How to Apply


Out of Bounds: Sinophone Perspectives on Chinese Cultural History

 The seed of the theme for this year’s conference is the term yuwai 域外 or “out of bounds.” In the imperial geographical model, morally transformative power (hua 化)radiated out until reaching the boundary of the realm. Outside was an unknown realm that was “out of bounds” and “beyond the pale.” The model was complicated by the tributary system and finally tossed into the dustbin of history with the advent of the modern international order. China repositioned itself in a polycentric world. Yet over the past several decades the world has witnessed the “rise of China.” The effects of this rise have been felt atmospherically, economically, culturally, and politically by everyone, but with a special poignancy by the Sinophone world. For over a millennium, the Chinese emigrants who populate the Sinophone world have gone out of bounds, founding Sinophone communities around the world. From a Chinese perspective, these emigrants and their descendants are overseas Chinese, but Sinophone perspectives are localized, culturally and linguistically hybrid and plural, and as varied as the milieus which they have over the centuries chosen to call home. In reflecting on the plurality of Sinophone experience, settlers may orient themselves in relation to China, whether or not as part of a diaspora, but they will inevitably locate themselves according to new coordinates. Their self-reflections constitute Sinophone cultural production, comprised of Sinophone artistic articulations that can only enrich our notions and narratives of Chinese cultural history. With this in mind, the conveners of this year’s conference, Professor Baochai Chiang and Professor David Der-Wei Wang, cordially invite young scholars from around the world to consider Chinese cultural history from Sinophone perspectives along the following lines:


Conference sub-themes:

  1. The commemoration of Sinophone experience
  2. The production of Sinophone modes of knowledge
  3. Migration, diaspora, and resettlement as modes of Sinophone experience
  4. Interethnic communication and exchange in Sinophone contexts
  5. The formation, development and imagination of Sinophone communities
  6. Sinophone cultural translation



 To be eligible to attend the conference, you must be under forty years old, an assistant professor with less than four years experience or a postdoctoral student, a doctoral student or an advanced Master’s student.

 Please apply before January 25, 2012 by emailing the following DOC attachments:
1. Application form (including an abstract of from one thousand to twenty-five hundred words and 3-5 keywords).
2. Documentation of academic status (photocopy of student or staff ID, diploma).
3. One letter of recommendation from a professor in a relevant field.


Review procedure

1. A committee will evaluate the applications in terms of originality, structure and potential for completion, selecting the most outstanding 20-25 proposals but taking number of papers per sub-theme into consideration.
2. The results will be announced by February 10, 2012 on the conference website. Individual applicants will be informed by e-mail.
3. The absolute deadline for the submission of completed papers is April 20, 2012.