Cambria Press Publication Review: Opening to China

Congratulations to Professor Charlotte Furth on the outstanding review of her book, Opening to China: A Memoir of Normalization, 1981–1982, by China Review International.

Modern Chinese History

The review notes that

For those who saw China at this time, this book is a touching reminder of the tentativeness of the whole affair – how Americans and Chinese alike were desperate to meet and get to know each other – and how difficult that was in reality – as cultural gaps and political realities loomed in the background of every encounter.

It further adds that:

Opening to China tells us also about the life of one of our most important China scholars, and through that life we see the growth and maturation of the field of modern Chinese history in the twentieth century. … this book about her time there informs us about the fraught nature of public diplomacy. …those interested in this key period of relations between the United States and China will find in this book a detailed and evocative picture of the personal side of public diplomacy. At the same time, it is a jolly good read.

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Cambria Press Publication Review: The Sinophone Cinema of Hou Hsiao-hsien

Congratulations to Professor Christopher Lupke on the excellent review of his book, The Sinophone Cinema of Hou Hsiao-hsien: Culture, Style, Voice, and Motion, by Film International, which praises it for being

a well-informed book straddling between the disciplines of Chinese Studies and Film Studies and is highly relevant to film buffs, sinophiles, film researchers, and students.

The review notes that Lupke’s book:

provides Chinese-speaking readers a cinematic approach to Hou’s well-known and less well-known works and non-Chinese speaking readers a holistic view on Hou’s works and a window into Chinese-language scholarship on Hou. By detaching Hou Hsiao-hsien’s works from the frequently-used framework of European arthouse tradition, the book strives to move away from a Eurocentric view and delves deep into film texts. Plot summary is detailed; historical settings and socio-political undertone are foregrounded.

The review also commends the book because

The ambition of balancing between Chinese Studies and Film Studies and between textual analysis, contextual information, and theoretical discussion is also rather difficult to achieve. Yet the book remains an enjoyable read for lovers of Hou’s films and a comprehensive and informative guide to the sinophone world of Hou Hsiao-hsien; it bridges the scholarship on Hou in English and Chinese and embraces Hou’s oeuvres in its entirety.

This book is in the Cambria Sinophone World Series headed by Victor H. Mair (University of Pennsylvania) and the Cambria Global Performing Arts Series headed by John M. Clum (Duke University).

Hou Hsiao-hsien

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Cambria Press Publication Review: Cosmopolitanism in China, 1600–1950

Congratulations to Professors Minghui Hu and Johan Elverskog on the journal review of their book Cosmopolitanism in China, 1600–1950. The review, published by Comparative Literature and World Literature, commends the book for being a “handsome volume … organized chronologically and by topics, accompanied by a short introduction by the editors plus a useful index.”

The review also states that “taken together or read one by one, the eight chapters collected in this volume illustrate what Elverskog rightly concluded, that ‘there did exist a tradition of Qing cosmopolitanism, and that the Chinese tradition has the cultural, intellectual and religious resources needed to foster cosmopolitanism.’”

Cosmopolitanism in China

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Book Highlight: North Korea Demystified

If the world is to effectively deal with the reality of North Korea, reliable information is critical. This book seeks to demystify the “intelligence black hole” that is North Korea. In so doing, it supplies the reader with much needed factual information garnered through firsthand experience by those who have actually visited and done research in North Korea. Each chapter consists of original research by prominent experts in the field.This is a timely read, given the current escalation of political tensions between North Korea and the United States. Whereas other studies of North Korea most often rely merely on available secondary resources (e.g., texts, films etc.) rather than firsthand experience or interviews in supporting central claims, this edited volume, led by foremost North Korean expert Dr. Han S. Park, has the unprecedented advantage of all its contributors having actually spent a considerable amount of time “on the ground” in North Korea gathering information for their research. North Korea Demystified is available for purchase on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

North Korea Demystified

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Cambria Press Publication Excerpt by the Association of Asian Studies (AAS)

Read the #AsiaNow piece from the Association for Asian Studies, Inc. (AAS) about Professor Charlotte Furth’s new book Opening to China, which Ian Johnson, Beijing correspondent for The New York Times, and author of “The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao,” praises because

“Charlotte Furth’s memoir provides a window into a China that few of us can remember or even believe possible: a country that was not the economic and political powerhouse of today, but a hesitant, slightly paranoid society emerging from decades of being closed-off to the outside world. As one of the rare witnesses to this crucial transition, Professor Furth takes us into the life of China’s most important university, showing the struggle to accept her group of visiting scholars–a microcosm for the debate in China at the time over whether the country really should open up. Written honestly and candidly, this memoir will be of interest to scholars of US-China engagement but also to general readers eager to see how much China has changed over the past decades.”

Cambria Press author Charlotte Furth publication Opening to China

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Cambria Press Publication Highlight for Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

As we close out Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, we highlight a noteworthy title, Be(com)ing Korean in the United States: Exploring Ethnic Identity Formation Through Cultural Practices by S. Sonya Gwak.

Cambria Press publication

The following is a quote from the book:

The very act of exploring ethnic identity foregrounds the significance of articulating an aspect of our selves that links us to our families, peers, traditions, transnational histories, and diasporic communities and distinguishes us from the flattening effects of racial categorization. Therefore, producing ethnicity in the United States is in constant flux, negotiating between how we are identified as ethnic and racial subjects and how we identify ourselves as Korean.

Displacement from our ancestral home increases the salience of ethnic identity as something that must be produced and cultivated. In other words, being Korean cannot be predicated solely on originating from the nationstate, Korea, but necessitates further elaborations based on proof of ancestry, family history, and notions of primordial ties. The process of becoming Korean cannot rely merely on quotidian experiences but fosters the teaching and learning of cultural practices that are constructed as Korean in a variety of ways.

Preview this book here and buy the book on Amazon.

Title: Be(com)ing Korean in the United States: Exploring Ethnic Identity Formation Through Cultural Practices
Authors: S. Sonya Gwak
Publisher: Cambria Press
ISBN: 9781604975840
372 pp.  |   2008   |   Hardback & E-book
Book Webpage: http://www.cambriapress.com/books/9781604975840.cfm

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Interview with Cambria Press author Professor Mark Bender

An interview with Professor Mark Bender (The Ohio State University) about his new book was posted on the MCLC. Professor Bender’s book The Borderlands of Asia: Culture, Place, Poetry was released last month at the 2017 AAS conference in Toronto.

Cambria Press author Mark Bender publication Borderlands of Asia

See also Professor Bender’s speech at the
AAS 2017 Cambria Press reception.

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