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09:00-09:30 Session SD1W: Open Welcome (Kino Metropol, Sokolská 572/25)

Bart Dessein

President of the European Association for Chinese Studies

Jiří Stavovčík

Vice-Rector for International Relations

Petr Bilík

Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Arts for External Relations

09:30-10:30 Session SD1FKS: First EACS Keynote Speech by Prof. David Uher (Palacký University Olomouc): "Mandarin Chinese – a tonal language?" (Kino Metropol, Sokolská 572/25)

The relevant analysis usually does not cross the binary boundaries in even representative works on the phonology of modern Chinese. When it does, it is not very convincing, as it is often based on too small a sample of linguistic data. At the same time, the rhythm of the Chinese sentence, which is usually performed more in higher units, i.e., segments, colons, and sentences, combined with the so-called seven degrees of prominence, only allows for the realization of many functional concepts in Chinese, including actualization. More than eighty years ago, Oldřich Švarný (1920–2011), the most influential representative of Olomouc sinology after its renewal in 1993, became interested in this issue. More than fifty years ago, he began publishing on this topic. During his studies, Švarný noticed that when connecting syllables and binaries into higher pronunciation units, a significant reduction in the quality of the tonal course of the individual syllables appears, which helps to provide a rhythm to the Chinese text. Therefore, this paper will attempt to confirm his assumptions using a sample represented by a short anecdote realized at different speech rates by a native speaker of the pronunciation standard of modern Chinese, i.e., Pekinese. It will also quantify Švarný’s assumption that two-thirds of the syllables reduce their tonal course. This finding may indicate that Chinese is currently being transformed from a tonal to a melodic accent language.

11:00-12:30 Session SD1YSA: Young Scholar Award Presentations (Kino Metropol, Sokolská 572/25)

YSA candidate #01: Philipp RENNINGER, Harvard University

Title of talk: A “New Era” of Chinese Law? On Sinomarxist Legal Theory and Xi Jinping Thought


Sino-Marxism has officially been described as a sinicized and modernized “Marxism with Chinese characteristics”. In this significantly modified form, Marxist legal theory and practice are still authoritative for Chinese state organs, the Chinese Communist Party (“CCP”), China’s population, and Chinese academia. The influence of Sinomarxism is not limited to juristic schools and approaches explicitly propagating a “Marxist jurisprudence with Chinese characteristics”. Rather, it yields far-reaching implications for both (Chinese) positive law and legal studies, especially in public law. Sino-Marxism has canonized its most important elements both in the Chinese Constitution and in the CCP Statute. Enumerated are Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, the Important Thought of Three Represents, and the Scientific Outlook on Development. Its newest element, Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, was included in the CCP Statute in 2017 and the Constitution in 2018. Xi pursues a four-pronged comprehensive strategy and propagates twelve socialist core values in order to create and ensure a “new normal” in China. This shall contribute to the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation and thus realize Xi’s China Dream. Despite claiming to lead China into a new era, Xi Jinping continues and develops the four basic paradigms of traditional Sino-Marxism: First, Sino-Marxism conceptualizes both law and (legal) science as subordinate to practice. Enacting, interpreting, and analyzing the law (as part of the superstructure) must “seek truth from facts”. This is due to the base-superstructure-theory, the core element of (historical) materialism. Second, the practice that law must abide by is the actual one. The actuality criterion merges the base-superstructure model and dialectics into dialectical materialism. However, the actual situation in China – as expressed by the so-called main contradiction in Chinese society – is exclusively determined by the CCP. Third, SinoMarxism propagates an integrated “politics and law” concept. It considers law (and legal studies) as intrinsically interwoven with, and subordinate to, politics. Both the political system and all policies in China can ultimately be drawn back to CCP as the exclusive ruling party exercising all-embracing party leadership. Following this subordination of law and science to facts, actuality, and party politics, Sino-Marxism demands both legal norms and legal studies to “emanate from political realism”, “repel abstract and void idealism”, and “be born out of political power”. This cumulates in a

factualist positivism of power undermining the normativity and autonomy of (Chinese) law and jurisprudence.


YSA candidate #02, Keru CAI, University of Oxford

Title of talk: Lu Xun’s Cannibalization of Russian Intertexts: The Heteromodal Realism of “Diary of a Madman”


Lu Xun’s Cannibalization of Russian Intertexts: The Heteromodal Realism of “Diary of a Madman” Though Lu Xun has long been considered a foundational writer of realism in modern China, critics have complicated this designation and pointed out his modernist or symbolist proclivities. I propose to reconsider the nature of Lu Xun’s groundbreaking formal innovation in Kuangren riji (“Diary of a Madman” 1918) by enlarging the scope of inquiry beyond the text itself to scrutinize its main Russian intertexts—Nikolai Gogol’s 1835 Zapiski sumasshedshego (“Diary of a Madman”) and Leonid Andreev’s 1904 Krasny smekh (Red Laugh). I close-read these three texts to demonstrate how Lu Xun appropriated themes, images, and narrative techniques. To understand the formally slippery nature of Lu Xun’s story (is it realist or not?), we must interrogate the formally slippery nature of his Russian models (in what ways are they realist or not?). To intervene in longstanding discussions about the nature of realism in modern China, as well as in recent debates about so-called peripheral realisms, I redefine the realism of what is often considered the first modern Chinese short story. The cannibalism thematized in Lu Xun’s story, I contend, becomes a metaliterary figure for his practice of intertextuality. Examining the elements he cannibalizes from his two Russian intertexts, which have historically defied straightforward categorizations such as realism, I argue that Lu Xun’s resulting narrative is a heteromodal realism, capable of encompassing many modes of narration from a plurality of literary movements. I coin this term as an analogue to Mikhail Bakhtin’s principle of the heteroglossic nature of language and the novel, which omnivorously absorbs a multitude of speech registers and styles. My claim is not about language or the novel, but about a mode like realism. In the early twentieth century, Chinese writers were so enthusiastically intertextual, so omnivorously translating and absorbing different Western literary movements at the same time, that whatever forms realism takes in Chinese literature is necessarily informed by a broad spectrum of realist and non-realist, indigenous and foreign, highbrow and lowbrow modes of writing. What I designate as heteromodality in Lu Xun’s realism results from the heterochronic nature of Chinese importation of Western literary ideas, the simultaneous reception of what were originally successive historical periods. The air at the time was thick with newly translated “isms” (zhuyi), from romanticism to naturalism to modernism to symbolism to futurism, and so on. The

heteromodality (or hetero-ism) of Chinese realism also characterizes the work of other early twentieth century writers such as Mao Dun, Ding Ling, Lao She, and Ba Jin. Scholarship on modern Chinese realism has tended to focus on its moments of epistemic crisis or formal deformation.1 Rather than evaluate the purported limitations of modern Chinese realism, I ask how writers wielded the fecund resources newly within their reach to invent provocative mimetic ways of depicting unprecedented objects of representation. Lu Xun parlays a position of supposed disadvantage (as a writer on the periphery or semiperiphery of hegemonic national cultures) into one of daring innovation precisely because his “belatedness” as a realist writer gives him simultaneous access to a diverse array of models to select from and combine. More broadly, my theorization of heteromodal realism can inform how scholars articulate the nature of peripheral realisms elsewhere around the world, in places where writers were able to make formal innovations thanks precisely to their peripherality, their temporal and spatial dislocation from the geographic cores where literary realism first arose.


YSA candidate #03, Charlotte Chun Lam YIU, University of Michigan

Title of talk: Order within Chaos: Reexamining Spatial and Relational Disorder in Jin Ping Mei 金瓶梅


This paper takes issue with the predominant view on the early modern Chinese novel, Jin Ping Mei in secondary scholarship: that the domestic space and human relations portrayed in the novel are essentially disorderly and incestuous in a dystopian sense. I trace the origin of this view to Andrew Plaks’s seminal work, the Four Masterworks of the Ming Novel: Ssu ta ch'i-shu, and outline how Plaks’s paradigm of disorder and incest have been reproduced in different forms and approaches to this day. As I piece together the architectural constructions, spatial arrangements, and characters’ routines and movements in Jin Ping Mei, I detail and discuss the triangulation of three distinct spatial orders and allocations, namely the ritual-hierarchical Confucian order, the urban-commercial use of residence, and the guest-entertaining, pleasure-oriented garden, that are constantly contesting, negotiating, and interacting with one another. Together, these three orders and allocations form the veneer of spatial and relational disorder. Behind this veneer, nonetheless, is that fact that each of the orders generates its own spatial principles and creates its own routes and routines for the characters to follow or deviate from. What I would like to reveal ultimately is that Plaks’s paradigm of disorder, however influential, stems purely from a Neo-Confucianist perspective, and should thus be applicable to only part of the complex inner workings of the narrative world in Jin Ping Mei. The order(s) with the chaos are always present if we look carefully enough.

14:30-16:00 Session SD1-1A: Archeology and Material Culture (1) (Křížkovského 10, 1.49)
Fabienne Wallenwein (Heidelberg University, Germany)
Marina Svensson (Lund University, Sweden)
Fabienne Wallenwein (Heidelberg University, Germany)
Chee Meng Wong (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
Weiwei Xiao (University of Leicester, UK)
Marina Svensson (Lund University, Sweden)
(HYBRID) Heritage-led Urban Regeneration along Chinese Trade Routes: Historic Fabric, Contested Narratives and Local Perspectives

ABSTRACT. Organiser: Fabienne Wallenwein Discussant: Marina Svensson

Zooming in on historic Chinese trade hubs and their city morphologies, this panel explores approaches and responses to urban regeneration with a clear focus on cultural heritage. In the studied former inland and coastal trading posts, fading material and cultural traces remain as reminders of not only economic prosperity but also demographic dynamics and cultural exchange. While government authorities worldwide have recognised the potential of cultural heritage for economic development and city branding, what to conserve and how is part of a highly selective heritagisation process. Building on in-depth case studies from the PRC and Singapore, this panel discusses the development, reception and challenges of Chinese material and urban culture in the context of regeneration initiatives. By looking at how Taoxichuan Art Avenue, an emerging industrial heritage site in the so-called ‘ceramic trade capital’ Jingdezhen, artist enclave-risen Tianzifang in Shanghai’s former French Concession and a Chinese shopping district and cultural space36 in Singapore have sought to reinvent themselves and forge their own identities since the 1980s, it critically evaluates reuse-oriented approaches beyond a musealisation of traditional arts and handicrafts. The panel further explores homogenisation tendencies that result from commercialisation and cultural policy objectives. Compared to more strongly valued traditional architecture, industrial and intangible heritage are particularly threatened to disappear in the rapid transformations accompanying urban restructuring. The panel aims to stimulate debate on broader civic engagement, including collective memories of social groups with lower voices and creative adaptations of traditional practices as a corrective to government-led approaches.

From Artist Enclave to Living Urban Heritage: Exploring the Unconventional Path of an Ordinary 1920s Mixed-use Urban Block in Shanghai

Fabienne Wallenwein

Depending on land sales to real estate developers for funding, Chinese municipal governments have engaged in large-scale transformation of historic districts (jiucheng gaizao 旧城改造) since the 1980s. At the turn of the millennium, this widespread approach has been toppled by pioneering groups of architects and artists who recognised and promoted the value of abandoned industrial spaces and vernacular architecture. One of the PRC’s earliest places to purposefully appropriate hitherto unnoticed urban material and immaterial culture for revitalisation is Block 56 in Shanghai, better-known as Tianzifang. Drawing on textual sources, on-site fieldwork and qualitative interviews, this paper explores how competing stakeholder groups harnessed and mobilised various historical and cultural resources to defend their interests throughout its valorisation process, from unique architectural characteristics to personal nostalgic attachment and associations with Shanghai’s defining period in the 1920s/30s. It investigates the careful spatial anchoring of intangible heritage in a given-up urban block over different developmental stages, welding together local inhabitants in its very beginnings and ultimately incorporating it into the national conservation system of Historically and Culturally Famous Cities (lishi wenhua mingcheng 历史文化名城). Although the case of Shanghai Tianzifang is not reproducible in many respects and its residential function has now strongly declined, it is argued that it made important contributions to foster an awareness for alternative approaches to urban redevelopment, both on the part of government authorities and citizens.

On Disjuncture between Shophouse Conservation and Cultural Sustainability: An Unofficial Chinatown in Singapore

Wong Chee Meng

The Xiao Po or ‘smaller town’ in Singapore, otherwise mapped out as the Bras Basah and Bugis areas in an Anglophone context, has been a second major Chinese enclave since the late 19th century, though architectural landmarks today also bear witness to historical presence of the British, Eurasian, Japanese and Jewish communities. In the postwar period of the 1950s and 60s, the area was especially notable among the Chinese-educated community for its prevalence of Chinese bookshops and publishers. But unlike the ‘bigger town’ area to the south of Singapore River that was gazetted for conservation as ‘Chinatown’ in 1989 and constantly exoticised for tourism, similar shophouse architecture here would be overlooked except for a conservation area overlapping with a Hainanese enclave. Amidst urban redevelopment in postcolonial Singapore transforming much of the remaining area into shopping malls and hotels, a high-rise building called Bras Basah Complex has become a refuge of Chinese bookshops, antique shops, art galleries and music shops since the 1980s. While their sustainability and future custodianship pose a challenge due to declining Chinese literacy and changing tastes in Chinese visual arts and the culture of collecting, they arguably represent a significant microcosm of trade and cultural exchange with China that is community-led. They struggle to evolve, independent of state-led initiatives in urban regeneration, involving adaptive reuse in a nearby ‘arts belt’ and authorised practices in musealisation of heritage. Such disjuncture between architectural conservation and disappearing cultural memories may suggest an urgent need for civic engagement in cultural policy-making.

Regeneration of Industrial Heritage in a Chinese Traditional Ceramic City: A Case Study of Taoxichuan Ceramic Art Avenue

Xiao Weiwei

The concept and practice of industrial heritage in China have begun to evolve since the 21st century. A number of industrial heritage conservation cases, initially carried out in the eastern and coastal regions, have stimulated academic interest in this type of heritage in China and abroad. Jingdezhen, a city located in inland China, has long been known as “porcelain capital”. With the decline of the ceramic industry and under the influence of global industrial heritage development, Jingdezhen government sought to reinvent the local economy and promote urbanisation through regenerating its industrial heritage, Taoxichuan Ceramic Art Avenue. Based on a case study approach, this paper will examine the creation, diverse functions and interaction of this site on local and global levels through semi-structured interviews, official documents, and other textual and photographic sources. Led by the government, Taoxichuan has been constantly seeking a balance between catering to the interests of tourists and preserving local heritage features, aiming to become the ideal model of China’s inland industrial heritage. This is reflected by the artistic adaptation of industrial buildings, the conservation of collective memories, exchanges and collaborations with global artists and institutions, and the diversification of the commercial sector. However, the lack of civic participation in heritage development has led to a marginalisation of certain local groups, while excess tourism development poses challenges to its authenticity and sustainability. This paper will suggest that long-term collaboration between industrial heritage sites and local communities could prevent the erosion of cultural identities and a potential homogenisation.

14:30-16:00 Session SD1-1B: Environment (1) (Křížkovského 10, 1.48)
Monika Arnez (Palacký University Olomouc, Czechia)
Beth Harper (The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)
Exploring Self and Cosmos on a Mountain: a case for comparative East-West Environmental Humanities

ABSTRACT. The ecological crises of our time invite a reconsideration of natural objects in a strictly post-human re-orientation of hermeneutic, ethical and political concerns. Environmental approaches to the humanities question anthropocentrism, the primacy of the human subject and bring a new attention to the ontology of non-human objects, including their power, vitality and agency. Here, I ask what this new attention might mean for the premodern, East-West comparative humanities. For ancient societies as much as for our own, there is no unitary definition of what “nature” and “culture” signify. The relations between human beings and their different environments may be valued according to where they fall on the scale between wilderness and what is predominantly “culture”, but these values shift across languages, cultures, time periods, and geographical terrains.

Here, I offer a case study of mountains in East-West cross-cultural perspective to show how mountains have at various historical moments been associated with the sacred, fear and loathing, spiritual fusion with the divine, an all-too-human mastery, or celestial transcendence. The complex, shifting and differentiated social and cultural histories of mountains in early China and premodern Europe show how a “green” focus can open up new avenues of inquiry for ancient worlds. Similarly, they can remind us of the longue durée of the oscillation between enchantment and disenchantment of human beings with their natural environments, thus countering any linear narrative towards disenchantment with the onset of industrial capitalism, mechanism, nuclear power etc.

Brian Lander (Brown University, United States)
Dike building and environmental change in the Central Yangzi valley from the Han to the Tang

ABSTRACT. The wetlands of what is now Hubei and Hunan Plain were once vastly larger than the remaining fragments of Dongting Lake, but people have mostly converted them to agriculture by building dikes. In order to reconstruct the long term environmental history of the region, this paper will explore the evidence for water control from the Han through Tang period, the earliest period for which we have written texts on water control in the region. Most scholarship on this topic focuses on recent centuries, for which there is abundant evidence, but this paper will gather scattered references to agricultural colonization from historical documents to show that people were actively managing water control infrastructure in the region from the early Han, if not earlier. Although our evidence is scanty, it suggests that people were modifying waterscapes across the region throughout this period. Until recently the best documented aspect of this was the construction and gradual strengthening of the large dikes along the Yangtze River, but excavated texts from the Han and Three Kingdoms periods provides new evidence of numerous smaller water control works from earlier times. And Tang geographical texts suggest a large number of such works, even though we often know little more than their names and locations.

14:30-16:00 Session SD1-1C: Chinese as a Foreign Language (1) (Křížkovského 10, 2.39)
Joanna Ut-Seong Sio (Palacký University Olomouc, Czechia)
Zuzanna Wnuk (Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu, Poland)
Development of the metalinguistic graphemic and grapho-morphological awareness of the Chinese writing system in Polish learners of Chinese as a foreign language

ABSTRACT. The Chinese writing system is considered to be the most difficult aspect of learning Chinese as a foreign language by learners coming from an alphabetic background. The difficulties come from the differences between the relations of language units and writing units in the logographic Chinese writing system and writing systems based on an alphabet. The process of reading also differs because of the different types of metalinguistic awareness necessary to process the text. The types of metalinguistic awareness necessary to read Chinese are graphemic (ability to decompose a sinogram), grapho-morphemic (awareness of semantic elements), grapho-phonological (awareness of phonetic elements). The aim of the current project is to determine how the Polish learners of Chinese perceive and conceptualize sinograms, and how it changes along with language proficiency. The key definitions of the study are based on the Polish school of glottodidactics understood as the study of learning/teaching a foreign language during an institutional learning process. The semi-structured interview along with a metalinguistic orthographic knowledge test has been conducted on sixty learners on three different proficiency levels. Collected data has been analysed with the use of phenomenographic framework in order to discover the qualitatively different ways in which learners perceive sinograms. Due to the use of the think-aloud protocol, it was possible to determine the shift in learners' conceptions about sinograms – beginner learners depend mostly on the visual form of the sinograms, while intermediate students start to depend on known semantic elements and gradually are becoming aware of their correct position.

Michaela Zahradnikova (Palacký University, Czechia)
Multiple Intelligences and Chinese Character Learning Strategies

ABSTRACT. Chinese characters are perceived as one of the most challenging parts of Chinese language for western learners (Kubler 2001, Orton 2008). To tackle the learning obstacles, learners apply series of learning strategies. The selection of strategies varies depending on several aspects, including learners’ level, background and personal preferences. Finding suitable set of strategies is crucial to keep the learning motivation, mainly for beginners. This study explores whether suitable learning strategies can be predicted based on individual levels of eight Multiple Intelligences defined by Gardner (1983). To answer the question, two questionnaire queries were administered among 127 first- and second-year Czech students of Chinese language: Strategy Inventory for Learning Chinese Character (Zahradnikova, 1997) and Multiple Intelligences Developmental Assessment Scales (Shearer, 1996). Data from both questionnaires were statistically analysed.

Andreas Guder (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany)
Dimensions of Chinese as a subject in secondary schools: Results from a comprehensive survey among experienced teachers

ABSTRACT. Over the past 20 years, more than 100 secondary schools in nearly all federal states of Germany have established Chinese as a foreign language subject. We conducted a comprehensive survey among teachers of Chinese at public secondary schools all over Germany in 2020/21, which comprised 100 closed and open questions (in German and Chinese) on teaching goals, curricula, textbooks, exams, methodology and digitalization, the writing system, the amount of instruction hours, personal backgrounds, language evaluation, instructional language, heritage speakers, and the role of exchange programs with China. The talk will present a selection of our findings. While there is a wide range of similarities with other foreign language subjects, the results also highlight some fundamental language-related, institutional and curricular issues regarding the professional integration of Chinese into the language profile of schools, which underlines some “eurocentrisms” of educational language policy. These include, for instance, the problem of the manual/digital usage of the writing system, the development of intercultural competences, or the underdeveloped and underestimated role of China-related knowledge in European contexts. Answers, comments and reflections of the respondents show: If taught professionally and with adequate resources (concerning instruction time, teaching materials etc.), “Chinese” as school subject might enable young people to think more globally, and enhance self-reflection and tolerance towards non-European cultures and societies. To achieve this goal, teachers need sufficient support by their school administrations as well as responsible educational stakeholders and authorities to overcome.

14:30-16:00 Session SD1-1D: Science and Technology (1) (Křížkovského 10, 2.40)
Jörg Henning Hüsemann (Leipzig University, Germany)
Joerg Henning Huesemann (Leipzig University, Germany)
David Bello (Washington & Lee University, United States)
Nanny Kim (Heidelberg University, Germany)
Chun Xu (MPIWG Berlin, Germany)
The Benefits of Water: State, Scholars, Farmers and the Exploitation of Waterscapes in Early Modern China

ABSTRACT. Organizer: Jörg H. Hüsemann Chair: Jörg H. Hüsemann

Since the Song dynasty, exploiting the “benefits of water” (shuili 水利) developed into a major concern of statecraft discourses and in this respect the network of waterways and the coastal areas were of central importance. These waterscapes were used in various ways. Among other, they enabled travel and transport, provided fish, clams, and drinking water, drove waterwheels, allowed the irrigation of fields and served recreational purposes or as aesthetic inspiration. Besides their many benefits, flooding was a common threat for the population and the social as well as economic well-being and an improper management of waters and a neglect of exploiting their benefits was also interpreted as a sign of the government’s inability to impose an ordered state. This panel proposes to examine how people in early modern China perceived and interpreted the benefits of waterscapes, thus rivers, wetlands, and tidal lands. The panelists will explore which benefits were discussed in various sources and explore how different historical actors tried to improve the exploitation of waters and the surrounding areas. We will do so from various angles including environmental and social history, political and statecraft narratives, and technical and agronomical discourses. Each paper focuses on a different topic and/or set of early modern sources ranging from technical and agronomical writings, through local gazetteers to historiographical sources.

Yangzi Wetlands as Sites of Bountiful Conflict

David A. Bello

This paper considers mutually conditioning relations between rivers and humans, exemplified by conflicting exploitations of lower Yangzi wetlands during the early nineteenth century. The overall benefits of water—the critical resource for imperial subsistence, revenue and profit—were subject to a commensurately wide range of exploitation often at odds over the management and allocation of the rich bounty of China’s vast river systems. Wetlands (dangdi; 蕩地), as sources of reeds for construction materials and of reclaimable arable sand bars (shazhou; 沙洲), were acute sites of such conflict. One such site was Haizhou prefecture in northeastern Jiangsu province in the 1810s and 1820s. As state enclaves, Haizhou wetlands were to provide economical embankment construction materials from their vast stands of reeds. State jurisdiction would also ensure easy removal of any sand bars throughout the river system that obstructed water control. From the rival perspective of local private interests, however, wetlands had immense potential as agricultural land—once cleared of reeds and managed, instead, to preserve emerging sand bars. Their vital function in hydraulic management and agricultural development rendered wetlands sites of “bountiful conflict” as allocating collective benefits of rivers exposed inherent contradictions of imperial water systems.

Balanced and Beneficial – The Agricultural Use of River Mud

Jörg H. Hüsemann

Among the various types of fertilizers that Chinese farmers have developed to improve their fields, mud fertilizer (nifen 泥糞) belongs to the earliest fertilizers mentioned in written sources and its use can be traced back to pre-Han 漢 times. Famers collected the greenish-blue silt from the bottom of waterways, which then was either used alone but more often was turned into a compound fertilizer by mixing it with excrements or with plants. According to the Ming 明 dynasty scholar-official Yuan Huang 袁黃 (1533–1606), if not used properly, many fertilizers do harm to the field. Only mud fertilizer he regards as balanced and beneficial and thus as the best (故為第一也). Using a variety of sources such as farming manuals and local gazetteers, this presentation seeks to examine the history of this type of fertilizer. What tools and techniques did farmers use to collect it and how did they process it? In which regions was it used and was its application restricted to certain types of fields, soils, and plants? I further seek to answer the question, why agronomists like Yuan Huang regarded it as balanced, how they explained its benefits for the agricultural soil and how they compared its effectiveness to other fertilizers. By doing so I seek to provide insights into the development of agronomical thinking in early modern China and present a further aspect of the “benefits of water”.

The upper Changjiang and Confucian Dreams of River Taming

Nanny Kim

In the 1740s, the Qianlong emperor supported and funded an engineering project to make the Jinshajiang navigable. Over eight years, works were undertaken on some 30 dangerous rapids along almost 400 km of the river. In 1749, governor-general Zhang Yunsui reported full navigability. Two years later, an inspecting team reported that the river remained highly dangerous. The official who submitted the most critical report was demoted. By this time, Zhang had reached the end of his tenure and died from natural causes. Shipping remained highly precarious. The project had largely failed, yet it was buried silently. The absence of repercussions in the Jinshajiang project stands in sharp contrast to the routine investigations into shipping accidents in state transports on the Upper Changjiang, with skippers and responsible officials inevitably suspect of negligence. Considering the powerful current constricted between great cliffs and unstable slopes, challenges to navigation and river engineering appear insurmountable by the technologies of the period. The proposed paper pursues the question why and how the Qing government believed in the feasibility of the Jinshanjiang project or in the probability of culpable negligence in shipping accidents. The investigation mainly focusses on the formation of the Jinshajiang project from its conception in the Ming period and on representation of transformations of the environment by human effort. Findings suggest executive decisions that appear almost familiar, made on the basis of voluntarism, simplified information, and a basis of distrust.

Terraforming the Mongol-Yuan Metropole: Yu Ji and His Campaign for Riziculture in the Littoral Metropole

Xu Chun

In 1327, the Yuan-dynasty scholar-official Yu Ji 虞集 (1272-1348) petitioned Khagan Yesün Temür for a massive engineering project, aiming to transform the littoral regions of the Metropole (fuli 腹裏), where millet and wheat dominated agricultural production, to lands suitable for wet rice cultivation. In Yu Ji's plan, building incessant, thousand-mile-long sea walls along the coast would create ideal farming environments for Southerners to produce wet rice, a cultivar with much higher yields than native, "inferior" crops in the North. This idea of reclaiming tidal lands was based on the successful model of landscape alteration in the southern province of Jiangzhe, where the Mongol court raised the majority of its grain-tax revenue. Yu Ji's plan was the first of many similar engineering efforts to "terraform" tidal lands in order to replicate the rizicultural agrosystem of the South. These efforts were always couched in the language of "reaping the benefits of water (shuili 水利)", which promotes and celebrates the alteration of waterscapes in the environment for human benefits. By analyzing the techniques in Yu Ji's plan, and situating his language of shuili in a scholarly tradition developed in the eleventh-century Yangzi delta, this paper supplies a case study to show how bodies of knowledge, ideological presuppositions and cultural preferences developed in the South cast a long shadow over late imperial Chinese efforts in the field of water control and management.

14:30-16:00 Session SD1-1E: Sociology and Anthropology (1) (Univerzitní 3, Konvikt Lectorium)
Christian Soffel (Universität Trier, Germany)
Josie-Marie Perkuhn (Universität Trier, Germany)
Hung-Yi Chien (Ruhr Universität Bochum, Germany)
Thomas Fliß (Universität Trier, Germany)
Amélie Keyser-Verreault (Concordia University & National Taiwan University, Canada)
Christian Soffel (Universität Trier, Germany)
Beatrice Zani (McGill University, Canada)
(HYBRID) Taiwan’s Innovative Roles in the Global Megatrends: An Interdisciplinary Approach

ABSTRACT. Situated at the crossroads of different cultures, powers, and nations, Taiwan has developed its unique strategies to adapt to new situations in historical contingencies, equipping it with pioneering responses to nowadays megatrends. As a distinct case among East Asian societies, Taiwan’s responses to modernity deserve more attention in the field of Chinese studies. The four panellists propose their studies about modern Taiwan in political sciences, history, linguistics, and anthropology to offer different, yet connected angles in European Chinese studies. They will examine Taiwan’s recent innovations in the modern era and contextualize these successes in a broader background of modernity. They will set a general tone by demonstrating Taiwan’s pioneering status in the recent four decades, and, in doing so, the panellists present early studies of a larger research agenda on four beneficial political framework, teaching foreign languages, developing new rhyming patterns, and modernizing postnatal care. These developments reflect Taiwanese people’s responses to global challenges in the modern era. This critical period transformed Taiwan from a traditional community in the Sinophone world into a globally distinct and innovative society in East Asia. By arguing Taiwan’s innovative roles, the panellists also intend to play creative roles in European Chinese studies by proposing solutions in their selected topics. The aim of these efforts is to point out novel approaches and frameworks in European Chinese studies. This panel takes up the research focus on Taiwan to generate empirical material from different angles and research approaches to amplify the research portfolio on Chinese Studies.

Innovation Hub Taiwan: Asian’s Pioneer in Facing Global Challenges

Josie-Marie Perkuhn

Over the last decades of Asia’s rise, Taiwan has emerged as a pioneering actor in the regional East-Asian context and in an innovation-driven globalizing world. From managing the COVID-19 pandemic crisis in 2020 to a wide-spread promotion of digital infrastructures and innovation hubs Taiwan is taking up a pioneering role in facing 21st Centuries megatrends. Although the island has tremendously been contested in history, Taiwan’s trajectory is an incessant part of the global political agenda in midst of the great powers striving for influence. Being pushed to find creative solutions, Taiwan has become a melting pot and created a trait of facing global challenges with key features, such as participation and new technologies. This paper assumes, that Taiwan’s strength for combining innovation and social inclusiveness appears unique as its pioneering status among Asia. In comparison to the PRC, how did Taiwan emerge as this pioneering actor in facing global challenges of a new interconnected era with innovation? Based on the trajectory of the political development over the last four decades, this paper presents a pre-study: I conduct an explorative analysis to scope through empirical material to trace Taiwan’s pioneering status in three cases. Namely, first, public health in the case of preventing the spread of Covid-19; second, digitalization and Cybersecurity, and third, the green energy transformation agenda. In doing so, my paper contributes to the research agenda on why we need more Taiwan expertise in Chinese Studies.

Pioneering in Modern Pedagogy: The Modernization of Teaching Foreign Language by the Normal School at Taihoku (Taipei)

Hung-yi Chien

Teaching and learning foreign languages are not a modern phenomenon in East Asian countries. Every country had developed its pedagogical traditions in the pre-modern era and successfully trained linguists to bridge language gaps. In the latter half of the nineteenth century, improved transportation technology propelled another wave of language contacts globally. Modern linguists invented new pedagogies to respond to the increasing demand for foreign languages worldwide. Their methods influenced teaching and learning foreign languages in East Asia. Coinciding with this period of pedagogical reformation, the Qing Empire ceded Taiwan to the Japanese empire in 1895, and the latter decided to “assimilate” Taiwan into the Japanese nation through the Japanese language. This decision created a massive demand for teaching and learning Japanese as a foreign language in colonial Taiwan. Language teachers introduced the fruits of the modern pedagogical reform to Taiwan. In the early phase of colonial rule, they decided to adopt François Gouin’s Direct Method as the primary way to teach Japanese in Taiwan. The Normal School at Taihoku (today’s National Taipei University of Education) played an important role in this pedagogical reform. The Normal School at Taihoku experimented with new pedagogy and trained teachers to practice it across Taiwan. This paper uses contemporary sources to reconstruct the history of adopting the Direct Method in early colonial Taiwan, highlights the role of the Normal School at Taihoku in this adoption, and traces the later dissemination of the Direct Method in modern East Asia.

Rhyme Features and Rhyme Behaviour Changes in Taiwanese Rhyme Literature – Exemplified by Selected Taiwanese Rhyme Literature Genres

Thomas Fliss

In Taiwanese literature rhyming is a very prominent feature which can not only be seen in written literature like poems, but also in folk literature such as proverbs. Because of the distinctive phonological features of Taiwanese, it is not only obviously different from the rhyming in Mandarin, but diachronically seen also shows some changes in rhyme behaviour in itself. In order to describe its rhyming, there exist rhyme systems of traditional Hokkien and Taiwanese rhyme books and also new ones developed by Chinese and Taiwanese scholars, with each having its own perspective on rhyme behaviour. Most of them are established on the basis of corresponding research about the rhyming in a single rhyme literature genre. This paper conducts a corpus analysis of the rhyme behaviour of selected representative rhyming literature such as Kua-a Books, Taiwanese Opera, pop songs and Modern Taiwanese poetry. By doing so, this study aims to give a better understanding of Taiwanese rhyme behaviour as well as the different rhyme systems and their categories which are used to describe it. Furthermore, it will discuss the changes in its rhyme behaviour which we can observe between different genres.

Taiwan As Pioneer in Professionalizing Traditional Postnatal Care Practices: Investing in Human Capital from the Beginning through Postnatal Care Centres

Amélie Keyser-Verreault

This paper explores the institutionalization and marketization of postpartum care through mothers utilization of yuezi zhongxin (月子中心) and its articulation with parents anxiety in nowadays global Taiwan, ardently desiring to invest in their children’s human capital from the very beginning. While the tradition of yuezi (月子) is a long-time established practice, Taiwan is a pioneer in the institutionalization of the yuezi practice through yuezi centres. Postnatal care centres first originated in Taiwan, where they combined childbirth with postpartum care and were legalized by public health authority. The practice of attending a postpartum care centre is very common in Taiwan, for example in 2018, there were about 60% of Taiwanese mothers who attended one after giving birth. Perinatal care is an important and pioneer shift in social practices, witnessing a deep change regarding childbirth. As a matter of fact, we went from the management of the perinatal period by the private sphere to institutions’ taking over. This step from private to public illustrates a desire to invest “from the beginning” in professional and expert care for the precious children in a context of dramatically low birth rates. Those institutions propose modern ways of doing the month and respond to Taiwanese mothers’ modern aspirations.

14:30-16:00 Session SD1-1F: Arts and Art History (1) (Univerzitní 3, Konvikt Chapel)
Laura Pozzi (University of Warsaw, Poland)
Laura Pozzi (University of Warsaw, Poland)
Jeremy Taylor (University of Nottingham, UK)
Piotr Strzalkowski (The University of Edinburgh, UK)
Mariia Guleva (Charles University, Czechia)
Damian Mandzunowski (University of Freiburg, Germany)
Nick Stember (University of Cambridge, UK)
(HYBRID) Caricatures in Flux: Cartoons and Comics in Changing China, 1930s–1980s

ABSTRACT. Chair: Laura Pozzi

Discussant: Jeremy Taylor

This panel explores multi-layered entanglements of cartoons (manhua 漫画) and comics (lianhuanhua 连环画) in the changing social-political context of twentieth century China. On the one hand, we pursue questions of production and reception: how these visual texts were embedded Caricatures in Flux: Cartoons and Comics in Changing China, 1930s–1980s in mass movements and political campaigns, the ways in which they interacted with readers, and how the expectations of the polity and common readers clashed. On the other hand, we pick up the related theme of change as bridging the periods under observation to ask: What was the impact of ongoing changes on visual texts? And reversely, how were these changes visualised and contextualised in the same media? This panel advances our understanding of the roles played by visual texts by looking across five decades and beyond the standard division lines of 1949 or 1976. From the anti-Soviet and anti-Japanese propaganda of the 1930s, to the shifting instructions given to and formulated by cartoonists in the 1950s; from depictions of group reading activities in comic books in the late 1970s and early 1980s, to the colourful depiction of fantastic scientific advances in many other comics from the same period, these four papers consider the various roles cartoons and comics played in China’s domestic and international affairs during the 1920s-1980s, and in turn consider the influence of these changes upon cartoons. During wars, in mass mobilisation campaigns, or in times of rapid modernisation—cartoons and comics were always there to deliver comic relief, target enemies, and propagate political goals.

Analogous Evils: Caricatures, Joint Anti-Soviet and Anti-Japanese Propaganda, and the Shanghai Press, 1927–1937

Piotr Strzalkowski

Multiple works of major cartoonists who published their visual anti-Bolshevik commentaries in the Shanghai press during the 1920s and 1930s have been overlooked by scholars, including those working on political propaganda and in the wider field of history of Chinese cartooning. This article aims to improve our understanding of the issue and expand the current literature by analysing nature and gradual emergence of the simultaneously anti-Communist and anti-Japanese caricatures created concurrently by Chinese and foreign artists in the city. The research shows that the influence of ongoing external circumstances, i.e., intensifying Soviet and Japanese aggression towards China created a context in which emerged the perception of analogy between them in popular culture. It demonstrates that the development of a joint anti-Soviet and anti-Japanese visual discourse began to take place already in 1927, but it fully emerged only after 1932. Until 1937 a significant number of relevant images appeared in the Shanghai press. The paper shows that the Red Scare propaganda in China kept evolving and the discourse attempted to underline the relevance of its opposition towards Communism and the USSR by incorporating, acknowledging, and embracing the widespread anti-Japanese sentiments, extensively analysed by the current literature. By demonstrating this link, the article broadens our understanding of the anti-Communist and anti-Japanese propaganda in Chinese popular culture and Shanghai press. Additionally, the paper shows that both Chinese and foreign authors employed related themes and methods to conceptualise the analogously malicious nature of the two empires and attempted to influence in a related manner emotions and behaviours of the reader.

Explaining Cartoons: Manhua Magazine Struggling to Create New Cartoons for New China in the Early 1950s

Mariia Guleva

Production of cartoons in the first years of the PRC was at once a continuation of the practices from previous decades and a shift towards stronger political and ideological conformity. Yet, censorship procedures and information exchange between the party/state and cultural workers, of whom cartoonists were a part, were complex: the deliberate use of uncertainty in governmental instructions forced cartoonists to find the limits of “acceptable” by active self-censorship and by grasping at straws in official guidelines. In this paper, I propose to look at Manhua magazine, published in 1950–1960 and intended for (often) public reading and, importantly, copying by “amateur” authors. Its earliest issues provide abundant material for studying how the magazine’s editors and contributors adapted to and promoted party/state policies while struggling to define the Caricatures in Flux: Cartoons and Comics in Changing China, 1930s–1980s boundaries of “new satire”, as their experiences and skills clashed against requests for “appropriate” depictions of enemies, friends, and party’s own ranks. During 1950–1952, Manhua magazine frequently published texts containing explanatory theories, instructions, and reports on cartooning, as well as criticisms and self-criticisms of cartoonists. These texts reflected the changes in cartoonists’ work: the shifts in acceptable metaphors and symbols, the transitions of themes and objects of satire, and other alterations which created complicated conditions for cartoonists, among other artists, in China. Most importantly, these texts reflected the debates about the kinds of satire suitable for the changed, socialist society and state; these debates remained unresolved and had an impact on cartooning during the Hundred Flowers and Anti-Rightist campaigns of 1956–1957.

Collective Reading Activities in Chinese Comics of the Mao Era

Damian Mandzunowski

This paper explores the visual language and strategic location of scenes of reading together appearing in lianhuanhua, Chinese comic books, of the Mao era. This period—beginning with the early 1950s, and ending with the late 1970s—was a time of ongoing radical social-political changes. Group reading activities (dushu huodong 读书活动) were one among many propaganda exercises that communicated and reacted to these changes. The organised consumption of relevant texts found its way into the pages of Chinese comic books too. This visual trope saw the ongoing narrative put on hold, only to be replaced by a collective reading of texts. This, in turn, oftentimes brought immediate solutions to ongoing issues presented within the narrative. Which texts were depicted in the comics? How were these texts depicted? And who were the collective readers, both literally within the same visual stories, and also figuratively, in the outside world? While ‘real-life’ reading activities were organised for adult cadres, workers, peasants, and soldiers, the comics were first and foremost intended to be read by (their) children. For what purposes, then, would collective reading appear in Chinese comics of the Mao era?

Technologies of the Heart: Cryogenics and Revivification in Post-Cultural Revolution (1978–1981)

Nick Stember

Lianhuanhua Like crocuses blooming in the still-melting snow, the immediate aftermath of the Cultural Revolution saw the sudden re-emergence and proliferation of a wealth of light-hearted forms of popular culture, from crosstalk to comics. Through this carefully managed cultural thaw, the Party — now under new leadership—sought to distance themselves from the dogmatic campaigns of the preceding decades without abandoning their hard-won legitimacy as the sole heirs to the May Fourth spirit of science and democracy. To this end, fictionalised retellings of the traumas and injustices suffered by intellectuals promoted under the banner of “scar literature” found a ready audience among the swelling ranks of urban readers, many only recently returned from the countryside. With renewed calls for the “Four Modernisations”, meanwhile, coupled with a flood of news and entertainment media from abroad, science popularisers (kexue puji zhe 科学普及者) likewise found themselves thrust into the limelight. At the intersection of these two trends, the emerging science of cryogenics captured the imaginations of writers, artists, and readers across China. In this paper I look at a series of lianhuanhua (comic books) published between 1978 and 1981 in which the protagonists are by turns frozen and brought back to life; disappeared and returned to the realm of the living. As I argue, beyond their political messages, these texts—featuring new advances so fantastic that they could only be described as science fiction—represent the changing times, as lianhuanhua creators sought win the hearts and minds of an audience that had become inured to the melodrama and heroics of revolutionary struggle.

14:30-16:00 Session SD1-1G: History (Premodern) (1A-double panel) (Křížkovského 10, 3.05)
Dušan Vávra (Masaryk University, Czechia)
Ute Wallenböck (Masaryk University Brno, Czechia)
Veronika Zikmundová (Charles University Prague, Czechia)
Martin Hanker (Charles University Prague, Czechia)
Iveta Nakládalová (Palacky University Olomouc, Czechia)
Antonio De Caro (Masaryk University, Czechia)
Petr Jandáček (Charles University, Czechia)
Jana Valtrová (Masarykova univerzita, Czechia)
Dušan Vávra (Masaryk University, Czechia)
Food and cuisine cultures in China and Tibet through the eyes of Christian Mission(s) during the Ming and Qing dynasty

ABSTRACT. Organiser: Ute Wallenböck Chair: Dušan Vávra

Food is literally the center of everyday life. And by looking at “cuisine”, including the traditions connected to food preparation, eating, exchange, etc., traces of historical cross-cultural contacts are made visible. Quite profound research has already been done on China’s imperial food as well as on China’s food history, however, this panel aims at the description of food and cuisine cultures through the eyes of Christian missionaries who have been to China and Tibet between the 15th and 19th century, and hence, reported on food and cuisine cultures to the “European” world. As food and beverages with their symbolism also constitute an important part of religious practice, light shall not only be shed on the production, distribution, and consumption of food but also on the description of (empowered) food ingredients in rituals and religious ceremonies through the eyes of the missionaries. Moreover, the connection between food and faith, including the aspects of fastening and food restrictions, shall be touched upon. This panel discusses how missionaries have approached the topic food by looking at their social and aesthetic concerns including daily meals, special occasions, setting and presentation, and the experience of dining out. additionally, regarding culinary culture, we also look at the products, techniques, and tools, and the cultural context for preparing and consuming meals as described by the missionaries. In general, this panel will focus on selected topics regarding food and cuisine cultures in China and Tibet during the Ming and Qing Dynasty.

Monguor food in the reports of E.-R. Huc and J. Gabet and L. Schram

Veronika Zikmundová

Based on two missionary reports, in this paper I map the developments in food customs of the Monguor as representatives of the multiethnic borderland between contemporary Qinghai and Gansu provinces. The Monguor are descends from Mongols, Tibetans, Chinese, and possibly also other groups. One of the first to mention the Monguors were the French Lazarist missionaries Evariste-Régis Huc and Joseph Gabet (Travels in Tartary, Thibet and China 1844-184). However, the first comprehensive ethnographic description of the Monguors comes from Louis Schram (CICM) - The Monguors of the Kansu-Tibetan frontier. Although Schram lived in the area between 1911 and 1922, he makes extensive use of oral history which reflects earlier situation. While mentioning specifically Monguor food only briefly, Huc and Gabet present invaluable information about the general food practices of the area in the mid-19th century, whereas Schram gives detailed information about the Monguor’s every day and festive food customs. His work’s value lies also in its focus on the social structure underlying food practices, and on the claimed origin of meals and eating customs which reflect the community’s views on their ethnic history. By combining the data of the travelogues with modern Monguor ethnography we are able to trace some tendencies and developments, such as gradual abandoning of some food customs interpreted as legacy of their nomadic Mongol ancestors.

Cumys consumption in the perspective of 13th-century Franciscan friars among the Mongols

Jana Valtrová

Franciscan friars travelling to the Mongols in the 13th century, namely John of Carpini and William Rubruck, refer to various troubles connected to the food supply, its quality and food cultures among the Mongols. Among the issues that complicated the physical health and social position of the friars was the question of the consumption of cumys. This beverage consisting of fermented mare´s milk, was one of the essential items for nutrition among the nomadic people in the steppe. At the same time, it played a central role in the social life of the Mongols and their interaction with foreigners. However, it also carried specific cultural and religious meanings. As a food used in Mongolian tradition for ritual libations, cumys was tabooed by Russian Christians. The paper focuses on the question of the friarsʼ attitudes towards cumys and its possible consequences for the success of their missionary endeavours.

Perception of the Tibetan diet and foodways by Jesuit missionaries

Ute Wallenböck

By looking at Jesuit missionaries’ reports of the 17th and early 18th century, light shall be shed on the study of the Tibetan society of the past by taking into consideration mundane areas of human life, namely food and beverages. Food is literally the center of everyday life, not speaking about festive occasions and religious practices Based upon this background, I want to investigate the role played by food and beverages in the larger strategy of “Christianization”, the policy of assimilation designed by the Pope(s) with the goal of convincing Tibetans to convert to Catholicism and adopt the subsequent cultural norms and the Catholic lifestyle – (Lenten) fastening, abstinence etc. Since food and food production are the most immediate of all the material underpinnings of life, I further want to find out the links between the Jesuit order and food during the Jesuits’ mission to Tibet. Hence, my paper examines the relationship between food and (religious) power in Tibet during the 17th and 18th century according to the reports by Jesuit missionaries, such as the Portugese priest António de Andrade (1580-1634), the Austrian missionary Johannes Grueber (1623-1680), the Belgian priest Albert D’Orville (1621-1662), and the Italian missionary Ippolito Desideri (1684-1733).

Breaking B(re)ad in translation

Martin Hanker and Petr Jandáček

Most people build their lives around some complex carbohydrate which often comes in the form of bread. Bread also became an important religious concept in Christianity, where it plays an integral part during the Holy Communion. And since the Moravian Church, the prominent translators of the Scripture in Tibet, perceive the “breaking of bread” as a “social responsibility”, they had to challenge the local food cultures to provide an accurate translation. The first translation of the New Testament into Tibetan was prepared in Ladakh by a Moravian missionary Heinrich August Jäschke (1817–1883) and published in 1885. He is well known for his perfectionism and ability to find suitable equivalents even for words notoriously hard to translate like the Holy Spirit or angel. He even collected depictions of Tibetan punishments to translate the concept of crucifixion properly. In our paper, we will focus on the early attempts in translating the “unleavened bread,” a concept abounding with symbolical meaning. We will look at the Gospels crucial for the Holy Communion (Mt 26:26, Mk 14:22, Lk 22:19) to examine how the translators challenged the problems of cross-cultural transmission. What were the sources of Jäschke's translation? What equivalents of bread were available in the Tibetan cultural sphere at that time? What Tibetan word was employed for bread by him and why? Did it change in the later editions? Is this problem even reflected in his Tibetan-English dictionary? And how was Jäschke dealing with the local food culture in general?

Translating Food Culture: Early Modern Franciscan and Jesuit reports on Chinese food

Iveta Nakladalova

Since their very first Early Modern entry into the Middle Kingdom (Jesuits 1580s, Franciscans 1630s), the Christian missionaries produced an extensive corpus of documents on this extremely exotic and unknown territory: relationes (reports to their superiors on the state of the mission), chronicles, a huge body of letters, and a vast variety of accounts on Chinese history, philosophy, nature, its culture, people and religions. In all these texts, the missionaries describe their first-hand experience with the Chinese kingdom perceived as “almost a different world” (in words of Matteo Ricci, the founder of Jesuit mission in China). This voluminous corpus of missionary documents not only referred about the things Chinese, it also interpreted this unknown country for their European readers in a process the contemporary scholarship has designated as transcultural translation, explaining the foreign culture using the familiar, European terms. My paper will focus on the very beginning of this process: it will analyse how the first missionaries apprehended the Chinese food and food culture, and how they described them and interpreted them in their reports. It will focus on the first Franciscan and Jesuit missionaries (since the Society of Jesus is the most important religious order operating in China, and the Franciscans are the most relevant mendicant order in Chinese mission), at the end of the 16th and at the beginning of the 17th centuries. I will also compare the perception of the Chinese food culture to similar reports on the Japanese mission.

Turning food into faith: Food practices, curious tales and conversion to Christianity during the late Ming dynasty and the early Qing dynasty

Antonio De Caro

Since the end of the 16th century, European Jesuit missionaries – and other Roman Catholic religious orders - reached China and described Chinese practices in their own terms. Culinary practices were seen not only as an occasion to share a convivial moment with prestigious members of the Chinese elites but also as an opportunity to proselytize Christianity among them. This led also to the popularization of European food products in China. Wine - a crucial symbolic and ritualistic component for the Roman Catholic mass – became an important component of the trade of Jesuit missionaries with European merchants; the loss of large quantities of wine coming from Europe was oftentimes seen as a disastrous event that jeopardized the evangelical efforts of the missionaries. Foreign food practices related to distant lands were also described by the Jesuit missionaries in their Chinese works generating a vivid curiosity among Chinese literati. Similarly, Christian food practices became more familiar to the Chinese converts and they were popularized by the Jesuit missionaries – sometimes in contrast to the local ones. This paper will address the relevance that food practices had on the Jesuit efforts to establish a cross-cultural interaction between European and Chinese culture from the late 16th century until the 18th century. It will mainly engage with the description of Chinese food practices provided by Jesuit missionaries, the curious tales narrated by them and the popularization of European food in relation to the proselytization of Roman Catholicism.

14:30-16:00 Session SD1-1H: Literature (Premodern) (1) (Univerzitní 3, Konvikt Auditorium Maximum)
Renata Čižmárová (Palacký University, Czechia)
Giovanna Tsz Wing Wu (The Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)
(ONLINE) “Inner Sage and Outer King”: The Portraits of Kings and Emperors in Tang Xianzu’s Eight-Legged Essay

ABSTRACT. To speak on behalf of the Confucian sages was the aim of writing the eight-legged essay. Previous studies have generally posited that this writing aim was influenced by the portrayal skills of the operas of the Yuan and Ming dynasties. Others have pointed out that the flourishing of the Ming opera was indeed influenced by eight-legged essays. Because the Ming playwrights received training in composing eight-legged essays from an early age, they paid long-term attention to the technique of portraying Confucian sages, which ended up benefitting portrayals of operatic characters in their later years. These opinions, nevertheless, are only the intuitive speculation of researchers. The mutual influences of the two genres have never been specifically examined and analysed. Since the Jiajing and Longqing periods of the Ming Dynasty, the mutual influences between characters’ portrayals in the two genres became more and more significant. Tang Xianzu grew up during this period. He was a famous playwright of the Ming dynasty and a master of eight-legged essays in his time. His portraying techniques have long been praised by his contemporaries. For this reason, this article takes several kings and emperors portrayed in Tang’s eight-legged essay as examples, analyses how polyphony inspired him to conceive his eight-legged essay’s portrayals of these rulers, and elaborates on the mutual influences between the portrayal techniques used in his eight-legged essays and those used in his operas.

Chloé Musso (IFRAE (INALCO), France)
The Lotus Dream: the fate of a female warrior in love

ABSTRACT. The 17th century Chinese xiaoshuo The Lotus Dream (Guiliangmeng 歸蓮夢) tells the story of Bai Lian’an, the stereotypical female warrior: orphaned, she is raised in the mountains by an eccentric Buddhist monk and is introduced to certain Daoist magic powers by a priest as a teenager. Strengthened by these experiences, she ends up creating a dissident military sect. Surprisingly, this novel is often categorized as a beauty-scholar romance (caizi-jiaren xiaoshuo 才子佳人小说): Bai Lian’an suffers from a one-way love to the scholar Wang Changnian, who has been promised since childhood to the beauty Cui Xiangxue. The situation gives rise to a love triangle, as she never confesses her feelings, dresses as a man and “marries” Xiangxue to save her from a disharmonious union and help the man she loves. At the end of the novel, the woman protagonist faces an ultimatum: prevent Changnian from being sentenced to death and surrender to the imperial order or continue her duties as a sect leader. Wishing to escape the human world and his sufferings, she ultimately converts to Buddhism and attains enlightenment. This paper will study how this novel and its protagonists subvert the nüxia and caizi-jiaren typical plots, and how the concepts of zhiji 知己 and yuanjia 冤家 are represented, but also, through the fate of Guiliameng’s different characters, the religious discourses of Confucianism, Daoism and Buddhism.

Yizhuo Li (University of Cambridge, UK)
Hu Yong’er and Tang Sai’er: Literati Writings about Women Bandits in Late Imperial China

ABSTRACT. Banditry that aimed against the imperial reign through heretic religions and military uprisings had been a major phenomenon in premodern China. In late imperial China, women bandits became an independent category in historiographies and a popular sub-genre in fictional literature. Narrative accounts about women bandits written by literati overlapped and merged with one another across boundaries of genres. This paper examines two women bandits Hu Yong’er and Tang Sai’er as case studies. Hu Yong’er originated from the Ming novel Pingyao zhuan (Quash the Demon's Revolt) whereas Tang Sai’er appeared in official historiographies of Ming dynasty. My methodology is to analyse from gender perspectives Ming and Qing adaptations about these two figures, including narratives written by Feng Menglong (1574-1646) and Ling Mengchu (1580-1644), Nüxian waishi (The Unofficial History of the Female Divinity), a Qing novel about Tang Sai’er and Ruyi baoce (The Precious Pamphlet of Satisfaction), a Qing palace drama about Hu Yong’er for close reading. Both Hu Yong’er and Tang Sai’er received sympathetic discussions and even purifications of their nature in these literati writings from demonic women to agreeable heroines, which challenged the Confucius gender ideology and contributed to a new gender trend in favour of women’s sexual desires and political powers in late imperial China.

16:30-18:00 Session SD1-2A: Archaeology and Material Culture (1) (Křížkovského 10, 1.48)
Monika Arnez (Palacký University Olomouc, Czechia)
Jiaqi Liu (university of warwick, UK)
The Ritualized Liquor Cups: Design for a New Order from the Fragmented Post-Tang World

ABSTRACT. Nie Chongyi, a court ritualist, redesigned ritual paraphernalia used at state sacrifices in the late 950s, which led to the birth of an important Song ritual manual – Sanli tu. The tenth century was a time when continuous violence not only empowered regional forces, but also destroyed many tangible heritages, including ritual objects and spaces of the former Tang Empire. Nie responded to the vacuum of a supreme authority over state rituals by turning towards ancient ritual texts and deviating from the prevalent Tang standards. Through an examination of Nie’s design of eight liquor cups, I would argue that Nie had reclassified various liquor cups mentioned in ancient texts into three categories – sacred ones, less sacred ones, and profane ones, and applied different standards to the tiered cups, reinforcing the dichotomy between the sacred ritual paraphernalia and daily objects, as well as generating a new ritual design apparently different from the tenth-century practices. For instance, one key principle applied by Nie was to preserve Tang practices in daily objects and to reintroduce ancient standards to sacred ritual paraphernalia. After Sanli tu was acknowledged by Song emperors and after Song reclaimed most territory previously belonged to Tang, Sanli tu spread out and visualized a new look of state ritual among scholar-officials across Song. The revival of ancient ritual manuals in Sanli tu predated and provoked Song antiquarian studies of the eleventh century, which challenged Nie’s design, but secured his dichotomy between sacred and profane by continuously investigating on ancient designs.

Frederik Schmitz (University of Bonn, Germany)
Maritime tianxia and underwater archaeology under the banner of using the past to serve the present.

ABSTRACT. Maritime Regions become crucial for China’s re-emergence as global power and are embedded in the broader community-of-common-destiny-for-mankind-discourse. In 2019, Xi Jinping presented the maritime community of common destiny as integral part of his large-scale vision. Alongside a huge number of geopolitical facts e.g., created by a modernized navy and oversea tenures, maritime identity should not be underestimated. The (re-)creation of a maritime past, present and future underpins Chinese ambitions from a narrative perspective. Two aspects will be focused: (1) A discourse emerge about the question of a maritime tradition. Supported by historical sources and excellent traditional culture, ancient concepts like tianixa datong and he er butong are praised as superior to a so called hegemonic western tradition. The CCP is presenting itself as successor of a valuable past which can lead the world into a glorious future. (2) High-level funding is provided to promote underwater archaeology. Politically instrumentalized archaeology produces pieces of evidence presented in museums to prove historical legitimacy, its own vision of history and territorial claims. These aspects try to challenge the existing world order through historical statecraft. Successful historical statecraft produces an amalgam of memories based on selective readings of the past and fabrication of myths to extend the past into the present and future. Historical statecraft will help us better understand how the process of historical meaning-making is implemented and how it is aimed to underpin China’s narrative as a global maritime actor? This provides a supplementing aspect to predominantly geopolitical views on China’s future.

Elizabeth Emrich-Rouge (Independent researcher, UK)
Medium and Message: Interactions between Modern Printmaking and Photography in Republican-era China

ABSTRACT. The historiography of modern printmaking in Republican-era China has been strongly codified, concentrating narrowly on the role of Lu Xun (1881-1936) and his support of young print artists through training, materials to emulate, critique, and opportunities to exhibit their work. Seen as political precursors to the woodblock prints created at Yan’an in the 1940s under Mao Zedong's (1893-1976) direction, these earlier woodcuts are generally identified with Marxist theory and leftist, socially-engaged imagery. However, the largely urban visual culture surrounding these printmakers during the 1930s is rarely examined as a further source from which they drew. This paper seeks to address this lacuna in the literature by focusing on the interaction of woodblock printmaking and photography in the work of two artists: Chen Yanqiao (1911-1970) and Jiang Feng (1910-1983). While Chen’s work In the Factory (1935) reflects his reinterpretation of photocollage through printmaking, Jiang’s Soldiers in the Northeast (1936) borrows and adapts journalistic photography, transforming both the image and its meaning through his practice. In both cases, the artists have appropriated and adapted the photographic medium – a material with which they were surrounded in Shanghai’s prolific print culture – in order to more effectively communicate their progressive political message. Furthermore, I argue that these two works were part of an efflorescence of what I call a “socialist aesthetic,” appearing transmedially in literature, printmaking, cartoons (manhua) and film at this time in Shanghai and elsewhere.

16:30-18:00 Session SD1-2B: Economics (1) (Křížkovského 10, 1.49)
Zachary Lavengood (Charles University, Czechia)
Zachary Lavengood (Charles University, Czechia)
Zuzana Krulichová (Charles University, Czechia)
The West and China at 2049: Examining Sino-West Relations through Scenario Building Methodologies

ABSTRACT. Sino-West relations are a complexity of economic, security, and political factors which have become increasingly strained as China asserts its great power status on the global stage and challenges the Western led status-quo which has existed since the end of the Cold War. Ambitious Chinese projects such as the Belt & Road initiative, sabre rattling over territorial claims in the South China Sea, and calculated maneuvering for influence within Europe have been identified as indicators of Sino-West relations in the lead up to the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) 100th anniversary in 2049. Using three scenario building methodologies this panel examines these indicators by crafting scenarios which project current events and trends into the near future, at or near the mentioned CCP anniversary, to highlight the key drivers of their inter-relations and the prospects of both conflict and cooperation.

This panel is a presentation of findings from an ongoing Charles University START grant project titled Western Preparedness for the 21st Century Realities of a Great Power China: A Scenario Based Evaluation. Each participant focuses on their individual area of expertise within the project: Zachary Lavengood- Chinese territorial claims and military capabilities in the South China Sea (also acting as moderator); Zuzana Krulichová – Belt and Road Initiative’s impact and development within the EU

16:30-18:00 Session SD1-2C: Law and Human Rights (1) (Křížkovského 10, 2.39)
Martin Lavicka (Department of Asian Studies, Palacky University Olomouc, Czechia)
Leigha Crout (King's College London, UK)
'Constitutional Moments' in the People's Republic of China

ABSTRACT. Within the People’s Republic of China, constitutional law and the development of ‘rule of law’ jurisprudence have often been defined by singular, historic legal moments – moments which have significantly altered the Party-state’s fundamental laws and authority. Here defined as ‘constitutional moments’, these dynamic events possess the requisite social force or political momentum required to effect real and clearly ascertainable changes to the PRC’s constitutional governance. Utilising a comparative constitutional law frame, this draft will endeavour to define the composition and force of these moments and articulate their relevance to the present development of constitutional law within the PRC.

Martin Lavicka (Department of Asian Studies, Palacky University Olomouc, Czechia)
Julie Yu-Wen Chen (University of Helsinki, Finland)
Recent Development of the Rule of Law with Chinese Characteristics: Evidence from New Measures in Governing Religions in China

ABSTRACT. This presentation joins the current scholarly discussion on China’s attempt to replace some of the international legal norms with their own version, or the so-called laws “with Chinese characteristics.” This results in part from China's increasing self-confidence in world politics, and is in part due to the impotence of international law enforcement mechanisms to make states comply with universal human rights. We examine five newly adopted measures governing religions in China to show this trend. Our review does not just highlight how these new religion laws could significantly impact religious communities in China. More importantly, we show how the Chinese state’s redefinition of religious rights differs from existing international legal standards, weakens international human rights protection mechanisms and further threatens their universality.

16:30-18:00 Session SD1-2D: Science and Technology (2) (Křížkovského 10, 2.40)
Karine Chemla (CNRS, France)
Florence Bretelle-Establet (CNRS, France)
Florence Bretelle-Establet (CNRS, France)
Karine Chemla (CNRS, France)
Shuyuan Pan (Institute for the History of Natural Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China, China)
Xiaohan Zhou (Institute for the History of Natural Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China, China)
(HYBRID) Textual Issues in the History of Science, Textual Issues through Scientific Sources

ABSTRACT. Textual Issues in the History of Science, Textual Issues through Scientific Sources

Panel organizers: Florence Bretelle-Establet 羅蘭 (SPHERE, CNRS and Université de Paris, France) Karine Chemla 林力娜 (SPHERE, CNRS and Université de Paris, France)

This panel is devoted to scholarly texts qua texts. It intends to address two key questions. First, how can historians of science benefit in their research from clues drawn from a close examination of the material features of their textual sources? Second, how can the fact that their sources deal with scientific topics help historians of science shed light on textual issues of broader relevance? The four talks of the panel that address these issues all deal with textual sources to the production of which multiple hands took part. Each of the talks focuses on determining who these multiple hands were, why they found their way into the sources, how their voices were combined in a single document, and what this can tell us more broadly on the textual processes that led to the production of the sources examined. Indeed, the documents that testify to our actors’ knowledge were rarely written from scratch. They were almost always based on existing knowledge which, under the brush of a new individual or collective, was recycled, decomposed, recomposed, invalidated, requalified. When no source (such as successive drafts) exists to shed light on the different operations carried out in the process of producing the document, we argue that the historian can nevertheless find clues in the “final” document that can shed light on these operations and on the nature of the source.

Karine Chemla 林力娜 (SPHERE, CNRS and Université de Paris, France)

Reading dots in Chinese manuscripts thanks to mathematics. (Second part)

Abstract: Writings on Mathematical Procedures (筭數書) is a Han manuscript written on bamboo slips, which was discovered in a Zhangjianshan tomb (number 247) during the winter 1983-1984. Like many other Qin and Han manuscripts, some of its slips feature dots, sometimes in the body of the text, and sometimes in the margins. This talk will put forward the thesis that the fact that the manuscript deals with mathematics enables us to establish the meaning of the dots. To draw this conclusion, I rely on previous research on the manuscript carried out with Daniel Morgan (CRCAO, CNRS). The examination of some of the material features of Writings on Mathematical Procedures led us to the hypothesis that the manuscript had been produced in the context of a mathematical apprenticeship and had been written by two hands—that of a person learning and that of someone guiding his learning process (墨子涵 (Daniel Morgan), and 林力娜 (Karine Chemla). “也有輪著寫的:張家山漢簡《筭數書》寫手與篇序初探.” In this context, we discovered a correlation between a mistake that I had identified in the text and dots that were placed on the slips where this mistake occurred. Since then, I have carried out a complete study of the dots on the manuscripts, whose conclusion I will present in the talk.

Zhou Xiaohan 周霄漢 (Institute for the History of Natural Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China) How were the various layers of text of a mathematical Canon embodied in the books produced in the 15th and 16th centuries China?

Abstract: In 15th and 16th-century China, against a background of a society with gradually flourishing book publication, there appeared several mathematical writings that were more or less stimulated by the ambition of their authors or compilers to provide a complete and comprehensive writing about mathematics for a wider readership. Two of them—Great Compendium of The Nine Chapters on Mathematical Methods with Analogies (九章算法比類大全 1450) and Unified Lineage of Mathematical Methods (算法統宗 1592)—were handed down through printed editions. The unpublished manuscript of a third one—Precious Mirror of Mathematical Studies (算學寶鑒 1524)—is still extant. Such an ambition—which is reflected from the authors’ prefatory words or the titles of their works—might relate to the fact that these works all adopt in a large measure a similar structure. They are modelled on the structure of The Nine Chapters on Mathematical Procedures, a mathematical Canon dating back to the first century BCE or first century CE. Through several case studies which focus on certain mathematical methods, I examine how the text of the mathematical Canon as well as parts of the explanatory commentaries composed during different periods are embodied in these 15th- and 16th-century works. I also examine how the authors modify the formulation of problems, the sequence of problems and the mathematical methods with respect to those in the Canon and I analyze the probable reasons for these changes.

PAN Shuyuan 潘澍原 (Institute for the History of Natural Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China) “The System and the Order”: Textuality and Materiality in the Textual Formulation of the Chinese Translation of the Elements in the Early 17th Century Abstract. The first Chinese translation of the Elements 幾何原本 (1607), which was carried out by Matteo Ricci and Xu Guangqi 徐光啓 mainly on the basis of the first six books of Christoph Clavius’s Euclidis Elementorum liber XV (1574), was always regarded as the first important work among those introducing knowledge from Europe. Actually, the appraisal was partly attributable to the textual features of this Chinese Euclid in the late Ming dynasty. Ricci and Xu translated not solely the definitions, postulates, axioms and propositions of the Greek text but a considerable quantity of explanations and criticisms of Clavius as well as those he collected from previous commentators. Further material, including quotations from ancient Chinese works, and translators’ reflections, were also inserted. In order to arrange these components and sub-components, the translation embodied strong uniformity with respect to the form, which Ricci pointed as “the system and the order” (guimo cidi 規摹次第). As a result, by comparison with Clavius’ Euclid, the translation was further systematized and standardized, being thereby involved in a process of classic-formation. In this talk, we analyze how Ricci and Xu separated one chapter into parts, and how they classified definitions (postulates, axioms) and propositions into divisions to which they attached various designations and for which they adopted distinctive indentations. These investigations bring better understanding about textuality and materiality of ancient Chinese texts in early modern times from the outlook of history of science.

Florence Bretelle-Establet (SPHERE, CNRS and Université de Paris, France)

What the margins tell us on the material and social life of the medical book in late imperial China

Abstract. During the Ming and Qing dynasties, the number of medical writings increased dramatically in every corner of China. On the other hand, the development of commercial publishing favored the printing of more and more of these writings. And yet not all medical texts ended up in print. In this talk, I will focus on medical texts produced in the far south of China at the end of the empire that have been printed and have survived the passage of time. By paying a particular attention to their different parts, i.e. a main text and its peritextual elements distributed in various textual spaces, I will highlight the type of actors and interventions that enable the transformation of a manuscript into a printed book. The particular study of marginal annotations, printed and handwritten, in these printed books will allow us to achieve a better understanding of the status of the medical book. I will argue that a book of this kind was conceived not as a closed and finished work but as the starting point of a conversation with its peers and readers. We will see that the use of the different spaces into a page to arrange the added allographic elements nevertheless enables us to suggest a chronological reading of the shaping of a book and thus makes it possible to reconstruct, in part, the history of its life.

16:30-18:00 Session SD1-2E: Sociology and Anthropology (2) (Univerzitní 3, Konvikt Lectorium)
Rune Steenberg (Palacky University Olomouc, Czechia)
Rune Steenberg (Palacky University Olomouc, Czechia)
Robbie Barnett (SOAS, UK)
Anonymous Researcher (Independent Researcher, Czechia)
Uradyn Bulag (University of Cambridge, UK)
The People In-between: Complexities of State-Society Relations among Uyghurs, Tibetans, Inner Mongolians and Others Within Autonomous Regions

ABSTRACT. State-society relations in Xinjiang, Tibet and increasingly Inner Mongolia have come increasingly, for reasons that are often all too evident, to be depicted in terms of a binary opposition between governmental repression on the one hand and local, ethnic resistance on the other. This narrative is also commonly found in the western media, among diasporas, and in some areas of scholarship. Study of the actual situation on the ground, however, suggests multiple degrees of nuance and complexity in local perceptions among minority residents of the state and its interventions. This panel focusses on these intermediate positionalities, looking particularly at the persistence of the “ordinary” and the “prosaic” within ethnic communities even under conditions of extreme duress, and at the notion of pragmatic co-existence. This can take the form of co-operation or support among some sectors of minority communities for the Chinese government and its policies, but is typically marked by more complex and ambiguous, but usually unmarked, modes of sociality. These can be considered under a number of analytic factors ranging from coercion to genuine conviction at the extremes, and with notions like opportunism or strategic self-protection in the mid-range. This panel discusses the complex and nuanced positionalities represented, by choice or otherwise, by intermediate participants in China’s ethnic politics, including traders, politicians, translators, administrators, journalists, ethnic minority bloggers, and others working with or alongside the Chinese authorities in the autonomous regions of the XUAR, the TAR and Inner Mongolia.

From Academic to Influencer. Uyghurs on government payroll in XUAR, PRC (Rune Steenberg)

What do a university professor and a social media influencer have in common? If both are Uyghur and living in the XUAR, they may share more of a structural position than you’d expect. Both are supported and paid by the Chinese government, both belong to a minority group that is and has been for a long time discriminated against and suppressed, both are at the same time suppressed and privileged by the governments’ minority policies and both in each their differently careful way speak for their group and are being held up as representatives of it by the government. Each represent – as an ideal type – a certain period in time within the 2010s in Xinjiang of the relation between the government and local Uyghurs. This is a relation of elite production and -facilitation, of legitimacy, of patronage and of propaganda. The professor represents 2010-2016 while the influencer represents 2017-2022. This shift provides significant insights into more general social changes that have been pushed ahead by the massive state violence and mass incarcerations of minority populations that escalated in 2017. This paper offers several examples of both professors and influencers, draws preliminary conclusions from these and lays out a working hypothesis of what has changed in the relation between the Chinese state and Uyghur elites or potential elite parts of the population.

Chinese Intellectuals in Search of Good Life in 1961-62: Famine, Hospitality, and the Production of Inner Mongolia as a Land of Minzu Tuenjie (Uradyn E Bulag)

The current Chinese promotion of the Chinese national community of shared fate is fast making obsolete minzu tuanjie, the longstanding hallmark of the PRC’s nationality policy. As a hegemonic notion with double meanings of both national unity and inter-ethnic/nationality friendship, minzu tuanjie both cuts minority “splittism” and challenges Han Chinese chauvinism. This paper examines how this concept was put to practice by Ulanhu in 1961 and 1962 when he invited scores of China’s top intellectuals – historians, novelists, artists – to tour Inner Mongolia amid the Great Chinese Famine. For almost two months, those hungry visitors from Beijing and Shanghai were taken to the best parts of Inner Mongolia, traversing 15,000 kilometres, to enjoy Mongol hospitality while carrying out “diaocha yanjiu” (investigations and research). Fed on mutton and best food available in Inner Mongolia (euphemistically called zhuabiao – fattening animals), by the end of their tour, all had recovered from their hunger oedema, and upon return all started to write essays, novels, plays, poems or drew paintings in praise of Inner Mongolia as a land of minzu tuanjie. Using the case in hand, the paper will explore two issues that may have contemporary relevance: Mongol agency to legitimise Inner Mongolia’s autonomy by showcasing the region’s achievements to be seen and “enjoyed” by China’s most important opinion-makers; and relatedly the capacity of Chinese intellectuals or the lack thereof to appreciate the need for minority autonomy and the condition for rise of such appreciations.

Personalized propaganda – Uyghur v-loggers and ‘nationality unity’ in Xinjiang (Anonymous Researcher)

Since 2014, along with the construction of re-education camps in Xinjiang, the disappearance of Uyghur intellectuals and others with family members in the Uyghur diaspora started to garner international attention. This led to China becoming the target of criticism by human rights organizations and international observers. In response, the Chinese government focused on telling the story of ‘the beautiful and happy Xinjiang’ through its official and non-official media. Since 2017, several Uyghur v-loggers have uploaded videos on western platforms such as YouTube and Facebook, where they talked about their daily life in Xinjiang. The videos that these Uyghur v-loggers uploaded seem like daily-life videos on any other personal media accounts. Every video has its own topic, mostly about their happy life in Xinjiang, or about traditional Uyghur customs, eating habits and so on. The majority of these videos seem similar to advertisements for tourism in Xinjiang, encouraging Han Chinese from inland China to travel to the region. But almost 90% of these videos also include strong political narratives, such as inter-marriage, nationality unity, poverty alleviation, and so on. After some time, several uploaded some videos against western critics of China about ‘forced labor’ in Xinjiang. I choose to call media accounts of this type ‘personalized propaganda’. They probably are not directly working for state propaganda, but indirectly present the state narratives, mixed with accounts of daily life presented by locals in simple language. Hence they are the group of people who are in between the official state propaganda and ordinary media influencers. In this talk, I look at some videos from two Uyghur v-loggers about ‘nationality unity’ and Han-Uyghur intermarriage in Xinjiang, and examine their ways of presenting and promoting these state policies in the region. I compare these videos with my fieldwork data from 2014-17 in southern Xinjiang, and show differences between the local context and the narratives found in these personalized propaganda videos. 

The Putative Change-Agent: Tibet, the CPPCC and the Promise of Consultation (Robert Barnett)

In any society, but especially those where there is a stark division in ethnicity, culture or resources between the ruler and the ruled, leading citizens develop complex, often convoluted narratives to explain and justify their positions within the elite. But this is not to say that those rationales are necessarily without substance or significance in terms of social benefit or even power. One such narrative is that of the minority change-agent – the member of a minority who accepts a prominent but submissive role within the power structure because they have been promised that they will be consulted on state policies, and therefore will have the opportunity to improve conditions for the minority community. In China, tens of thousands of leading figures from minority communities hold consultative positions of this kind, most prominently as members of a body called the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC). Treated with ritualised importance and respect by the state and routinely profiled in official media, members of the CPPCC hold high-status, life-long positions for which they receive substantial salaries and lifestyle benefits in return for providing public advice on policies, legislation and governance – including the constitution. The media profile of CPPCC members is, however, one of uniform, unquestioning obedience to the state, suggesting that the consultative role is purely notional if not fictitious, so that among Tibetans they are commonly referred in private to as “flower vases”. In this talk I look at the narratives surrounding the role of CPPCC members in Tibet, and suggest ways in which, given the almost total absence of public information about their actual work or influence, we might conceptualise this intermediate positionality and its role in governance.

16:30-18:00 Session SD1-2F: Arts and Art History (2) (Univerzitní 3, Konvikt Chapel)
Giorgio Strafella (Palacký University Olomouc, Czechia)
Lauren Walden (Birmingham City University, UK)
Clandestine Surrealism in Maoist China (1949-1976)

ABSTRACT. Through case studies of Zhao Shou and Sha Qi, who encountered surrealism whilst studying abroad in Japan and Belgium respectively during the Republican Era (1911-1949), I hope to show that surrealist activity in Maoist China did not aim to question Communism as a political system, but rather lament the restrictions upon individual expression that socialist realism and, later the Cultural Revolution, would place upon an artist’s creative practice. Zhao Shou was a political prisoner of the Maoist regime, sent down to the countryside in 1958 where he continued his Surrealist practice clandestinely. Conversely, Sha Qi was a psychological prisoner in Mao’s China, diagnosed with schizophrenia and confined to his hometown, his artistic talents scorned. For the CCP, Zhao Shou’s political approval of land reform and gender equality was marred by aesthetic non-conformity, too much of his individual psyche on display. Sha Qi attempted to reconcile his fantasy of becoming a provincial leader with inner desires that manifested themselves through the genre of the nude and other automatic drawings upon propaganda newspapers. He displayed a particular penchant for the biblical figure of Salomé, a potential allegory for Jiang Qing. The oeuvre of both artists chimes with the Surrealist notion of ‘Independent Revolutionary Art’ (1938) whereby individual freedom of expression would pave the way for political change. Yet, this was precisely what the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) wished to avoid; Out of all western avant-garde movements, Surrealism, despite sympathising with communist principles, ostensibly posed the biggest threat to the CCP.

Fang Wang (Saxon Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Leipzig, Germany)
The Great Departure of Siddhārtha in Wall Paintings of Kucha and Turfan

ABSTRACT. The paper focuses on a crucial life legend of the Buddha, i.e. Great Departure (abhniṣkramaṇa), which has, astonishingly, only been preserved in Kucha and Turfan in the Pre-Islamic Tarim Basin, in the form of five pictorial examples which are wall paintings. First, the two mural scenes of “Siddhārtha leaving Kapilavastu”, preserved in Kizil caves, are given a new identification. In comparison with the Indian prototypes, the local artistic feature of the city goddess offering the milk to the fleeing Siddhārtha is particularly notable because it is a detail which is exclusively described in the Hami Maitrisimit in Old-Uyghur manuscripts. Then, the three mural illustrations discovered among the debris of Turfan Buddhist sites are to be restored into their original Mahāyana décor programme; these representations emphasize the symbolism of great salvation more than the story-telling. It is proposed here that the artistic narratives of the Bodhisatva’s great departure in Kucha were inspired by certain factors from the Zoroastrianism or Manichaeism, both of which had communities of believers along the Silk Road despite sparse record of their presence; the stylised pictures of a later date in Turfan demonstrate further convergences of these different religions that were locally flourishing   

Lucie Olivová (Masaryk University, Brno, Czechia)
A Study of the Coromandel Screen from Valtice-château

ABSTRACT. The topic of my presentation is a large Coromandel screen made in the Fujian province in 1683, as a birthday gift. These facts, and other, were recorded in the laudatory text carved on the reverse face of the screen, together with the names of the donors. Spanning the averse face, there is a depiction showing plentiful figures in a garden palace, surrounded by a decorative border with flowers and mythical beasts. The central scene shows Zhang Gongyi of the Hou Jin dynasty (936-946) who symbolizes longevity and plentiful family. Besides, there is a number of secondary scenes, some of which are known from other media; examples include dancers, women and children, or brooms and horses. I shall focus on the compositional rules by which the entire image was put together.

16:30-18:00 Session SD1-2H: Literature (Modern) (1) (Univerzitní 3, Konvikt Auditorium Maximum)
Petr Janda (Palacký University Olomouc, Czechia)
Giulia Rampolla (University of Naples L’Orientale, University of International Studies in Rome UNINT, Italy)

ABSTRACT. The portrayal of the unique natural environment of north-western China, which includes grasslands, deserts and mountainous areas, and is populated with a wide range of indigenous wildlife, is a central motif in the literary works of the Chinese writer Hong Ke 红柯 (1962-2018), whose personal experience is deeply rooted in the rural surroundings of the Shaanxi Province, where he was born, and partly also in Xinjiang, where he has lived for ten years. This paper explores Hong Ke’s fictional world, by focusing on an investigation into the representation of the intense and troubled relationship between humans and animals, in some of his most well-known literary works, in particular the short stories Benma 奔马 , Meilinu yang 美丽奴羊, and Langhao 狼嗥, which will be mainly analysed through the theoretical framework of ecocriticism and animal studies. It will be attempted to demonstrate that Hong Ke brings into being a singular narrative perspective on wolves, horses, and other living non-human creatures, which all symbolise the power and the wisdom of nature, and whose depiction is often enriched with mysterious elements and hints of magic realism. In these stories, animals instinctively experience a deep connection with the wilderness of nature and with the forces of life, which appear instead to be unfathomable secrets to human beings, who are blinded by rationality. It will be further argued that in these works the representation of human-animal relations can be considered as a tool to investigate into human nature.

Katarzyna Sarek (Jagiellonian University, Poland)
China's realistic literary avant-garde. Su Tong and his subversive struggle against Communist ideology

ABSTRACT. Emerging from 1987 to the early 1990s, Chinese avant-garde literature is commonly described as depoliticised and extremely individualistic. It is believed that by focusing on the individual, the writers were trying to dissociate themselves from the trauma of the Cultural Revolution and manifest a lightness of being and a detachment from the past. Their disinterest in reality would also be expressed in formal terms - stylistic experiments, the introduction of metafiction, a departure from realism and language games. However, contrary to popular belief, the Chinese avant-garde has not cut itself off from its political and social past and present. Su Tong's early prose is in fact built on the antithesis of official communist ideology. Su Tong describes important elements of contemporary Chinese history, such as rural-urban migration, modernisation, land reform, but shows them as the result not of class struggle, but of a tangle of individual feelings and blind fate. In the stories of the Maple Village cycle, the characters seemingly fit into stereotypes, e.g. the landlord is evil and oppresses the peasants. However, the way they are portrayed and the types of relationships between them defy clichés and undermine the validity of political stereotypes. Hatred is the main driving force behind the characters' behaviour and is present in every interpersonal relationship. Su Tong's frequent motif of men fleeing the countryside for the city is an expression of the individual's helplessness, and the portrayal of cities as nests of corruption and crime is a questioning of the country's modernising achievements.

Stefania Stafutti (Università degli studi di Torino, Italy)
Traditional values and their ambiguity: a reflection on Jia Pingwa’s Broken wings

ABSTRACT. The narrative of contemporary Chinese leadership about "cultural tradition" plays a crucial role to feed within the country and outside China as a "cultural superpower" whose importance has been under-estimated by the West throughout the ages. As Liu Zaifu points out, some intellectuals like Fei Xiaotong (费孝通, 1910-2005), Pan Guangdan ( 潘光旦, 1899-1967), Qu Tongzu (瞿同祖, 1910-2008) "helped Chinese people to move from a naïve identification with tradition or an irrational rejection of it to an attitude of rational understanding". But what does "traditional culture" really mean in now-a-day China? How does the "rational understanding" Liu Zaifu is referring to prevent unveiling the dark side of the so-called "tradition"? How does it interfere with some crucial questions as, for example, the opposition of women in Chinese society and gender issues in general? Is tradition always a source of values? Does the celebration of "tradition" bring along any ambiguity? I will try to answer these questions taking into account the phenomenon of girls abduction in China's countryside as presented in Jia Pinghua (1952-,贾平娃) 's novel Broken Wings (极花 jihua). I will consider the novel's reception, the author's position, and Li Yang's movie Blind Mountain 盲山 (2007), inspired by Jia's novel, which has never received a domestic release. Based on this analysis, I will question the idea of celebrating "tradition" as a source of the values of today's China's mainstream cultural narrative. I will then prove that this narrative prevents a broad awareness of gender inequities.