Cornell University

Society for the Humanities Presents: Prasenjit Duara

Monday, March 25, 2019 at 4:30pm

A. D. White House, Guerlac Room
29 East Ave, Ithaca, NY 14850, USA

"The Art of Convergent Comparison—China and India in Modern Times": In this talk, Duara will argue that non-discursive modes of authorizing ‘foreign’ processes as home-grown are crucial to their acceptance, particularly since extra-national penetrations in the emergent national body need to take place below the discursive radar. They include visual, aural, olfactory and, in general, sensorial modes of vernacularizing circulatory processes. When we adopt this perspective, we begin to see the parallels among developments and forms which have until recently remained the ‘ground’ in relation to the ‘figure’ of unique developments within the nation or society.  Recognizing this gestalt produces significant transformation of our view of history—how its ownership can or cannot be claimed—and the problem of national sovereignty.

Lecture by Invited Society Scholar, Prasenjit Duara, Oscar Tang Chair of East Asian Studies, Duke University.   Duara was born and educated in India and received his PhD in Chinese history from Harvard University. He was previously Professor and Chair of the Dept of History and Chair of the Committee on Chinese Studies at the University of Chicago (1991-2008). Subsequently, he became Raffles Professor of Humanities and Director, Asia Research Institute at National University of Singapore (2008-2015). His work has been widely translated into Chinese, Japanese, Korean and the European languages.

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