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CFP-George Orwell: Asian and Global Perspectives
full name / name of organization:
Department of Foreign Languages and Literature / Tunghai University (Taichung, Taiwan)
George Orwell: Asian and Global Perspectives
1. Conference Location:
Department of Foreign Languages and Literature
2. Date: May 21, 2011
3. Conference Theme: George Orwell: Asian and Global
In his The Public Intellectuals (2001), Richard Posner ranks Orwell 11th in a list of the 100 most-mentioned intellectuals of the 20th cent. (depending on coverage in the media, internet "hits" and citations in academic journals). Yet, while Orwell's status in Britain, the US, and the West generally speaking, is beyond question, his place in Asian and other non-Western cultural discourse seems less certain. Orwell, nevertheless, is profoundly linked to and deserving of consideration in the Asian cultural context. He was born in Bengal, served five years in the Indian Imperial Police in Burma, and returned from the experience a firm anti-colonialist. Already in his first book, Down and Out in Paris and London (1933), he reflected on the fate of Indian rickshaw pullers and gharry ponies while discussing his experiences as a dishwasher in a Paris hotel and such texts as “A Hanging,” “Shooting an Elephant,” and Burmese Days have become classics of English colonial literature. From 1941-1943 he was employed by the Indian section of the BBC’s Eastern Service and took a keen interest throughout his life in the question of Indian independence, the future of Palestine, decolonization throughout Asia and around the world, and new English writings from Asia.
As 2010 is an Orwell commemorative year, it presents a good opportunity to further Orwell scholarship in an Asian as well as global context. From raucous democracies to hermit kingdoms, contemporary Asia features varied societal and political models and George Orwell’s writings consequently have been received very differently from country to country. In Myanmar, the former Burma, e.g., Burmese Days (1934) is hailed as a first-class anti-colonial document, but Animal Farm, Nineteen Eighty-four, and the rest of his work are banned. Yet, elsewhere his work is freely available both in English and in translation (e.g. in Taiwan) and George Orwell, by the Japanese academic Yasuhara Okuyama (Tokyo, 1983), made a significant contribution to Orwell scholarship and included original interviews with Orwell contemporaries.
We invite papers exploring the following topics, but also welcome presentations dealing with other aspects of Orwell scholarship:
The reception history of Orwell in Asian countries
4. Conference/Paper Language: All papers are required to be written and presented in English.
5. Guidelines for Abstract Submission:
-The length of the abstract should be maximum 350 words.
6. Important Dates:
Due date for abstract submission: Dec. 15, 2010
7. Contact Information: