Full list of events and activities

22-26 June 2020
Organisation of workshop “Reading Sources from the Uyghur Homelands” by Rune Steenberg (online) at Palacky University, Olomouc, Czech Republic

7 February 2020
Lecture “Variations on a theme? Social networks, formalization and the glue of relatedness in Central Asia” by Rune Steenberg at the Conference on “Central Asian Transformations”, Augsburg University, Augsburg, Germany

31 January 2020
Lecture “Measurements in Uyghur legal documents” by Aysima Mirsultan at University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria

28 January 2020
Lecture “The ideology of ‘customs’. The rise and fall of Uyghur social science in post-Mao China” by Rune Steenberg at the Dept. of Development Studies, Freie Universität, Berlin, Germany

8 January 2020
Lecture “Uyghur Identity Narratives in the Reform Era from Eastern Xinjiang,” by Ildikó Bellér-Hann, at the Seminarseries of the Zentralasienseminar, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Berlin, Germany

12-14 December 2019
Lecture “The BRI as a product of Financialisation” by Rune Steenberg at the RoadWorkShop 3.0:”The cultural, political and financial life of China-built infrastructures across Asia”, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland

11 December 2019
Organization of Manuscript seminar with Prof. Ingeborg Baldauf by Aysima Mirsultan, at the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin, Berlin, Germany

11 December 2019
Organization and moderation of workshop with Vanessa Frangville: “Documenting, Assessing and Reporting the Uyghur Crisis” by Rune Steenberg at Université libre de Bruxelles, Bruxelles, Belgium

3 December 2019
Lecture “The Production of Uyghur Subnational Histories in reform China” by Ildikó Bellér-Hann at the Mainzer Kolloquien zur Turkologie und Orientalistik, Johannes Gutenberg Universität, Mainz, Germany

28 November 2019
Lecture “The re-education camps in Xinjiang: Facts, guesses and propaganda” by Rune Steenberg at Copenhagen University, Copenhagen, Denmark

9 November 2019
Participation in closed Uyghur activist conference and presentation on the perspective of the scientific community by Rune Steenberg, Oslo, Norway

6 November 2019
Lecture “Re-education Camps in Xinjiang: Human Rights Violations and International Responsibilities” by Rune Steenberg at Lund University, Lund, Sweden

18-20 October 2019
Lecture “Silk Road Kinship. The Interaction of Gifts, Descent and Bureaucracy in Central Asian Relatedness, with a Special Focus on Uyghurs in Kashgar” by Rune Steenberg at Silk Road workshop, University of Frankfurt, Frankfurt a. M., Germany

17 October 2019
Lecture “To Walk and Chew Gum at the Same Time: Solidarity with the Ethnic Minorities of Xinjiang and Whom Else?“ by Rune Steenberg at the conference “The Crisis in Xinjiang/East Turkestan: Domestic Developments and International Implications”, Prague, Czech Republic

15 October 2019
Blog-post “Connecting the dots around the XUAR camps” by Rune Steenberg at the Central Eurasian Studies Society Blog

10 October 2019
Organization and hosting of
closed door meeting with Rushan Abbas by Rune Steenberg at University of Copenhagen, Denmark

9 October 2019
Lecture “Dans, Motorveje, Genopdragelseslejre og Terrorisme. Hvad foregår der i Kinas muslimske region Xinjiang?” by Rune Steenberg at the Dept. Of Chinese Studies, Århus University, Århus, Denmark

29 September – 2 October 2019
Organization of panel (with Miriam Benteler )“(Nicht-) Aushandlung von Werten und Welten: politische Wirklichkeiten und ethnologische Theorienbildung” and talk “The ‘two-faced’ Uyghur intellectuals. From post-modern to post –compromise in Xinjiang” by Rune Steenberg at the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Sozial- und Kulturanthropologie conference, Konstanz, Germany

27-31 August 2019
Organization of panel (with Magnus Fiskesjö) and talk “Kinship, fragmentation and solidarity amongst Uyghurs after 2016” by Rune Steenberg at European Association of Social Anthropology conference “World Solidarity with the Indigenous Peoples of Xinjiang, China” in Poznan, Poland

23 August 2019
Presentation "The newly preserved Chagatai manuscripts" by Aysima Mirsultan at the Third International congress on "Uzbekistan - the crossroads of great roads and civilizations: empire, religion, culture" in Tashkent-Samarkand, Uzbekistan

19 August 2019
Presentation "Family law among the Uyghurs: divorce settlements between 1911-1949" by Aysima Mirsultan at the 62nd meeting of the Permanent International Altaistic Conference, Friedensau, Germany

29 June 2019
Organization of the panel "Constituting the Uyghur self between homogenization and fragmentation" by Ildikó Bellér-Hann and Rune Steenberg at the 16th Conference of the European Society for Central Asian Studies “The Globality of Central Asia,” Exeter,UK

Programme:

  • Rune Steenberg Reyhé: “Oasis identities reconsidered: the politicisation of homogeneity, commercialisation of difference and fragmented developments in Uyghur customs and narratives”
  • Ildikó Bellér-Hann: “Exemplariness in Uyghur historical representations in reform China”
  • Ondřej Klimeš (Czech Academy of Sciences): “The ‘two-faced persons’ campaign against Uyghur elites in Xinjiang”

28 June 2019
Participation in Roundtable on “The Xinjiang Muslim Internment Camps” by Ildikó Bellér-Hann and Rune Steenberg at the 16th Conference of the European Society for Central Asian Studies “The Globality of Central Asia”, Exeter, UK

28 June 2019
Presentation "12 Zodiac in Uyghur legal documents from 19th and 20th century“ by Aysima Mirsultan at the symposium "Sprachkontakt und Sprachmischung in der Turksprachen”, Göttingen, Germany

18-19 June 2019

Co-organization of the 11th Annual Asian Dynamics Initiative Conference “Asian Mobilities”, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

18-19 June 2019
Organization of the panel "The Battle for Hearts and Minds in China and Central Asia: Narratives and Propaganda" by Rune Steenberg and Ondřej Klimeš (Oriental Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences) at the 11th Annual International ADI Conference, organised by Asian Dynamics Initiative, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Programme:

  • Ondřej Klimeš,Czech Academy of Sciences
    Cooptation and repression of Uyghur intellectuals by the CPC from 1949
  • Galen Murton, James Madison University
    What is ‘China Aid’ (and what does it do)?
  • Halmurat Uyghur, Uyghur Aid Helsinki
    Narratives and Terminology of Statehood. A close reading of Ürümchi Uyghur Newspapers in 2019
  • Rune Steenberg, University of Copenhagen
    Conviction, critique and propaganda. The subtle traces of ideology in Uyghur language social science of the 21st century

14 May 2019
Talk on "Education, prevention or punishment in Xinjiang? Disentangling facts, rumors and open questions" by Rune Steenberg at the conference "The Uyghur camps in China" at East Asian Studies, Université libre de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium

7 May 2019
Lecture “Uyghur Muslim Identity: Local Historical Narratives from easter Xinjiang” by Ildikó Bellér-Hann at the Research Seminar of the Mongolia and Inner Asia Studies Unit, University of Cambridge

30 April 2019
Public talk "Education, prevention or punishment in Xinjiang? - Disentangling facts, rumors and open questions" by Ildikó Bellér-Hann and Rune Steenberg, organised by Centralasiatisk Selskab at Copenhagen University

24 April 2019
Public talk "What is really happening in Xinjiang? Historical context, current developments and source criticism" by Ildikó Bellér-Hann and Rune Steenberg hosted by Asian Dynamics Iniatiative, ThinkChina and NIAS at Copenhagen University

18 April 2019
Presentation"Çin cumhuriyet döneminde (1911-1949) Uygurca Hukuk belgeleri" [The Uyghur legal documents from republican era in China (1911-1949)] by Aysima Mirsultan at Inönü Universitesi, Malatya, Turkey

13 April 2019
Talk on "Sunken Models of Distance across Xinjiang" by Rune Steenberg at the Highland Asia Workshop, Anthropology Department, Ludwig Maximillian Universität München, Germany

28 - 29 March 2019
Workshop "Present Tense, Past Perfect? Narrative constructions of social representations in Central Eurasia", University of Copenhagen

Convenors: Ildikó Bellér-Hann, Anna-Luise Kraayvanger, Aysima Mirsultan, Rune Steenberg

By invitation only!

Venue: South Campus, University of Copenhagen, Building 4, Room: 4A.0.68

Workshop poster: Present tense - past perfect?

This two-day workshop is the major event of our three-year research project, “Between homogenization and fragmentation: textual practices as strategies of integration and identity maintenance among the Uyghurs of Xinjiang, China (20th‒21st centuries),” supported by the Danish Velux Fonden.

In the extremely tense political context created by ongoing securitization and aggressive assimilation policies, this project explores textual strategies employed by the Uyghurs to demarcate and sustain their collective identity and negotiate their subjecthood within the Chinese polity in the 20th and early 21st centuries.

Focusing on four distinct text corpora of the late 20th and early 21st centuries, the project explores how Uyghur elites have used the leeway available to them through their status as a minority to produce knowledge about their group and construct identity.

The recent escalation of the “Xinjiang problem” lends the project a new significance, since this leeway is no longer available. Since the writing of the original proposal, the near-contemporary perspective of three of the sub-projects has metamorphosed into a retrospective due to the further escalation of the political situation. Researchers attend to multiple, cross-cutting loyalties, discourses of belonging and identity, indigenous subjectivity, and local practices and agency against the backdrop of sometimes stable, at other times changing historical circumstances. These may create tension in the present that in turn can lead to either an idealization of the past or to using the past as a social commentary on the present. The title of the workshop is intended to emphasize the importance of the historical context for knowledge production as well as our interest in textual strategies of all sorts.

We are particularly interested in the textual strategies employed by indigenous authors to construct group representations of all sorts (legal, ethnographic, fictional or historical, etc.), taking careful account of the interaction between texts and contexts. Through the presentation of diverse case studies, we anticipate stimulating discussions that will mark out new directions for the study of the representation of social identities.

Programme: (download here)

28 March  

10:00–10:20  

Opening and Introduction  

10:20-10:55  

Actualized Narratives in the Oghuzname-Chingizname-Complex  

Ingeborg Baldauf, Humboldt University 

10.55-11:30  

The Imperial Uncanny: On Translation and Disruption in Turn-of-the-Century Xinjiang  
Eric Schluessel, University of Montana 

11:30-12:05

From ethnographic narratives to criminal law: the construction of a criminal framework against local practices in Central Asia, late 19th century-early 1920s
Aude-Cécile Monnot, Center for History of Sciences Po/EHESS, Paris 

12:05-12:40

Discussion

12:40-13:50

Lunch Break

13:50-14:25

Mediations by “Good People”: Legal Dispute and the Amicable Arrangement (ṣulḥ) among the Uyghurs in the Republican Era  
Jun Sugawara, Lanzhou University  

14:25-15:00

Narrating communal and personal identity: Fazil shangye in the Kucha documents (1934-1949)  
Aysima Mirsultan, University of Copenhagen  

15:00-15:20 

Coffee Break

15:20-15:55

Stuck in the center: Uyghur histories for the Turkistanis of Mecca   
Rian Thum, University of Nottingham 

15:55-16:30

Articulating identity: Uyghur constructions of sub-national histories in reform China   
Ildikó Bellér-Hann, University of Copenhagen 

16:30-17:00  

Discussion

19:00

Dinner

  
29 March  

10:00-10:35  

The Story of an Unborn Book. Investigating the Heritagization of Past Narratives among the Chinese Sibe  
Ildikó Gyöngyvér Sárközi, Institute of Ethnology, Research Centre for the Humanities, HAS  

10:35-11:10  

Where is the Safe Place? Continuity and Authenticity of Uyghur Dastan Oral Tradition  
Amy Anderson   

11:10-11:45

“Comprehensive Collection, Focus on Revision”: An Examination of the Early 'Jangar Epic' Literary Construction in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region 
Michael D.R. Long University of Cambridge 

11:45-12:20  

Discussion

12:20-13:30

Lunch Break

13:30-14:05

12. Örp-Adet”. The Rise and Fall of a Genre in Uyghur Language Publishing 1980–2015  
Rune Steenberg, University of Copenhagen 

14:05-14:40

Twilight of the Ili Elites: High Socialism in Xinjiang, 1957-1966 
Joshua L. Freeman, Harvard University  

14:40-15:00

Coffee Break

15:00-15:35  

Reading between the lines of Chinese propaganda: assessing the rhetoric in official and semi-official documents concerning the XUAR   
Martin Lavička, Palacký University Olomouc, Czech Republic  

15:35-16:10 

Curating a Paper Museum: Genealogical Projects of Kazakhs in Xinjiang  
Guldana Salimjan, University of British Columbia

16:15-16:35

Discussion  

16:35-16:50

Closing remarks  

19:00  

Dinner

Discussants:

  • Chris Hann, Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology 
  • Ondřej Klimeš, Czech Academy of Sciences 
  • Nathan Light, Uppsala University 

Group photo

23 February 2019
Talk on "Uyghur Customs: Bureaucracy, Kinship and Trade in Xinjiang and beyond" by Rune Steenberg at the Conference on Uyghur Culture and the current situation in Xinjiang organised by Uyghur Aid, Helsinki, Finland

5 February 2019
Talk for faculty and students on the situation in Xinjiang"Umerziehungslager und die Situation uighurischer Intellektueller in Xinjiang" by Rune Steenberg at the Zentrum für Entwicklungsländerforschung, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany

29 January 2019
Talk on "Genopdragelseslejre, jobtræning og propaganda i Xinjiang" by Rune Steenberg at Dansk-Kinesisk Forening, Copenhagen

22 January 2019
Presentation of paper “Homogenization and Fragmentation: knowledge production of the Uyghur elite in Xinjiang during reform socialism” by Ildikó Bellér-Hann within the Sinophone Borderlands Project, Palacký University, Olomouc, Czech Republic

15 January 2019
Presentation "Some Chagatai manuscripts collection of Berlin state library“ by Aysima Mirsultan at the conference "Das Erbe der großen Seidenstraße als Brücke zwischen Usbekistan und Deutschland”, Berlin, Germany.

6 December 2018
Workshop "Contested Narratives in Islamic Central Asia" to mark the 10th anniversary of the Asian Dynamics Initiative, University of Copenhagen

Workshop flyer - Contested Narratives in Islamic Central Asia

Convenor: Ildikó Bellér-Hann

Programme:

09:30-09:40 Welcome by Janus Hansen, Chair of Asian Dynamics Initiative
09:40-09:50   Introduction by Ildikó Bellér-Hann, Dept. of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen
09:50-10:50         Keynote speaker Ingeborg Baldauf, Institute of African and Asian Studies, Humboldt-University, Berlin

Did Chinggis Khan's grandmother have an illegitimate child?

10:50-11:00 Break
11:00-11:30 Mustafa Coşkun, Eberhard-Karls-Universität Tübingen
Past Perfect: Narratives of History, Heritage and Identity among the Kyrgyz
11:30-12:00 Claus Pedersen, Dept. of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen
Legitimizing an Islamic government - Khomeini's layer-by-layer formulation of a new Twelver Shi'i narrative and a new role for the faqih
12:00-13:00   Lunch
13:00-13:30   Aysima Mirsultan, Dept. of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen
Narratives in legal documents from Xinjiang (1911-1949)
13:30-14:00  Martin Lavička, Dept. of Asian Studies at Palacký University, Olomouc
Changing legal narrative concerning religious affairs in light of
amendments of Religious Affairs Regulations and Regulations of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region on Religious Affairs
14:00-14:15 Break
14:15-14:45     Rune Steenberg, Dept. of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen
Narratives of Islamic revival in Xinjiang in the 2000s. The conceptual division of customs and religion
14:45-15:15  Ildikó Bellér-Hann, Dept. of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen
Rulers, scholars, imams, merchants: Uyghur constructions of role-models in Xinjiang in the 21st century

All are welcome!

Venue:
Room 4A-0-68 at KUA3
South Campus
Njalsgade 76
DK-2300 Copenhagen S
See map here

27 November 2018
Colloquium "Good Customs and Bad Customs. Ethnographic Writing of Uyghur Intellectuals in Xinjiang" by Rune Steenberg at the Zentrum für Entwicklungsländerforschung, Berlin, Germany

15 November 2018
Presentation "Modern Kazak Literature in Berlin State library" by Aysima Mirsultan, Berlin, Germany

7 November 2018
Presentation of paper “Uyghur Manuscripts in the 20th century and their significance: an example from Eastern Xinjiang” by Ildikó Bellér-Hann at the conference “Schriftzeugnisse und Sprachen der historischen Völker der Seidenstraße/Ancient Texts and Languages of the Ethnic Groups along the Silk Road,” Georg-August-University Göttingen – State- and University Library, Göttingen, Germany

7 November 2018
Presentation of paper “The uneven blossoming of a genre: Uyghur language publications on ‘customs’ in the 20th century” by Rune Steenberg Reyhé at the conference “Schriftzeugnisse und Sprachen der historischen Völker der Seidenstraße/Ancient Texts and Languages of the Ethnic Groups along the Silk Road,” Georg-August-University Göttingen – State- and University Library, Göttingen, Germany

7 November 2018
Presentation of paper “Child custody (bala saqlamaq) following divorce in Republican Xinjiang (1911-1949)” by Aysima Mirsultan at the conference “Schriftzeugnisse und Sprachen der historischen Völker der Seidenstraße/Ancient Texts and Languages of the Ethnic Groups along the Silk Road” Georg-August-University Göttingen – State- and University Library, Göttingen, Germany

5 November 2018
Talk on "What changed in the 2010s? The tragic trajectory of Uyghur intellectuals’ efforts at integration" by Rune Steenberg at the public roundtable "China's Uyghur Human Rights Crisis", Université libre de Bruxelles (EASt), Brussels, Belgium
(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0kAh3j5hFZY&t=2700s, starting 39:00)

12 October 2018
Talk on "Discourse on 'Good' and 'Bad' Customs. An integration attempt on local terms 1980–2018" by Rune Steenberg at the Workshop „Ideas and Practices: Exploring economic and social transformation in Central Asia", Max Plank Institute for Anthropology , Halle, Germany

9 October 2018
Presentation of paper “Walking the tightrope: the shifting concept of ‘custom’ between heritage, backwardness and radicalism in Xinjiang” by Rune Steenberg Reyhé at the conference “Transnational Custodianship of Cultural Heritage in the 21st Century, 8-9 October 2018, University of Copenhagen

8 October 2018
Presentation of paper “Uyghur cultural heritage in contemporary China” by Ildikó Bellér-Hann at the conference “Transnational Custodianship of Cultural Heritage in the 21st Century, 8-9 October 2018, University of Copenhagen

8 October 2018
Talk on "Tradition and Religion, Good and Bad Customs. A Sociology of Transformation in Kashgar 2010–2018" by Rune Steenberg Reyhé at the "Central Asian Platform Seminar Series 2018", Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, Czech Republic

18-20 June 2018
Panel "Legal documents and identity construction in Muslim Central Asia" at the 10th Annual International Asian Dynamics Initiative Conference "Transition and Disruption in Asia", University of Copenhagen

Workshop flyer - Legal documents and identity construction in Muslim Central Asia

Conveners: Aysima Mirsultan and Ildikó Bellér-Hann

Presentations:

Eric T. Schluessel, University of Montana
Reconstructing Patterns of Landholding in Turn-of-the-Century Xinjiang (Eastern Turkestan)

Rune Steenberg, University of Copenhagen
A 'Much-Married Woman' Revisited: Divorce, Class and Modernisation in Contemporary Kashgar

Aysima Mirsultan, University of Copenhagen
Divorce settlement among the Uyghurs during the Republican era in Xinjiang

Anisa Bhutia, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai
In-Between Tibet and Kashmir: Trails and Tales of Belonging through Documents

Jun Sugawara, Lanzhou University
Debt Contracts and the Penalty clause in Pre-Modern Muslim Society in Xinjiang

Martin Lavička, Palacký University Olomouc
Beijing’s Xinjiang Policy in Light of the PRC Government White Papers

Group photo
Aysima Mirsultan, Jun Sugawara, Rune Steenberg, Eric T. Schluessel, Martin Lavička, Ildikó Bellér-Hann

7 June 2018
Presentation "The Chagatai manuscripts collection of Berlin state library" by Aysima Mirsultan at the second International congress “cultural legacy of Uzbekistan is the way to the dialog between peoples and countries”, Sanct- Petersburg, Russia

23 May 2018
Presentation "The Treasures of the Berlin State library “ by Aysima Mirsultan at the International Conference Chronicle of world capitals to 20-years of Astana”, Astana, Kazakhstan

12–13 May 2018
Presentation of paper “The Formal Side of Informality. Non-bureaucratic organisation, pride and books among Uyghur traders” by Rune Steenberg  at the workshop "Bazaars in Central Asia", Tbilisi University, Tbilisi, Georgia

4 May 2018
Presentation of the paper “Integration Over Statistics. Lessons on Development, Infrastructure and Communities From Two Decades of Development Initiatives in Xinjiang” by Rune Steenberg at the conference "Connectivity Through One Belt One Road Between China and South Asia", Federal Urdu University, Karachi, Pakistan

4–6 April 2018
Presentation of the paper “Infrastructure and Community. Different types of security on the Xinjiang side of CPEC” by Rune Steenberg at the conference "The Great Transformation? The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and Culture, Economy and Society in Pakistan", Lahore University for Management Sciences, Lahore, Pakistan

5 March 2018
Presentation of the project "Between homogenization and fragmentation: textual practices as strategies of integration and identity maintenance among the Uyghurs of Xinjiang, China (20th‒21st centuries)" by Ildikó Bellér-Hann, Anna-Luise Kraayvanger, Aysima Mirsultan and Rune Steenberg at the Department of Cross-cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen

27 January 2018                      
Presentation of the paper "Legitimate illegality; bureaucracy and social relations as alternatives in Central Asia  by Rune Steenberg at the conference "Il/legal and Informal Practices in the Eurasian Region", SOAS, London, UK

20 December 2017
Presentation of the paper "Narrative representations of domination and legitimation in Eastern Xinjiang" by Ildikó Bellér-Hann at the Departmental Seminar (Resilience and Transformation in Eurasia), Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Halle, Germany

3 September 2017
Presentation of conference paper "The Silk Road: metaphor and localized realities" by Ildikó Bellér-Hann at the Fifth European Congress on World and Global History, Corvinus University and the Central European University, Budapest, Hungary

29 May -2 June 2017
Teaching at the international summer school: "Bordering and Othering: how Inner Asian identities have been shaped, Department of Asian Studies" by Ildikó Bellér-Hann at Faculty of Arts, Palacký University Olomouc, Czech Republic

Lectures delivered included:

  • Local history and space
  • Elite discourses
  • Rulers, peasants, Islam in local narratives

3 May 2017
Presentation of the project "Between homogenization and fragmentation: textual practices as strategies of integration and identity maintenance among the Uyghurs of Xinjiang, China (20th‒21st centuries)" by Ildikó Bellér-Hann at the Department of Linguistics and Philology, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden

25 November 2016:
Presentation of the project "Between homogenization and fragmentation: textual practices as strategies of integration and identity maintenance among the Uyghurs of Xinjiang, China (20th‒21st centuries)" by Ildikó Bellér-Hann at the Joint Islamic Studies Research Seminar, University of Copenhagen and Lund University, Copenhagen