Literary Transversals: Modern East Asian and Diasporic Literature

April 22 - 23, 2022
Day 1: Swift Hall, 3rd Floor Lecture Hall, 1025 E. 58th Street
Day 2: Logan Center for the Arts, Performance Penthouse 901, 915 E. 60th Street

Registration Required
For IN PERSON attendance, click here.
For VIRTUAL attendance, click here.

Kanfu Train Ferry (Shimonoseki – Busan) | Animation by David Krolikoski

This two-day conference brings prominent scholars together at the University of Chicago’s Hyde Park campus and online to explore new cross-disciplinary theoretical and methodological approaches to the study of East Asian literature. Literary Transversals takes the concept of “transversality” as its central theme to highlight current scholarship that traverses geographical, formal, and disciplinary boundaries. By putting scholars that work on diverse translation/translingual, transnational, and transmedial research in conversation, the conference explores how critical engagement with diaspora, world literature, and/or media culture has the potential to meaningfully (re)shape and expand the field of East Asian Studies, while challenging the historically constructed institutional focus on the physical “area” of “area studies.”

Literary Transversals is free and open to the public and is organized by Susan Dan Su and Emily Jungmin Yoon, PhD candidates in East Asian Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago.


Swift Hall, 3rd Floor Lecture Hall, 1025 E. 58th Street, Chicago, IL 60637

2:30 - 3:00 pm
Introductions with Coffee and Refreshments

3:00 - 5:00 pm
Panel 1 - Legibility, Legitimacy, Intimacy: Reading Ethnic Identity in Transnational Contexts

5:15 - 6:15 pm
Keynote Speech 1 - "What Is an Asian Diaspora?" by Timothy Yu (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Logan Center for the Arts, Performace Penthouse 901, 915 E. 60th Street, Chicago, IL 60637

9:30 - 10:00 am
Introductions with Breakfast

10:00 - 12:00 pm
Panel 2 - Between, Through, and Across: Transmedial Modes and Methods

12:00 - 1:00 pm

1:00 - 3:00 pm
Panel 3 - On Their Own Terms: Dialogues and Creative Spaces Between Languages

3:00 - 3:30 pm
Coffee and Refreshments

3:30 - 4:30 pm
Keynote Speech 2 - "No Translation Necessary? Liberal Democracy’s Monolingualizing Impact in Our Time" by Rey Chow (Duke University)


*Asterisk next to name denotes virtual presenter

*Rey Chow (Duke University)
Timothy Yu (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Angie Chau (University of Victoria)
Andre Haag (University of Hawai'i at Mānoa)
Carl E. Kubler (University of Chicago)
Nick Ogonek (University of Chicago)
Yoon Jeong Oh (New York University)
*Evelyn Shih (University of Colorado Boulder)
Susan Dan Su (University of Chicago)
Timothy Thurston (University of Leeds)
Ethan Waddell (University of Chicago)
Yinzhi (Celia) Xu (University of Chicago)
Renren Yang (University of British Columbia)
Emily Jungmin Yoon (University of Chicago)

Paola Iovene (University of Chicago)
Hoyt Long (University of Chicago)
Haun Saussy (University of Chicago)


Literary Transversals is co-sponsored by the Franke Institute for the Humanities, the Association for Asian Studies Northeast Asia Council, the Korea Foundation, and the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Chicago with generous support from a Title VI National Resource Center Grant from the U.S. Department of Education.