Last month the Humanities Research Center co-sponsored and participated in three cross-cultural dialogues in Italy. The first, at the Pari Center, brought academics from China, Europe and the USA together for a five days of intensive dialogue on East-West philosophy in relation to sustainability. Discussion sessions in the morning and afternoon were complemented by relaxed lunches and dinners at the local restaurant in the village of Pari, about 30km south of Siena.
The events in Pari were followed by two dialogues in Rome. The first took place at La Sapienza University in Rome, where the topic of east-west philosophical dialogue continued in the presence of faculty and graduate students in the Italian Institute for Oriental Studies.
The series of events culminated in a high-level two-day meeting at the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences (PASS) inside the Vatican City, chaired by Cardinal Peter Turkson. This event was both cross-cultural and interdisciplinary, featuring economists from PASS and other institutions in dialogue with philosophers and other experts in Chinese culture. This Dialogue Between Civilizations on Global Commons invited academics to consider the underlying philosophical and ethical issues in the United Nations’ seventeen Sustainable Development Goals. DKU professor Xiang Zairong spoke on the topic of gender equality, and HRC co-director James Miller spoke on the topic of climate change.
As a result of the HRC’s co-sponsorship of these events, DKU was able to bring two students, Tianyu Zhang (DKU ‘24) and Siyu Wang (DKU ‘25) to participate in the events.
Ms. Wang said, “The conference in the Vatican City offered me a unique perspective on how critical issues such as the sustainable development goals set by the UN are discussed and addressed by a diverse range of stakeholders, each with their own backgrounds and employing various approaches.”
It was an invaluable experience for the students and the professors to join in the various dialogues and also to participate in a closed, high level event at the Vatican. The dialogues revealed profound philosophical differences regarding the underlying values embedded in the SDGs, and their interpretation within different civilizational frameworks. There was an intensive discussion on how key Chinese cultural concepts such as 仁 (ren; benevolence, humanity), 福 (fu; good fortune), 富 (fu; wealth) and 繁荣 (fanrong; flourishing) should play a role in articulating the SDGs within a Chinese context and might contribute to a more globalized discussion of the ethical values and worldview underpinning the transition to an ecologically sustainable civilization. This demonstrated the necessity for further cross-cultural research among the world’s philosophies and religions on the topic of the United Nations’ sustainable development goals.
Reported by Vicky Yongkun Wu, Class of 2026
This workshop was part of the Women’s History Month 2023 events organized by the HRC’s Gender Studies Initiative.
The Women’s History Month Student Workshop 2023, hosted by Professor Titas Chakraborty, focused on 9 student papers. On Friday April 21, after Professor James Miller’s opening remarks, student presenters, who were accordingly distributed to three panels, gender in China, women and conflict, and feminism and media, were given approximately 10 minutes to introduce their projects, followed by professors’ comments and the Q&A session. The wide range of gender topics covered in the workshop was impressive and truly enhanced gender studies at DKU. Continue reading “Student Report on Women’s History Month Student Workshop”
The Humanities Research Center invites all members of the DKU community to participate in its Undergraduate Humanities Research Conference, China and the World, which will be held in person at Duke Kunshan University from April 28-29, 2023. The conference features approximately 40 undergraduate research papers from DKU and universities across China including:
- Chinese Academy of Art
- CUHK Shenzhen
- Fudan University
- NYU Shanghai
- Tianjin Foreign Studies University
- Wuhan University
- University of Nottingham, Ningbo
Students will present their papers on panels chaired by DKU professors, and cover the following themes:
- Chinese and Japanese Literature
- Contemporary Chinese Culture
- Gender, Media and Technology
- Histories and Environments
- Identity, Psychology and Society
- Literature, Borders and Boundaries
- Philosophy, Religion and Ethics
- Visual Media and Society
Students who attend the conference are also invited to sign up for an exclusive seminar with one of the keynote speakers, as well as a gala dinner with the speakers on Saturday April 29.
See the conference program
Register for the conference by Thursday April 20 Continue reading “Registration for the Undergraduate Humanities Research Conference”
Reported by Cody Schmidt, class of 2025
This was the first event of the Computational Humanities Seminar series, which focuses on the role of technology in the social sciences. The series is organized by Jaehee Choi, Zhaojin Zheng, and Alice Xiang.
Professor Amir Fekrazad, a professor of economics from Texas A&M – San Antonio, presented his research on using artificial intelligence to estimate a person’s remaining lifespan on February 24th. Moderated by Professor Jaehee Choi, Professor Fekrazad detailed the process of creating such technology. Continue reading “Student Report on Estimating Remaining Lifespan from the Face”
Reported by Shivam Mani, Class of 2025
This talk was a part of the HRC’s Religion+ event series, held in-person on the DKU campus. Each event connects a topic to religion, and faculty are invited to speak on their work and/or ideas about the intersection of the topics.
This event brought Prof. Bryce Beemer, Prof. Titas Chakraborty, and Prof. Tommaso Tesei together for a conversation about the role of religion in the formation, development, and behaviors of empires throughout history. Continue reading “Student Report on Religion + Empire”
Reported by Dongkun Lyu
The seminar was divided into three parts. Sue first introduced the Ontology of the Lucid Dream, Michelle then discussed several different “Selves” in the dream, and finally Nathan proposed the research on knowledge in dreams and related action philosophy. Continue reading “Superdeep#17: “Lucid Dreams Elucidated” By Nathan Hauthaler, Weifan Mo and Siyu Wang”
Cody Schmidt, class of 2025
This event was hosted by HRC’s Citizenship Lab. The Citizenship Lab seeks to understand the transformation of citizenship and the ways in which citizenship is expressed through ecological, temporal, and spatial terms. The full event can be viewed here.
Dr. Nick Kelly and Professor Marcus Foth from the Queensland University of Technology joined Professor Robin Rodd from Duke Kunshan’s Citizenship Lab on March 9th to discuss the role of the metaverse in the politics of climate change. Based on their article published in The Conversation, the two began by explaining Tuvalu’s attempt to save their nation that has turned towards metaverse technologies. Continue reading “Student Report on The Climate Emergency and Tuvalu’s Escape to the Metaverse: Challenging the Complicity of Design in Technological Solutionism”
The deadline for submitting abstracts for the Undergraduate Humanities Research Conference is March 21, 2023. To help students prepare their abstracts, Professor James Miller, co-director of the Humanities Research Center, will give a information session on Monday 20 March from 8-9pm (Zoom 6952900771).
In the information session you will learn
- advantages of participating in the conference
- advantages of presenting a paper at the conference
- the rules for which types of papers will be accepted and which will be rejected
- how the selection process works
- how to write a good title and a good abstract
All students who are considering participating in the conference are strongly encouraged to attend.
Reported by Cody Schmidt, class of 2025
This talk was hosted by HRC’s Citizenship Lab. The Citizenship Lab seeks to understand the transformation of citizenship and the ways in which citizenship is expressed through ecological, temporal, and spatial terms.
Professor Kregg Hetherington from Concordia University joined Duke Kunshan’s Citizenship Lab on February 17th to deliver a presentation titled “Ghost Rivers in the Urban Anthropocene.” Moderated by Citizenship Lab co-director Robin Rodd, the lecture recounted the story of the St. Pierre, a river that once ran through Montreal and nourished the city in its foundation, now considered a “ghost river.” Continue reading “Student Report on Ghost Rivers in the Urban Anthropocene”
The Humanities Research Center is pleased to announce its annual Undergraduate Humanities Research Conference, China and the World, which will be held in person at Duke Kunshan University from April 28-29, 2023. The conference will feature approximately 40 undergraduate research papers and 4 keynote addresses. Students who are selected for the conference will also attend an exclusive seminar with one of the keynote speakers. Continue reading “China and the World, Undergraduate Humanities Research Conference, April 28-29”