China and Inner Asia
Following the resurgence of protests against racialized police violence since May 2020, citizens, activists, artists, and academic communities across the globe have renewed efforts to reflect on and respond to issues of race and racial discrimination. One such measure taken to address structural racism in academia has been an email petition generated by members of the Association for Asian Studies to the board of directors, in which cosigners voice their support for black scholars of Asia and the need to combat racial bias and anti-Blackness within Asian Studies. To expand the epistemic potential of Asian Studies and Global Asia programs, we must center anti-racist pedagogies and review issues of race and culture beyond the existing paradigms of Asian diasporas and Asian migrants.
In this context, we are proposing a two-part panel to present multi-disciplinary and polyvocal perspectives on the current state of race and ethnicity in Asian Studies. This panel cobbles together papers that addresses pedagogical issues and epistemologies (i.e. both hegemonic and resistant/counter-hegemonic). We ask: 1)How might we decolonize existing vocabularies within Asian Studies while addressing the limitations of appropriating, transposing, and/or mistranslating Euro-American perspectives on racial formations?; 2)What are the explicit and implicit biases inherent to the conception and history of Asian Studies as a field? And how to address the gap between racialized experiences and scholarly/institutional discourses about racism, racial justice, and representation?; 3)What are the theoretical, methodological, and political concerns surrounding issues of representation (i.e. who can/should speak for whom)? Whose voices and experiences should be centered and how might we accomplish such recentering?