Tuesday, December 15, 2015

UC Berkeley-UCLA Southeast Asian Studies Conference

UC Berkeley-UCLA Southeast Asian Studies Conference
Making Southeast Asian Cultures: From Region to World
April 22-23, 2016
at UC Berkeley
Abstract deadline: January 8, 2016

Keynote speaker: Melani Budianta, Professor of Literature, University of Indonesia

The aim of this conference, jointly sponsored by the Center for Southeast Asia Studies at UC Berkeley (Director: Prof. Pheng Cheah) and the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at UCLA (Director: Prof. George Dutton), is to reopen the question of Southeast Asia's culture both by looking back at the history of the region and at the dynamic transnational processes at work in contemporary globalization that actively make Southeast Asian cultures today. 

For example, how have Indian Ocean trade and religious networks shaped various aspects of Southeast Asian culture and how has their localization in Southeast Asia in turn inflected these networks?  In the field of contemporary art, are the different arts communities in Southeast Asia connected to and contemporary with each to other?  Can we speak of a self-conscious regional identity among these communities so that visual artists from Burma who are relatively new to international art practices and discourses can be curated alongside artists from highly "globalized" Singapore in an international biennale?  In the field of film studies, how have the Shaw and Cathay film empires, which were multilingual and multicultural, established a foundation for Southeast Asian film? In literary studies, has the public phenomenality of literary festivals and literature prizes such as the Man Asia Literary Prize or the Ramon Magsaysay Award in Journalism, Literature and Creative Communication Arts helped to create a body of Southeast Asian literary works?

The conference seeks to understand the production of Southeast Asian cultures by drawing on different humanities and social science disciplines.  By self-consciously adopting a world perspective and transnational frame in the study of Southeast Asia, the conference hopes to correct the normative Eurocentrism of the disciplines, their methodological nationalism, and the relative undertheorizing of Southeast Asia in Asian studies.

The organizers invite submissions for presentations from scholars and graduate students conducting original research in the social sciences and humanities that address the primary themes of the conference. Some travel funding is available, with priority for funding directed towards faculty and graduate students at UC and CSU campuses. 

Abstracts (up to 500 words) should be sent to CSEAS at UC Berkeley by Friday, January 8, 2016. Abstracts should include your name, affiliation and discipline and contact information (including e-mail address).

About the Keynote Speaker
Melani Budianta teaches Indonesian and English-language literature at the University of Indonesia. She has been instrumental in establishing Cultural Studies as a field of study at the University of Indonesia. Well regarded in Indonesia as a literary critic and also as a women's rights activist, she was a founder of Suara Ibu Peduli, a women's NGO that played a significant role in the May 1998 protests against Suharto. She has an M.A. from the University of Southern California and a Ph.D. from Cornell University.

Contact: CSEAS, 1995 University Ave., 520H, Berkeley CA 94704-2318

The Center for Southeast Asia Studies at UC Berkeley and the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at UCLA form a consortium U.S. Department of Education Title VI National Resource Center for Southeast Asian Studies.

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