China

And the days are not full enough

The past month has been conference season for this Asianist – and a pretty exciting one, at that! I am feeling both rejuvenated intellectually & yet also melancholy. I relish the opportunity to reconnect with old friends & acquaintances and make new connections, but it reminds me how much I miss some things (and many people).…

Recent research and … Star Wars (of course)

Since moving to Montana, I’ve come to the general conclusion that academics are like wolverines (well, at least academics in my fields): we like our space. We really, really like our space. One might say we’re ridiculously, fiercely protective of that & may in fact get pretty damn grumpy when we don’t get it. I’m currently knee-deep…

Happy (research) birthday

Six years ago – give or take a week or two, I can’t remember when the semester started – I found one of the great intellectual loves of my life. I suppose I often think of the real birth of my research life as being tied to my actual birthday: it was at some point around the…

New Year, New(ish) Look

Well, 2014 was a pretty exciting year for this blog: my little post on a Chinese lianhuanhua version of Star Wars went viral (and is still garnering a pretty astonishing number of page views for a not frequently updated, kind of boring blog. It’s far surpassed even my best post at Kotaku!). I was also selected as one…

Coming ’round full circle

I took the first week and a half of winter break to go on one of my every-nine-months-or-so gaming binges – doing the media consumption equivalent of gorging one’s self during the holidays on delicious treats with little thought to anything or anyone else (or your waistline). I played through Tales of Xillia, having played about 3/4s…

Giving pleasure, not a political lesson

Well, the Star Wars comic has proved shockingly popular; I’ve been keeping up on both where it’s going & the sorts of discussions its been stimulating with great interest. I’ve actually been pleasantly surprised that there’s been a lot of delight (and trying to figure out where the references are coming from), versus generalized grousing about shanzhai culture in…

A Long Time Ago in a China Far, Far Away …

As much as I don’t miss large swaths of life in China, I do look longingly at kongfz.com, the world’s best secondhand book website, and remember with pleasure being able to purchase a lot of sources and other bits of historical detritus with a minimum of effort. These days, getting ahold of things that catch…

A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll [Probably] Do Again

Back in my second year of grad school, Ian Bogost encouraged me to apply to the world’s most insane sounding conference (or at least, the most insane sounding conference I had ever heard of): Foundations of Digital Games 2009, which wasn’t just outside of my area in a variety of ways (my only credibility vis-à-vis “game…

Thoughts on our 2014 AAS Roundtable, Part II

As I mentioned in my general ramblings on our AAS roundtable, the general theme was “access.” Although Alan & Nick in particular focused on issues of accessibility in regards to sources (mostly for teaching), Amanda & I riffed on the theme of accessibility of sources (mostly for research). I spoke for a very short period of…

Thoughts on our 2014 AAS Roundtable, Part I

I just returned from a rousing Association of Asian Studies annual conference in Philadelphia, which is the annual gathering to wallow (in the most wonderful way) in Asian studies for a few days with old friends & new friends. What follows are some (probably confused and somewhat random) thoughts on the panel I was part…