Speakers Matt Oches, Emily Brink, and Nan Da various applications, ramifications, and extensions of “orientalism” as a scholarly discourse and a field of study.
James L. Huffman, former reporter and University of Michigan alumnus, is the H. Orth Hirt Professor of History at Wittenberg University. Having gotten an MA in East Asian Strudies from the University of Michigan in 1967 and a PhD in History (with a focus on Japan) in 1972, Dr. Huffman has had a lasting interest in the long-term effects of imperialism, nationalism, and the struggle towards modernization in Japan. The book his lecture will be drawn from, A Yankee in Japan: The Crusading Journalist Edward H. House (2003), is at once an engrossing biography of a nineteenth-century American journalist and an absorbing history of Japan in the initial stages of its modern transformation.
Imagined Communities, Benedict Anderson’s brilliant book on nationalism, forged a new field of study when it first appeared in 1983. Since then it has sold over a quarter of a million copies and is widely considered the most important book on the subject. In this greatly anticipated revised edition, Anderson updates and elaborates on the core question: what makes people live, die and kill in the name of nations? He shows how an originary nationalism born in the Americas was adopted by popular movements in Europe, by imperialist powers, and by the anti-imperialist resistances in Asia and Africa, and explores the way communities were created by the growth of the nation-state, the interaction between capitalism and printing, and the birth of vernacular languages-of-state. Anderson revisits these fundamental ideas, showing how their relevance has been tested by the events of the past two decades.