AAS Panel on Popular Science in Chinese Socialist Media: Seeking a Discussant for Association for Asian Studies 2020 Conference -

Linda Zhang's picture
August 4, 2019
Subject Fields: 
Area Studies, Art, Art History & Visual Studies, Chinese History / Studies, Film and Film History, History of Science, Medicine, and Technology

Dear all,

Lu Liu (Ph.D, Asian Languages and Cultures, University of Wisconsin), Eldon Pei (Postdoc, Art History, Stanford), Virginian Conn (Ph.D. Candidate, Comparative Literature, Rutgers University) and I (Ph.D. Candidate, East Asian Languages and Cultures, Berkeley) are proposing a panel for AAS Boston 2020, tentatively titled “Learning to see, Picturing the Body, Envisioning Technology: Popular Science in Socialist Media and Film.”

We are seeking a discussant for the panel. If you are interested in this topic, please send me an email at lczhang@berkeley.edu.

The title of the panel, “Learning to See, Picturing the Body, Envisioning Technology,” gestures towards the powerful and prevalent practices of seeing and visualizing in popular science socialist media. Our papers ask: How did Mao-era media teach the viewer how to see and what to see? In turn, how did they engage with tools of scientific vision - such as the microscope, film slides, and the documentary cinematic apparatus itself - to enable greater access to “invisible” or physically-inaccessible worlds? What narratives did PRC science media provide about such visual and scientific technologies as markers of socialist society? In turn, how did the discourse teach viewers and readers to imagine the idealized, socialist child, or the scientific, gendered body of the socialist adult, and even the bodies of their invisible, bacterial enemies? In considering these questions, we seek to delineate the pedagogical practices and impulses in the visual discourse, and vice versa, the visual turn in pedagogical media.

Thank you for reading!

Linda Zhang

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