May 2018 AAS Member News & Notes

Congratulations to the AAS Members awarded fellowships by the American Council of Learned Societies:

Thomas Donald Conlan (Princeton University), Karl Gerth (University of California, San Diego), Tze-Lan Deborah Sang (Michigan State University), Nicolas Tackett (University of California, Berkeley), Stacey Van Vleet (University of California, Berkeley), and Judd Kinzley (University of Wisconsin-Madison).


AAS Member John Osburg (University of Rochester) has been named an Andrew Carnegie Fellow by Carnegie Corporation of New York. As a fellow in the 31-member Class of 2018, Osburg will receive funding to pursue his research on “Spiritual Crisis and Moral Transformation in Contemporary China.”


AAS Member Van C. Gessel (Brigham Young University) has been awarded a decoration from the Japanese government for Spring 2018, “The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon” (旭日中綬章 Kyokujitsu Chūju-shō). The citation honors Gessel for contributing to “developing Japanese literary studies in the United States and promoting mutual understanding between Japan and the United States.”


Congratulations to the four AAS Members below, who are recipients of ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowships for the 2018-19 academic year:

Eunsung Cho (Columbia University), “The Thread of Juche: Vinalon, a Figuration between Science and Society in North Korea, 1948-1970”

Jawan Shir Rasikh (University of Pennsylvania), “The Rural in Medieval Afghanistan: Islamization of the Region of Ghur in Tenth through Twelfth Centuries”

Matthew Shutzer (New York University), “Extractive Ecologies: Fossil Fuels, Global Capital, and Postcolonial Development in India, 1870-1975”

Alex-Thai Dinh Vo (Cornell University), “From Anticolonialism to Mobilizing Socialist Transformation in the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, 1945-1960”


The AAS has also made many grant awards this spring. Congratulations to the recipients of our China and Inner Asia Council Small Grants, Northeast Asia Council Japan Studies Grants, and Northeast Asia Council Korean Studies Grants!


Following deliberations at the AAS Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., the AAS Editorial Board voted to provide the following awards in our First Book Subvention Program:

  • The University of Washington Press, toward publication of The Other Milk: Reinventing Soy in Republican China, by Jia-Chen Fu (Emory University).
  • Yale University Press toward publication of Contested Territory: Dien Bien Phu and the Making of Vietnam, by Christian Lentz (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill).
  • The University of Washington Press toward publication of Privileged Minorities: Syrian Christianity, Gender, and Minority Rights in Postcolonial India, by Sonja Thomas (Colby College).
  • The University of Washington Press toward publication of Written on the Land: Violence and Social Formation on a Cambodian Frontier, by Jonathan Padwe (University of Hawai’i at Mānoa)


Authors who would like to have their works submitted to the next round of AAS book prize competitions are invited to consult the eligibility guidelines, submission instructions, and deadlines now posted at the association website. These prizes will be awarded at the 2019 annual conference in Denver, Colorado.


AAS Member Cindy Ewing (Yale University) writes, “I will be joining the Department of History at the University of Toronto, where I will be teaching contemporary international history, modern Southeast Asia, and US-Asia relations.”

Have your own member news to submit? Share it with #AsiaNow!


We are pleased to share that the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) has received a grant from the Henry Luce Foundation to partner with the AAS and continue our long-running dissertation workshop series. We look forward to working with the SSRC and thank the Luce Foundation for its support of this important initiative!


Many regional AAS conferences are currently accepting proposals for their 2018 meetings:

  • The New England AAS is now accepting paper and panel proposals for its October 6 conference at Brandeis University; deadline for submission is May 31.
  • Submit a proposal to the annual conference of the Mid-Atlantic Region Association for Asian Studies by June 1. The 2018 meeting will take place at Elizabethtown College in Elizabethtown, PA on November 3-4.
  • The Western Conference of the Association for Asian Studies will hold its 2018 conference, on the theme of “Asia in the World,” at Soka University in Orange County, California on October 19-20. Submit a proposal by June 30; proposal types include individual papers, full panels/roundtables, and undergraduate poster sessions.
  • The Southwest Conference on Asian Studies will convene its annual meeting on October 19-20, at Baylor University in Waco, TX and is accepting individual paper and panel proposals until June 30.

Deceased Asianists

Michael Cooper (1930-2018), longtime editor of Monumenta Nipponica. Memorial essay by Beatrice Bodart-Bailey via H-Japan.

We welcome submissions for the AAS Member News & Notes column, so please forward material for consideration to Please note that we do not publish book announcements in this space; new books by AAS Members will be announced on the association’s Twitter feed (@AASAsianStudies) and Facebook page (@AASAsianStudies).