Events Celebrate Launch of Asian Studies Program

A day-long conference, cultural extravaganza and film screening April 24-May 7 will celebrate the recent launch of an Asian Studies Program at Eastern Kentucky University.


All three events are free and open to the public, and no advance registration is necessary.


The "Asian Studies in the Contemporary World" conference will be held on Friday, April 24, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Kennamer Room of the Powell Building. EKU President Michael Benson kicks off the event at 9:45 a.m., with five presentations to follow:


·        10-11 a.m., Dr. Jason Abbott, University of Louisville, "Southeast Asian Politics: Democracy's Travails?"


·        11 a.m.-Noon, Dr. Abraham Velez, EKU, "The Buddha and Religious Diversity."


·        1-2 p.m., Dr. Jeffrey Richey, Berea College, "The Sage Returns: Confucian Revival in Contemporary China."


·        2-3 p.m., Dr. Kristin Monroe, University of Kentucky, "Mobility, Risk and Possibility among Syrian Workers in Beirut."


·        3-4 p.m., Dr. Akiko Takenaka, University of Kentucky, "Yasukuni Shrine: History, Memory and Japan's Unending Postwar."


EKU faculty members will serve as moderators. The day also includes lunch from noon to 1 p.m. and a reception at 4 p.m. Parking for visitors will be available in the Alumni Coliseum Parking Lot. The conference is sponsored by the EKU Asian Studies Program and the Bluegrass State Intelligence Community Center of Academic Excellence.


For more information about the conference, visit


"An Asian Occasion," EKU's first, one-of-a-kind cultural extravaganza, will be held Thursday, April 30, beginning at 3 p.m. at Powell Corner with an Asian Read-In. All readers are welcome and will read in English excerpts of their choice from great works of literature written by Asians and people of Asian descent (readings in English available). A cultural fair, featuring games and free samples of ethnic Asian food, will follow from 5 to 7 p.m. in Middle Powell.


"An Asian Occasion" is sponsored by EKU's Asian Studies Program; Department of Language, Cultures and Humanities; Cultural Center, Center for International Education; International Student Association; Student Government Association; Office of Student Life; and the UNICEF Club at Model Laboratory School.


Then, on Thursday, May 7, the final film screening/discussion in the program's film series, "Salaam Bombay," will begin at 7 p.m. in O'Donnell Hall of the Whitlock Building.


​For more information about any of the activities, contact Dr. Minh Nguyen, director of EKU's Asian Studies Program, at

Published on April 09, 2015

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