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2022 New York Conference on Asian Studies

State and Society in Asia: Past and Present


State and Society in Asia: Past and Present

Recent events such as the successes and failures of states at mitigating the COVID-19 pandemic; the targeting of religious, racial and ethnic minorities; widespread protests against military regimes; the possibility of a new cold war between China and the U.S.; and the dramatic takeover of Afghanistan by Taliban forces have highlighted the ever-crucial role of the state in Asian societies, both in its presence and absence.

In bringing scholarly perspectives to these current events, questions that interest us include: What historical legacies of the state persist in contemporary Asia? What roles do technology and urban development play in extending state power to unprecedented degrees?

Conversely, how does a vacuum in state infrastructure in countries like Afghanistan create conditions for regime change? Can countries like Myanmar continue to isolate themselves and not suffer social and economic hardships? Contemporary artists, filmmakers, and environmental activists frequently challenge and critique these developments. How do regime changes unsettle and re-arrange key local and national cultural constituents and what impact do these changes have on environmental history, archaeology, and cultural heritage sites?

We also invite explorations of issues such as how local populations have historically contested the hegemony of the state in both its “weak” and “strong” formations; how inter-Asian networks operate across, within, or against state geographies; and how indigenous movements challenge state controls and global economic regimes.

Additionally, we are interested in the ways that migrations, climate change, the Belt and Road Initiative, and the renewed importance of the Indian Ocean littoral have challenged and transformed the nation-state geographies of Asia and Asian studies.

Important Due Dates

  • June 15: Proposal Submissions
  • September 1: Program Registration Fee
  • October 1: Attendee Registration Fee

Registration Fees

  • Faculty/Independent Scholar: $125
  • Student: $50
  • Syracuse University Student: Waived


Collegian Hotel and Suites

To book a hotel room please email Rob Marino.

Moynihan Institute of Global Affairs
346 Eggers Hall