Author Archives: Humanities & Social Sciences

The Impact of the Digital on Japanese Studies

When: November 11-12, 2016
Where: Joseph Regenstein Library, Room 122
The Digital Humanities Workshop of the University of Chicago will be hosting a public workshop on “The Impact of the Digital on Japanese Studies” on November 11-12, 2016. The goal of the workshop is to bring together a variety of Japan scholars to consider how digital data and computational methods are changing the ways we organize and analyze cultural and historical information. It is also meant to catalyze new initiatives and projects by bringing together experienced and newer voices to brainstorm, discuss, and offer critical feedback on digitally inflected work and how it might support humanistic scholarship.The workshop is organized around projects at various stages of completion, ranging from those at a conceptual stage to those more fully realized. Presenters will share the results of any data-driven work they have done while addressing the technical or methodological processes involved in this work and possible future directions for research. Subject matter will range widely across multiple time periods and disciplines and will interrogate some of the most popular computational methods: text analysis, network analysis, and spatial analysis. A tentative schedule of panel sessions and individual presentation titles is provided below.For more information about the workshop, please contact the organizer, Hoyt Long, at hoytlong@uchicago.edu. Visitors from outside Chicago can find out about transportation and local accommodations here.

Schedule

Friday, November 11

10:00 – 12:00     Session 1
12:00 – 1:00       Lunch
1:00 – 3:30         Session 2
4:00 – 5:00        Group Discussion/Roundtable
5:00 – 6:30        Reception

Saturday, November 12

9:30 – 11:30        Session 3
11:30 – 12:30       Lunch
12:30 – 2:30       Session 4
2:30 – 3:00        Wrap-up Discussion

Workshop Sessions

Session 1

Hyakunin Isshu as a Mini Database
Catherine Ryu, Michigan State University

On Structure and Style in the Dai Nihon Shi
Aliz Horvath, University of Chicago

On Late Medieval Forgery Production
Paula R. Curtis, University of Michigan

To view the abstracts, click here.


Session 2

The Epigraphy of Business Documents
Raja Adal, University of Pittsburgh

On the Politics of Text
Amy Catalinac, New York University

On the Language of Empire in Taiyo Magazine (1895-1925)
Molly Des Jardin, University of Pennsylvania

Political Discourse in Early Meiji Japan
Mark Ravina, Emory University

To view the abstracts, click here.


Session 3

Mapping Medical Edo/Tokyo
Susan Burns, University of Chicago

Can You Sing a Map?
Joel Legassie, University of Victoria

On Scale
Jonathan Zwicker, University of California, Berkeley

To view the abstracts, click here.


Session 4

On Collecting Data
Jonathan Abel, Penn State University

On Aozora Bunko as Archive
Hoyt Long, University of Chicago

On Japanese Corpora and Tokenization
Toshinobu Ogiso, National Institute for Japanese Language and Linguistics

To view the abstracts, click here.

Half a Hundred: EALC’s Golden Anniversary 1966–2016

Exhibition Dates: October 28, 2016 – March 20, 2017
Location: Fifth Floor, Regenstein Library, 1100 East 57th Street, Chicago

Half a Hundred: EALC's Golden Anniversary, 1966-2016The year 2016 marks the 50th anniversary of the formal establishment of the Department of Far Eastern Languages and Civilizations (now the Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations) at the University, although the founding of the teaching program on East Asia at the University can be traced back to 1936 when Herrlee Glessner Creel (1905-1994) was appointed to teach ancient Chinese language and civilization in the Department of Oriental Languages and Civilizations.  To commemorate this landmark year for East Asian Studies at the University, in conjunction with a number of other celebratory activities, a small book exhibition is on display on the Fifth Floor of the Regenstein Library. Entitled Half a Hundred: EALC’s Golden Anniversary 1966-2016, the exhibition showcases scholarly publications by ten former East Asian Studies faculty members who made significant contributions to the Department. The exhibition is curated by Edward L. Shaughnessy, the Lorraine J. and Herrlee G. Creel Distinguished Service Professor in Early Chinese Studies, with assistance from Ayako Yoshimura and Yuan Zhou of the East Asian Collection and Joseph Scott of the Special Collection Research Center of the University Library.

The art and science of bringing Asian resources online

Scholars and students at the University of Chicago and around the world have a fundamental need for access to digital Asian resources in all disciplines.  By collaborating with librarians, faculty, computer scientists, and other colleagues at libraries and universities around the world, the University of Chicago Library is expanding the size and range of Asian digital collections that are freely available and discoverable online, while developing sophisticated new approaches to presenting and connecting materials in a variety of sonic and visual formats.

The Bodhisattva Siddhartha

The Bodhisattva Siddhartha (Sakyamuni Buddha as a Prince). From a set of relief sculptures depicting the life of the Buddha at the Royal Bhutanese Monastery, Bodhgaya, India. 20th century. Photo by Eric Huntington (PhD’13), 2007.

Metadata for Huntington Photographic Archive of Buddhist and Asian Art

The University of Chicago has been awarded a $50,000 grant from the Henry Luce Foundation to improve the metadata for the John C. and Susan L. Huntington Photographic Archive of Buddhist and Asian Art currently at The Ohio State University. Our Library is collaborating with the Huntingtons to augment and improve access to the metadata for more than 27,500 photographs of the art of China, Korea, and Japan, as well as Thailand, Myanmar (Burma), and Indonesia for improved scholarly and public understanding of Asia from ancient to modern times.

The Huntington Archive represents the efforts of 45 years of field documentation photography by John and Susan Huntington, who visited sites in remote regions of Asia, photographing many works of art that had never been published. Since the time many of these photos were taken, in far too many cases, the works of art have since been lost through theft or have been destroyed through natural and man-made disasters. The photos comprise one of the most important sources of information about these works.

Sonic and Visual South Asia in Space and Time

Continuing work that first began with a grant from the Neubauer Family Collegium for Culture and Society in 2013, this summer, Laura Ring, Assistant Southern Asia Librarian, and I collaborated with faculty including Philip Bohlman, Kaley Mason, and Anna Lise Seastrand to lead a workshop in Colombo, Sri Lanka, on philosophical and practical considerations with metadata titled Sonic and Visual South Asia in Space and Time—Connecting Objects, Texts, People and Places.

Participants included ethnomusicologists, art historians, leaders of cultural heritage institutions, social historians, archeologists, media and industry experts, computational scientists, archivists, and librarians.  Our intention is to investigate over several years how the methods of science might elucidate and facilitate the humanistic understanding of the resources upon which we focus.

SAMP Open Archives Initiative

The South Asia Materials Project’s (SAMP’s) Open Archives Initiative, launched in April, is creating and maintaining a collection of open access materials for the study of South Asia.  Subject specialists focused on the South Asian subcontinent from university libraries across the U.S. and South Asia have begun to work together to set priorities for digitization of resources on South Asia in every discipline from the humanities to the sciences. Among the intended candidates for digitization are official publications from colonial British India, 19th– and 20th-century serials, newspapers and monographs, and manuscript collections such as the Muslim League papers and the Indian National Congress papers and official correspondence.

Representations of the Holocaust in the Arts and the Legacy of Elie Wiesel (1928-2016)

Exhibit Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, Fourth Floor
Exhibit Dates: August 16 – October 31, 2016

Elie Wiesel

Elie Wiesel (September 30, 1928-July 2, 2016)

“How does one describe the indescribable? How does one use restraint in recreating the fall of mankind and the eclipse of the gods? And then, how can one be sure that the words, once uttered, will not betray, distort the message they bear?” (Elie Wiesel, “An Interview Unlike Any Other,” in A Jew Today, trans. Marion Wiesel [New York: Vintage, 1979], 15.)

Reflections on the Holocaust take various forms. In the first decades after the end of World War II, many survivors chose to publish first-hand accounts of their experience. Elie Wiesel’s internationally acclaimed memoir was originally published in Yiddish in 1956 under the title Un di velt hot geshvign (And the world kept silent). He later translated an abbreviated account into French, La Nuit, which served as the basis for his English translation, Night, published in 1960. It was this version of his experiences that catapulted him to international notoriety, including receiving the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1986.

Facsimile manuscript of Schoenberg’s “A Survivor from Warsaw”

Facsimile manuscript of Schoenberg’s “A Survivor from Warsaw”

Wiesel’s attempt to reflect on death, suffering and fate through artistic representation, was part of a larger endeavor to represent the Holocaust that invoked severe polemics among artists. Such polemics are addressed in this exhibit through the work of four influential figures: Sylvia Plath (Poetry), George Steiner (Literature), Arthur Miller (Theater), and Arnold Schoenberg (Music).

Special attention is paid to attempts to confront both personal and collective experiences pertaining to the Holocaust and the critical reception of such attempts. But the exhibit also examines the way in which critical reception prompted alternative forms of representation. Such was the case of George Steiner who, objecting to Plath’s “personification of the Holocaust,” attempted a non-personal representation of the Holocaust by rendering it philosophically and in light of the problem of anti-Semitism; an account explicated in his Portage to San Cristobal of A.H (1982). In another instance, The Diary of Anne Frank, adopted by F. Goodrich and A. Hackett for a Broadway stage production in 1955, was criticized severely by the playwright Arthur Miller, who accused its creators of seeking audience gratification versus critical reflection.

Chinese translation of Elie Wiesel’s Night

Elie Wiesel’s memoir, Night, has been translated into 30 languages since the French was published in 1958. Here is the cover of the Chinese translation.

This two-case exhibit is displayed in the 4th floor Reading Room of the Joseph Regenstein Library, from August 16 through October 31, 2016. Visitors unaffiliated with the University of Chicago should contact Anne K. Knafl, aknafl@uchicago.edu, in advance of visiting the exhibit.

Kazimir Malevich and “The Last Futurist Exhibition (0, 10)”

Exhibit Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, Second Floor
Exhibit Dates: June 22 – October 31, 2016

Black Square by Malevich, in 1915

Black Square by Malevich (1915)

One hundred years ago (December 1915-January 1916), one of the most significant exhibitions in the history of the pre-revolutionary Russian avant-garde was The Last Futurist Exhibition of Painting 0.10 (Zero Ten). It marked an important moment of transition. Up to this point, Russian innovators had essentially been assimilating and developing the creative inventions of European artists. 0.10 revealed that Russian artists had caught up with their Western colleagues and now occupied a position at the forefront of avant-garde experimentation. From being followers, they had become leaders. At 0.10, Kazimir Malevich presented his famously iconic Black square along with thirty-eight completely non-figurative Suprematist canvases, which consisted of colored geometric shapes painted on white grounds… assemblages of everyday materials that were liberated from the wall and floor and slung across the corners of the room so that they defied gravity and existed fully in space. These twin innovations of non-figurative work in two and three dimensions posed fundamental questions concerning the nature of art itself, undermining traditional notions of painting and sculpture, and marking the beginning of a new phase in modernist explorations. [Any] attempt to reconstruct the original show would be well nigh impossible given the paucity of accurate information.

Photograph of works displayed on walls.

Only known image of Malevich’s works as displayed in the 1915-1916 “Last Futurist Exhibition”

Only two installation photographs of 0.10 exist – one shows part of Malevich’s display and the other illustrates a fragment of Tatlin’s presentation. Even the printed catalogue does not provide a definitive list of exhibits since the display underwent several changes as artists added and removed items. Moreover, the catalogue entries are so vague (sometimes consisting merely of numbers) that many of the works are difficult to identify with any precision. To compound such difficulties… many of the paintings were lost or damaged in the chaos that followed the Revolution of 1917, the Civil War (1918–20) and the imposition of Stalinism. Uncertainties about 0.10 abound……The show in Russian is Poslednaya futuristicheskya vystavka kartin 0,10 (nol’-desyat’). Translating the title into English usually entails changing the mathematical formula as well, and converting the comma into a full stop. While the exact meaning of ‘zero-ten’ remains obscure, a mathematical allusion was clearly intentional. Malevich, who never underestimated the importance of the Black square, frequently referred to it as the ‘zero’ of form – denoting both an end and a beginning – and argued that Suprematism went beyond ‘zero’. ‘10’ might refer to the number of artists initially involved in the show, who had also gone beyond zero.

Text excerpted from “In Search of 0,10 – The Last Futurist Exhibition of Painting” by Christina Lodder in The Burlington Magazine, no. 158 (2016), pp. 61-63.

On the 100th Anniversary of Kafka’s Metamorphosis

Exhibit Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, Second Floor
Exhibit Dates: April 27 – June 30, 2016

Artist James Legros's image of the transformation of Gregor Samsa.

James Legros’s depiction of the transformation of Gregor Samsa.

“When Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from disturbing dreams, he found himself transformed…”

Into what sort of thing was Gregor transformed? Why? How did his family and the world react to this transformation? Some very few responses are presented from the enormous body of scholarship and artistic vizualizations that in the past 100 years, have made this story a gem of world literature.

Benjamin Elijah Mays and the University of Chicago

Exhibit Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, Fourth Floor
Exhibit Dates: April 19 – July 31, 2016

Benjamin Elijah Mays

Benjamin Elijah Mays in his office at Morehouse College

“We should not boast or glorify in our wisdom because we cannot choose our parents and we cannot choose the places of birth. And whether we were born rich or poor, wise or foolish, it is largely by accident, and we had little choice in the matter.” Thus spoke Dr. Benjamin Elijah Mays to an audience of 150 at Rockefeller Chapel on Sunday, December 5, 1971. In this sermon, “In What Shall We Glory?,” Mays offers his reading of Jeremiah 9:23-24 as an admonishment to turn away from glorifying in hierarchical divisions and, instead, commit oneself to kindness, justice and righteousness; not only in one’s daily existence, but played out in “our political, economic, national and international lives.”

Dr. Mays (1894-1984) was the most prominent and influential black intellectual of his time, who sought to produce Christian ministers and community leaders committed to public service, social justice, racial equality and intellectual excellence. He is best known as the mentor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Mays and King met in 1944 at the start of Mays’s 27-year service as President of Morehouse College and while King was still a teenager.

Benjamin Elijah Mays was born near Rambo (now Epworth), South Carolina in 1894 to

Hezekiah Mays and Louvenia Carter, tenant farmers who had been enslaved. He earned his Bachelor’s degree from Bates College in 1920. That same year, he was ordained a Baptist minister. Interested in pursuing graduate work in religion, Mays applied to Newton Theological Seminary but was denied admittance based on his race. In turn, he applied and was admitted to the University of Chicago, Divinity School. Mays earned his A.M (1925) and Ph.D. (1935) through the Divinity School. In his autobiography, Lord, The People Have Driven Me On, he describes his intellectual flourishing under the direction of “some of the world’s greatest scholars,” but also pervasive prejudice against blacks both at the University and in the city of Chicago.

Mays’s autobiography dedicated to Hanna Gray

A copy of Mays’s autobiography, Lord, The People Have Driven Me On, which he has dedicated to Hanna Gray, president of the University of Chicago, 1978-1993

This two-case exhibit displays materials from the University of Chicago Library’s collection by and about Benjamin Elijah Mays, with special attention to his relationship to the University. Items on display include facsimile reproductions of correspondence between Mays and members of the University administration from the archives of the Special Collections Research Center. A portrait of Dr. Mays, to honor his relationship to the Divinity School, will be unveiled on April 21, 2016, to be permanently displayed in the Common Room of Swift Hall. This exhibit is on display April 19 through July 31, 2016, in the 4th floor Reading Room of the Regenstein Library.

20 Years and After: Korean Collections Consortium of North America (KCCNA)

Exhibit Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, Fifth Floor
Exhibit Dates: March 1 – April 1, 2016

Poster "20 Years and After"Are you interested in finding books on Korean textiles and costumes in the 19th century or Korean performing arts? Our library users are able to access materials on more than 100 subject areas in Korean Studies. In parallel with the robust growth experienced by Korean Studies programs in North America over the past two decades, Korean Studies libraries contributed by building comprehensive collections beyond core subjects, such as literature and history. Korean Studies librarians in North America developed the concept of a cooperative collection development program, whereby participating members divide collection responsibilities to compile a larger inter-institutional collection. As a result, University of Chicago Library users are able to conveniently access materials at any of our partner institutions via Interlibrary Loan.

The Korean Collections Consortium of North America (KCCNA) was founded in 1994 with 6 member institutions, with the University of Chicago quickly joining as the 7th member in 1995. Currently, the number of participating institutions has expanded to 14, covering a total of 109 subjects in Korean Studies. The Korea Foundation, affiliated with the Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has financially supported the consortium for the past 20 years to optimize resources for students and scholars of Korean Studies. Students and scholars now enjoy access to broader and more extensive resources than any one institution could provide by itself. The University of Chicago Library collects nine subject areas as assigned- 1) Welfare Studies; 2) Environmental Studies; 3) Political Parties; 4) Pre-modern Philosophy; 5) Industry; 6) International Relations;  7) Traditional Fiction; 8) Publications on Korea and Koreans published in China and Taiwan; and 9) Publications on Korea and Koreans published in Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin.

Cover of 한국노동사자료총서 (The History of Korean Labor Movements Series)

한국노동사자료총서
(The History of Korean Labor Movements Series)

Visitors to the fifth floor of Regenstein Library will have a chance to view a selection of the University of Chicago’s KCCNA-assigned subject books. One of the books on display is from  한국노동사자료총서 (The History of Korean Labor Movements Series / Han’guk nodongsa charyo ch’ongsŏ ), a 630-volume set of primary sources on key cases on South Korea’s union movement history related to political activities from 1970.

‘An Acquisition of Inestimable Value’: The Men Who Funded the Berlin Collection

Exhibit Location: The Joseph Regenstein Library, Fourth Floor
Exhibit Dates: February 11 – April 15, 2016

Berlin Collection Bookplate

Have you ever wandered through the stacks browsing in books for significant dedications, humorous doodling, or interesting bookplates?  If you have, you undoubtedly came across one bookplate more than any other.  Tens of thousands of titles bear the Berlin Collection bookplate, proudly listing its nine donors.  Who are these nine men and how did they come to fund this “acquisition of inestimable value”?  It was accomplished through the diligent work of the University’s first President, William Rainey Harper, and the generous donations from four key members of the original Board of Trustees and five prominent Chicago businessmen.

While vacationing in Berlin with his family some fifteen months before the new University of Chicago was scheduled to open in 1892, William Rainey Harper came across a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.  G. Heinrich Simon of S. Calvary and Company, a world renowned bookselling firm that was going to close its doors, wanted to sell off his massive stock en bloc. After some negotiating, the two men agreed upon a final price of $45,000 (or 180,000 marks), an enormous amount of money for the time, but in reality nothing in comparison to its actual value. Indeed, this collection was so vast that it would immediately catapult the University of Chicago into the top tier of research universities in the United States and the entire world. Only one obstacle remained, raising the money for the purchase.

When his first attempts to find funding fell flat, Harper placed the matter before the Board of Trustees, which recommended that the Board itself purchase the Berlin Collection.  According to Thomas W. Goodspeed, Secretary of the Board of Trustees, “Rust began the subscription with $12,000. Kohlsaat followed with $6,000, and Ryerson and Hutchinson assured the rest.”  Along with Harper, Martin A. Ryerson, H. H. Kohlsaat, C. L. Hutchinson, Byron L. Smith, A. A. Sprague, C. H. McCormick, C. R. Crane, H. A. Rust, and C. J. Singer subscribed the entirety of the $45,000 needed to complete the purchase. All the donors with the exception of Harper are commemorated on the bookplate for the Berlin Collection.

This two-case exhibit features biographies of the 9 donors along with highlights from the history of the purchase of the collection.

For a detailed account of the acquisition of the Berlin Collection see Robert Rosenthal’s “The Berlin Collection: A Historyin The Berlin Collection: being a history and exhibition of the books and manuscripts purchased in Berlin in 1891 for the University of Chicago … ([Chicago]: University of Chicago Library, c1979).

 

 

World War I – the Eastern Front: on the front and in their own words

The Joseph Regenstein Library, Second Floor
January 19 – May 16, 2016

Deatail of handwritten text from Franz Eberls KriegstagebuchThrough the course of World War I, many,  from diverse points of view, felt the need to comment immediately upon their experiences in war. In this one-case exhibit one can find a few samplings of such text from the University of Chicago Library’s collections.