-called "Confucian" and "Daoist" literatures. For Buddhism to enter these discursive fields effectively, it needed to translate the excellence of the Buddha into terms that resonated with the cultural possibilities established in those discourses. Thus, fu de contributed to establishing a discursive place in Chinese culture for the Buddha as a new Chinese sage.

October 28,
3:30 - 5:15 p.m.

Session IV, Panel 18
Roundtable: Experiments in Content-Based Instruction: Integrating Asian Language and Area Studies at St. Olaf College
Room 300

Supported by a grant from the United States Department of Education, the Department of Asian Studies at St. Olaf College has undertaken an effort to strengthen our core Asian Studies curriculum by deepening the integration of language, cultural studies, and experiential learning.  Members of the department, language and non-language faculty alike, collaborate to provide students with guided opportunities to use Asian languages throughout their college careers.  This roundtable shares our experience in seeking to integrate Asian languages and non-language area studies disciplines.

Organizer and Chair: Robert Entenmann, , St. Olaf College

1. Luying Chen, St. Olaf College

» The Liberal Arts Content in a Fourth-year Chinese Language Class

The “content” that informs my fourth-year Chinese course “Literary Essays and Liberal Arts” includes my background in Comparative Literature, the MLA Report “Foreign Languages and Higher Education: New Structures for a Changed World,” and St. Olaf’s emphasis on teaching vocation. Each unit starts with a close study of one Chinese literary essay which has themes that parallel the concepts under the larger framework of vocation. Unit discussions and projects offer a transcultural perspective between China and the US on related topics. The first unit, “Graduation and Mountain Climbing,” compares historical changes in graduation ceremonies and reflects on life goals and values. The second unit compares the Daoist philosophy of inaction and the Western philosophy of taking action when facing critical moments in life. Students also use the framework of multiple perspectives to present their learning in various academic disciplines. “Being at Home” discusses human alienation from nature in modern society, feeling at home while abroad, and personal alienations in mundane jobs and ways to find physical and spiritual rejuvenation. The last unit, “Reading and Life-Long Learning,” discusses reading, learning and happiness. Through the course, students reflect on their college life in anticipation of life after graduation.

2. Tomoko Hoogenboom, St. Olaf College

» Content-Based Instruction (CBI) in an Advanced Japanese Course

In this presentation, I discuss an example of Content-Based Instruction (CBI) for an advanced Japanese language course. The topic of the course is ‘Japanese Food Culture’ which includes Japanese cuisine, history, display, and manners. CBI focuses on teaching content using the language rather than teaching language itself. In Japanese, based on ACTFL National Standards, Ushida and Chikamatsu conducted an advanced level course called Japanese-American History in Chicago.  My course is a 7th semester of Japanese course and is conducted exclusively in Japanese. The three objectives for this course are: 1) ability to discuss opinion by comparing to others’ after reading authentic materials, 2) experiencing Japanese culture through cooking a Japanese meal, and 3) thinking critically about the action of ‘eating’ after watching Japanese food theme movies.  After taking this course, students were able to express their opinions in Japanese without hesitation; however, the instructor needs to explore topics that enhance the students’ critical thinking skills. In addition, it is important to introduce CBI at the beginning level using the same topic so that students are accustomed to the method and learn the topic in greater depth as their level advances.

3. Robert Entenmann, St. Olaf College

» Chinese-Language Components in Chinese History Courses

Two survey courses on Chinese history – pre-modern and modern -  each offer an optional .25 credit Chinese-language component for students with a basic competence in the language.  The purpose of these components are to give students an opportunity to enrich their study of modern Chinese history with readings of Chinese primary sources in the original language.  Students taking the component meet once a week to read and discuss Chinese texts.  As far as possible, the texts relate to the topics the course covers that week.  Some texts will be read over a two-week period, and we adjust our pace depending on the difficulty of the text and the students’ language level.  Because pre-modern primary texts were generally written in classical Chinese, the Chinese component in the pre-modern survey gives students an introduction to classical Chinese.  Because of the difficulty of classical Chinese, the passages are quite short, and the vocabulary lists quite long.

4.  Kris MacPherson, St. Olaf College

» Applying CBI to a Research Methods Course

A required course on the interdisciplinary nature of Asian Studies and basic research methods for majors provides an opportunity to apply the principles of CBI to a non-language course.  With students at all levels of ability in Chinese, Japanese or Hmong, the goal is to use as authentic as possible materials, even if in English, to illustrate the nature of individual disciplines, what constitutes an interdisciplinary major and how one uses a variety of strategies to identify and utilize appropriate resources for research.  What defines “as authentic as possible”?  This will be the focus of this portion of the roundtable.

October 28,
3:30 - 5:15 p.m.

Session IV, Panel 19
The Politics of the Chinese Communist Party
Room 301

Chair: Yue-him Tam, Macalester College

1. Linlin Wang, University of Texas at Austin

» Sacrifice for Resistance: the Grain Tax Collection of the CCP in Jiangsu (1937-1945)

The scholars of the Chinese Communist Revolution agree on the importance of the War of Resistance (1937-1945) in the development of the Chinese Communist Party. However, treated as a periphery of the Communist revolution, Jiangsu Province received less attention than other places. This paper focuses on the issue of the grain tax collection, which is prevalently regarded as one of the important indicators of the state controlling ability, to show how the CCP penetrated into the local communities by propaganda and mass mobilization, and how the masses reacted to such penetration during the War.

Based on a detailed description of the CCP’s grain tax collection campaign, I show that tax had never been employed as an issue by the Party to attack the Nationalist government in Jiangsu Province. Actually no evidence suggests that the tax rate of the CCP was lower compared with that of the Nationalist government before the War. Different from its predecessor, the Party collected grain tax directly on ordinary peasants. Relying on its efficient mobilization, the Party employed grain tax as a channel to reinforce its existence as a state power vis-à-vis the masses.

2. Charles Kraus, George Washington University

» The Centralizing State: Social Investigations, Political Campaigns, and Regime Consolidation in Xinjiang, 1949-1955

By 1955, the Chinese Communist Party had achieved something few Chinese regimes had ever accomplished: centralized and durable control over the “new frontier," Xinjiang. While in the past scholars have focused upon the People’s Liberation Army and Han Chinese migrants to explain Xinjiang’s growing integration with the rest of China during the 1950s, this paper instead aims to reveal how the CCP understood and interacted with the indigenous elements of Xinjiang’s society after 1949. In particular, this paper analyzes two specific governing technologies, “social investigations” and political campaigns, employed by the CCP to aid and accelerate regime consolidation. Through these processes, the CCP identified and attacked political enemies while increasing its penetration of local communities. The end result was that, by 1955, Xinjiang had fallen under the CCP’s tight and unyielding control.

3. Sonja Kelley, Western Washington University

» Finished Business: The Impact of the Anti-Rightist Movement on the Long-term Development of Visual Art in the People’s Republic of China

The Cultural Revolution (CR), lasting from 1966 to 1976, was a period of political and social upheaval that ultimately led to drastic changes in the kinds of art produced in the People’s Republic of China. It is understood to have resulted in a major shift in China’s art world. Past scholarship has examined how the CR changed the lives of artists; this paper, however, will look at what it did not change. Research focusing on Sichuan has shown that while the leading figures in that province’s art world were all removed from their posts during the CR, they regained their status and power afterward. In contrast, careers stifled during the Anti-Rightist Movement (AR) in 1957 never fully recovered. The AR differed from the CR in that it involved attacks on only some influential artists, not all. It was used to settle power disputes, determining who would occupy positions of power not just in the late 1950s but well into the 1990s. The AR is key to understanding the power relationships in China’s art world before and after the CR and offers insight into the continuity of conservative values that underlay China’s artistic development during decades of radical cultural change.

4. Joseph Yick, Texas State University-San Marcos

» Leftwing Journalism and Communist Politics in British Hong Kong: Wen Wei Po in 1989

Wen Wei Po is a leading local leftist newspaper in colonial Hong Kong.  Although it was registered as a privately operated newspaper in 1948, since 1951 Wen Wei Po has actually been subsidized and managed by the Hong Kong Xinhua News Agency, the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) command post in the former British colony.  Being a major propaganda tool and mouthpiece for the CCP to spread party policies and nationalism and try to win over local Chinese support for the Hong Kong Handover (on 1 July 1997), Wen Wei Po has been part of the Communists’ united front in Hong Kong; and its publisher Li Zisong was an important cultural United-Front personage in the mass media.  However, during the development of the pro-democracy movement in Beijing extending from mid-April to the bloody crackdown that climaxed on 4 June 1989, Li and his newspaper took the unusual step of deviating from their pro-CCP stance for the first time in four decades.  Under political pressure from hard-line leaders in Beijing, the Xinhua Agency leadership abruptly terminated Li’s employment without seeking approval from the Wen Wei Po’s board of directors.  This event triggered a large number of resignations from Wen Wei Po and other leftist newspapers and organizations in Hong Kong.  The improper heavy-handed treatment of Li raised doubts about Xinhua Agency’s credibility and damaged the Communist United Front Policy in Hong Kong.  The unusual activity of the leftist Wen Wei Po in CCP’s united-front history and the negative reaction of the Party in Hong Kong within the context of the critical political events in Beijing in the spring and summer of 1989 deserves a historical investigation.  The special journalistic stance of Wen Wei Po and its unprecedented opposition to the Party line also provided a unique angle to the complex mainland and local Chinese politics in colonial Hong Kong.

October 28,
3:30 - 5:15 p.m.

Session IV, Panel 20
Development Issues in Asia
Room 205


Chair: Liang Ding, Macalester College

1. Bordoloi, Sudarshana, York University, Canada

» Development Implications of the Emerging Non Farm Sector in India: The Case of Kerala

The incapability of a stagnating agricultural sector in providing productive employment in rural areas in most developing economies has resulted in a shift of developmental policies from the farm to the nonfarm sector in recent times. Backed by global institutions like the World Bank and FAO, the non farm sector has been argued to have immense potential for generating alternative sources of rural employment which can play a significant role in decreasing unemployment instigated rural to urban migration and reducing income disparities in rural areas. In India, some of these developmental policies were initiated in the form of rural industrialization projects in the 1970s but gained actual momentum with the intensive export drive in the post neoliberal reform period through incorporation of rural manufacturing units as subsidiaries of urban based export oriented production processes. Based on this background, this paper critically examines some of the developmental implications of the emerging nonfarm sector in India through intensive fieldwork based case study of export oriented rural industrialization in the state of Kerala. Acknowledging some of the positive impacts, the paper seeks to address and analyse the structural constraints of such developmental policies in transforming material conditions of existence in the long run.

2. Ajay Panicker, St Cloud State University

» State Power and Social Movements in the Neoliberal Era: Examination of a People’s Movement in Kerala, India

A rich body of literature has examined the nature of the state in the context of neoliberal globalization. While scholars have identified several commonalities in neoliberal states, it has also been acknowledged that geographical and historical specificities do structure states differently.. A unique combination of civil society activism, social reforms, political literacy, and a vibrant public sphere have contributed to what has been popularly known as the Kerala model of development that focused on human development while experiencing slow economic growth. Within this model, the state played the role of organizing human development focused social change. Yet, this model has been experiencing a crisis with the ascendancy of neoliberalism.

In response to this neoliberal turn, several social movements have risen across Kerala. This paper will examine one such movement – the struggle of mostly tribespeople in Plachimada, Kerala, against Coca Cola. Specifically, this paper will examine the interaction between new social movements and the liberal democratic state in Kerala, India, attempting to bring out the nuances of neoliberalism in its localized context in Kerala.

This paper will draw on extensive fieldwork that the author conducted in Kerala during 2005-2010, employing ethnographic methods.

3. Sucharita Sinha Mukherjee, College of Saint Benedict/Saint John's University

» Are Asian Societies Penny-Wise but Pound-Foolish? An Analysis of Ageing Populations, Female Statuses and the Future of Economic Development in Japan, China and India.

Stories of striking economic growth in Japan in the sixties followed by China and India since the eighties and nineties respectively, often obscure the deeper developmental implications of material progress in these societies. While revamped economic policies have resulted in increased global interaction, rising income levels and massive consumption and production capacities, deep rooted patriarchal attitudes regarding roles, statuses and expectations from women continue to persist in each of these regionally, culturally and historically varied countries. A cumulative impact of modern and traditional forces has resulted in falling fertility rates, rising female participation in the workforce and higher marriage ages on the one hand while sustaining worsening masculine sex ratios at birth (in the case of China and India), employer discrimination against women, a growing double burden resulting in voluntary withdrawal from the workforce on marriage, rising rates of divorce and women preferring to remain unmarried. Women in the workforce continue to be under- utilized and relegated to less remunerative positions, a large percentage of educated women continue to remain unemployed while populations are becoming prematurely aged in Japan and China and possibly in India too in a few decades. Public policy often targeted at superficial levels of eliminating gender bias needs to urgently address these concerns if the Japanese economy must revive and economic success is to remain unabated in China and India.

4. Yong-Chool Ha, University of Washington, Seattle

Wang Hwi Lee, Ajou University, South Korea

Sunil Kim, University of California, Berkeley

» Re-embedding: Institutional Scanning for the Restructuring of Business-Labor Relations in Japan and Korea

The substantial causes and mechanisms of the diverging paths of institutional adaptation have not been sufficiently discussed in the current institutionalism literature. The modus operandi of adopted institutions, we argue, is hinged on the degree of embeddedness of the existing institutions as well as the ways in which social actors interpret the adopted institutions while attempting to re-embed them back into the society. This dynamic re-embedding process is accountable to the performance and pervasiveness of adopted institutions. Japan and South Korea, both of which initiated neo-liberal reforms in industrial relations but the attempt was mostly limited in the former while pervasive in the latter, will serve as the cases in support of the argument. Building on the empirical and comparative analysis of the changes in the government policies, business attitudes, and labor practices in the two countries, we suggest that institutional adaptation is a socio-historical process where the degree of institutional embeddedness plays a key role. This dynamic re-embedding interaction of social actors upon the imposition of new institutions contributes to the institutional outcome since each actor interprets the new institutional environment and responds to it reflecting its own tradition and practices.

October 28,
3:30 - 5:15 p.m.

Session IV, Panel 21
Narrating Modern Chinese Fiction and Theater
Room 270

Chair: To be determined

1. Chun-yu Lu, Washington University in St. Louis

» A Love Story of Returning: Mu Rugai (1884-1961) and Popular Romance in Manchukuo

This paper examines love in popular romance during wartime. The case in point is Mu Rugai and his novella “Farewell at Wedding” (1942). Mu, a Manchu descendant who migrated to Manchuria from Beijing after the establishment of Republican China, became an important figure in cultural politics in Manchukuo. In “Farewell at Wedding” a young man married a young woman whom is his mother’s choice; they are forced to be apart at the first night of their wedding. The Republican Revolution in Mu’s story signifies the beginning of a series of meaningless wars that separate lovers and send young men on the road to fight for illegitimate warlords. Only the virtue of constancy could prompt lovers to reunite and bring the young man home. Does the virtue of constancy constitute qing? Is there romantic love in an arranged marriage? Do love and virtue contradict to each other, or compliment one another? Could love or virtue be the redemption of the devastation of war? Why did Mu continue to write about the Republican warlord during the Second Sino-Japanese War? How did the cultural standpoints of the author influence the topic and narrative of his popular romantic writings?

2. Li-Lin Tseng, Pittsburg State University

» The 1930s: Mei Lanfang, Beijing Opera, and European Avant-garde Theater

My project examines Mei Lanfang, the greatest Beijing opera artist, in relation to European modernism.  This paper branches out from a chapter of a book project I am working on, titled “Shanghai Crossing: Early Chinese Filmmakers, Film Stars, and Film Critics and Their Many Encounters with the West, 1896-1937.”  Focusing on the intercultural dialogue between China and the West, I investigate critical questions and issues raised by Mei’s international networks and collaborations with European avant-garde artists, notably Sergei Eisenstein, Vsevolod Meyerhold and Bertolt Brecht.  In the 1930s, the debate about realism excited Western art and literary circles.  Many European experimental artists rejected the realistic theater and sought to find a new mode of expression that would better represent the dynamics and complexity of modern life.  Mei’s art provided an entirely new model that contested European modernism.  The novelty of his style and artistic strategies stimulated, expanded, and even helped transform the development of European theater.  I also call into question the ways of representing otherness, further exploring the effect of the West’s use of China and Chinese ideas as a method of expanding the boundaries of European modernism.

3. Steven Day, Benedictine University

» Faux Epistolary: Shi Tuo’s Shanghai Correspondence and the Aesthetics of Literary Montage in Accounts of Wartime Shanghai

Among Shi Tuo’s corpus of literary experiments, Shanghai Correspondence stands out as one of his most innovative yet least researched works. Ostensibly epistolary in form, this work provides a rich text to examine the aesthetic and epistemological implications of both private and public accounts of wartime Shanghai. Written between 1939 and 1940, the title appears somewhat a misnomer since the “letters” are not dated, signed, or addressed to anyone at all, resembling instead a series of unconnected vignettes of life during wartime in the city. In fact, Shi Tuo plays with generic conventions and expectations throughout this work, freely combining personal travelogue, recognizable historical events, scenes from everyday life, and newspaper clippings. After the breakdown of the linear narrative detailing his railway journey back to Shanghai following the outbreak of hostilities, Shi shifts to literary montage to depict the fragmented urban space of the city. The use of montage as aesthetic choice puts the author’s work in the company of other great modernist depictions of urban space and history in fiction (namely Döblin’s Berlin Alexanderplatz, Dos Passos’ Manhattan Transfer, and Joyce’s Ulysses). But what may such an aesthetic choice signify? This paper will investigate how literary montage and the work’s own liminal generic position between history and fiction may function as a self-reflexive critique of both. Since montage signifies by juxtaposition and context rather than direct forms of exposition, I argue that the work levels its critique by drawing attention to its own constructed nature and challenging readers to question the boundaries that separate categorical divisions such as history/fiction, public/private, subjective/objective, or authentic/false.

4. Haosheng Yang, Miami University

» Displaced Dream of Loyalist Romance: Yu Dafu and His Poetry

This paper examines modern Chinese writer Yu Dafu’s (1896-1945) classical-style poetry as his lyrical response to China’s social, political, and cultural changes in the modern period. Focusing on the dynamic interactions of tradition and modernity and of poetics and politics as embodied in Yu’s poems, this paper emphasizes that Chinese lyrical tradition has played a crucial role in Chinese literary and cultural modernity. Specifically in Yu’s case, traditional lyricism strongly fostered Yu’s conception and perception of himself as a romantic loyalist. Yu sought to express his fatalistic pessimism towards a hostile modern society by largely using themes, allusions, and imagery inherited from classical loyalist writings. His fascination with literary accounts of loyalists and his imitation of loyalist romance in real life are aesthetic orientated. His dream of loyalist romance is a twisted form of his will to understand or to explain both the individual and national crisis that he had experienced in the twentieth century China, but the displaced dream eventually caused his individual tragedy.

October 29,
8:30 - 10:15 a.m.

Session V, Panel 26
Alterity and Japanese Cinema
Room 205

The heyday of Japanese cinema as “privileged Other” to Western film has long since passed, but the presence of alterity as a visual and rhetorical force in and around the world of Japanese film continues to be fertile ground.  This panel will look at alterity in a number of different guises: In Ichikawa Kon’s Tokyo Olympiad, it marks the relationships—at one and the same time—between filmmaker and subject, host and guest, and superstars and marginal figures.  For the actor Mikuni Rentaro, it signifies a hidden past and an unexpected mid-career reinventing of oneself.  In American and Okinawan films about the relationship between the two, the Other is turned around on itself in a liminal place.  And in the films of Ogigami Naoko, professional women in unusual places find alternatives to high-stress urban Japan and shades of their 1960s student-movement era predecessors.

Organizer and Chair: Kendall Heitzman, Macalester College

1. Kendall Heitzman, Macalester College

» Slower, Lower, Weaker in Tokyo Olympiad

At the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, the director Ichikawa Kon led a staff of hundreds in shooting what would be the official film of the Games, reviled by authorities and a smash success in Japan upon its release in 1965.  Among the camera crews was the writer Yasuoka Shotaro, who was part of a group creating a “scenario” for the small delegation from Chad.  Yasuoka’s crew’s efforts to depict a solitary runner from Chad with no chance of winning a medal or even of seeing the finals in his event would seem to be a deliberate echoing of Riefenstahl’s depiction of Jesse Owens in Leni Riefenstahl’s Olympia, filmic history repeating itself as farce.  At the same time, however, the visual logic of the film demolishes the distinction between central and peripheral characters, and actual events surrounding the production blur the line between privileged self and the supplicant other: World events threaten to take the focus away from the Olympics, and their Chadian guests express far more interest in a small-scale Japanese documentary of the previous year’s national athletics meet than in Ichikawa’s Olympic project itself.  The search for the individual within the mass ornament erases national boundaries, on screen and off.

2. Noboru Tomonari, Carleton College

» Burakumin and Masculinity: Mikuni Rentaro and Postwar Japanese Cinema

Richard Dyer’s study Stars reads the image of stardom as a construct of media, ideological, and cultural practices in a dynamic relation to social meanings and values. This paper traces the development of Japanese film actor Mikuni Rentaro (1923-) as a star in the Japanese context by combining study of performances in specific scenes with the theoretical paradigm of Star Studies and research into masculinities. Mikuni first made his screen appearance in 1951 in director Kinoshita Keisuke’s The Good Fairy. He has since made screen appearances in many films with serious social and political concerns and has become one of the major actors in the 20th century Japanese cinema. With his status, it created something of a scandal when in his midcareer he confessed that his official biography was a publicity fabrication and that he has burakumin (outcaste) origins. From that point onwards, he wrote a number of books about the Buddhist priest Shinran as well as burakumin-themed books which were co-authored with literati and scholars such as Noma Hiroshi and Okiura Kazuteru. My paper connects Mikuni’s burakumin identity and stardom to the crisis of masculinity which is at the center of Japanese postwar culture and cinema.

3. David Obermiller, Gustavus Adolphus College

» Agency and Orientalism in the Movies Teahouse of the August Moon (1956) and Beat (1998)

In the twenty-seven years of the US military occupation of Okinawa, Orientalism was a salient dimension of the how occupation officials viewed Okinawans.  In this context, occupation officials treated Okinawans, at best, in a patronizing and paternalistic manner, not to mention believing the islanders were docile, submissive, and lazy.  Okinawans, however, rarely lived up to US stereotypes as their resistance to the occupation was as pervasive as American Orientalism.  This paper examines two movies, Daniel Mann’s Teahouse of the August Moon (1956) and Amon Miyamoto’s Beat (1998).  Both movies represent an outsider’s perspective of occupied Okinawa as Daniel Mann, an American, and Amon Miyamoto, a mainland Japanese, offer a sympathetic view of Okinawa as they illustrate the occupation’s corrosive effects as well as Okinawan struggle against the occupation.  In both films, race, gender, and class are dominant in the interactions between the American interlopers and the Okinawans.  While both films attempt to provide agency for Okinawans, at the same time, both productions suffer from an orientation that ironically reifies what both movies are attempting to combat, Orientalistic constructs of Okinawa.  

October 29,
8:30 -
10:15 a.m.

Session V, Panel 27
Return the Chinese Gods to the Local and Rethink the Social Complexity in the Studies of Chinese Religion
Room 352

The three papers in this panel aim to examine the importance of different media besides text to the studies of Chinese religions and raise questions to challenge common perceptions on the “making” of Chinese gods. By emphasizing the locale and the role of human application, especially of the local ritual specialists/non professionals and assemblies (hui or yingshen hui), the papers convey the very idea that one Chinese god/deity is often placed among a cluster of gods who may or may not share similar characteristics with the “distinct” one.  The papers of this panel will prove, deities like Zhong Kui and Pan Gu build connections to other deities and pantheons and thereby create complex relationships between the divine beings that fully manifest in the local ritualistic performances. Finally, this panel claims that it is necessary to trace these complex relationships of deities in the local rituals and the community's practical applications as displayed by the means of musical instruments like drums and artistic elements such as pictures and theatrical performances on religious assemblies to understand the complexity and multitude of Chinese popular religions.

Organizer: Liu Yilin, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Chair: Tobias Zuern, University of Wisconsin-Madison

1. Liu Yilin, University of Wisconsin-Madison

» From the Lunar New Year Pictures to the Five Petty Demons --A Gap Between the Pictorial and Theatrical Representations of Zhong Kui in late Imperial China

Through the close reading of the late imperial novel the Stories of Demon
Pacification and the drama play “The Five Demons Dance with Zhong Kui”, I
discovered that while Zhong Kui, a guardian deity, is accompanied by the Five
Demons and a cluster of Daoist deities such as the door guardians in ritual practice, he exists unaccompanied when depicted in new year pictures. Moreover, both texts are attributed to the Chinese Lunar New Year. Though a fundamentally religious festival in pre-modern China, it has been washed down to the modern alienation of pure jolly. Yet, the textual evidence and the representations of Zhong Kui in the two texts allow me to associate him and the cluster of Daoist deities with exorcisms and the ancient nuo (?, exorcism) tradition that defines the religious aspect of the festival. Nevertheless, since the texts do not hint at “who painted and played the role
of Zhong Kui”, they leave room for local “practitioners” who are less likely vocational to fill in the gap. By filling in the gap, the need to maintain an ancient tradition and the urgency to illustrate a Daoist pantheon converged onto one occasion: the Lunar New Year.

2. Tobias Zuern, University of Wisconsin-Madison

» Polymorph Divine Beings--Pan Gu, Pan Hu, and the Drum in a Report of a Ritual from Hunan

This paper will discuss the role of drums in a ritual from Hunan province to Pan Gu and Pan Hu and will use this account to question the common perceptions of the deities as either distinct or the same ontic beings. It will argue in three steps that the drum as one of the backbones of the ritual resonates to both deities' mythic narratives. By comparing the function, the shape, and performative use of drums within this ritual with attested traits of the stories of Pan Hu and Pan Gu, this paper wants to show how specific aspects of the 'two' cults overlap in the ritualistic roles of the drum and how this community in Hunan combines and synthesizes two seemingly distinct myths and persona in one ritual. In doing so, this paper will suggest a different approach to the question whether Pan Gu and Pan Hu are the same or distinct deities. It will argue that we should rethink our understanding of gods as independently existing entities and discuss them in the context of concrete religious communities which deliberately amalgamate seemingly distinct deities into polymorph manifestations based on the gods' associated ritualistic functions and their surrounding imaginaire.

3.  Naparstek Michael, University of Wisconsin-Madison

» Auntie's an Exorcist: Literary Consumption of Daoist Exorcism

Spells to ward off evil appear with the formulaic coda "quickly quickly as the law commands" (jiji rulüling) in grave-quelling texts from Han dynasty tombs. These incantational forms are taken up in some of the first Daoist demonographic literature such as the Demon Statutes of Nüqing (Nuqing guilü), and become incorporated into the language of early Daoist exorcistic liturgy where they continue to appear in the ritual context of today's Daoist exorcisms . This paper will explore the popular reception of Daoist exorcistic rites amongst literati outside the ritual context by looking at liturgical phrases and forms that appear in tales from literary collections such as the Taiping guangji and the Yijian zhi. Scenes with characters using ritual incantations to expel disease and demonic threats found in the stories of Tang and Song literature may offer insights into the degree to which liturgical forms were incorporated into everyday knowledge. Through an analysis of the tales' historical context and the language of the stories themselves, this paper hopes to shed some light on the place of Daoist exorcism in Chinese culture at large.

Discussant: Michael Naparstek, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Format of the panel: Each one of the three panelists will be the discussant for once where he or she will be discussing his or her fellow panelist's paper; In the meantime, we also hope to open the floor to our audience and welcome all sorts of comments and questions. The goal of this panel is to set up a model for graduate students to organize conference panels of their own. Through the intensive group work and series of scholarly discussions, a specific topic (event theme) shall be examined much more thoroughly. Finally, this kind of panel is also an excellent pre-exercise for graduate students to cultivate themselves before officially entering academia.

October 29,
8:30 - 10:15 a.m.

Session V, Panel 28
Women in Late Imperial China:  Literary, historical and artistic perspectives.
Room 170

One of the most exciting areas of research in East Asian Studies is the study of women in the early modern period.  Scholars in various disciplines have examined this field in a variety of ways, including the role of woman as artist and as political figure.  In our panel, we will be presenting a series of papers that furthers this exploration, covering the 13th through 19th centuries.  George Zhao addresses the question of representation of two of Genghis Khan’s wives in official Chinese historiography, the Yuanshi (Yuan History), and contextualizes this by a comparison with contemporary Persian sources.  Ihor Pidhainy presents a case study of the lives of the women connected to the Ming scholar Yang Shen (1488-1559) as represented in his writings and those of his wife, Huang E (1498-1569).  Lidu Yi examines the intricate network that linked female painters, literati, and connoisseurs in late Ming and early Qing China.  Marion Lee extends the discussion to the quest for modernity itself through a ‘destabilizing’ of what women painters meant in the mid-Qing (1796-1850).

Organizer & Chair: Ihor Pidhainy, Marietta College

1. Marion S Lee, Ohio University

» Re-positioning painters of women in Late Imperial China

The confluence of historiographic narratives in the overlapping areas of history and art history has led to the paper. A ruse of these narratives is the generally mild interest in the practice of painters from the late eighteenth to early nineteenth centuries that is shown by art historians, with the exception of curators and collectors (speaking relatively). While pictorial art is suggested to be of little visual interest and, at best, conventional or formulaic in sensibilities, until recently the same decades overall are also referred to by the metaphor the “black hole”. The congruent lack of interest in/understanding of the short historical period may be traced to both how modernity/modernization have been conceptualized by thinkers and scholars in different parts of the world, since the second half of the nineteenth century, and to how such conceptualizations underlie and are reinforced by the influential historiographic narratives. The narratives are about “uneven development” in which China has been characteristically posited as lagging behind and having “to catch up with” the West, since the early nineteenth century. Informed by art historians, literary historians and historians within and outside the area of China who have begun to probe and dismantle the hegemony of the narratives, I explore the possibility of de-stabilizing the status of painters of women as a way for understanding the historical time, from about 1796 through 1850.

2. Ihor Pidhainy,Marietta College

» How Men saw Women in Late Imperial China (and consequently how they were judged):  A case study of Yang Shen and the women in his life.

The status of women in late imperial China has been one of general decline and a limit of power in relation to males, particularly familiar men, such as fathers, husbands and to some extent other male family members.  However, despite this paradigm, women often went beyond proscribed and ideal roles and were able to effect their own agency in their daily life.  This paper will examine to what degree we can observe this by examining the women in the life of a literatus, Yang Shen (1478-1559).  In particular, we will be most interested in the lives of Yang’s two wives and his three concubines.  For four of these women, we will be limited to whatever poems and notes Yang Shen himself left behind, but for his second wife, Huang E (1488-1569), we will also make use of her own body of poetry to help us examine this.

3.  Lidu Yi, McGill University

» Women Painters--Divinely Endowed Talents of Ming and Qing and Art Collections

Late Ming and early Qing literati often regarded paintings done by women artists as rich in spirit and perception, by divinely endowed talents who achieved exciting results—these women artists should not be neglected.
This paper presents close reading of some paintings by women and for women from the late Ming and early Qing.  It closely examines both visual and literary clues as to how literati and connoisseurs in general appreciated such paintings and explores the channels through which these paintings came to their attention and, for some, were included in their collections.
The paper also addresses underlying social issues and the formation of art collections, focusing on both subject matter and target audiences.

4. George Qingzhi Zhao, Skidmore College

» Lives and political involvement of Kubilai Khan’s wives: Chabui and Nambui in the Yuan dynasty

This paper explores the lives and political involvement of Kubilai Khan’s two principal wives: Chabui and Nambui.  Marco Polo claimed that Khubilai had four legitimate wives, and each one had her own court with no less than 300 beautiful girls in attendance, as well as many eunuchs and other men and women. According to Rashid al-Din, however, there were five women called Khatun among Khubilai’s wives. Among them, Chabui was certainly the most famous, with a lengthy biography in the Yuanshi. She helped Khubilai in his military and political career and her involvement was encouraged by Khubilai. Two years after Chabui’s death, Nambui succeeded her as Khubilai’s principal wife. In his latter years Khubilai stayed in Nambui’s ordo and she was very active in political affairs. The Chinese sources suggest that Khubilai permitted her to issue edicts in his name. Her biography, however, does not cite any specific decisions made by Nambui.  The Yuanshi reveals that after the death of Khubilai, the succession struggles were fierce, but the Chinese sources are strangely silent about Nanbui’s activities during this crucial juncture. The fate of Nambui remains a mystery and this paper attempts to offer some suggestions.

October 29,
8:30- 10:15a.m.
Session V, Panel 29
Transnational Writing on Asian Themes
Room 370

Chair and Discussant: Wang Ping, Macalester College

1. Stephanie Cox, Carleton College

» The microscopic writing of Ying Chen, Francophone Asian-Canadian writer

Being at the crossroads of Chinese and Canadian cultures and at least three languages, Ying Chen's works have pushed the boundaries of what is considered "Immigrant Writing" in the United States, "écriture migrante" in Quebec, "Asian-Canadian writing" in Anglophone Canada and what France considers as part of "Francophone literature." Acclaimed both in Quebec and in France, Chen remains relatively unknown elsewhere, partially due to the fact that only one of her eleven works has been translated into English and another into Chinese (both early novels). Although her first three novels are often classified into the before-mentioned categories, the rest are devoid of any reference to time and space, making it explicitly difficult to locate her narrative. This presentation will give an overview of her works, centering on the “sinister series” the last six novels in which her main and anonymous character reappears and narrates the impossible tale of being immobile and yet traveling through time and space. Chen contributes a new microscopic perspective to Transnational writing, focuses on the universal dialogue between cultures as individuals as she deals with the lost of her origin which she carries within sometimes like a handicap, and other times like “an indigestion.”

2.  Puspa Damai, U of Michigan, Ann Arbor

» Cannibal Himalaya? Reading Jamaica Kincaid's Among Flowers: A Walk in the Himalaya

The question I ask in this paper is: does Jamaica Kincaid’s travelogue, Among Flowers, differ from the Orientalist portrayals of exotic Himalayas, and how? A writer whose memoire, A Small Place, denounces the tourism industry of a postcolonial nation, her travelogue on Nepal must be different from Western representations of the exotic other. While majority of Western travel narratives involve a white European male traveler discovering, exploring, and at times, claiming and colonizing non-European lands, Kincaid conjures an ethnically and sexually marked body of a postcolonial subject as a traveler. Thus her encounters with the foreigner in Nepal, and her observations about its people and cultures differ significantly from a conventional travel narrative. Yet the question still remains – how to articulate and make sense of the difference that emerges from Kincaid’s travelogue? Is it a postcolonial narrative especially when she firmly locates herself in North America? Is it a cosmopolitan narrative even though she is more interested in “walking among flowers” in order to hunt for herbs, seeds and plants than in exploring the urban life in Nepal?  I contend that though Kincaid’s narrative employs the standard structural and rhetorical strategies of a Western travel narrative – e.g. hunger for the exotic, yet fear of being eaten alive or cannibalization; desire at once to understand and know the other and to keep herself distinct from what she attempts to know; wish to connect yet to critique the other – it enables us to see the Himalaya in a unique way, which transcends the binaries of the visitor and the visited, and the outsider and the insider, and the orient and the occident. I would like to venture this hypothesis that when it comes to texts like Kincaid’s, traditional dichotomies such as ethnography and auto-ethnography or regular anthropology and native anthropology lose their distinctions. Even though Kincaid plays with the Western fantasy of the savage other and the anxiety about being eaten by the savage, she stages cannibal Himalaya in order to orchestrate her notion of the loss of self inherent in all encounters with the other. It is by presenting the Himalaya as cannibal that Kincaid succeeds in saving it from merely being an aesthetic and ideological object for global consumption.

3. Devon A. Cahill, University of Minnesota

» Penetrating Gotthard: Tawada, Travel, and the Illusion of Identity

Tawada Yo?ko resists classification. As a Japanese national living in Germany, she writes original literary and performance pieces in Japanese, German, and English. Considering her own precarious cultural position, it is not surprising that travel, tourism and translation are common motifs in her work. Bored with the tourist hotspots, her works become travel journals of protagonists who stumble off beaten paths to assume positions that are more critical than conciliatory.  By documenting the uncharted space between languages, Tawada’s characters expose the boundaries of nation, language, and gender as constructed concepts. This is the driving force behind her short story “The Gotthard Railway,” a self-reflective first person account of a Japanese national in Switzerland who has been asked to ride through the St. Gotthard tunnel from the north of Switzerland to the Italian border and write an article on the experience for a Zurich newspaper.  

In this paper, I examine how Tawada’s short story challenges the foundations of national and individual identity, and ultimately meaning itself, on both narrative and conceptual levels via the trope of the anti-tourist. Freed from the confines of sanctioned destinations and canned emotional responses, Tawada’s anti-tourist chooses the constructed illusion of identity as her destination.

Saturday, October 29,
10:30 a.m.-
12:15 p.m.

Session VI, Panel 33
Family Planning, State Medicine and Mental Health in Asia
Room 370


Chair: Ron Barrett, Macalester College

1. Suryadewi E Nugraheni, University of Wisconsin - Madison

» How Indonesian Administrations Have Changed Family Planning Policy

As the fourth most populous country in the world, social and economic inequalities, and environmental consequences could become a substantial problem that impedes the development of Indonesia. The family planning program that has been implemented since 1970 has achieved success as a method to reduce the problem. However, the change of presidents has led to different policies on family planning that affected various aspects including the growth of population, health status and family welfare. This study will review the relationship between the changes in the Indonesian administration and the application of the family planning program, the influence of the family planning policy on health and demographic measurements, such as Annual Population Growth Rate and Total Fertility Rate, and its application to health indicators across population groups such as urban versus rural and rich versus poor. This investigation could be helpful in that understanding the history of different Indonesian administrations can help Indonesia to find the best family planning policy, and can show a global audience that, even though Indonesia is considered a developing country, it can prove that its family planning program can achieve its goals and thus can assist in raising standards of living for Indonesian families.

2. Byungil Ahn, Valley State University

» State Medicine with a Socialist Face: The CCP’s Programs for Maternity and Infant Health in the 1950s' Urban Areas

When the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) took control of urban China in 1949, it had to confront the fact that it should not only a revolutionary party, but should also be a government that was responsible for providing reliable medical service to its citizens. However, despite its ambitious ideal to create “medicine for the masses,” the Party had very little human and medical resources. In fact, the CCP’s immediate goal was to restore medical services to the pre-war level, rather than bring about dramatic improvement in health services in major urban areas. Particularly, supplying reliable medical services to women in childbirth and infants was an urgent task that required the Party’s immediate actions for practical and ideological reasons. This paper mainly concerns how both the CCP’s ideological claim of creating medicine for the masses and the practical needs of supplying medical services with limited human and material resource shaped the CCP’s medical programs for maternity and infant health in 1950s Beijing and Shanghai. In the end, this paper explains how CCP’S health insurance system evolved from these programs.

3.  Trude Jacobsen, Northern Illinois University

» The Curious Case of Sherlock Hare: Race, Class, and Mental Health in British Burma

In 1891, Sherlock Hare was classified a “criminal lunatic” and removed from British Burma. The exact nature of Hare’s inanity is vague; in the official records of the trial, doctors contradict themselves, spurious witnesses are produced, and the evidence of mental illness is flimsy at best. Hare was apparently so convincing in his sane moments that the captain of the Elson allowed him to disembark before reaching the Albert Dock, where asylum officials were waiting to take him into custody. The resulting embarrassment for the British government led to an inquiry into the entire procedure for European persons deemed criminally insane in the colonies. The story of Sherlock Hare – his arrest, evaluation, incarceration, and subsequent removal to England – reveals not only a great deal about Victorian perspectives toward mental health, but also the relevance of race and class in the treatment of afflicted persons in the colonies.

4. Prachi Priyam, Stanford University

» Schizophrenia in Varanasi: A Cross-Cultural Inquiry into the Social Bases of Illness Experience

Schizophrenia in India is of great interest because of a well documented but still poorly understood WHO finding that schizophrenia has a more benign course and outcome in India when compared to other countries. This project documents differences between the experience of schizophrenia in Varanasi, India and the United States. In my study of thirty patients with schizophrenia in Varanasi, I identified distinct differences between schizophrenia in the two settings. These differences were predominantly in patient conceptualizations and identification of the illness, as well as symptom patterns. Ultimately, this study corroborates the medical anthropological observation that as one crosses cultural boundaries, the way illness is identified, expressed, experienced, and treated may change.

October 29,

Session VI, Panel 34
Modernization and Shifting Meanings:  Creating Gender, National and Religious Identities
Room 205

This interdisciplinary panel—linguistics, religion, history, art history—looks at how shifting written and verbal usages create and announce new identities in Asian modernity.   Drawing from examples in Meiji and contemporary Japan, Nationalist China, and diaspora Tibet, these papers examine changes in and the development of a particular word or voicing that have broad implications in wider social and historical meanings. Presentations include changing gender markers in vocalization of modern Japanese; the transformation of “love” in 19th century Japan; “science” as a tool and indicator of modernity in Nationalist China; and the changing of “peace” in Tibetan Buddhist structures found outside of Asia.

Organizer: Jennifer Oldstone-Moore, Wittenberg University,
Chair: Tanya Maus, Wittenberg University

1. Janice Glowski, Wittenberg University

» Powerful Partners:  Buddhist Stupas and Peace Language in the Tibetan Diaspora

Following the diaspora begun in the late 1950s, Tibetan stupas began appearing increasingly outside of Tibet and Asia.  Today, they serve as concrete markers of East-West dialogue and the exponential growth of Buddhism in the West.  Most recently built stupas have retained their traditional formal characteristics.  However, new meanings have surfaced at the confluence of tradition and their modern physical and ideological contexts.

This paper examines the stupa’s shifting meaning, focusing particularly on its categorization as an international “peace” monument.  Considering structures like the Great Stupa of Universal Compassion (Victoria, Australia), The Great Stupa of Dharmakaya that Liberates Upon Seeing, (Redfeather Lakes, Colorado), and Sechen Monastery’s Stupas for Peace project, this study explores stupa symbolism and the meaning of “peace” in traditional buddhalogical and contemporary western contexts.  Further, it discusses why this particular architectural form and language choice make powerful partners in contemporary cross-cultural dialogue.

2. Jennifer Oldstone-Moore, Wittenberg University

» Kongzi and Mr. Science

This paper looks at “science” and the way in which ideas about science were used by Nationalists to implement Confucian social and political programs.  Science—really scientism—was used in a number of cultural contexts by Chinese in the 20th century to reformulate and reclaim traditional cultural forms.  This paper will look at discussions of science and its resonance with Confucianism in Nationalist China, both during the Nanjing Decade and afterwards in Taiwan.  “Science” and “scientific” have been used to define Confucianism’s validity in a modern world, as a means to demonstrate the universality of Confucianism, and finally to demonstrate the ancient origins or resonance of science in Confucian attitudes.

3. Tanya Maus, Wittenberg University

» Transformations of "Love" in Meiji Japan

In order to more fully understand the conceptual foundation of an emerging practice of social relief during the mid-Meiji period (1880-1900), in this presentation I examine the lexeme of ai ?, or love, and several of its word formations, such as soai suru (loving others),  jiai (merciful love), jinai (benevolent love), and aijin saisei (saving the world through love of others) through a number of philosophical treatises written during the Tokugawa period (1600-1868).  Furthermore, I will address the use of ai in early nineteenth-century Chinese translations of the New Testament and discuss how ai became incorporated into early Japanese translations of the New Testament (such as the Hepburn and Meiji versions). I argue that in the revolutionary decades of the early and mid-Meiji period, ai became perceived as a “new” vocabulary of philanthropy among social relief workers, often recent converts of various forms of Christianity, obscuring an earlier ethical heritage.  By tracing the complex layering of the lexeme of ai, its word formations, and its various rearticulations during the nineteenth century, this presentation seeks to question the “early modern” and “modern” divide that is commonly used within the periodization of Japanese history.

4. Terumi Imai, Wittenberg University

» Speech and Gender Shaping  in Contemporary Japanese

This paper looks at a shift in meanings in language use, namely, in vowel devoicing. In a study that investigated the social aspects of vowel devoicing in Tokyo Japanese, it was found that younger males devoice most, younger females devoice least, and middle-aged and older speakers of both genders fall in between. It was also found that devoicing is more likely in the more casual speech styles. These results suggest that there is a shift in meaning associated with vowel devoicing among younger speakers in which gender is being symbolized by differentiated devoicing rates, perhaps arising from the association of devoicing with more casual speech styles, which, in turn, is associated with “masculinity.” It has been shown that younger female Japanese speakers tend to use more masculine features, such as first-person pronouns, certain words/morphemes, and some sentence-finale particles. However, the differentiated devoicing rates might indicate that speakers are still maintaining gender differences on another and more subtle linguistic level, associating less vowel devoicing with a new meaning of femininity, or protecting masculine territory by increasing vowel devoicing, or both.

October 29,

Session VI, Panel 35
Re-reading Classical Texts
Room 352

Chair: Jim Laine, Macalester College,
Discussant: Jim Laine, Macalester College


1. Catherine Ryu, Michigan State University

» Placing The Tale of Genji on the Map of The Silk Road Imaginaire: A Poetic Flight through the Figure of a “Maboroshi”

This study re-examines The Tale of Genji (early 11th c.), a masterpiece of Japanese literature by a noblewoman named Murasaki Shikibu, specifically as a discursive evocation of what we have now come to recognize and appreciate as the world of the Silk Road. A case in point is the author’s creative adaptation of “maboroshi” (a seer or a wizard) from Bai Jiyu’s “The Song of Everlasting Sorrow” (early 9th c.). This famous Chinese poem itself is derived from the cultural memory of the An Lushan Rebellion, a pivotal political event in the Silk Road history of the mid-eighth century. By investigating the poetic resonance between the figure of a “maboroshi” and its Chinese textual precedent, a “daoshi” (a daoist magician) in “The Song of Everlasting Sorrow,” this study brings into focus the Japanese author’s profound exploration of the relationship between desire and imagination—an exploration inflected by the complex process of cultural translation and transformation along the Silk Roads. As such, this study ultimately aims to elucidate the literary legacy of The Tale of Genji not only within Japanese cultural history but also as part of the Silk Road imaginaire.

2. William B. Noseworthy, UW-Madison

» Establishing a Historical Context for Nai Mai Mang Makah

The Cham Ariya (truong ca or lyrical poem) Ariya Bini-Cam has been read as a parter poem to another Ariya: Ariya Cam-Bini. Placed in this literary parternership the two texts have been said to mimic certain elements of Romeo and Juliet or Laila and Majnun. However, Ariya Bini Cam has also been analyzed and historicized under a title drawn from its first name: Nai Mai Mang Makah (The Princess came from Makah). In this context the meaning is said to relate directly to the emergence of a feminine embodiment of the word of the prophet brought through the school of Sunni Islam in the 17th century. Makah in this context is then conflated with the physical geography of Kelantan. Based on analysis of the text placed in combination with the primary source accounts of European explorers and Vietnamese chroniclers this paper attempts to answer the question of how a knowledge of history can elicit new meanings from a text, and a knowledge of a text can reflect back new understandings on to history.

October 29,

Session VI, Panel 36
Gender and Women’s Roles in China
Room  170


Chair: David Buck, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee,  emeritus

1. Irena Cronin, UCLA

» Changes in Gender Differentiation in Western Zhou Elite Joint Burial Tombs, as an Indicator of Strength of the Late Western Zhou Ritual Reform

Although some research has been done to attempt to reconstruct male and female gender roles during China’s Shang dynasty (ca. 1600-1046 BCE) based on archaeological data and much-later texts, no significant research has been done on how gender differences were expressed during the Western Zhou. Of particular interest is the change in gender differentiation across regions that could be observed when comparing Western Zhou joint burials pre- (ca. 1045-ca. 851 BCE) and post-Late Western Zhou Ritual Reform (ca. 850-771 BCE).  This reform was most probably part of a larger administrative plan to consolidate and standardize regions under Western Zhou rule, and as such, can be used to illustrate the motif of power gained through ritual requirements. I propose that changes in gender differentiation in Western Zhou elite joint burial tombs could be used as a correlative indicator of the strength of the Late Western Zhou Ritual Reform, by measuring overall and regional variability of gender differentiation based on associated burial goods and tomb burial attributes throughout Western Zhou elite joint burial tombs, and doing a comparison pre- and post-ritual reform. In this way, the impact of the Late Western Zhou Ritual Reform could be more definitely assessed than ever before.  

2. He Man, Ohio State University

» Staging “(Free) Love” in Makeshift Stages: Empowering Women in the Performative Culture of 1920s China

This essay discusses one of the ways by which women, a significant subaltern demography, were (self) empowered to move upward in the social hierarchy of 1920s China under the umbrella of nationalism.  It examines the “co-authorship” of playwrights, performers, and the mass audience (peasants, urban petty citizens, elites, etc.) on women’s empowerment, manifested in modern theatrical productions and in what is broadly defined as the performative culture in China.  In doing so, this essay further investigates the significant role that the performative culture played, in tandem with print culture, in constructing an imagined community in the late 19th early 20th centuries.

The “texts” “read” in this essay are the amateur drama, Southeast Flies the Peacock, staged by the Beijing Women’s Higher Normal School on February 1922 during a variety performance (youyi hui ???); Lanzhi And Zhongqiong, Xiong Foxi’s (???,1900-1965) production in Ding County (??) in 1932; Ding Xilins’s (???, 1893-1974) one-act script, A Wasp, first published in 1925; and Yuan Changying’s (???, 1894-1973) three-act script, Southeast Flies the Peacock, first published in 1929.   Through this “reading”, this project examines how different groups within the broad category of modern theatrical personalities conceived and staged “free love” and women’s empowerment and how the mass audience perceived and responded to these initiatives in relation to the societal change that was taking place around them. In doing so, I further investigate by what means and to what extent the promise to uplift the subaltern was achieved.  This essay also shows how theatrical personalities, in the specific process of staging, encountered and resolved conflicts between modernizing Chinese theatrics (an aesthetic pursuit) and mobilizing/regulating social emotions (a public obligation); between bringing forth mass-enlightenment and fetching individual economic, cultural and political privilege; and between staging an imaginable modern nation state and addressing local interests for diverse demographic profiles.  In other words, we can see within the broad environment of theatrical personalities and their audiences many of the same tropes and issues which have come to define both “Modern China” and the modern world.

3. John M Knight, Ohio State University

» Comrade Jiang Qing or Madame Mao?  How Commentary on Jiang Qing Reflects the Changing Roles of Women in Communist China

Jiang Qing (1914-1991), at different times, was arguably either the most promoted or the most vilified women in Chinese history.  My research situates Jiang Qing’s role in the Chinese Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) within the general Maoist trend toward “genderless” equality that partly defined the early decades of the PRC.  It suggests that contemporary condemnation of Jiang Qing on the Mainland may imply more than just the dismissal of China’s former First Lady (or even the dismissal of the entire Mao era by proxy), it may be indicative of ingrained modes of analysis which support the gendered status quo.  My research also argues that changes in the focus of Western commentary on Jiang, from an emphasis on her public persona in scholarship written before her imprisonment, to the near-exclusive stress upon her personal life in works that have appeared after her fall from political power, parallels the relative embrace, and then rejection of, a class-based approach to women’s advancement by Western feminists.  Jiang Qing, while in power, seemed to vividly embody the Maoist ideal that gender difference was surmountable in a socialist society.  Ironically, after her imprisonment, most of the criticisms leveled against Jiang were directed against her as a woman, damning her public persona as either the culmination, or a transgression, of her “essential” womanly attributes.  The move from “Comrade Jiang Qing” to “Madame Mao” suggests not only changing attitudes toward Jiang Qing, but changing attitudes toward female gender roles and female “essence” as a whole. 

4.Gregory Freitag, The Ohio State University

» Cultural Imperialism or Feminist Intervention: Rethinking Power Relations and the Ideals of Missionary Education in China

Some historians have argued that American missionary work in China was a form of cultural imperialism while others regard these efforts as necessary proto-feminist interventions to uplift women.  My paper seeks to go beyond these dichotomous depictions by focusing on a case study of missionary-established schools in China.  I focus in particular on the gendered nature of the curriculum provided for Chinese women in missionary schools.  My study begins at the Fuzhou School for Girls in 1903, examining Chinese women and missionary interactions until the end of the May Fourth era (1925).  I argue that American missionaries were not necessarily interested in overthrowing Confucian patriarchy; rather they used the Christian schools as an avenue to replace Chinese gender norms with the Victorian model that was prevalent in the West.  In this process, Chinese women also shaped the ideas and behavior of female American missionaries.  My case study offers a more nuanced and reciprocal understanding of how American missionaries and Chinese women interacted and influenced one another.  My presentation posits the need to rethink the cultural imperialism versus feminism debate by calling for new models and new language for understanding power relationships among women of different national, cultural, and religious backgrounds.     

October 29,

Session VI, Panel 37
From the Cultural Revolution to the 2010 Expo: An Analysis of Shifting Chinese Identity across Multiple art Forms
Room 300

This panel will explore issues regarding contemporary Chinese identity via the appropriation of art forms from China’s rich artistic past. The topic addresses stereotyping, exploitation, propaganda, globalization and political commentary, as illustrated in Chinese posters, painting, photography and architecture. Ms. McMonagle’s paper focuses on Chairman Mao’s use of other cultural groups – namely Latin Americans and Africans – in propaganda posters from the Cultural Revolution to create a pan-proletarian image. Ms. Tillman’s paper compares two distinct paintings of a Chinese architectural icon: Tiananmen Square, analyzing how the works illustrate a change in Chinese national identity between the years they were created. Mr. Feist’s paper addresses stereotyping in early Chinese photographs by examining Wang Qingsong’s Night Revels of Han Xizai. He examines Qingsong’s appropriation of early techniques to construct a political statement concerning contemporary Chinese identity. Ms. Czarniecki’s paper investigates the way Chinese national identity is portrayed through contemporary architecture, namely the China Pavilion. It considers the theme of the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai within the historical context of Expo tradition in order to explain what it says about Chinese identity. The panel will ultimately explore how China’s artistic tradition has served to enhance, as well as reconstruct, the nation’s contemporary identity.

Organizer and Chair: Natalie McMonagle, University of St Thomas

1. Natalie McMonagle, University of St Thomas

» Proletarians of the World Unite: Expanding Chinese Identity through Propaganda Posters of the Cultural Revolution

In his 1942 talks at the Yan’an Forum on Literature and Art, Chairman Mao Zedong declared art to be but an instrument in the proletarian revolutionary cause – a tool used to generate a stronger national identity. Propaganda posters depicting other non-Western peoples fighting against imperialist powers alongside the Chinese were used as vehicles to further the Chinese Communist Party’s agenda. This paper will focus on the affect this pan-proletarian image had on the Chinese sense of self by analyzing the relationship between China and its pretend “cultural army” – namely Africa and Latin America – as illustrated in propaganda posters of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.

I will address the theme of exploitation within a social and political framework. Through the propaganda art of this period, the Chinese created an idealized picture of their connection with Africa, Latin America and other colonized countries in the fight against imperialist powers. Examining the nations’ relations prior to and during this period, as well as specific examples of African and Latin American depictions in propaganda posters, will illustrate the shifting identity of China during the Cultural Revolution, from Communist nation to self-described leader of the anti-imperialist world.

2. Carolyn Tillman, University of St Thomas

» In Front of Tiananmen: Tourist Photography and Identity in Two 20th Century Chinese Paintings

The paper will investigate two related compositions in Chinese painting: Sun Zixi’s In Front of Tiananmen (1964) and Wang Jinsong’s Taking a Picture in Front of Tiananmen (1992). While the two pieces convey similar groups of tourists having their photos taken in front of Tiananmen, I will be examining their underlying content in the context of their unique timeframes. The extremely charged socio-political environments of these two decades will manifest in very different meanings in the images of Tiananmen, Chairman Mao, and common Chinese citizens. How does national identity change from 1964 to 1992? Were both artists’ pushing subversive meanings behind innocent imagery, or was Sun’s painting truly propaganda? What are the artists saying about national and individual reactions to these tumultuous eras by using the theme of the tourist?  How do other details in the painting aim to subvert the worship of Tiananmen or Mao as popular attractions? These are just a few of the questions I will be exploring in this paper.

3. Joshua Feist, University of St Thomas

» Creating and Preserving Narratives in the Act of Appropriation: Between Night Revels of Han Xizai and Night Revels of Lao Li

Like many contemporary artists in China, Wang Qingsong draws inspiration from the rich artistic diversity of the nation’s past in order to wrestle with the issue of defining Chinese identity in today’s globalized world.  This paper explores Wang Qingsong's compositional appropriation of a twelfth century copy of the handscroll painting Night Revels of Han Xizai with his photomural, Night Revels of Lao Li.  Aside from the formal appropriation which evokes the convention of depicting narrative particular to Chinese handscroll paintings, this paper argues that this photomural stands as a prime example of how Wang Qingsong has utilized early photographic techniques to make a political statement.

I contend that Night Revels of Lao Li follows in the footsteps of an early photographic method of staging, a technique that certain early Western and Chinese photographers used in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.  Some of these photographs contributed to the formation of a stereotypical impression of the Chinese identity by Western audiences.  By appropriating this technique and the formal aspects of Night Revels of Han Xizai, what message might Wang Qingsong hope to convey to viewers of his work?

4. Katie Czarniecki, University of St Thomas

» National Identity Through Architecture: The China Pavilion at the World Expo 2010 Shanghai

Through a case study of the China Pavilion, which was built for the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai, this paper aims to investigate how Chinese national identity is portrayed through contemporary architecture.  First the China Pavilion will be placed within the larger historical context of World Fair/Expo architectural traditions. Then, an analysis of its architectural elements as they relate to traditional and postmodern Chinese architectural styles will be followed by a comparison between this structure and the Beijing National Stadium, which was built for the 2008 Olympic Games. This will establish the context for how the China Pavilion may be considered symbolic of contemporary Chinese identity.  This paper will conclude with consideration of the relationship between this structure and the overall theme of the Expo, “Better City, Better Life” and what this means for Chinese national identity.  These issues will be addressed through the lens of architectural history and material culture studies, with a post-structuralist approach highlighting the change in the meaning of the built environment over time.

October 29,
1:45 - 3:30 p.m.

Session VII, Panel 41
Saturday, October 29, 1:45 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Tang Narrative-I
Room  370

Modern Chinese scholars have identified the tales composed during the Tang as the first consciously fictional works in the narrative tradition. But the dependence of Tang tales on historical genres and motifs as well as oral storytelling was still strong. This panel examines the role of intertextuality, oral tradition, and historical records in these tales.

Organizer and Chair: William H. Nienhauser, Jr., University of Wisconsin-Madison
Discussant: Thomas Noel, U. of Wisconsin-Madison

1. Chunting Chang, U. of Wisconsin-Madison

» How the Heroines Drive the Plots in ‘Lingying zhuan’ and 'Liu Yi'

In the two lengthy Tang chuanqi about dragon maidens, “Liu Yi” and “Lingyingzhuan” , the difficulties that the two dragon maidens confront and make them seek help from human beings are both related to their marriages. However, through close readings, this paper will demonstrate that their images are on the two extreme ends of the spectrum which leads the story plots in divergent directions and to endings. Other than her longevity, the dragon maiden in “Liu Yi” resembles a common woman. She experiences what could possibly happen to any woman at that time, and she is depicted as an abandoned helpless woman without any supernatural power. At the end, she can only reward Liu Yi, her savior, with longevity and a male descendent. On the other hand, the heroine in “Lingying zhuan” represents a tough, insightful and elite deity. She is conversant in the Classics, capable of selecting appropriate subordinates, and adamant about keeping her chastity. From this perspective, she is similar to the embodiment of an ideal sovereign. Therefore, the heroine grants his rescuer with longevity as a largess without engaging in a marriage.

2. Maria Kobzeva, University of Wisconsin-Madison

» "Zhou Bao in the Tang Fiction and Historical Accounts"

In the two lengthy Tang chuanqi about dragon maidens, “Liu Yi” and “Lingyingzhuan” , the difficulties that the two dragon maidens confront and make them seek help from human beings are both related to their marriages. However, through close readings, this paper will demonstrate that their images are on the two extreme ends of the spectrum which leads the story plots in divergent directions and to endings. Other than her longevity, the dragon maiden in “Liu Yi” resembles a common woman. She experiences what could possibly happen to any woman at that time, and she is depicted as an abandoned helpless woman without any supernatural power. At the end, she can only reward Liu Yi, her savior, with longevity and a male descendent. On the other hand, the heroine in “Lingying zhuan” represents a tough, insightful and elite deity. She is conversant in the Classics, capable of selecting appropriate subordinates, and adamant about keeping her chastity. From this perspective, she is similar to the embodiment of an ideal sovereign. Therefore, the heroine grants his rescuer with longevity as a largess without engaging in a marriage.

3. Xin Zou, University of Wisconsin-Madison

» “Storytelling and Creativity in ‘Xie Xiao’e zhuan’ ???? (The Account of Xie Xiao’e)”

“Xie Xiao’e zhuan” (The Account of Xie Xiao’e) is attributed to Li Gongzuo (ca. 778-848). The tale is a first-person, autodiegetic account, relating Li Gongzuo’s encounter with the heroic young woman Xie Xiao’e, who, with Li’s help, avenged the death of her father and husband. The tale had already transmitted in written form in the Tang dynasty, enjoyed widespread currency in the Song dynasty after it was incorporated into the New History of the Tang.
This paper builds on previous research on the fluidity of Tang tales and argues that in the process of telling and retelling, a storyteller could still show his creativity. The first part compares “Xie Xiao’e zhuan” with another tradition of the story, showing how Li Gongzuo, by stitching together plots from different sources, adds new meaning to his source materials. The second part compares “Xie Xiao’e zhuan” with two later adaptations—“Ni Miaoji” and “Duan Juzhen Qi.” This paper argues that the retold stories are not always irrelevant to and independent from the sources, but creatively confirm, complement or even reject them.

October 29,
1:45 - 3:30 p.m.

Session VII, Panel 42
Midwest Japan Seminar I
Room 300

Jeffrey Alexander, University of Wisconsin, Parkside

» “The Beverage of the Masses: The Recovery and Growth of Japan’s Postwar Beer Industry, 1945-1965”

This paper is the fourth chapter of my current book manuscript, which is entitled Brewing Japan: The Japanese Beer Industry and National Transformation, 1870-1970. The book examines a wide array of novel perspectives on Japan’s history, for beer industry sources shed a great deal of light on the technical, commercial, social, and economic challenges that faced Japan during this turbulent century. The fortunes and fumbles of Japan’s major brewers serve as significant windows on a variety of issues, including work, wealth, fashion, taxation, regulation, war, consumer preferences, and popular culture. Chapter four explores postwar Japan through the recovery and gradual expansion of its surviving breweries. The early stages of the Allied Occupation were trying, but the sources reveal that Japan’s beer industry led the nation’s industrial recovery, and was one of the quickest sectors to return to productivity and profitability. In June 1949, Japan’s beer halls, which were initially open only to Allied personnel, were reopened to Japanese patrons. This symbolic event marked a turning point for Japan’s postwar economy, and with the advent of the Korean War in 1950, Japanese began or resumed their consumption of beer in earnest. Studies conducted by the leading producers also identify the specific reasons for the increase of beer consumption by both women and young people in the postwar. This work combines a wide variety of source materials, including contemporary newspaper and magazine articles, print advertisements, photographs, museum collections, business publications, scholarly literature, and company histories. Manufacturing companies offer remarkable vantage points on complex historical developments, and this study demonstrates that industry sources, if examined in new ways, can reveal valuable new perspectives.

Saturday, October 29,
3:45-5:30 p.m.

Session VII, Panel 43
India, China and Japan: Regional Power Politics in Asia
Room 352

Chair and Discussant: Andrew Latham, Macalester College

1. Arijit Mazumdar, University of St. Thomas

» India in South Asia: Regional hegemony in the twenty-first century

India has long been perceived as the regional hegemon in South Asia. It has displayed a willingness to use coercive diplomacy, even force, in pursuance of its twin objectives of maintaining regional supremacy and denying extra-regional actors a foothold in South Asia. The military interventions in Sri Lanka (1987-90) and The Maldives (1988) and a virtual economic blockade of Nepal (1989-90) were in line with these objectives. However, during the last decade, India seems to have drawn away from such policies and there even appears to be less opposition to outside involvement in the region. By examining India’s policies towards its smaller South Asian neighbors, particularly Sri Lanka and Nepal, this study seeks to understand these recent developments in light of India’s quest to maintain regional supremacy and ensure regional stability.

2. Yuxin Ma, University of Louisville

» China's Rise to Prominence: Competitor or Partner?

The fast and steady economic growth of China, its military modernization, and the growing popularity of Confucian culture, has enabled her to play important economic, strategic and diplomatic roles on the world stage. Is the rising China a competitor to the US dominated Western World, or a partner? This paper argues that China is both. On the one hand, with her authoritarian political structure, China nonetheless has produced a most vital capitalist economy, which challenged the rules and conventions on which the US regime has been based and provided an alternative model to Western democracy for developing states. China’s rise to prominence helps shape the world toward a multi-polar interstate system. On the other hand, China has integrated itself into global capitalism and the Western economic order, and is playing game by Western rules, which reinforces the dominance of US companies and regulatory institutions. The Western world needs deal with the challenges and competitions posed by China, and give China credit as their market and investor. The growth of Chinese economy cannot be restricted by Western protectionism because China can produce for her domestic market and the consuming power of her large population will drive Chinese economic to grow further. The Western world needs work with China despite her political and cultural differences, seeking peaceful cooperation and mutual benefits in the future. 

3. Taka Daitoku, Northwestern University

» Decline or Renewal? High-Growth Japan’s Search of Nuclear Capability and the Three Traditions of Postwar Pacifism

This paper aims to diversify our understanding of postwar Japan’s pacifism by analyzing its domestic politics over the development of nuclear bombs from the early 1960s to the mid-1970s. The research first examines changes among practitioners of the Yoshida doctrine. It argues that both Yoshida Shigeru and Ikeda Hayato became in favor of recreating Japan as a middle-class nuclear power. It then describes how Japan under Sato Eisaku pursued nuclear capability and reacted ambivalently to the NPT (Non-Nuclear Proliferation Treaty) regime that emerged at the United Nations in 1968. The study second spotlights a shift in Japan’s public opinion that became more supportive to its future possession of nuclear arms, following the growth of the first postwar generation and of China’s nuclear power. The survey finally addresses the previously undernoticed tradition of imperial-bureaucratic pacifism. It discusses that Emperor Hirohito sought to maintain post-defeated Japan’s peace-state status with his reliable transwar officials. While reviewing hesitation among the ruling and opposition parties toward Japan’s full entry to the NPT regime in the early and mid-1970s, it scrutinizes how Speaker of the House Maeo Shigesaburo made the NPT through the Diet for ratification in 1976, six years after signature, fulfilling his majesty’s wish.

October 29,
1:45-3:30 p.m.

Session VII, Panel 44
Unreeling China: Fact and Fantasy in Chinese Cinema, 1950-Present
Room 170

This panel seeks to explore the various ways in which Chinese cinema from the PRC, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and the Chinese diaspora has negotiated reality from the 1950s until the present. These negotiations might be of political or fictional nature, might explore questions of identity formation or construction of state myths, or might engage with cinematic sub-genres such as science fiction, horror, action and adventure, or documentary.

Organizer and Chair: Frederik Green, Macalester College
Discussant: Jennifer Feeley, University of Iowa

1. Charles Laughlin, University of Virgina

» “Are We Having Fun Yet? Levity and Play in Chinese Socialist Film Comedy”

I have often been curious about how early Chinese revolutionary writers took pains to depict proletarian life as pleasurable and enjoyable, both at the workplace and at home. Pre-1949 revolutionary writers are torn between depicting the extraction of proletarian labor as the infliction of suffering and the depiction of workers’ interrelations and their relationships with machines and beasts of burden as positive and fulfilling. No matter how evil and exploitative one imagines capitalism to be, a society still requires industrial and agricultural production, and if the revolution does really radically transform the working conditions of the proletariat, one presumes the utopian new society brings happiness and pleasure. The enjoyment of family life and other forms of enrichment both within and outside the workplace are just as essential to a post-revolutionary society as they are thought to be to the urban bourgeoisie, just as essential to the working class as to the ruling classes. The critical question is, to what degree are citizens of a liberated society in control of the conditions of their leisure?

This paper examines three PRC films from the late 1950s, “Xin juzhang daolai zhi qian” (Before the Arrival of the New Bureau Chief, 1956), “Qiuchang fengbo” (Basketball Court Hullabaloo, 1957), and “Hua hao yue yuan” (“Happily Ever After,” 1958), based on Zhao Shuli’s short novel Sanli wan, to see how humor both creates and alleviates social tensions perceived in the new society, with particular attention to the depiction of leisure and its relation to work. Though these films were not influential, I argue that they reveal not only the political restrictions on film in the PRC, but also sincerely held viewpoints on how to construct the good life under socialism, and many of the problems involved.

2. Wei Yang, Sewanee, University of the South

» Branding Beijing: The Flattening of Time and Space in Jackie Chan’s The Karate Kid

Contemporary corporate Hollywood is often referred to as a “self-aware cinema of spectacle”. How are spectacles featured in action blockbusters, a genre that relies heavily upon star presence and global accessibility? How do spectacular images, paired with mythical narrative, mobilize new relations of time and space in a non-Western urban setting? This paper looks into the built-in pleasures promised by the thematic and stylistic elements in the family action genre. Using Jackie Chan’s The Karate Kid (2010) as an example, the paper seeks to address the complicity between film form, style, and the motivational ideology as capital institutionalizes its cultural forms across the globe. The result, I argue, is the veneration of a friction-free society (and economy) dissociated from its history, context, and identities.

3. Frederik Green, Macalester College

» The Sky is the Limit: Feng Xiaoning’s Leitmotif Cinema and the Popularization of State Myths

In this paper, I intend to explore the dissemination of state myths in post-Tiananmen China through recent leitmotiv films by the influential Chinese filmmaker Feng Xiaoning that all relate to minority discourses in the People’s Republic. While leitmotiv films used to form a rigid propaganda category in socialist cinema, more recent productions, like those of 5th generation filmmaker Feng Xiaoning, complicate the once relatively well-defined dichotomy between political propaganda and politically progressive art movies.

Through my reading of three of Feng’s recent movies that are set in Tibet and Mongolia against earlier minority films of the 1980s, I will argue that the idea and image of the ethno-cultural Other as expressed in Feng’s epic tales popularizes a re-awoken Han-centric dialectic that once more portrays minorities as national subjects that are simultaneously exoticized and subjugated. While movies such as Tian Zhuangzhuang’s 1985 The Horse Thief (Daoma zei) portrayed Tibetans as radically ulterior and unrestrained spiritual Others, and thereby subjected the Han majority to a cultural critique, Feng, in his movies Red River Valley (Hong hegu, 1997), Gada Meilin (2002) and Railway in the Clouds (Qing Zang xian, 2009), demystifies the ethnic Other and reasserts an affirmative nationalism that enjoys broad popular support.

October 29,
1:45-3:30 p.m.

Session VII, Panel 45
Roundtable: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Teaching South and Southeast Asia
Room 205

This roundtable is animated by our experiences teaching South and Southeast Asian topics to a wide variety of students, including students from outside of the U.S. Our pedagogical approaches are drawn from a number of disciplines, but common interests are the examination of boundaries, the importance of location, and the role of performance in opening up new perspectives. The core of the discussion will be situated within our own teaching experiences, but it will extend to an exploration of how teaching techniques reveal priorities in representing Asia in the classroom.

Organizer and Chair: Julia Byl, St. Olaf College

1. Julia Byl,St. Olaf College

» Ephemeral Representations: Southeast Asia in the Performative Moment

Metaphors used to represent Southeast Asian topics are unusually expressive. Thinking about court centers as “mandalas,” formal ritual as “the theatre state” and national identity as an “imagined community” lends a visual, performative or imaginative nature to these historical and political concepts. As teachers, we draw on such experiential metaphors to ground our students’ understanding of Southeast Asia, an area that, centuries-old and spread over a large geographical area, is often difficult to approach. This paper explores how we can also use the analysis of performance to help students understand Southeast Asian pasts and presents. In Burma or Sumatra, a musical or theatrical tradition is layered with religious, political and historical resonances, and in order for a performance to effectively reach its audience, the meaning of these legacies must be recognized. In the classroom, an analysis of a performance is a tool for understanding both the legacies of history, and the extent to which modern Southeast Asian audiences recognize them as relevant and vital. This paper explores this pedagogical approach, and the technique of focusing on an ephemeral performance to revive topics ranging from the spread of Sanskrit to the struggle for national independence.

2. Thomas Williamson, St. Olaf College

» Universities Without Borders?  Connecting Southeast Asian and American Campuses

My presentation examines how we study Southeast Asia in light of modern technologies to transmit and perform education.  I focus on universities, which organize knowledge in a modern bureaucratic fashion.  Learning about Southeast Asia on an American college campus produces an interesting connection to students in Bangkok, Singapore, and Kuala Lumpur, while also raising questions about forms of difference.  I examine how we might think about these similarities and differences through paying attention to issues of language, nationalism, economic development, and politics.  How cosmopolitan is the identity of student, and how particular is it?  In posing these issues I also raise questions of history.  Students occupy a particular location do to their serial appearance on campus and their disappearance after graduation.  This dynamic often produces amnesia, as each cohort moves through the system.  Such amnesia is particularly acute in Southeast Asia, where the energetic campus politics of the 1960s and 1970s in many countries in the region (including the United States) have faded in memory.  Thus I am also interested in uncovering otherwise hidden connections between my own institution and those in Southeast Asia.

3. Elizabeth Coville, Carleton College

Joko Sutrisno, Indonesian Performing Arts Association of Minnesota

» Teaching "Anthropology 110: Indonesian Music and Cultures": Interdisciplinary Experiential Education in Minnesota

A joint contribution with Joko Sutrisno from Indonesian arts organization Sumunar, this presentation explores our experience offering an intensive January-term course to Hamline University undergraduates as an introduction to the arts and peoples of Indonesia. By mixing anthropology, historical fiction, religion, and ritual, on the one hand, with hands-on experience learning the gamelan and being introduced to first-hand accounts of the arts and daily life in Java, on the other, at times the course gives students the sense that they have traveled to Indonesia without leaving Minnesota.  We, the instructors, reflect on lessons learned from this experience: the use of the music-learning process as a pedagogical tool; the impact of requiring a recital on student learning; the role of story-telling in the class; and the challenges and benefits of combining book-learning with hands-on learning.  We welcome the opportunity to share our experiences and reflect on what we have learned in the process of working in this interdisciplinary fashion.

4.Matthew Rahaim, University of Minnesota

» Difference, Translation, and Commensurability in Teaching Asia Survey Courses

Introductory courses that survey Asia seem to require the impossible of teachers.  On one hand, we are compelled to provide organizing themes (e.g., theater, medicine, media) that bring distinct traditions into conversation; on the other hand, we are compelled to present a diversity of practices that resist facile comparison (e.g., ayurveda, Temiar shamanism, traditional Chinese medicine.)  Driven by time constraints and the vastness of Asia, we may find ourselves torn between either presenting a series of easily digestible but inevitably flawed translations, or presenting a parade of perplexing, discrete, and seemingly untranslatable particularities.  Students, for their part, often enroll in such survey courses with a cognitive map of a world split into mutually unintelligible, geographically bounded cultures.  Thus, even well-meaning attempts to situate texts and practices in time and place can be received as affirmations of national or racial essences.  How can we teach about difference without reducing Asia to an array of incommensurable cultures? How can we deal with the translations that such broad surveys require without reducing Asia to a hegemonic grid of English-language categories? This presentation proposes several pedagogical strategies for harmonizing coherence and difference in Asia survey courses.

October 29,
3:45 - 5:30 p.m.

Session VIII, Panel 47
Saturday, October 29, 3:45 p.m.-5:30 p.m.
Tang Narrative-II
Room 370

Organizer and Chair: William Nienhauser, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Discussant: Rania Huntington, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Modern Chinese scholars have identified the tales composed during the Tang as the first consciously fictional works in the narrative tradition. But the dependence of Tang tales on historical genres and motifs as well as oral storytelling was still strong. This panel examines the role of intertextuality, oral tradition, and historical records in these tales.

1. Chen Wu, University of Wisconsin-Madison

» “Spaces in ‘Changhenge zhuan’ (The Story of the Song of the Everlasting Sorrow)”

This paper will discuss the shift and interaction between multiple literary spaces in Chen Hong’s (fl. 805) “Changhen ge zhuan” (Story of the Song of Everlasting Sorrow).  Topics to be explored include the objective spaces like the palace space in capital Chang’an and on Mount Li, the suburban space in Mawei, the imaginary space described in the heavenly Penglai, and also the musical space presented by “Nishang yuyi qu” (Music of Rainbow Skirt and Feathered Clothes). The paper will explore how plots progress in tandem with the shift in spaces, reflecting both personal lives and national experiences, as well as how the echoes and contrasts between different spaces help to convey the emotional up-and-downs of characters and to set the rhythm of the narration as well.

2. Nan Ma, University of Wisconsin-Madison

» “Where Romance Ends, Politics Begins: Power, Gender, and Anxiety of Speech in the Tang Tale ‘Lingying Zhuan.’”

Among the many Tang tales about dragon women, “Lingying Zhuan” ??? is a distinct text. Its anonymous author explicitly links it to other works in this literary tradition and, through this intertextuality, establishes a coherent fictional history for the dragon race and their world, a history that is otherwise fragmented and incomplete in these tales. If most other Tang tales are sporadic, suppressed, and potentially subversive anecdotes of the uncanny that “puncture” the orthodox history of the “real,” “Lingying zhuan,” presumably written in the last chaotic decades of the Tang dynasty, may be seen as a rare attempt to forge an orthodox history of the uncanny. For this paradoxical scheme to work, the “historicity” of the “other world” must gain a status that is at once different from, comparable to, and interactive with that of the real world. Within this larger context, this paper explores the power and gender relations in this tale, shedding light on the ambiguous identity of the Ninth Princess, the hardening boundary of the “other world,” and the intriguing relationship between the ambiguity of the main characters’ identities and the anxiety of speech permeating the whole tale.

3. Hai Liu, University of Wisconsin-Madison

» Payment and Repayment in “Lingying zhuan” and “Liu Yi”: A Balance Collapsed and Then Restored

The principle of reciprocity that involves payment and repayment is one of the major motivations of Chinese classical fiction. However, in “Lingying zhuan” ???, the hero Zhou Bao??does not get any rewards, thereby seeming to violate the principle of reciprocity.
This paper intends to explore that apparent violation by comparing two Tang tales, “Lingying zhuan” and “Liu Yi”, seeking to show that “Lingying zhuan” is actually in accord with that principle by varying its structure within the frame of the principle. The analysis will operate from three levels of representation. At the first level, the protagonist shifts from Zhou Bao to Zheng Chengfu to guarantee the success of transaction and restore the balance to the story. At the second level, “Lingying zhuan” uses different rhetorical methods, for example, mimetic showing versus diegetic feelings, to neutralize the process of the shifting of the protagonist. At the third level, the method of characterization that “Lingying zhuan” uses reinforces the theme.

October 29,
3:45 - 5:30p.m.

Session VIII, Panel 48
Midwest Japan Seminar II
Room 300

Monika Dix, Saginaw Valley State University

» Straightening the Wrinkles: Aging Ambivalence in the Jojin Ajari no haha no shu

In Heian Japan, a culture obsessed with literary production and the aesthetics of youth, old age signifies bodies that are unproductive and unattractive. In this paper, I examine the relationship between aging, productivity, and gender in the Jojin Ajari no haha no shu (Collection of the Poems of the Mother of the Priest Jojin). Compiled between 1071 and 1073 by a woman known to us only as Jojin’s Mother, this nikki explores various ramifications of aging. Central to my discussion about the aesthetics of aging are the undesirable qualities written along gendered lines, as well as biological and professional markers, identifying women’s distinct secular and sacred marginalization. How is Jojin’s Mother’s aging constructed by the cultural forces that impinge upon the gendered body and the psychic consequences of living with a perceived loss of capacity? Contrary to the common assumption that the author’s somber poetry proves her aging body as unproductive, I propose that it is precisely her loneliness and despair which empower her poetry, linking female aging to productivity. This engagement becomes the means of understanding the relationship between gender and productivity from a new perspective. Aging is a narrative both of a body and of a culture. By re-reading that narrative through a literary lens, I seek to uncover what is at stake in the literary privileging of that which Heian culture considers its highest value.

October 30,

Session IX, Panel 52
Translating the Shiji (Grand Scribe’s Records)
Room 205

Organizer and Chair: William Nienhauser, U. of Wisconsin-Madison
Discussant: Michael Naparstek, U. of Wisconsin-Madison

The papers presented in this panel resulted from work on the Grand Scribe’s Records project to translated chapters 41-47 of the Shiji. These studies emphasize textual and contextual problems encountered in the translation carried out at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

1. Ying Qin, U. of Wisconsin-Madison

» When Historical Records Do Not Agree: The Case of the “Zhao shijia” (Hereditary House of Zhao)

There are many discrepancies among the records from different chapters of the Shiji (Grand Scribe’s Records) and the “Zhao shijia” (Hereditary House of Zhao) seems to contain an exceptional number of them. This paper provides representative examples from the “Zhao shijia” and analyzes the possible causes of several such variant accounts, especially that of the Zhao shi guer (the orphan of the Zhao) and the dreams of Viscount Jian of Zhao . Based on the analysis of these examples, this paper offers a discussion on the possible use of fictional or anecdotal accounts in official histories such as the Shiji and studies some aspects of historiography in ancient China.

2. Thomas Noel, U. of Wisconsin-Madison

» The Lords of Dian ?: Early Han Imaginings of the Noble Savage

It has been commonly held that the Chinese have always considered themselves to be the stewards of an enlightened haven in a world of chaotic savagery.  Chinese interactions with the peoples who resided on their periphery have thus often been recounted as either the expansion of a civilizing influence to troubled lands, or as the annexation of foreign peoples and regions by an empire assured of its right to cultural hegemony. Owen Lattimore, in his Studies in Frontier History (1962), has argued that within this paradigmatic conception of the cultured center bounded by barbarism, the Chinese constructed a dualistic concept of the frontier in which the southlands were understood as frontiers of passive inclusion receptive to acculturation, while the northlands represented threatening exclusion. This paper will re-evaluate these assumptions via examination of the account of the Lords of Dian in the Shiji?? (The Grand Scribes Records). It will be shown that foreign peoples during the Early Han Dynasty were often represented in ways which not only challenge the popular conceptions mentioned above, but that “foreign civilization” was often taken very seriously, at times were even presented as a potentially legitimate rebuttal  to the authority of Chinese civilization itself.

3. Lianlian Wu, U. of Wisconsin-Madison

» "Gongshu Boying  or Gongshu and Boying: A Case of Mistaken Identity."

The “Hann?, Hereditary House 15” in Shiji (Grand Scribe’s Records) records the competition for the heir to King Xiang ? (r. 311-296 B.C.) of Hann in 300 B.C. involving Kongshu Boying. However, his identity is still under a veil. Some scholars consider Kongshu Boying as a single person while others think these four characters stand for two people, Gongshu and Boying. This paper attempts to determine Kongshu Boying’s true identity. Following a survey of different scholars’ opinions on this issue, the contexts of the narrative within the “Hann, Hereditary House 15” as well as parallel accounts in the Zhanguo ce (Strategies of the Warring States) will be considered.

October 30,
9:30 - 11:15 a.m.

Session IX, Panel 53
Literature and Cinema in Japan
Room 352

Discussant and Chair: Kendall Heitzman, Macalester College

1. Reichardt Travis, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee

» The Noble Gangster: Seijun Suzuki's Portrayal of the Yakuza in Japanese Chivalry Films of the 1960s

The 1960s was the most successful decade for yakuza cinema in Japan. During that decade, the success of films depicting Japan’s notorious gangsters—the yakuza—hinged upon the schematics of the ninkyo eiga (chivalry film) genre. With the yakuza playing the role of the noble hero, ninkyo films of the 60s told the cliché battle of good versus evil, and it was the gangster’s sense of duty (giri) and personal emotions (ninjo) that are put to the test in the final scenes the ninkyo eiga.  This paper examines three of 1960s film director Seijun Suzuki’s quintessential works, and argues that while his films can easily be lumped together with other yakuza films of the decade, Suzuki’s portrayal of the noble gangster is often satirical. 

2. Gerald Iguchi, University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

» Tanaka Chigaku, Buddhist Modernity, Nichirenism, Affect

Tanaka Chigaku (1861–1939) coined the term “Nichirenism” (Nichirenshugi), referring to a Buddhist modernism he largely invented. He affected various Japanese, including historical visionary and military officer Ishiwara Kanji and children’s storywriter and poet Miyazawa Kenji. These figures — who from a commonsense perspective could have not been more different—were mutually inspired by Tanaka to attempt world transformation.

Miyazawa’s literature attempted this by challenging modernity’s scientific-rational commonsense, and through social activism. Ishiwara attempted this via military adventurism initiating fifteen years of warfare in Asia and the Pacific ending in 1945. He advocated militarism he believed would lead to the Japan’s defeat of Western Imperialism, initiating an age of peace and humanly beneficial development.

Tanaka inspired both Miyazawa and Ishiwara, but the content of their actions differed. I argue that Tanaka influenced them with something like “attitude,” which I will interpret in terms of affect, defined as unqualified but communicable feeling. I argue that political-ideological power in modernity often functions via affect, with people being motivated by concepts that are often substantively empty but powerful nonetheless.My paper will examine key texts by and about Tanaka, using them to illustrate how and why he had such wide-ranging and powerful influence.

3. Lauren Prusinski, Valparaiso University

» Wabi Sabi, Mono no Aware, and Ma: Tracing Traditional Japanese Aesthetics Through Japanese History

A nation originally built on Chinese tradition, Japan has gradually developed its own cultural standards and definitions of beauty. Japan has always focused on beauty in all realms of their culture: in their arts, like poetry and calligraphy; rituals, the ancient tea ceremony; contemporary Japanese urban life, consumer goods and architecture. Japanese society has revolved around a keen awareness of nature as it relates to these aspect of life and has focused on this conscious sensibility of nature through aesthetics, including wabi sabi, a rustic and often desolate beauty, mono no aware, an awareness of a fleeting beauty, and ma, an empty or formless beauty. These aesthetics have permeated the Japanese culture from their roots in the Heian era at the end of the 8th century through contemporary Japan. With a keen eye for their surroundings, the Japanese have effectively melded ancient aesthetics with modern advancement, remaining deferent to their natural roots by highlighting rather than diminishing their eternal presence in society. Though urban development has extended its reach to the base of the Kyoto mountainsides, the high volume of temples and gardens scattered amidst its municipal areas still exemplify Japan's relationship with nature. Though advances in technology have made the Japanese less reliant on nature, the Japanese have maintained this appreciation for the role nature still plays in an industrial setting, recognizing that technology cannot eliminate nature, and have created a harmonious balance between human and nature.

Macalester College · 1600 Grand Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55105  USA · 651-696-6000
Comments and questions to