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News from NIAS

Geir Helgesen talks to NK News about human rights in North Korea

"North Korea refuses to cooperate at any level on the issue of human rights, according to an announcement from the United Nations in early July.

But a recently established investigation commission, led by Australian judge Michael Kirby, seems determined to gather all possible information both from former North Korean citizens now living abroad and, should access be granted, directly from North Korean authorities, even if the latter seems unrealistic at the moment."

NIAS' Director Geir Helgesen, long-time researcher of politics and culture on the Korean Peninsula, has analyzed the human rights issue in North Korea in Dialogue with North Korea? Preconditions for Talking Human Rights with the Hermit Kingdom, which he co-authored with Hatla Thelle, published in April. Because of this he was recently  interviewed by NK News to discuss human rights, Western perspectives of North Korea, and what lies ahead.

To read the full interview follow this link to the NK News website

New face in the library

Librarian and IT expert Chia-Ning (Debbie) Chen has started at NIAS Library. Debbie has a Bachelor of Art in Library Science from Taiwan and a Master of Science in Computer Science from California State University. Debbie will be working in a temporary position at NIAS Library. We are very happy to welcome her at NIAS Library.

Inger Agger invited to join research group on trauma at Kyoto University

NIAS Associate Inger Agger  spent a month at the French School of Asian Studies (EFEO) in July 2013 in Kyoto, Japan, as part of her research on "Trauma, Memory and Healing in the Context of Organized Violence in Asia". She showed her documentary film on "Justice and Healing in Cambodia" at Kyoto University and was invited to become Overseas Research Associate of the Research Group: “Trans-disciplinary Studies of Organizing Traumatic Experiences and Memories: From Narratives to Memorials,” at Institute for Research in Humanities, Department of Humanities, Kyoto University, Japan.

Read more about Inger Agger and Testimonial Therapy & the Life Project on the In Focus Blog where a longer interview with her from the magazine Torture: Asian and Global Perspectives has been re-published.

New workplace student at NIAS

We are happy to welcome a new workplace student to NIAS.

Erja-Liisa Lappalainen is a master’s student from the Centre for East Asian Studies at the University of Turku, Finland. Her master’s thesis is about social media in China, focusing on the microblogging behavior of Chinese urban youth.
Erja-Liisa started at NIAS on 5 August and will stay until December.

2nd Call for Papers 7th Annual Nordic NIAS Council Conference at University of Southern Denmark 4-8 November 2013

Date: 
Monday, November 4, 2013 to Friday, November 8, 2013

THE POWER OF KNOWLEDGE: ASIA AND THE WEST
The conference and PhD Course are organized by SDU’s Negot in Chinese/Institute of Design and Communication at University of Southern Denmark and NIAS. The PhD Course is co-organized together with IIAS - International Institute for Asian Studies in Leiden.

Opening and registration 4 November, Conference 5-6 November, PhD Course 7-8 November

As the movement of thoughts from East to West seem to increase, it is high time to realize the opportunities of a multipolar world and seriously consider all existing human experiences and knowledge systems. The present conference and PhD workshop will limit itself to Western and Asian experiences, in an effort of bringing the two into a creative and fruitful dialogue. In light of this, area studies and the different disciplines need to come together and share insights and identify theoretical and methodological approaches that might strike a reasonable balance between universal concerns and particular cultural understandings.

The following keynote speakers will inspire our proceedings

  • Nandita Chaudhary, Associated Professor, Lady Irwin College, Delhi University
  • Jan-Olof Nilsson, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, Lund University
  • Jaan Valsiner, Professor, Department of Psychology Clark University, Niels Bohr Professor of Cultural Psychology, University  of Aalborg

More keynotes will be announced later

Commentators at the PhD course are

  • Nandita Chaudhary, Associated Professor, Lady Irwin College, Delhi University
  • Min Dongchao, Professor  & Director of the Centre for Gender and Culture Studies, Shanghai University
  • Geir Helgesen, Director NIAS –Nordic Institute of Asian Studies
  • Nikita A. Kharlamov, PhD, Department of Communication and Psychology, Aalborg University
  • Willem Vogelsang, PhD, Institute Manager, IIAS - International Institute for Asian Studies, Leiden
  • Qi Wang, Associated Professor, Department of Design and Communication, University of Southern Denmark
     

For more information please go to the conference website:
http://www.knowledgennc2013.niasconferences.net

 

Visit from Shanghai

On July the 3rd a group of eighty (80) Chinese students from five universities in the greater Shanghai area visited NIAS. The European trip was organized by Fudan University and brought the group of students and some of their teachers to Oxford University and to  University of Copenhagen, where Professor Lars Bo Kaspersen, head of the department of Political Science and chairman of the NIAS board gave a lecture on “The development of the welfare state, Danish experiences”. Only the busy schedule and two buses waiting for the group stopped the lively discussions after the lecture. Our research guest of the summer, Dr. Chiu Chen-Yu presently a post-doctoral researcher at the Department of Architecture  at Aalto University, but originally from Taiwan assisted us as interpreter for those of the Chinese students who needed it. 

Chiu Chen-Yu New Visiting Researcher at NIAS

Chiu Chen-Yu graduated from Chung Yuan Christian University, Taiwan in 2002 with a Bachelor of Architecture. He achieved a Masters degree in Urban Design at Columbia University in New York in 2005 and received his PhD at the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning, The University of Melbourne, in 2011.
In 2013, he works as a Post-doctoral Researcher at the Department of Architecture, Aalto University. His primary research interest is in the cross-cultural/national relationships within the field of design, history and theories of architecture, particularly in the work of Jørn Utzon and Chinese building culture.
 

University of Greenland now member of the Nordic NIAS Council

Illisimatusarfik, University of Greenland became the 25th member of the NNC group.

On June 26 Rector Tine Pars signed the NNC contract. We warmly welcome our colleagues and students in Greenland aiming at expanding their capacity on Asia. We look very much forward to working together on topical projects such as Asia in the Changing Arctic, and to introduce our new partners in Nuuk to the 24 other members and not least to our many counterparts in Asia.    

 

Current SUPRA student at NIAS

Mayumi Takahashi, PhD, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)
Topic: Young Children and Consumer Culture in Japan

New In Focus blog by Mai Corlin "Unearthing the Past: From Independent Filmmaking to Social Change"

There is a new In Focus blog by Mai Corlin on Unearthing the Past: From Independent Filmmaking to Social Change

Wu Wenguang, considered the father of independent Chinese documentary film, has since 2005 slowly but surely been handing over the camera to people on the margins and to younger generations of Chinese documentary filmmaking. In 2010 Wu and Caochangdi Workstation initiated the Folk Memory Documentary Project, where young filmmakers go to the countryside to gather and document memories of the Great Famine (1959-1961) from elderly villagers.

To read the blog, please click here

Mai Corlin is enrolled as PhD student at Aarhus University, Department of Culture and Society, Asia Section. Her project is entitled Utopian Imaginaries in Rural Reconstruction – Urban Activists in Rural China and is concerned with socially engaged art in the countryside of China.
 

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