Tag Archive for East Asian Studies

Schwarcz Reads From New Book of Poems

Vera Schwarcz, the Mansfield Freeman Professor of East Asian Studies, professor of history, professor of government and chair and director of the Freeman Center for East Asian Studies, offered a poetry reading and informal discussion March 31 in Russell House. Her new book of poems, Chisel of Memory (2009) is a personal collection which blends Chinese and Jewish themes in an original way.

Vera Schwarcz, the Mansfield Freeman Professor of East Asian Studies, professor of history, professor of government and chair and director of the Freeman Center for East Asian Studies, offered a poetry reading and informal discussion March 31 in Russell House. Her new book of poems Chisel of Memory (2009) is a personal collection, which blends Chinese and Jewish themes in an original way. Pictured with her in the photo is Robert Rennie McQuilkin.

SchwarczBorn in Romania trained as a sinologist, she brings to poetry an ear attuned to history, memory and the grace of unexpected discovery. (Photos by Andy Zhou '09)

Born in Romania trained as a sinologist, Schwarcz brings a poetic ear attuned to history, memory and the grace of unexpected discovery. (Photos by Andy Zhou '09)

Schwarcz Publishes Chisel of Remembrance

Chisel of Remembrance by Vera Schwarcz.

Vera Schwarcz, the Mansfield Freeman Professor of East Asian Studies, chair of the East Asian Studies Proggram, professor of history, professor of East Asian studies, is the author of Chisel of Remembrance, a new collection of poems that draws from roots in Jewish, Chinese, and other ancient traditions. The 76-page book of poetry was published from Antrim House Books.

Schwarcz Reflects on 30-Year History with China

Vera Schwarcz, professor of history and East Asian Studies and director of the Freeman Center, discusses her experience with China during a presentation Jan. 29.

Vera Schwarcz, professor of history and East Asian Studies and director of the Mansfield Freeman Center, discusses her experience with China during a presentation Jan. 29.

Thirty years ago, the United States opened its first embassy in the People’s Republic of China as our nation began reestablishing its relations with the country. Vera Schwarcz, professor of history and East Asian studies and director of the Freeman Center, remembers the events well. After all, she was part of them.

Schwarcz, an expert on Chinese culture, politics and literature, was one of only seven official exchange scholars invited to visit China in February 1979 when the embassy opened. Her recollections of this time, and her subsequent 30 years of experiences studying in and about China, served as the foundation for her presentation titled “A Thirty Year Harvest: Personal Reflections on U.S. China Relations.”

Schwarcz’s lecture kicked off Wesleyan’s Mansfield Freeman Center for East Asian Studies semester-long celebration and recognition of the reopening of community country to the western world.

During the lecture Schwarcz shared her insights, inspiration and challenges that have come from her personal relationship with China for the past three decades.

“I went to China as a so-called expert,” Schwarcz says. “I came back as a perennial student.”

Willis Honored for Efforts with Buddhist Nuns

Jan Willis, professor of religion, professor of East Asian studies, meets with three Buddhist nuns in Ladakh, India. Willis was honored as a "Outstanding Woman in Buddhism" recently for making an "exceptional contribution to Buddhism."

Jan Willis, professor of religion, professor of East Asian studies, meets with three Buddhist nuns in Ladakh, India. Willis was honored as a "Outstanding Woman in Buddhism" recently for making an "exceptional contribution to Buddhism."

In the sparsely populated, mountainous region of Ladakh, India, elderly Buddhist nuns are suffering from isolation, illiteracy and lack of respect from their communities. These women, who spent their lives serving their family or working as laborers, have rarely had the opportunity to become ordained or to worship in a monastery like the highly regarded male monks.

“These women have been devalued from the beginning,” says Jan Willis, professor of religion, professor of East Asian studies. “All they’ve ever wanted to do is serve the dharma and study, but instead, they’ve become servants of their community, or helpers for the monks.”

Jan Willis

Jan Willis

Willis, who has devoted part of the last seven years to helping a group of elderly Ladakhi nuns, is being honored as an “Outstanding Woman in Buddhism” for the year 2009 for making an “exceptional contribution to Buddhism.”

Buddhist Prints on Display in Mansfield Gallery

Buddhist Prints from the Derge Parkhang" is on display at the Mansfield Freeman Center for East Asian Studies Gallery through Dec. 7.  The Derge Parkhang is one of the foremost cultural, social, religious, and historical institutions in Tibet.

An exhibit titled "The Pearl of the Snowlands: Buddhist Prints from the Derge Parkhang" is on display at the Mansfield Freeman Center for East Asian Studies Gallery through Dec. 7. Founded in 1729 by Denba Tserenone, the Derge Parkhang is of the foremost cultural, social, religious, and historical institutions in Tibet.