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Update on Chinese Censorship of Academic Publications

As reported in mid-August, representatives of the Chinese government asked Cambridge University Press (CUP) to remove from its Chinese website 315 China Quarterly articles on so-called “sensitive” topics (Taiwan, the Cultural Revolution, Tiananmen, etc.). At that time, CUP also conveyed to the Association for Asian Studies a Chinese request that 100 Journal of Asian Studies articles be blocked in China. Under pressure, CUP reversed its decision and lifted the block of the China Quarterly articles before any JAS articles were affected. AAS has issued a statement in strong defense of academic freedom. Since then, AAS officers and staff have continued monitoring the situation. There are no new updates concerning our Journal of Asian Studies, which remains fully accessible to AAS members in China. However, other publications have been affected by censorship in China, and this episode has prompted many members of the academic community to discuss academic integrity, scholarly labor, and possible respo ...

#AsiaNow Speaks with Jisoo M. Kim

Jisoo M. Kim is Director of the George Washington University’s Institute for Korean Studies and Korea Foundation Associate Professor of History, International Affairs, and East Asian Languages and Literatures. She is author of The Emotions of Justice: Gender, Status, and Legal Performance in Chosŏn Korea, published by University of Washington Press and winner of the 2017 AAS James B. Palais Book Prize. To begin with, please tell us what your book is about. By asking the question of justice in premodern Korea and how it was shaped by emotions, my book contends that the state’s recognition of the sentiment of being wronged permitted every subject regardless of gender or status to seek justice by voicing grievances to the state. This study illuminates the intersection of law, emotions, and gender in premodern Korea. In its approach, the work contests the typical image of the Chosŏn state (1392–1910) as being socially rigid because of its hereditary status system, slavery, and Confucian ...

November 2017 AAS Member News & Notes

Congratulations to the AAS Members whose books have been awarded prizes by other organizations: Sheena Chestnut Greitens (University of Missouri), co-winner of the 2017 Best Book Award from the American Political Science Association Section on Comparative Democratization and co-winner of the 2017 Best Book Award from the International Studies Association for Dictators and Their Secret Police: Coercive Institutions and State Violence (Cambridge University Press) Christopher Goscha (Univ. du Québec à Montréal), awarded the John K. Fairbank Prize from the American Historical Association for Vietnam: A New History (Basic Books, 2016) Audrey Truschke (Rutgers University), awarded the John F. Richards Prize from the American Historical Association for Culture of Encounters: Sanskrit at the Mughal Court (Columbia University Press, 2016) *** The Board of Directors of the Association for Asian Studies welcomes this opportunity to recognize KENNETH C. FROEWISS following his recent retirement a ...

Best of the EAA Archives: October 27, 2017 Edition

This post includes articles on Chinese and Japanese history, traditional Korean culture, Indian food, and everyday Shinto. Titles, short annotations, and links are below. The fall 2017 EAA featuring the special section “Water and Asia” is now published and online. Read Lucien Ellington’s “Editor’s Message” from the issue in this #AsiaNow post. Next week’s post will highlight several tasty nuggets from the issue but if you can’t wait, visit our EAA archives now. • We’ve published a number of nifty simulations in EAA but here is one of our better offerings: “Contesting Twentieth-Century China: A Simulation” by Joseph W. Esherick and Jeremy Murray (fall 2010). • Many education articles that include the term “critical thinking” feature fluff instead of substance. This is not the case with Ethan Segal’s fine essay "Can Samurai Teach Critical Thinking? Primary Sources in the Classroom." (winter 2010). • Many p ...

#AsiaNow Speaks with John Stratton Hawley

John Stratton Hawley (a.k.a., Jack) is Claire Tow Professor of Religion at Barnard College, Columbia University and author of A Storm of Songs: India and the Idea of the Bhakti Movement, published by Harvard University Press and winner of the 2017 AAS Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy Book Prize. To begin with, please tell us what your book is about. India celebrates itself as a nation of unity in diversity, but where does that sense of unity come from? One important source is a widely accepted narrative called the “bhakti movement.” Bhakti is the religion of the heart, of song, of common participation, of inner peace, of anguished protest. The idea known as the bhakti movement asserts that between 600 and 1600 CE, poet-saints sang bhakti from India’s southernmost tip to its northern Himalayan heights, laying the religious bedrock upon which the modern state of India would be built. In A Storm of Songs, I clarify the historical and political contingencies that gave birth to the concept of the b ...

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