• Cold War and the Chinese Revolution: The Rise and Fall of "May Fourth Studies" in the U.S.

    Thu, May 2, 2019, 4:30 pm

    The question about how to interpret the nature of May Fourth Movement has been at the center of many debates concerning the development of Chinese history, culture, and politics. Yet the studies of “May Fourth” had met with new challenges in the twenty-first century due to a number of reasons. First, the movementbecame a subject of studies in the U.S. in the 1960s, in which scholars began to inquire into the nature and rise of Chinese communism. A key question debated at the time is whether the movementis responsible for, or analogous to, Chinese Cultural Revolution.

  • Revolution Goes East: Imperial Japan and Soviet Communism

    Wed, Oct 16, 2019, 4:30 pm

    The Russian Revolution of 1917 did not have the same meaning in Asia as it did in Europe or Russia itself, and it meant something different in Japan than in the rest of Asia on account of the fact that Japan was not a colonized country but a colonizer.After the failed Siberian Intervention, the Japanese government had to negotiate with the actual authority in Russia, the Bolshevik government, rather than with the impotent anti-communist forces, in order to protect Japan’s interests in the Russian Far East, north Manchuria and Inner Mongolia.

  • Religion in China: Back to the Center of Politics and Society

    Thu, Apr 25, 2019, 4:30 pm

    For more than a hundred years, China embarked on a movement of forced secularization, with most religions heavily persecuted or banned. But religion is now back at the center of Chinese society and politics, with the country awash with new temples, churches, and mosques—as well as cults, sects, and politicians trying to harness religion for their own ends. Churches are being demolished and Muslims forced to attend reeducation camps, while the government is also promoting Buddhism and folk religion. How to reconcile these contradictory claims?

  • Was It Frost? The Little Ice Age, Local Gazetteers and the Fall of the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368)

    Fri, Mar 29, 2019, 4:30 pm

    Every second to third year, mulberry plantations in the North of China were destroyed by frost and insects. The genre of local gazetteers (difang zhi) is a major source for the Yuan-Dynasty’s reputation as an era of natural disaster. It is also the period in which Chinese sericulture production was multiplied and expanded towards the South. Scientists since Zhu Kezhen have thus used local gazetteers to discuss the impact of weather on China’s political history and socioeconomic change.

  • The Taiwan Expedition: New Perspectives on Japanese Imperialism and the Meiji Restoration

    Tue, Mar 12, 2019, 4:30 pm

    In the spring of 1874 the Japanese government sent an expedition to southern Taiwan ostensibly to punish indigenous villagers who had murdered dozens of people from Ryūkyū. Contemporary records show that the Japanese government also attempted to colonize eastern Taiwan and it justified its actions using the argument that a state must spread civilization and political authority to territories where it claimed sovereignty.

  • Making China Modern: From the Great Qing to Xi Jinping

    Mon, Mar 11, 2019, 4:30 pm

    A panoramic survey of China’s rise and resilience through war and rebellion, disease and famine, that rewrites China’s history for a new generation.

    It is tempting to attribute China’s recent ascendance to changes in political leadership and economic policy. Making China Modern teaches otherwise. Moving beyond the standard framework of Cold War competition and national resurgence, Klaus Mühlhahn situates twenty-first-century China in the nation’s long history of creative adaptation.

  • Global History Workshop-Roundtable

    Mon, Mar 25, 2019, 4:30 pm to 6:00 pm

    Featuring the following scholars and papers:

    "Correspondence between Crowns: A Trial for a World History of Diplomacy"

    Fuyuko Matsukata, University of Tokyo


    "Challenging to Capitalism and International Market : Tea Traders under Tsarist Russia in World history"

    Takako Morinaga, University of Tokyo


    "Challenging the Imperial Order: The League of Nations and Social Questions in East Asia"

    Harumi Goto-Shibata, University of Tokyo

  • Shrines to Living Men in the Ming: Out-takes and Inside Stories

    Wed, Apr 24, 2019, 4:30 pm

    When the Ming dynasty (1368-1644 CE) government looked like the misbegotten union of a totalitarian emperor and a cowardly, grasping bureaucracy, shrines to the living – primarily to late-Ming eunuch dictator Wei Zhongxian – looked like absurd manifestations of wicked megalomania.  But now scholars take a more balanced view of the complicated strengths and weakness of a state that did last for 276 years.  Ming living shrines, too, deserve a second look.  For they appear frequently in the historical record -- across the whole span of the dynasty (indeed of the imperial period), the whole ter


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