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2021 Program


The tumultuous events of this past year have upended societies around the world, inspiring reevaluations of past traditions as well as social, political, and cultural practices moving forward. WCAAS 2021 will feature presentations across a range of disciplines that will reevaluate the contexts within which our understanding of the cultural, historical, economic, and political conditions of Asia’s past, present, and future are based. Brigham Young University will host this virtual conference. The conference is free and open to the public.

**US Mountain Daylight Time


Greetings from WCAAS 2021 Program Chair and AAS President 

SESSION 1: 8:30–10:00 AM

1. Cosmopolitans, Family, and Patriotism in the Chinese Revolution, 1920-1963

  • Chair and Discussant: Greg Lewis, Weber State University
  • "The Luo Family Story: Shattered Dreams, Enduring Ideals,” Laurie Dornbrand, OnLok Senior Health/Institute on Aging
  • “Between Familial and Patriotic Duty: Cosmopolitan True Believers and the Chinese Revolution,” Greg Lewis, Weber State University 
  • “Chen Hansheng: Internationalist or Communist?” Stephen MacKinnon, Arizona State University

2. Currents and Crosscurrents: Japanese contemporary poetry through its intercultural connections

  • Chairt: Yaxkin Melchy, University of Tsukuba
  • “The Construction of Shasei: the Influence of New Artistic Ideas in Masaoka Shiki’s Conceptions of Haiku,” Alonso Belaúnde Degregori, El Colegio de México
  • “The Ancestors of a New Society: The Tribes (Buzoku) and Their Journey through the Misunderstandings of the Japanese Countercultural Scene,” Yaxkin Melchy, University of Tsukuba
  • “Cosmopolitan Impressions of Latin America in Poet and Traveler Horiguchi Daigaku (1892-1981),” Matias Chiappe Ippolito, Waseda University
  • “Relocating Language in a Post-Disaster World. The Poetics of Translation and Exophony in Tawada Yōko's Poem ‘Hamlet no see’,” Gabriela Licausi, Universidad Iberoamericana de la Ciudad de México

3. Literature, Identity, and Community: Reading Scholastic Traditions and Networks in Medieval South Asian Sufism

  • Chair: Jyoti Gulati Balachandran, Pennsylvania State University
  • “Spiritual Genealogies, Biographies, and the History of the Muslim Community: A Critical Study of the Ak̲h̲bār al-Ak̲h̲yār,” Sushmita Banerjee, University of Delhi
  • “The Madness of the Majzūbs: Marginal Sufis in Mughal India,” Anurag Advani, University of California, Berkeley
  • “Scholasticism and Canonization: Literary Cultures and Community Formation Across the Chishtiyya Mystical Records in Delhi and the Deccan, 14th to 16th centuries,” Pia Maria Malik, University of Delhi

4. Defining Autonomy and Identity: Local Agency versus Imperialism within Mainland Southeast Asia

  • Chair and Discussant: Eric Hyer, Brigham Young University 
  • “The Chinese Outlaws and Dacoits the Indochinese Borderlands (1870s-1880s),” Diana Duan, Brigham Young University 
  • “Staging Vietnamese Nationalism: Kich Noi and the Formation of National Identity,” Spencer Fields, Brigham Young University
  • “The Chinese Diaspora in Vietnam 1945-1975: How Did They Thrive to Success in Business Amid Strict Laws and Regulations of the Vietnamese Government,” Nhi Phan, University of Toronto
  • “The Carriers of Yi Music,” Ran Duan, The Communication University of Zhejiang

5. Asia in Trans-: Rethinking Identities, Social Structures, and Cultural Practices

  • Chair: Youn Soo Kim Goldstein, Weber State University
  • “The Role of Korean-to-English Translators in the Global Success of South Korean Literature and Film,” Youn Soo Kim Goldstein, Weber State University
  • “Genre that Matters: Translating Cultural Authenticity into Ever-Changing Hybrid,” Yeojin Kim, Binghamton University, State University of New York
  • “Notes on Voice from the Philippines’ First Single-Author Lesbian Poetry Collection to First Single-Author Trans Poetry Collection,” Shane Carreon, University of the Philippines in Cebu
  • “Transwomen Sex Workers in Singapore and Bali, Indonesia: Stories of Transformation, Beauty, Love, and Death,” Kevin Chavez Laxamana, University of Alberta

6. Infrastructurally Queer: Digital Platforms and LGBT Cultures between East and Southeast Asia

  • Chair: Ting-Fai Yu, Monash University Malaysia
  • “Attention Economy and Neoliberalism in Filipino and Hong Kong Gay Amateur Porn Networks on Twitter,” Ruepert Jiel Dionisio CAO, Hong Kong Baptist University
  • “Being Queer, Chinese, and Malaysian Online: Reconfiguring Identities on the Internet in the Early-2000s,” Chloe Yap Wen Ting, Monash University Malaysia
  • “Infrastructural Development of Digital Queer Cultures across Taiwan and Sinophone Malaysia,” Ting-Fai Yu, Monash University Malaysia

SESSION 2: 10:00–11:30 AM

7. State Formation in Neolithic and Bronze Age China: A Multifaceted Approach

  • Chair: Lothar von Falkenhausen, University of California, Los Angeles
  • “Assemblages, Power, and Hegemony’s Folly: The Political Dynamics of the Late Shang Dynasty,” Andrew MacIver, University of California, Los Angeles
  • “Resilience, Transformation, and Diversity: A Reevaluation of the ‘Collapse’ of Longshan Societies in Northern China,” Zichan Wang, University of California, Los Angeles 
  • “Before the Ba Yin: Bone, Sound, and Power in Prehistoric China,” Kirie Stromberg, University of California, Los Angeles
  • Discussant: Min Li, University of California, Los Angeles

8. Poems Found Somewhere Else: Criticism, Criteria, and Strategies of Poetics Outside Poetry Collections in Late Imperial China

  • Chair: Wanming Wang, McGill University
  • “Nostalgia for the Capital as Poetics: Li Dongyang’s (1447-1516) Poems Left on Painting and Stele,” Minoru Takano, University of British Columbia
  • “Poems for Practice and “Peer Review”: Archival Poetry Scrolls and Literary Associations in mid-Ming China,” Ji Wang, University of Wisconsin–Madison
  • “To Study Poetry through Fiction: Why Poet Lin Daiyu in Hongloumeng (Dream of the Red Chamber) Does Not Like Li Shangyin’s (813-858) Poetry,” Wanming Wang, McGill University
  • “The “Absent” Early Works: The Practices of Deleting or Recovering Poems in Premodern China,” Jing Chen, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

9. Dark Memories and Fragmented Identities: Exploring the power of memory and trauma in the construction of worlds and identities

  • Chair: José Rodolfo Avilés Ernult, Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University
  • “Educational Tourism as a Narrative Space for Contested Memories of WWII: the Analysis of Young Visitors' Experience of War Heritage Sites in Okinawa,” Kaori Yoshida, Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University
  • “The Uncanny’s Presence in Magical Realist Cinema: The Cycle of Trauma and Memory Children of Men’s Worldbuilding,” José Rodolfo Avilés Ernult, Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University
  • “Contested Memories and Religious Identities: Conflicting National Narratives in South Asia,” Astha Chadha, Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University

10. Paradigm Shift in India’s Domestic and International Approach: Existing Trends & Path Ahead

  • Chair: Kumari Mansi, Amity University
  • “Rise of Conservatism in India: Towards an Authoritarian Statism?” Kumari Mansi, Amity University
  • “Kashmir Conflict and the Article 370: India-Pakistan Relation and the Road Ahead,” Ankita, Jawaharlal Nehru University
  • “Changing Dynamics Between India and China: Rhetoric or Reality?” Biatrisha Mukhopadhyay, Jawaharlal Nehru University
  • “India-Taiwan Relations: Absence of Coherence but Emerging Convergence,” Bhavana Kumari, Jawaharlal Nehru University

11. Papuan Lives Matter: Multilevel Resistance from Subnational to Transnational

  • Chair: Shane Barter
  • “Violence and Stigmatization in Papua: The Case of Intan Jaya Regency,” Elvira Rumkabu, Cenderawasih University
  • “Indonesian Autonomies: Explaining Divergent Self-Government Outcomes in Aceh and Papua,” Shane Barter, Soka University of America
  • “The West Papua Issue in Pacific Regional Politics: Explaining Indonesia’s Foreign Policy,” Hipolitus Wangge, Australian National University
  • “‘We Have a Lot of Names like George Floyd’: Contextualizing Papuan Lives Matter,” Christopher Lundry, El Colegio de México
  • Discussant: Richard Chauvel, University of Melbourne


  • Graduate Workshop

SESSION 3: 1:30–3:00 PM

12. Between Page and Stage: Rethinking Theatricality in the Late Ming and Early Qing Period

  • Chair: Ling Hon Lam, University of California, Berkeley
  • “Deception as Disclosure: Stage Directions and Embodied Transparency in Seventeenth-Century Chinese Drama,” Yun Bai, Yale University
  • “The Puzzles of Xu Wei: Yu Chanshi and the Problem of Zaju Publication,” Jiayi Chen, The University of Chicago
  • “Across Page and Stage: Excavating the Theatricality of Selected Scenes in Late Ming China,” Yihui Sheng, University of Michigan
  • Discussant: Ling Hon Lam, University of California, Berkeley

13. China’s Connections to and its Influences on the World: Past, Present and Future

  • Chair: Alex Yuan, Utah Valley University 
  • “One Belt One Road: A Continuation of the ‘Silk Road,’”Alex Yuan, Utah Valley University
  • “Tang Empire: An Open and Internationalized Nation,” Gloria Yang and Emily Bettridge, Utah Valley University
  • “China’s Silk Road, its Historical Background and Execution as Well as its Influence and Significance on Modern Chinese-Global Relationships,” Jeff Hibbard, Utah Valley University
  • “Zheng He’s Voyages to the West Seas: Capitalist Explorations with a Feudal and Agricultural Mission,” Blake Reynolds, Utah Valley University
  • Discussant: Gloria Yang, Utah Valley University

14. Environmentalism and Japanese Disaster Film and Anime

  • Chair: Rachel DiNitto, University of Oregon
  • “An Environmental Reading of Space Battleship Yamato,” Kaoru Tamura, University of Oregon
  • “Slow Violence in Hayao Miyazaki’s Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind,” Kit McDunn, University of Oregon
  • “Shin Godzilla: The Political Gaze and the Invisible Victims,” Shan Ren, University of Oregon
  • “Social debris, Disaster debris: Sono Sion’s ‘Fukushima’,” Aidana Bolatbekkyzy, University of Oregon

15. Diasporic Representations of Resistance and Memory Among the Overseas Chinese of the Americas, Europe, and Asia

  • Chair: David Ibarra, University of Costa Rica
  • “The Possibilities and Limits of Chinese Mass Rebellion in Nineteenth-Century Cuba and Peru,” Benjamín Narváez, University of Minnesota, Morris
  • “Migration, Power, and Racial Solidarity: About the Chinese Presence in the Andes,” Lorena Cuya Gavilano, Arizona State University
  • “Cup of Nostalgia: Bourgeois Tea and Coolies’ Coffee in Singapore Chinese Communities in the 1920s,” Huei-Ying Kuo, Johns Hopkins University
  • Discussant: Fredy González, University of Illinois at Chicago

SESSION 4: 3–4:30 PM

16. The Image of China in International Documentary from the Perspective of Cross Culture

  • Chair: Gaopei Fan, Communication University of Zhejiang
  • “China Images Abroad: The Representation of China in the International Documentaries During the Pandemic,” Gaopei Fan, Communication University of Zhejiang
  • “The Multimodal Discourse Analysis of the the Co-produced Documentaries: From Chung Kuo to China as an Example,” Jie Yu, Communication University of Zhejiang
  • “International Co-production of Chinese Documentary in the 21st Century: from the perspective of a Comparison of Versions,” Wujun Pei, Beijing Normal University
  • “The Performance and Development of Chinese Traditional Aesthetics in Joris Ivens's Chinese Documentaries,” Jing Wu, Beijing Normal University

17. Spreading Awareness of the 'Comfort Women' Through the Decolonization of Historical Narratives (Roundtable)

  • Chair: Jinah Kim, Northwestern University
  • “Transnational Memory Entrepreneurs and the State in ‘Comfort Women’ Memory Activism,” Mary M. McCarthy, Drake University
  • “History as Justice or Heritage? The ‘Comfort Women’ Challenge,” Chelsea Szendi Schieder, Aoyama Gakuin University
  • “Justice for Comfort Women as a Post-Colonial Struggle,” Miho Kim, Cofounder of Comfort Women Justice Coalition (SF) and Eclipse Rising
  • “Building ‘De-national’ Decolonial Coalitions for Justice: Contesting Japanese Denialism, Zionism, and White Supremacy at Neoliberal Universities,” Tomomi Kinukawa, Department of Women and Gender Studies, San Francisco State University.
  • “Asian American Advocacy for ‘Comfort Women’ Justice,” Elizabeth Son, Northwestern University

18. Governmentality Amid Public Health Crisis And Beyond–Cases And Examples From Asia (Roundtable)

  • Chair: Matt M. Husain, University of British Columbia
  • Guojun Sawyer He, SKEMA Business School
  • Robert Hanlon, Thompson Rivers University
  • Eric Li, University of British Columbia
  • Mansi Babbar, University of Delhi

19. Post-COVID-19 Japan: Shocks and Therapy by Abul Barkat (Roundtable)

  • Chair: Dilruba Sharmin, Dhaka University
  • “Post-COVID-19 Japan: Shocks and Therapy - A Multidisciplinary Treatise of an Economist-Japanologist,” Abul Barkat, Dhaka University
  • “Post-COVID-19 Japan: Nature of Social Shocks,” Abdullah-Al Mamun, Dhaka University
  • “​​Post-COVID-19 Japan: The Nature of Economic Development and COVID-led Shocks to Development,” Nashia Zaman, Dhaka University
  • Discussant: M Jahangir Alam, Dhaka University

20. Teaching about Asia Across Discipline (Roundtable)

  • Chair: Steven Riep, Brigham Young University 
  • “Enhancing Student Engagement in Content and Language Classes,” Steve Riep, Brigham Young University
  • "Bringing Creative Puppetry into Language Classes," Jasmine Chen, Utah State University
  • "Teaching 'Introduction to Southeast Asian Studies': Challenges and Reflections," Shane Barter, Soka University of America
  • “The Challenges and Rewards of Teaching an Online Course on the Humanities of South Asia,” Francesca Lawson, Brigham Young University
  • “Cultivating Creativity in Japanese Language and Culture Classes,” Mamiko Suzuki, University of Houston
  • “Engaging Students in Upper Division Language Courses,” Richard McBride, Brigham Young University

21. A Comparison of the Role of Student Dormitories in Assimilating Asian Youth Leadership in the French and American Empires (Roundtable)

  • Helen Kaibara, Jacksonville State University
  • Cheyenne Stickland, Independent Scholar
  • Karlie Johnson, Jacksonville State University

SESSION 5: 4:30–6:00 PM

22. Shifting Views of Taiwan: Revisiting Colonial-era Poetry, Healthy Realist Cinema, and Contemporary Animation

  • Chair: Frederik Green, San Francisco State University
  • “Writing Empire, One Classical Poem at a Time: Japanese Kanshi from Colonial Taiwan,” Frederik Green, San Francisco State University
  • “The Limits of Healthy Realism: Depictions of Disability in Taiwan Films of the 1960s and 1970s,” Steve Riep, Brigham Young University
  • “Hauntological Aesthetics in Taiwanese Animation Feature Grandma and Her Ghosts (1998),” Li Guo, Utah State University

23. GIS Approaches to Regional Religious Systems in Hangzhou, China

  • Chair: Jiang Wu, The University of Arizona 
  • “Visualizing Regional Religious Systems (RRS): Mapping Hangzhou Buddhist Temples in a Digital Atlas,” Jiang Wu & Philip Stoker, The University of Arizona 
  • “Qiansui Baozhang in the Writing of the Chan Historiography and the Rise of Zhongtianzhu Monastery in the Song Dynasty,” Lu Zhang, The University of Arizona
  • “Quantifying Qualitative Data in Buddhist Monastic Gazetteers: Visualizing the Wulin Fanzhi 武林梵志 via its Metadata,” Jeffrey Liu, The University of Arizona
  • “From ‘Heaven’s Fire’ to ‘Human’s Fire’: the Changing Idea of Fire Disasters in Hangzhou,” Xinrui Zeng, The University of Arizona
  • Discussant: James Baskind, The University of Arizona

24. Contestation, Transformation, and Backsliding in Myanmar: Here We Go Again

  • Chair: Ryan Hartley
  • “Dyarchy, Disciplined Democracy, and Death: Regional Impacts of Myanmar’s Return to Khaki Capitalism,” Ryan Hartley, Chuo University
  • “Myanmar’s Governments in Exile: Legitimacy and Power,” Catherine Renshaw, Western Sydney University
  • “Emergent Identity: Volunteerism, Social Media and the New Citizen,” Mike Griffiths, University of Hull and University of Mandalay

25. Post-Colonial/ Post-Cold War Trends in the Studies of U.S.-Japan Relations

  • Chair: Masami Kimura, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
  • “Japan’s ‘Failed Modernity’ and the Origins of War: American and Japanese Analyses Reconsidered,” Masami Kimura, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
  • “The Yoshida Doctrine and Silent Rearmament,” Yoneyuki Sugita, Kobe Women’s Junior College
  • “The Japan Socialist Party, Anti-Communism, and International Networks of Social Democracy in the 1950s,” Yutaka Kanda, Niigata University 

26. Going Beyond the Boundary: Interactions and Confrontations in the East Asian Sphere from the 9th century to 16th century

  • Chair: Nicolas Tackett, UC Berkeley
  • “Assessing Change and Continuity among Chinese Sea Merchants during the Tang-Song Transition,” Gregory Sattler, UCLA
  • “Before the Storm Comes: Diplomatic Exchanges between Mongols, Korea, and Japan Before 1274 Bun'ei Campaign,” Lina Nie, University of Southern California
  • “The Rise of the Möeng Maaw Empire in the Making of Ming Yunnan,” Sean Cronan, UC Berkeley
  • “Mutiny, Migrants, and Militarization: How the Datong Mutiny Changed the Ming Frontiers,” Ha Yiming, UCLA
  • Discussant: David Robinson, Colgate University

27. Through the Years: The Impact of the Digital Revolution on Contemporary South Asia's Social, Economic, and Political Spheres

  • Chair: Vasanth Narayanan, Stanford University
  • “South Asia's Globalization Challenges and Shifting Paradigms, a Thorough Analysis of Policy Changes,” Sasha Murthy, Annamalai University
  • “Past and Present Cultural Heritages: The Changing Landscapes of Art and Culture in South and Southeast Asia,” Sekar Saroja, Madurai Kamaraj University
  • “Ayurvedic Perspectives on Social and Health Issues, Medical Anthropology in South Asia,” Muthu Kumar, Madras University