Call for Applications, Chinese Studies Summer Institute 2016, University of Minnesota, Rivers and Human Systems in China, Africa and North America

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Summer Program
January 15, 2016
United States
Subject Fields: 
African History / Studies, American History / Studies, Chinese History / Studies, Environmental History / Studies, East Asian History / Studies

The Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation and the Consortium of Humanities Centers and Institutes are sponsoring the first annual Summer Institute in Chinese Studies and Global Humanities, to be held at the Institute for Advanced Study at the University of Minnesota, June 13-17, 2016. The Summer Institute, titled “Grasping Water: Rivers and Human Systems in China, Africa, and North America,” will be directed jointly by Professor Ann Waltner of the Department of History, University of Minnesota, and Professor Ruth Mostern, Interdisciplinary Humanities Graduate Group Chair at the University of California, Merced.

“Grasping Water” examines rivers ecologically, at the intersection of the physical world and human culture, in ways that demand both humanistic and scientific perspectives. The attempt to control rivers—to minimize flooding, to facilitate transportation, and to provide water for drinking, irrigation, and electric power—is one of the great enterprises of human history. It is an enterprise with a checkered history: the control of nature has proven to be a vexed question. The question of control of rivers is deeply political: who sets the priorities for river use, who invests in river projects, where is knowledge about rivers produced, who benefits from river control? How do rivers figure into narratives about local meaning and identity, and who sets the terms for those conversations? The Institute will look at ways in which \communities and political entities in China, North America, and Africa have dealt with the problem of controlling rivers in comparative and historical perspective.

We welcome the participation of junior scholars, especially those from China and Africa.  We have funding to cover the expenses for a number of young scholars.

For more information about the Institute and for application forms, please see the Institute's website.




Contact Info: 

Grasping Water Summer Institute

Institute for Advanced Study

84 Church Street SE, Ste. 290

Minneapolis, MN 55455 USA

612 624-2921


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