In early December, EASC held its annual book giveaway in the EASC conference room at Memorial Hall. This event, which has become something of a yearly tradition, gave students, faculty the chance to obtain free publications – including journals, books, newspapers and magazines – that are East Asia-related. Many volumes of these scholarly materials have found a new home; we sincerely hope that they make a valuable addition to the personal libraries of those who picked up free copies during the giveaway!
EASC partnered with IU’s Research Center for Chinese Business and Politics and the National Committee on United States-China Relations (NCUSCR) to host the eighth annual CHINA Town Hall in October. The event began with opening remarks from IU’s own Gardner Bovingdon (Associate Professor, Central Eurasian Studies and International Studies), who introduced human rights scholar Nicholas Bequelin. Bequelin, a senior researcher on China at Human Rights Watch, Hong Kong, gave a talk titled “Hong Kong’s Rebels! What Autonomy for China’s Peripheries?” He discussed China’s heavy-handed treatment of Xinjiang, Tibet, and Hong Kong, and the ethno-political conflicts it has generated. Former President Jimmy Carter followed with entertaining and astute observations on the US-China relationship, which he has played a significant role in strengthening over the past four decades. His talk can be viewed on the National Committee on United States-China relations website.
In October, Korean Night returned to the IUB campus. From 2:00-6:20 p.m., the W.W. Wright atrium, auditorium, and classrooms were filled with the sights and sounds of this year’s theme, Chuseok, the harvest moon festival.
Kicking off the event was a keynote speech delivered by Sang Il- Kim, Consul General of the Korean Consulate in Chicago. Kim's talk highlighted the strength of the US-Korea relationship and Korea's growing importance in global affairs. Other highlights of Korean Night, which was co-sponsored by the Korean Students Association and Korean Conversation Club, included a lecture by Professor emerita Bonnie Oh, fan dance and taekwondo performances by local Korean children, and a K-pop dance by Korean IU students. Over 500 guests enjoyed Korean arts and crafts such as paper folding while increasing their knowledge of Korean culture and language. They were also invited to sample dishes including galbi, which was graciously donated by Bloomingfoods, ddeokkibokki, japchae, kimbap, and kimchi from NYC’s famous Geumgangsan restaurant. The evening concluded with a screening of Le Grand Chef (Sikgaek) at the IU Cinema. In support of Korean Night, EASC was awarded a $2000 grant from the Korea Foundation.
This year’s event honored three individuals: Sang-Il Kim, Korean Consul General; Dr. William and Lynn Jackson, long-time supporters of EASC; and Helena Cheun, a veteran Korean teacher and EASC Korean cultural ambassador. Theresa Kang, EASC Associate Director and Korean Night planning committee chair, commented “I am so grateful that we could make the 2nd annual Korean Night event at the Indiana University campus. This program was possible thanks to our numerous sponsors, partners, board members, staff and volunteers for their ongoing commitment. I am already looking forward to the next year’s event and hope we can see you in 2015!”
This semester the Korean Book Workshop was extended to include works by scholars of China and Japan, inaugurating the newly named East Asian Book Workshop. Speakers this fall included E. Taylor Atkins (Northern Illinois University), Paula Iovene (University of Chicago) and Chenyang Li (Nanyang Technical University). They discussed topics ranging from Confucian philosophy to colonial anthropology to Chinese literature. Recordings of Professor Atkins’ session and previous workshops may be found here. The book workshop is open to all undergraduate and graduate students interested in East Asian scholarship, and free books are provided to the first five students to register for a session. The book workshop will continue in spring with a lineup of three more scholars. For information on how to participate, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The East Asian Film Series wrapped up another successful season in November with a screening of the 1985 Juzo Itami film Tampopo, dubbed Japan’s original “ramen western.” In October, the series included screenings of Korean classic Le Grand Chef (Jeon Yunsu, 2009) and Eat, Drink, Man, Woman (Ang Lee, 1994). In the spirit of this fall’s Themester, “Eat, Drink, Think,” each film related to Asian food culture in some way. The two films shown in October were co-sponsored by the IU Cinema.
IU Cinema is a world-class facility and program dedicated to the scholarly study and highest standards of exhibition of film in its traditional and modern forms. For more information on the facility or programs, call 812-856-2503 or visit www.cinema.indiana.edu.