Category Archives: Uncategorized

University of Minnesota – Twin Cities – Postdoctoral Fellow, Hmong Studies

The Program in Asian American Studies and the Institute for Advanced Study
at the University of Minnesota invite applications for the 2010-2011
Postdoctoral Fellowship in Hmong Studies. The fellowship is for work in
any field of Hmong Studies and is generously funded by a grant from the
Henry Luce Foundation.

Applicants should conduct research germane to Hmong Studies. Proposed
research projects should have the potential to make a significant
contribution to the field.

During their stay at the University of Minnesota, postdoctoral fellows
will be expected to participate in research, teaching, and service. While
research is the primary responsibility, fellows will be expected to teach
one course related to their research interests and consonant with the
curricular needs of the Asian American Studies program. In addition,
fellows are expected to give one talk on campus on their research project.

The stipend for 2010-2011 year will be $45,000, with full fringe benefits.
The Institute for Advanced Study will provide the fellow with office space
and routine office support for photocopying, faxing, mailing, etc.

A doctoral degree in hand is required by August 30, 2010. Preference will
be given to applicants who have completed their degrees in the past five
years. The postdoctoral fellowship will begin on August 30, 2010, is for
one year, and is non-renewable.

Applications should be completed on-line through the University of
Minnesota Job Site Search for requisition #
164296 and follow instructions. Review of applications will begin on
February 8, 2010.

Contact Info:
Ann Waltner
Institute for Advanced Study,
131 Nolte Center
315 Pillsbury Drive SE
University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, MN 55455


UCLA AASC: 2009 Statistical Portrait of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Other Pacific Islanders

The UCLA Asian American Studies Center, as an official U.S. Census Information Center (as a co-partner with National Coalition for Asian Pacific Community Development), is pleased to provide this 2009 statistical portrait of the Asian American and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander populations produced by the US Census Bureau for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, which will take place in May, 2009. The portrait provides current census data, population projections, and internet links that should be useful for research, planning, writing and general educational purposes.

Go to the following links to view the data:

UCLA Asian American Studies Center


CFP 4th Annual UC Santa Cruz APARC Grad Student Conf on Mobility in the Asia-Pacific-Americas (Feb. 21, 2009)

CALL FOR PAPERS (deadline: Dec 1, 2008)

UC Santa Cruz Asia-Pacific-Americas Research Cluster Graduate Student Conference on Mobility in the Asia-Pacific-Americas

CONFERENCE DATE: Saturday, February 21, 2009 at the University of California,  Santa Cruz

The Asia-Pacific-Americas Research Cluster (APARC) at the University of  California, Santa Cruz is pleased to present its fourth annual Graduate  Research Conference on the theme of how mobility in Asia, the Americas, and the Pacific produces discourses.  APARC invites submissions from graduate students from any discipline on topics that address, complicate, or illustrate issues  surrounding mobility, including
(1) the movement of ideas, people, and tangible and intangible goods along networks of people, technology, and water which are not necessarily bound to the nation and nation-state,
(2) how mobility plays in the making of conceptual frameworks in which ethnic, transnational, gendered, indigenous and other identities are construed, and
(3) how borders, boundaries, and other spatial categories can interfere with or arise from  mobility.

We also welcome submissions related to this theme that address pedagogical challenges and new ways in which multi-media can be used in the classroom.


Hyung Il Pai, Associate Professor in East Asian Languages & Cultures and the  History Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara, will deliver a keynote address entitled “Touring Japan’s Mythical Homelands: The Search for Authenticity and the Marketing of Heritage Destinations in the  Empire (1905-1945).”

Professor Pai’s research is interdisciplinary and has been  published in the Journal of Korean Studies, the Journal of East Asian  Archaeology, and in several Korean and Japanese journals. She is the author of Constructing “Korean” Origins: A Critical Review of Archaeology, Historiography, and Racial Myth in Korean State Formation Theories and is  currently working on a manuscript titled “The Re-discovery of Japan’s Antiquity: Nationalism, Colonialism and Heritage Management.”

Papers from any discipline are welcome. Please send to the following:

Your abstract (300 word limit), institutional and departmental  affiliation, and class year no later than Monday, December 1, 2008. Abstracts  will be accepted on a rolling basis.

Important note: Due to budgetary constraints and policies, we are unable to  fund student travel and accommodation expenses. Participants are asked to  secure funding at their home institutions. We sincerely hope that this will not prevent contributions to this promising event.

From: Amanda Shuman

Introducing SANACS!

First 40 paid charter members will receive a free book!

ISAAC is delighted to announce the formation of the Society of Asian North American Christian Studies. SANACS seeks to provide a community for scholars who are interested in Asian North American Christianity. We are a part of a growing interest in the study of religion in Asian and Pacific North America.

SANACS is currently administered by Dr. Russell Yee of ISAAC, who also serves as the Managing Editor for the SANACS journal.

The annual membership fee is $45 ($25 for graduate students). Members will receive a copy of the SANACS Annual journal upon publication in the Fall.

We invite you to be a charter member.

The first 40 paid members will receive a free copy of forthcoming books by Jonathan Tan (Introducing Asian American Theologies) or Amos Yong (Hospitality and the Other). Both books are published by Orbis Books and will be available in the Spring 2008.

So sign up now to reserve your free copy!

Click thumbnails below to view larger size…

Amos Yong, Hospitality and the OtherJonathan Tan, Introducing Asian American Theologies

Book Review _ Immigrant Faiths

Published by H-AmstdyATh-net.msuDOTedu (February, 2007)

Karen I. Leonard, Alex Stepick, Manuel A. Vasquez, and Jennifer Holdaway, eds. Immigrant Faiths: Transforming Religious Life in America. Lanham: AltaMira Press, 2005. 259 pp. Notes, bibliography, index. $59.00 (cloth), ISBN 978-0-7591-0816-5.

Reviewed for H-Amstdy by Jodi Eichler-Levine, Department of Religion, Columbia University.

Crossing National and Religious Boundaries

Ironically, Immigrant Faiths: Transforming Religious Life in America, an excellent anthology that presents many new models for studying religion and migration in America, displays one of the most classically flawed conceptualizations of “religion” in its title: with the prominence of the term “faiths,” its front cover reiterates the traditional nineteenth-century Protestant focus on religion as that which is believed, a conceptualization that has long since been critiqued, not least by many of the scholars writing within this volume itself. Nonetheless, Immigrant Faiths provides a collection of rich case studies on the dynamics of migration and religious life in the United States. The essays, which come from a range of disciplines including history, sociology, and religious studies, make up a volume that represents work affiliated with the International Migration Program of the Social Science Research Council.

The collection is framed by an introduction from editor Karen Leonard and by broad essays from two of the volume’s other editors, both of whom attempt to assess the state of the field. The opening piece, by anthropologist Alex Stepick, examines how religious issues have affected migration studies, while the closing essay, by religionist Manuel A. Vasquez, assesses how the question of migration has influenced scholars in religious studies; the two studies complement well.

The book’s main body of essays represents a wide variety of work. Chapters by Derek Chang and Danielle Brune Sigler bring an historical angle to the project as a whole. Chang’s piece, on American Baptist Home Missions among Chinese immigrants and ex-slaves in the late nineteenth century, examines the overlap of civic and religious discourse in the group’s activities. Similarly, Sigler addresses complexities of race, religion, and leadership in her biographical study of Charles Manuel “Sweet Daddy” Grace, an immigrant from Cape Verde who founded the Holiness-influenced United House of Prayer for All People.

Transnationalism is another major theme of the volume; it receives strong treatment in Kenneth J. Guest’s “Religion and Transnational Migration in the New Chinatown,” which chronicles how religious communities are part of the complex ways that recent Fuzhounese immigrants in New York relate to their new daily life in America and to their home villages in China.

Although some of the volume’s contributors make a point of unpacking the idea of “religion,” such discussions could have been more nuanced. Stepick, for example, argues that Nietzsche is “dead wrong today, at least for immigrants” (p. 11), an observation that is not really news in religious studies; indeed, as Leonard notes in the introduction, one of the goals of this anthology was to move beyond traditional Western conceptions of religion, taking into account the general demise of the “secularism” hypothesis. For the most part, the volume succeeds in this area; in particular, Ronald Nakasone and Susan Sered’s essay, “Ritual Transformations in Okinawan Immigrant Communities” attends to rich complications in the identities of Okinawan immigrants and argues against faith-oriented conceptions of religion. Similarly, Guest notes that the practices of Fuzhounese immigrants cannot easily be reduced to any singular tradition (p. 150). Even Nakasone and Sered, however, rely upon somewhat older literature in their overt theorizing of religion. It would be interesting to see how various essays in this volume might work in conversation with Thomas Tweed’s Crossing and Dwelling: A Theory of Religion (2006), which was published after Immigrant Faiths went to press.

Another way in which this volume moves beyond older paradigms of religious studies is in its attention to domestic religion and to other non-congregational instances of lived religion. Pyong Gap Min’s “Religion and the Maintenance of Ethnicity among Immigrants: A Comparison of Indian Hindus and Korean Protestants” is particularly strong in this area; similarly, in “The Protestant Ethic and the Dis-Spirit of Vodou,” Karen Richman examines the nuanced varieties of religious practice among the Haitians of Palm Bach country, including “performance events” centered around cassette players with recorded “letters”; she notes how “creative uses of cassette tape and video recorders have resulted in a reconfiguration of the boundaries of the ritual performance space, allowing immigrants to continue to serve their spirits back home” (p. 175).

At the same time, there is plenty of attention to more public religious practices, including Marie Friedmann Marquardt’s “Structural and Cultural Hybrids: Religious Congregational Life and Public Participation of Mexicans in the New South” and Thomas J. Douglas’s “Changing Religious Practices among Cambodian Immigrants in Long Beach and Seattle.” The overlaps of civic and religious life emerge throughout the book, as in Marquardt’s description of a “human-sized paper mache replica of the Statue of Liberty with a huge red question mark wrapped around its body” (p. 198), which had been made and used by one congregation’s youth in public protests; this anecdote illustrates the question of how immigrants’ religious identities are performed in the public square, and how their identities as Americans are performed within church buildings. Questions of civic life and national (or transnational) identities were thus a recurring theme, one that was highlighted in the volume’s framing essays and that should come to the fore more explicitly in future work in this field, particularly in light of the major protests concerning U.S. immigration policy in May 2006, and given the continuing post-9/11 challenges facing many immigrant communities.

As other reviewers have noted and as Leonard acknowledges, it is unfortunate that the book does not contain any case studies on Muslim immigrants.[1] Likewise, although this was specifically a volume tilted towards the “new” religious communities entering America, more transhistorical comparisons with studies of Jewish, Irish, Italian, and other earlier waves of immigration would have provided a deeper conversation. A few of the book’s authors, notably Stepick and Min, do employ such comparisons, to good effect.

Some of the ground not covered here has already been taken up in Religion and Immigration: Christian, Jewish, and Muslim Experiences in the United States (2003), edited by Yvonne Yazbeck Haddad, Jane I. Smith, and John L. Esposito, also published by Alta Mira Press; these two volumes might complement one another well in a classroom setting. Similarly, Making Muslim Space in North America and Europe (1996), edited by Barbara Daly Metcalf, provides strong work on the Muslims who are missing from this volume. Overall, Immigrant Faiths is a valuable and timely collection of essays, with nuanced case studies and assessments of the flexibilities and complications of immigrant religions; it will be useful in the classroom and the library alike for scholars of religion, migration, and American Studies.


[1]. Sarah Stohlman, review of Immigrant Faiths: Transforming Religious Life in America, ed. Karen L. Leonard et al., Sociology of Religion 6.3 (2006): 334.

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