Call for Papers: Orientalism and Asian Studies

May 15, 2024

Edward Said’s Orientalism (1978) has profoundly affected teaching and research in Asian Studies, raising fundamental questions about why and how we study Asia. Nearly fifty years later, we are faced with a need to reflect on what has changed and remains unchanged since Said’s seminal intervention in Asian Studies. Specifically, Transnational Asia is calling for papers that address pedagogical and instructional issues––in particular, Asian Studies classes in colleges and universities that engage directly with the themes and critiques raised in Said’s Orientalism and its reverberating effects. We are particularly interested in papers illustrating changes in classrooms and on campuses that have happened and are happening hand in hand with changing socio-economic and political conditions, not only in Asia but also in the rest of the world. We especially welcome cross-disciplinary approaches, including language instruction, art, history, area studies, anthropology, literature, ethnic studies, and geography. Prospective contributors are asked to send their abstracts by August 31 to

Read more about Call for Papers: Orientalism and Asian Studies

Call for Papers: Natural Disaster and Social (In)Justice

April 18, 2023

Natural Disaster and Social (In)Justice: One hundred years since the Great Kanto Earthquake in Japan

September 1, 2023 will mark the one hundredth year of the Great Kanto Earthquake in Japan that killed hundreds of thousands of people and damaged vast areas in the vicinity of Tokyo and Yokohama. By the end of that day, 1923, rumors began circulating blaming Koreans for the fire, looting, and rape. As a result, thousands of Koreans in Japan in these areas were hunted down and lynched by Japanese civilian vigilantes. These Koreans were colonial immigrants who moved to Japan seeking work opportunities following Japan’s colonial annexation of Korea in 1910. To this day, we often witness disasters that reveal various forms of xenophobia and racial and ethnic discrimination. For instance, following the recent catastrophic earthquake in Turkey, many Syrian refugees who had settled in the disaster-affected areas were harassed and discriminated against when trying to seek assistance. In this year of the one hundredth anniversary of the Great Kanto Earthquake, the Transnational Asia editorial committee calls for papers that address responses to natural disasters such as earthquakes, storms, floods and famines––responses that are historically conditioned, prioritizing some people and leaving others behind––or worse, eliminating some populations altogether. We interpret “natural disaster” broadly, since more often than not “natural” disasters are not completely natural. Send your 500-word abstract to

Read more about Call for Papers: Natural Disaster and Social (In)Justice

Call for Papers: Transnational Asia special issue dedicated to Professor Nanxiu Qian

March 27, 2023

The editorial committee of Transnational Asia recently lost its dear friend, Dr. Nanxiu Qian (1947-2022), Professor of Chinese Literature at Rice University. The committee plans to publish a special issue of Transnational Asia commemorating her life and work.

Professor Qian was best known for her pioneering and much-cited work on the enormously influential fifth-century Chinese masterpiece Shishuo xinyu (A New Account of Tales of the World), but she also wrote extensively on a great many other Chinese literary works spanning some two thousand years, from the Lienü zhuan (Biographies of Exemplary Women; first century BCE), to twentieth century fiction in Taiwan, and gender studies in contemporary American scholarship on China. Her last single-authored book was Politics, Poetics, and Gender in Late Qing China: Xue Shaohui and the Era of Reform (Stanford University Press, 2015), a highly regarded political and literary biography of a remarkable woman scholar in late nineteenth and early twentieth century China. Nanxiu was also a dedicated, prize-winning teacher who introduced hundreds of students to the beauty and power of texts written by Chinese women, past and present.

In appreciation of Nanxiu Qian’s wide-ranging scholarship, the editorial committee calls for papers on women and literature in transnational Asia from any historical period. The committee also welcomes diverse genres, ranging from classical prose to online novels and fan fiction. Please direct all inquiries to

Read more about Call for Papers: Transnational Asia special issue dedicated to Professor Nanxiu Qian