A New Approach to Understanding Classical Literary Cultures: Professor Denecke publishes The Oxford Handbook of Classical Chinese Literature
The Oxford Handbook of Classical Chinese Literature 1000 BCE through 900 CE...
The Spring Languages and Careers Fair will take place on Thurs. 3/30 from 4-6 PM in the Center for Career Development — 100 Bay State Road, 5th floor.
The Fair is designed to give students an opportunity to learn about our language programs in Boston and abroad, to meet representatives from organizations who are interested in recruiting students with language skills, and to network with recent BU alums who are using their language skills on the job.
The following organizations have confirmed that they plan to attend: Peace Corps, FBI, Middlebury institute for International Studies, Education First, and Boston Housing Authority. Representatives from the French and Spanish consulates will also attend and will have brochures regarding post-graduate scholarship and exchange programs.
We will also offer an assortment of international snacks.
Professor Wiebke Denecke (BU, WLL) will speak on
OVERSTEPPING THE “HUMANITIES” CRISIS: REFLECTIONS ON ARCHIVING AND CONCEPTUALIZING GLOBAL HUMAN MEMORY
Models for studying cultural phenomena in various places and periods on a global scale have rapidly multiplied over the past decade and resulted in a wealth of new scholarship of ambitious planetary scope. Sweeping new paradigms of “global history,” “world literature,” or “world philology” have emerged as we face the much-invoked “humanities crisis,” the incisive drop in the image of the humanities, in enrollments and student interest, and in funding and support for humanistic inquiry. Vibrant new subfields such as digital humanities, environmental humanities, or pop culture and media studies have certainly contributed to proving the relevancy of the humanities to contemporary society, but how can we overcome the “humanities crisis” without losing the historical depth of human experience and memory?
This lecture argues that the archiving and careful conceptualization of cultural phenomena in various places and periods of history on a global scale can give us deeper self-understanding and enable meaningful action in our current historical moment. Surveying the practices of global comparisons over the past decades, the lecture addresses the ethical challenges and responsibilities in the study of human memory. Throughout, the lecture throws light on how in particular East Asia might shape global comparisons in a way that can energize, even reconfigure the study of Western antiquity and European cultural history.
Wiebke Denecke is Associate Professor of East Asian Literatures & Comparative Literature at Boston University. She received her BA and MA from the University of Göttingen (Germany) and her PhD from Harvard University. Her research encompasses the literary and intellectual history of premodern China, Japan, and Korea, comparative studies of East Asia and the premodern world, and world literature. She is the author of The Dynamics of Masters Literature: Early Chinese Thought from Confucius to Han Feizi (2010), Classical World Literatures: Sino-Japanese and Greco-Roman Comparisons (2013), and co-editor of The Norton Anthology of World Literature (2012, 2018), The Oxford Handbook of Classical Chinese Literature (2017) and a three-volume literary history of Japan from an East Asian perspective (Nihon “bun”gakushi. A New History of Japanese “Letterature”) (2015-). She currently works on projects that situate early Japanese literature in relationship to China and Korea, on conceptual approaches to East Asia’s Sinographic Sphere, and on the global study of human memory
The Society, Politics & Culture Workshop in Sociology and the Department of English at Boston University are pleased to present:
Lisa Lowe is a distinguished Professor of English and Director of the Center for Humanities at Tufts University. Her talk will discuss interdisciplinary methods for consulting and interpreting archival documents and material culture in the recovery of transhemispheric links between Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Her most recent book is The Intimacies of Four Continents (Duke University Press, 2015) which examines the links between colonialism, slavery, imperial trades and Western liberalism across and through Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas.
The crew from the Korean TV channel EBS (Educational Broadcasting System) had set themselves an ambitious goal: they wanted to explore how China’s greatest thinkers, like Confucius and Mencius, Mozi, the “Daoists” Laozi and Zhuangzi or the “Legalist” Han Fei, lived up to the worst challenges of their time: constant infighting between China’s various states during the notorious “Warring States Period” (481- 221 BCE), greedy acts of usurpation and conquest, suffering of the common people under ruthless and incompetent rulers. They gave their 6-episode series the bold title: “Philosophy conquers Desperation: China’s Philosophical Masters” (절망을 이기는 철학: 제자백가). For more than a year the crew traveled around the world on a frantic schedule, interviewing more than 50 scholars in seven countries. But they did not want to confine their exploration of early Chinese thought to discussions in dusty university offices. The bulk of the series consists of scenes from the text corpus that bears the name of or was produced by China’s early philosophers: “Masters Literature.” Fans can see Confucius and Zhuangzi in action and experience their world in the fashion of the epic historical Korean TV dramas that have greatly contributed to the recent global enthusiasm over the “Korean Wave.” The caprices of the rainy season in China made the filming of large war scenes and court processions challenging and threw off their filming schedule.
But the crew prevailed in their efforts and in early January 2017 the series was broadcast in Korea. Professor Denecke was interviewed this past summer in Seoul as the author of The Dynamics of Masters Literature: Early Chinese Thought from Confucius to Han Feizi (Harvard University Press, Asia Center, 2011), in which she argues that the desire for a Chinese equivalent for Western philosophy has warped our understanding of early Chinese thought and shows how texts like the Confucian Analects or the Laozi can be read as part of a distinctive Chinese textual genre of “Masters Literature.” The crew interviewed her in particular on Han Fei, the “legalist” thinker, and brilliant rhetorician and analyst of the dark sides of human nature, who, though scorned by posterity, laid the ideological foundations for China’s first empire and Chinese bureaucratic institutions for centuries to come.
Dive into the world of Confucius and China’s great philosophical masters HERE:
EPISODES (subtitled version in preparation)
EPISODE 5 (ON HANFEI)
Join us for a reading and conversation with Mexican Author Yuri Herrera and Translator Lisa Dillma on Thursday, February 2nd at 6pm at 121 Bay State Road.
**Yuri and Lisa will also be speaking at the Literary Translation Seminar on Friday, Feb. 3rd from 1-3pm in STH 625.
Please click here to view the full event flyer.
Hosted by the Boston University Pardee School of Global Studies Latin America Program
Read the full story on BU Today.
Eight WLL Chinese instructors (Weijia Huang, Hongyun Sun, Liling Huang, Huimin Li, Hsinwei-Su, Lingsee Hung, Pengfei Li and Zhe Liu) attended the New England Chinese Languange Teachers Association’s International Conference on Learning and Teaching Chinese Language and Culture on October 29th at the College of the Holy Cross.
Weijia Huang led a panel discussion and presented his research, “The Study of the Cultural Origins of Chinese Vocabulary and Teaching Chinese Vocabulary as a Foreign Language”. Hongyun Sun presented on the topic of “The Effect and Impact of Course Evaluation on the Instruction of Chinese characters”. Huimin Li served as the Board Member of the NECLTA.
Please join BU faculty from WLL, Art History, English, and Romance Studies for an interdisciplinary symposium celebrating a new translation of on the world’s first novel written by a woman: Lady Murasaki’s 11th century Tale of Genji. The day will begin with a keynote by the translator, Professor Dennis Washburn, and will include guest talks by art historians Melissa McCormick (Harvard) and Timon Screech of (SOAS, University of London), as well as a panel of BU and Harvard students currently reading the Washburn translation.
5pm in Kenmore Classroom Building 101
Cathy Cohen Delivers 7th Annual Sedgwick Lecture in Gender and Sexuality Studies on October 25
In a history of black queer politics from the Combahee Collective to the contemporary Black Lives movement, Cohen identifies a new form of activism supported by a network of groups, many of which are led by young black women who identify as queer. Rather than organizing around single a charismatic leader and immediate policy changes, the new leaderful movement seeks expansive cultural transformation on behalf of marginalized communities.
Cathy Cohen is the David and Mary Winton Green Professor of Political Science and chair of political science at the University of Chicago. She is the author of Democracy Remixed: Black Youth and the Future of American Politics and The Boundaries of Blackness: AIDS and the Breakdown of Black Politics, as well as the coeditor, with Kathleen Jones and Joan Tronto, of Women Transforming Politics: An Alternative Reader. In addition to her transformative scholarship on race, gender, and politics, Cohen is the principal investigator of two major social change projects: The Black Youth Project and the Mobilization, Change and Political and Civic Engagement Project
We are delighted to host an open house event on Wednesday, October 19th from 3:30-5:00pm! Meet members of our department, learn about the courses, and explore new culture, film, and literature opportunities! This event will take places in room STH 625 at 745 Commonwealth Avenue. We hope to see you there!