Events in UCIS

Tuesday, October 10

12:00 pm Workshop
When is “Forced Marriage” a Form of Modern Slavery?
3610 Posvar Hall
Sponsored by:
Global Studies Center along with Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA)
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When is – and isn’t— forced marriage a form of modern slavery? To answer this controversial question, this Workshop explores the range of types of forced marriages – from customary forced marriages, to mail-order-brides, and abducted “wives” of armed fighters – in relation to competing legal definitions and conceptual debates about slavery. Participants will work toward a comprehensive understanding and definition of conjugal slavery which addresses the intersection between slavery and the broader issue of forced marriage, compare the suitability of rights-based slavery laws and prosecution-based trafficking laws in cases of conjugal slavery, gain insights into the working of slavery, human rights and trafficking laws more generally, and engage in current debates about modern slavery and about different approaches to ending it.

This workshop is limited to graduate students. Registration required. Please email Diane Cohen ( Light refreshments will be served.

1:00 pm Lecture
The Road to Sleeping Dragon: Learning China from the Ground Up
WPU Assembly Room
Announced by:
Asian Studies Center on behalf of Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and Department of English
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In 1995, at the age of twenty-three, Michael Meyer joined the Peace Corps and, after rejecting offers to go to seven other countries, was sent to a tiny town in Sichuan. Knowing nothing about China, or even how to use chopsticks, Meyer wrote Chinese words up and down his arms so he could hold conversations, and, per a Communist dean’s orders, jumped into teaching his students about the Enlightenment, the stock market, and Beatles lyrics. Soon he realized his Chinese counterparts were just as bewildered by the country’s changes as he was. With humor and insight, Meyer puts readers in his novice shoes, winding across the length and breadth of his adopted country -- from a terrifying bus attack on arrival, to remote Xinjiang and Tibet, and his future wife's Manchurian family, and into efforts to protect China's heritage at places like "Sleeping Dragon," the world's largest panda preserve.

In the last book of his China trilogy, Meyer tells a story both deeply personal and universal, as he gains greater – if never complete – assurance, capturing what it feels like to learn a language, culture and history from the ground up. Meyer will recount his 20-year journey via photographs, as well as talking about the challenges of reporting from China and how a freelance writer can fund and produce books that reach a wide audience.

3:00 pm Lecture
Natural Resources and the Making of Modern Xinjiang, 1907-1962
4130 Wesley W Posvar Hall
Sponsored by:
Asian Studies Center
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This talk will focus on the central role that natural resources played in shaping Chinese state power and authority in China's far western province of Xinjiang. Based on my forthcoming book, my talk will highlight the often overlooked role played by an assortment of Chinese and Soviet state agents, as well as a wide variety of non-state actors, each of whom were seeking to stake their own claim to Xinjiang's lucrative natural resources. Their combined efforts to gain access to the region's gold, wool, petroleum, and rare minerals served to construct the foundations of Chinese state power and authority in this distant border region.

The lecture is open for public. Little refreshments will be served.

5:30 pm Film
407 Cathedral of Learning
Sponsored by:
Asian Studies Center along with IndoPacific Council, Asian Studies Center, Film Studies, Cultural Studies and Department of English
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Khoon Diy Baarav enters the vexed political scenario in Kashmir through the lives of families of the victims of enforced disappearances. The film is a non-sequential account of personal narratives and reminiscences ruptured by violence, undermined by erasure, and over-ridden by official documents that challenge truth. Made over nine years it explores memory as a mode of resistance, constantly confronting and morphing- from the personal to political, individual to collective. It looks at the ways in which those affected by violence have no choice but to remember.