Published: March 9, 2016

Wednesday, March 9, 2016, 1:00 p.m.
UMC Aspen Rooms, CU-Boulder

Keynote speaker, Rudolf Wagner of Heidelberg University, and panelists from the CU faculty and graduate students present their views on "Transcultural Asia."

Rudolf Wagner is Senior Professor of Chinese Studies at the University of Heidelberg in Germany. He is known for his work in sinology and Japanese studies, and particulalry for his publications Joining the Global Public: Word, Image, and City in Early Chinese Newspapers, 1870-1910 and Zhouli as the Late Qing Path to the Future.

1:00 Keynote Address - "Drum of Remonstrance: The Transcultural Adaptation of a Political Installation across Eurasia," Rudolf Wagner, Heidelberg University
Introduction and response by Tim Oakes, Professor of Geography and Director of the Center for Asian Studies
Rulers across Eurasia have drawn legitimacy from a claim that their governance would secure justice in their domain. While this notion of justice comes in many different framings and the interaction between them is hard to trace, the spread of a curious installation across Eurasia is a significant pointer to the sharing of some of the underlying ideas and issues. This installation is a device installed in the public domain outside the palace that allows commoners to get direct access to the ruler himself with complaints about official abuses, remonstrance of the ruler himself, or crisis alerts. First ascribed to sage rulers of Chinese antiquity, such installations started to be realized in Imperial China, but news about them spread through ambassadors, merchants, and travelers, from where it found its way into Mirrors for Princes and historical narratives, and court installations. These are found from Japan to the Delhi Sultanate, from the Seljuq Empire to Mughal India, from Anurshiwan to Charlemagne, and from Al Masudi to Al-Idrisi, Ibn Battutta, Du Halde, Jacobi and Helman. The talk will trace this development, and explore its connection to a shared governance quandary of the administration of territorial states with a centralized bureaucracy.

2:30 Break

3:00 "Transculturalism in Asian History"
Patricia Helfenbein, MA Student, History and Chinese
Timothy Weston, Associate Professor of History and Associate Director of the Center for Asian Studies
John Willis, Associate Professor, History
Marcia Yonemoto, Associate Professor, History