Keynote Speaker

Dr. Hentyle Yapp, Assistant Professor, Department of Art and Public Policy, NYU Tisch School of Arts

Hentyle Yapp is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Art and Public Policy at NYU. He is also an affiliated faculty with the Department of Performance Studies, Disability Council, and Asian/Pacific/American Institute. Before joining NYU, Yapp was an Assistant Professor and Mellon-Chau Postdoctoral Fellow in Gender and Women’s Studies at Pomona College and lectured at San Francisco State University. His research broadly engages the theoretical and methodological implications of queer, feminist, disability, and critical race studies for questions regarding the state.

Graduate Presenters

Mark Bookman, University of Pennsylvania: “The Sagamihara Stabbings: A Tale of Murderers, Martyrs, and Political Paralysis in Contemporary Japan”

Mark received his B.A. from Villanova University in Global Interdisciplinary Studies in 2014 prior to researching Buddhist Philosophy as a Fulbright Fellow in Japan. He received his M.A. in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from the University of Pennsylvania in 2016, where he currently studies the history and politics of disability in Japan as a PhD student. When he is not working on his dissertation, “Politics, Prosthesis, and the Popular Imagination: 100 Years of Disability,” Mark works to promote equity and access for as many individuals as possible alongside local advocacy groups and governmental organizations.

Katherine Capuder, Columbia University: “The Kaibō Zonshinzu Anatomical Scrolls: Perception and the Body in Early Modern Japan”

Katherine Capuder is a second year Master’s student in the East Asian Languages and Cultures department at Columbia University. Currently she is working on a thesis, tentatively titled “‘I wonder if Marx is crying underground’: An Exploration of the Marx Boy in Prewar Japan,” about the culture of the Marxist movement in interwar Japan that focuses on the performativity of political identity and the cross-class appeals of Marxism. For her undergraduate degree at University of Chicago, she majored in Art History with a focus in 19 th century Japanese visual culture.

Monica W. Cho, University of California, Irvine: “All the Madwomen: Women’s Madness, Sexuality, Identity, and Desire”

Monica is a first year PhD student in modern Korean literature at the University of California, Irvine in the department of East Asian Languages and Literatures. She focuses primarily on gendered experiences of modern Korea manifested in literary works, primarily through the works by women writers. Monica is also interested in the power dynamics of language and institutionalized gender/sexuality in modern Korea, as well as the (in)translatability of experience and memory into text.

Ling-Wei Kung, Columbia University: “Cross-Eurasian Spirit Bonds: Oyirad Yeke Küriye, Central Tibet and the Qing Dynasty in the 18th Century”

Ling-wei Kung is a Ph.D. student in modern Chinese and Tibetan history. His research interests center on international legal practices and global economic exchanges between China and Inner Asia during the 18th-20th centuries. He is also broadly interested in Tibetan Buddhism, Islam, and comparative philology (Manchu, Mongolian, and Tibetan). His dissertation project, “Intelligence Collection, Trans-Regional Trade, and International Relations between China and Inner Asia, 1697-1921,” discusses how the transmission and the integration of geographic information in various Inner Asian languages shaped Qing China’s world order. His works and CV are available on his personal website.

Bess Xintong Liu, University of Pennsylvania: “The Vocal Embodiment of Modern Chinese Body in School Songs (Xuetang Yuege)”

Xintong (“Bess”) Liu is a second year PhD student in musicology from the University of Pennsylvania. As a Chinese citizen who has studied in five different countries, she is interested in the musical exchange between the East and the West. Her past researches include female piano pedagogy in modern China, Chinese School Songs (Xuetang Yuege) during the early Republican China, and the construction of the Eastern world and Asian women in Puccini’s Orientalist operas. Besides her academic commitment as a musicology PhD student, she is also an active pianist, singer, and interpreter.

Max Ma, Duquesne University: “The Sound of a Changing Identity along the Silk Road—Music, Identity, and Inclusion”

Max Si-yuan Ma is a second year Ph.D. student in English Literature at Duquesne University where he aims to investigate the intersection of puritanism and nationalism in the nineteenth century American lyrics and poems. Max received his BA in Japanese Studies and MA in Comparative Literature in Xi’an International Studies University before coming to the States. In the University of South Florida, Max’s research centers on the utopian effect of film music in the Hollywood movie musicals and the American country music films. In his spare time, Max likes to cook, read, and play some folk tunes with his guitar and mandolin, mostly for his wife and his daughter.

Aolan Mi, Indiana University Bloomington: “Becoming an Iron Man: Literary Representation of Working Bodies and Machines in Chinese Socialist Literature”

Aolan Mi is a Ph.D. student in East Asian Languages & Cultures at Indiana University Bloomington. She is interested in the literature, visual culture and intellectual history in twentieth-century China. Prior to enrolling at IU, she received her B.A in Chinese Literature and Language and her M.A in Comparative Literature from Renmin University of China.

Scott Miller, Columbia University: “Mapping Merriment: Modern Boys and Japanese Masculinities in Manga and Song”

Scott Miller is Master’s candidate at Columbia University focusing on environmental and social history. He studies the intersection of social minorities, such as Matagi ethnic hunters of Akita and Aomori Prefectures, and the changing landscape of land-use perceptions and practices in 19th and 20th century Japan. His interests include social, environmental, and gender studies as well as transnational history. He earned his BA in History from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2009.

Frank Mondelli, Stanford University: “Narrative Political Framing in Japanese Politics and Twitter”

Frank Mondelli graduated Swarthmore College with High Honors and election to Phi Beta Kappa in June 2014 and embarked on a Fulbright Research Fellowship in Okinawa, Japan the following year. He is now a Japanese Literature PhD student in the East Asian Languages and Cultures department at Stanford University. Frank’s academic interests focus primarily on Japanese media, political culture, disability studies, and anthropology. He is beginning work on a long-term project which explores the relationship between Japanese political ideologies, resistance movements, nationalism, broadcasting, and literature in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Shelby Strong, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: “Should We Pass on ‘Passing Women’?: The Stakes of (Trans)gender Ontologies for Korean Namjangyeoja Dramas”

Shelby Strong is a graduate student in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her research interests focus on hallyu fandoms, gender and sexuality, and contemporary South Korean media. Her current project investigates the relationship between the namjangyeoja drama trend and heteronormative familism as a reproducer of social inequality in South Korea.

Kaitlyn Ugoretz, University of California, Santa Barbara: “Characterizing the ‘Barbarian’: Chinese Exonyms and Eurasian Relations”

Kaitlyn Ugoretz graduated with her BA and MA in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from the University of Pennsylvania, where she specialized in the intersection of writing, gender, and ethnicity in premodern China. Kaitlyn is now a first-year PhD student in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultural Studies at UC Santa Barbara. Her work centers on the negotiation of authority over definitions of religion relating to Japan. Interrogating historical definitions of Shinto as the “indigenous/native religion of Japan,” Kaitlyn is interested in the increasingly global and digital nature of the production of knowledge and practice of Shinto.

Susie Wu, University of California, Santa Barbara: “From Bloodsucker to Disease Carrier: Mosquito and Chinese Hygienic Modernity”

Susie Wu is currently a master student at the Department of East Asian Language and Cultural Studies at the University of California at Santa Barbara. Her master thesis, which traces the cultural representation of the mosquitoes in Chinese history, aims to explore the role of hygienic discourse played in China’s pursuit of modernity through late Qing to Maoist era. Her research interests include modern/contemporary Chinese literature and visual culture, classical Chinese philosophy, history of science, and medical humanities.

Xiaodong Yang, Chinese University of Hong Kong: “Writing and the Shaping of Religious Identities: The Case of the Worship of Liu Benzun in the Southern Song Dynasty”

Yang Xiaodong is a Ph.D. candidate in Fine Arts at The Chinese University of Hong Kong. His research has focused primarily on the development of Buddhist art in Medieval China, deeply involved with the Buddhist material culture of the southwest. Before joining the Department of Fine Arts, he studied in Architecture at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (2014-2016) and earned his M.S. in Landscape Architecture (2013) from Peking University. Currently, he is a visiting fellow at the Harvard-Yenching Institute. At Harvard, he continues with his doctoral study entitled “Orthodoxy and Heterodoxy: the Worship of Liu Benzun and Its Material Culture in the Southern Song Dynasty.”

Zekun Zhang, Yale University: “Crossing the Legal Border or the Social? The Death of Yu Xuanji”

Zekun Zhang is a PhD student in the Department of History at Yale University. She received her BA in history from Peking University in 2015 and an MA in China Studies from the Yenching Academy of PKU in 2017. She is interested in the study of social and religious history in medieval China.

Undergraduate Presenters

Chaerin Lee, Yonsei University: “IU Is Not Drinking for the Sorrows of Sogyeokdong

Chaerin is a junior majoring in Political Science and International Relations at Yonsei University, South Korea. Currently she is on an exchange program at University of Pennsylvania. Chaerin’s academic interests include international political economy and business culture in Asian regions and with regards to that, the government’s role. In addition to her undergraduate coursework, she worked under several governmental organizations in South Korea. Non-profit
organization such as North Korean Human Rights Association, Korea-China Youth Leaders Association under Ministry of Foreign Affairs are part of them.

Susan Radov, University of Pennsylvania: “China’s Confucius Institutes: Promoting Language or Reputation?”

Susan Radov is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences at Penn, studying Cultural and Linguistic Anthropology and Chinese Studies. Through college, she has developed a keen interest in improving US-China relations and exploring questions of ethnic identity, politics, and global cultural change. By translating tours in Chinese for the Penn Museum, by designing and leading tours in the Chinese Rotunda, by serving as the head of the Chinese section for the Penn Asian Review, and by serving as a delegate at the Princeton University US-China Global Governance Forum, Susan has remained committed to Chinese language, culture, and history.

Ji Yang, University of Pennsylvania: “Responsible Fans and Good Citizens: The Governmentality of Copyright Protection and Fansubbing in China’s Online Space”

Ji Yang is a college senior at the University of Pennsylvania, where she double majors in Socio-cultural Anthropology and East Asian Languages and Civilizations – Japan. Her primary research interests include the relationship between the state and the public in China and Japan and Japanese Popular Culture, and Chinese Cultural Heritage Repatriation. She is actively involved in cultural heritage repatriation and is a researcher at China Heritage Initiative Research Center.