American Culture News
Arizona Congressman Matt Salmon, business leaders to discuss China's role as a rising economic superpower
To enhance friendship and economic cooperation between the United States and China, Rep. Matt Salmon will lead a symposium, titled “Working with China in the Global Market,” to be hosted by Arizona State University’s Confucius Institute from 3 to 5 p.m., Sept. 22.
Theater Works Beijing, organized by the Los Angeles Theatre Works, is broadcasting American and English language plays every day, online, for free.
ASU's Center for American Culture was awarded a grant of nearly $400,000 in January by the Ford Foundation that will allow it to host three conferences with Chinese universities over the span of three years.
In what experts describe as an unusual form of public diplomacy, U.S. colleges have created State-Department-funded “American Cultural Centers” in partnership with Chinese host universities.
The United States Embassy in Beijing announces The American Cultural Center Tours (ACCT) Program, a new initiative to bring American performing artists to tour 12 American Cultural Centers based in universities across China.
A grand opening ceremony on September 18 officially launched the Wuhan University-Ohio State University Center for American Culture in the Hubei Province of China. Located in Wuhan University’s newly built School of Foreign Literature and Languages, and funded by a $100,000 grant from the U.S. Department of State, the center provides a learning environment that promotes a better understanding of the diversity of U.S. culture through lectures and discussions on the U.S. legal system, social structures and higher education as well as American literature, music, film and television.
In North America and in Europe, the past three decades have seen an unprecedented expansion of higher education and, in the most recent time, efforts at reform and restructuring. My own university, Harvard, has overhauled its undergraduate curriculum in a comprehensive fashion for the first time in thirty years. European universities have witnessed even more thoroughgoing changes in the structure of undergraduate education. But perhaps nowhere on earth have recent decades seen more revolutionary change in higher education than in the People's Republic of China. Thirty years ago, Chinese universities were just reopening after catastrophe of the Cultural Revolution. Today they are poised for positions of international leadership in research and education.
The following is a guest post by Bob Eckhart, who is the American director of the Wuhan University–Ohio State University Center for American Culture.
Project Yao is a free, accessible database of American literature translations into Chinese.
Antislavery literature represents the origins of multicultural literature in the United States. The goal of the Antislavery Literature Project is to increase public access to a body of literature crucial to understanding African American experience, US and hemispheric histories of slavery, and early human rights philosophies. These multilingual collections contribute to an educational consciousness of the role of many antislavery writers in creating contemporary concepts of freedom.
Chinese culture deeply engrains a dedication to learning in its citizenry. “The magic quality of writing is perhaps one of the reasons why the peoples of East Asia have tended to place a higher premium on book learning and on formal education than have the peoples of any other civilization.”
A report to the members of the committee on foreign relations of the United States Senate states that Official U.S. interest in China for political, economic and strategic reasons has been part of our foreign policy for decades. Most Americans, on the other hand, when they have thought about issues outside our borders, have tended to focus on events in Europe and more recently the Middle East. But no more. The latest Pew Research poll shows that for the first time Asia has now overtaken Europe, by a wide margin, as the area of the world most important to Americans.
China faces a worrisome imbalance of intellectual trade with the United States. Contrary to conventional wisdom, Chinese know less about the United States than Americans know about China. Most Chinese students and scholars interested in the United States concentrate either on English language and literature or on Sino- American diplomatic history and policy studies. There are few opportunities for fieldwork in the United States, and scholarly work on American domestic politics is "woefully inadequate," according to a Peking University specialist in American studies.