Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Center for Contemporary South Asia

Rebecca Nedostup - Beyond the Spectral Metaphor: The Displaced Dead

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

12:00pm – 2:00pm

Kim Koo Library, Watson Institute

Light lunch provided. 

Theory from the South is a reading and discussion group, open to the public, that invites scholars from across campus that can "shake the ground," to curate readings and lead conversations. 

The “global South” is a working category today for a diversity of intellectual projects centered on the non-European postcolonial world.  Theory from theSouth locates the “south” as not merely a geographic category, but rather an epistemic one, as a generative source for theory and for understanding theworld as it is changing around us.  This year's program is aligned to the Sawyer Seminar on Displacement and Modernity, but rather than focusing narrowly on “displacement,” it asks what conceptions of the “world,” the “global” in “global south,” are at work as we think mobility - crossing both territorial and disciplinary boundaries, or tracking people or ideas over time and space.

Rebecca Nedostup works at the intersection of politics, culture and society in twentieth century China and Taiwan. She is the author of Superstitious Regimes: Religion and the Politics of Chinese Modernity (Harvard Asia Center 2009), and is currently writing Living and Dying in the Long War: Tales of Displacement in China and Taiwan, 1937-1959. She is co-organizer and co-editor of the collaborative, interdisciplinary project "The Social Lives of Dead Bodies in Modern China." A second collaborative project, "The Field of the State in Modern China," draws on collective historical knowledge. Her research and teaching interests include war, mobilization, and displacement; the long-term effects of mass violence; state-building over the long durée and in comparative light; the theoretical and methodological issues raised by ritual and spatial analysis; and the place of the corporeal dead in historical study.

Theory from the South