Call for Papers: “The United States in East Asia”

Location: Seoul, South Korea, September 21-22, 2012

“The United States in East Asia”
The 47th International Conference Organized by The American Studies Association of Korea (ASAK)
Seoul, South Korea
September 21-22, 2012

The American Studies Association of Korea (ASAK) is pleased to announce a conference on The United States in East Asia to be held in Seoul, South Korea, September 21-22, 2012.

East Asia is a region of growing significance in the twenty-first century, where the US has been a marked presence and a persistent influence. The three biggest economies of the region–Japan despite its recent decline, South Korea, and China–currently account for 22.3% of the world population, 19.6% of global production, and 45.7% of international reserves. Each nation in the region has witnessed a complicated history of interactions with the US: political and economic cooperation as well as contention, circulation of ideas and cultural practices, and educational and social exchanges, to name a few. A truly interdisciplinary approach is called for to capture the sense of the United States as a geopolitical actor and a cultural imaginary in East Asia. A further challenge lies in attending to the local and transnational specificities that have produced diverse ways of accommodating the US influence.

Recognizing this intricacy, the 2012 ASAK conference aims to further the understanding of the US in East Asia by bringing together scholars in diverse disciplines from different parts of the world. In doing so, we hope to widen and deepen the local, national, and transnational perspectives on the US. We believe the East Asian vantage point of our conference will provide a forum for rethinking the practice and methods of American Studies in the current world order.

We welcome paper proposals in either English or Korean from various disciplines on topics such as:

-Economic ties and political interests of the US in East Asia, and vice versa
-Elections or power transitions in East Asia and the US and their foreign policy implications
-The influence of US economic policies and models, business corporations, and/or financial institutions
-Issues of immigration and migration, including reverse migration, labor migration, and brain drain
-Specific examples depicting the importance of the US presence in East Asia
-The circulation and exchange of popular culture between the US and East Asia
-Appropriations of US modes of fashion and cuisine
-Representations of the US in the media, literature, and popular culture of East Asia
-US influence on East Asian educational systems and orientations
-The English fever phenomenon in East Asia
-The teaching of American literature, culture, and history in East Asia
-Representations of East Asia in American literature and/or popular culture
-Asian American and/or diasporic literature
-Comparative American Studies in other nations or regions such as South Asia, the Middle East, the Americas, and Europe

These topics in no way comprise an exhaustive list. You are encouraged to submit proposals on other topics related to the overarching theme of the conference. Interdisciplinary perspectives and new research methodologies are especially welcome.

Proposals may be submitted as individual paper proposals or as session proposals. Individual proposals should include a brief abstract of no more than 250 words and a one-page abbreviated CV. Session proposals should include a one-page proposal with title and topics for a session of three to four presentation papers along with individual abstracts and bios. Each presentation, delivered in either Korean or English, will be limited to twenty minutes followed by discussions and Q&A. Graduate students are also welcome to submit their proposals and participate in the conference. All proposals should be sent to the Organizing Committee at by March 15, 2012. Participants will be notified of the acceptance of their proposals by April 15, 2012. The registration fee for overseas participants (waived for students) will cover accommodations for three nights and meals for two days during the conference. Participants will be responsible for travel expenses, including airfare and medical insurance, if applicable. For further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Organizing Committee.

Important dates:
Deadline for submitting abstracts: March 15, 2012
Notification of acceptance of papers: April 15, 2012
Submission of papers for the conference proceedings: July 31, 2012

Registration fees:
Early bird (before June 30, 2012) USD 75
Standard (after June 30, 2012) USD 100

Peggy Cho
Visit the website at

About Paula

Paula lives in the vortex of academic life. She studies medieval Japanese history.
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