Imaging ‘East Asia:’

Constructing Knowledge through the Visual

Graduate Student Conference

presented by the East Asia Center

January 25-26, 2019 at University of California, Santa Barbara

Aesthetic sensibilities and visual cognition of the external world are fundamental to the construction of knowledge and divination of meaning. For “Imagining ‘East Asia:’ Constructing Knowledge through the Visual,” a UCSB East Asia Center Graduate Student Conference, we seek proposals that grapple with how “East Asia” and its constituent cultural, linguistic, or national properties and territories are problematized through the framework of the visual (e.g. art, film, digital and popular culture, or the everyday). Visual culture constructs and is constructed by assumptions about the world. How one reads visual culture is determined on at least two fronts—first, by the artist/producer through choices of subject, style, and genre, among others and, second, by the audience’s worldviews, biases, and dispositions. Given the inherent subjectivity of visual cognition, we as historians, art historians, anthropologists, religion, film, and literature scholars are forever conscious of alternative readings and wary of misrepresentations.

We invite participants to examine how ‘East Asia’ has been imagined and is being reimagined through visual culture, as well as the mechanisms and media through which these imaginings further animate various identities, ideologies, economies, and interpermeations. Relevant paper topics may approach this set of issues from any region or time period commonly identified as part of “East Asia.”

Keynote Speaker:
thomas lamarre
Professor Thomas Lamarre
James McGill Professor in East Asian Studies and Associate in Communications Studies
McGill University

Organized by:

Colin Raymond, PhD Student
Department of History of Art & Architecture

Kaitlyn Ugoretz, PhD Student
Department of East Asian Languages & Cultural Studies

East Asia Center at University of California, Santa Barbara


Department of Comparative Literature

Division of Humanities and Fine Arts

Department of East Asian Languages & Cultural Studies

Department of Film & Media Studies

Graduate Center for Literary Research

Graduate Division

Department of the History of Art & Architecture

Interdisciplinary Humanities Center

MultiCultural Center

Mellichamp Global Dynamics Initiative

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