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Wittenberg Professor To Present At Global Education Speakers Series Jan. 13

January 4, 2011  
 Filed in Community, Events, Humanities

Springfield, Ohio – Wittenberg University’s Center for Civic & Urban Engagement (CCUE) and the Global Education and Peace Network continue the Global Education Speakers Series with a presentation by Wittenberg Associate Professor of Chinese Language and Cultural Studies Howard Y.F. Choy at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 13, in Room 105, Joseph C. Shouvlin Center for Lifelong Learning, 737 N. Fountain Ave.

The theme for the ninth annual series is “Why Do They Do That? Asking Questions about Cultural Traditions” and will address stereotypes and provide answers to common questions. The event is free and open to the public.

Titled “Discovering Chinese Culture,” the Jan. 13 program will offer an introduction to Chinese culture from ancient to modern times as Choy provides the audience with some basic knowledge of this East Asian civilization.

“I will try to compress thousands of years of Chinese history, language, philosophy and religion into a one-hour lecture,” Choy said, adding that this “mission impossible” will be carried out by addressing 12 questions:

  • Why does the Chinese government allow families to have only one child?
  • What strategic sense do the Chinese dynasties reveal to us today?
  • Why are there five stars on the national flag of China?
  • Did early China have a concept of law?
  • Why did President Clinton land in Xi’an before visiting Beijing?
  • What do the terracotta soldiers tell us?
  • Why did the First Emperor build the Great Wall?
  • What kind of mentality does the Chinese writing system reflect?
  • Did China discover America in 1421?
  • What is the problem between China and Japan?
  • Why could Mao Zedong (1893-1976) be deified?
  • Why are there so many Chinese restaurants?

Participants are invited to ask additional questions.

A journalist and theater critic from Hong Kong, Choy received his Ph.D. in comparative literature and humanities from the University of Colorado. He joined the Wittenberg faculty in 2007. His research interests focus on Chinese culture and literature, with the most recent project being a comparative study of political jokes across mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and the United States.

Currently editing a book of Liu Zaifu’s selected essays, he is the author of Remapping the Past: Fictions of History in Deng’s China, 1979-1997 (2008) and the assistant author of The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Confucianism (2005). He has also published a number of articles and translations in major scholarly journals and serves as the faculty advisor of The Wittenberg University East Asian Studies Journal.

The Global Education and Peace Network organized in response to Study Circles, which discussed reactions and responses to the events that took place on Sept. 11, 2001. The monthly speakers series includes presentations by community members focused on issues of local and global importance that give citizens an opportunity to consider their role in a democracy to build a better world.

Written By: Phyllis Eberts
Photo By: Erin Pence

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