A bi-monthly update on Asia-related events in the Nordic Region
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Re-Examining the Operation of Hate Speech in Thailand 

TS4 Webinar 

The organizers of the TS4 Seminar Series, NIAS, Sydney Southeast Asia Centre (SSEAC) and the New York Southeast Asia Network (NYSEAN) are delighted to invite to this event with Mr Anwar Koma (Prince of Songkla University) investigating the links between Thai nationalism, discrimination and hate speech. 

Find more information and register here.

Time and date: 16.00  - 17.30 (CEST), Thursday 12 May 2022
Organizer: Nordic Institute of Asian Studies, Sydney Southeast Asia Centre, New York Southeast Asia Network 

International Responses to the Uyghur Issue


NIAS is delighted to invite to this on- site lecture with Julie Yu-Wen Chen, Professor of Chinese Studies at the University of Helsinki in Finland, talking about the international responses to the Uyghur issue in China. In this presentation, Julie Yu-Wen Chen examines Uyghur’s international activism, revisits the legitimacy issue of the Uyghur cause for self-determination and survey uneven international responses to it, from states to individuals. 

Find more information here.

Time and date: 12.30  - 14.00 (CEST), Thursday 18 May 2022
Organizer: Nordic Institute of Asian Studies

'Seed the Untold Story' 

                            Film Screening and Discussion with Terese Gagnon                          

NIAS Postdoctoral Researcher Terese Gagnon will speak on a panel discussing the film 'Seed the Untold Story' by Jon Betz and Taggart Siegel after its screening in Cinemateket, Copenhagen. The event is organized by the Global Development Network at the University of Copenhagen in collaboration with the Danish Film Institute (Cinemateket).

'Seed the Untold Story' is a documentary that shows how 94 percent of our seed varieties in the world have disappeared in just a hundred years. The ten largest agrochemical companies in the world, including Syngenta, Bayer and Monsanto, control over two-thirds of the global seed market and reap huge profits. But diversity suffers. The film follows farmers and activists defending our approximately 12,000-year-old food heritage – and the food of the future. 


Find more information about the event and get your tickets here.

Time and date: 19.15 - 20.30 (CEST), Tuesday 24 May 2022
Global Development Network at the University of Copenhagen, The Danish Film Institute


NAP reached over 300 000 downloads! 

We just received the news that the Nordic Asia Podcast was downloaded over 307,000 times within one year only (April 2021 until April 2022).That's an incredible number, especially for an academic podcast and we are so thankful for all our trustful listeners tuning in every week for new insights on Asian studies! 

With that being said, we also want to thank our wonderful partners at the Centre for East Asian Studies (CEAS) at the University of Turku and Asianettverket at the University of Oslo for a wonderful collaboration sharing all their expertise. We aim to continue together along those lines! Stay tuned for the next exciting podcast episode on a new NIAS Press book and find our newest titles, as always, below. 

New episodes in the #NordicAsiaPodcast

Looking for a listening experience full of researchers' insights on Asia? Try the Nordic Asia Podcast, co-hosted by NIAS, CEAS, ASIANETTVERKET and Forum for Asian Studies.
Since the last NIAS Update, we've released the following episodes:

Give it a listen on your favorite podcast streaming platform or find it here

In Focus Blog on the Asia Portal

Call for Contributions

In Focus is a forum for articles with a focus on Asia. We welcome well-written contributions from early career researchers as well as senior researchers on topics with relevance to modern and contemporary Asia. The blog has existed since 2008 and hold contributions on a number of different topics over the years.
The target length of the articles is 800-1000 words. If you have an accompanying picture, please feel free to include it with your submission.
You can send your submission to with the subject 'New blog submission'.
Contributions are reviewed on a rolling basis when sent to us. 

Newest InFocus Blog entry 

Mikael Gravers

The newest contribution to the InFocus Blog is by Mikael Gravers, Associated Professor Emeritus at Aarhus University and Associate at the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies (NIAS). His article "Nationalist monks provide spiritual support to Myanmar’s brutal generals"  provides a brief analysis of how Buddhism functions in Myanmar’s politics. 

Read the whole article here.


Fragrant Frontier off to print 


'Fragrant Frontier. Global Spice Entanglements from the Sino-Vietnamese Uplands' by Sarah Turner, Annuska Derks and Jean-François Rousseau has gone into printing and we cannot wait for it to be ready for publishing.  

This ethnographically rich study demystifies the contemporary spice trade originating from the Sino-Vietnamese uplands. Star anise, black cardamom, and cassia (cinnamon) take center stage as the authors explore the complex commodity chains and entanglements that move these spices to kitchens around the world. The volume explores the livelihoods of the ethnic minority farmers cultivating these spices across this mountainous frontier, follows the commodity chains from farms to global supermarkets, and examines the implications of the commoditization of these fragrant crops for the numerous actors involved.  

For more information about the book, visit our website & stay updated for news once it is out for sale. 




Visit NIAS Press Website


'Spirit Possession in Buddhist Southeast Asia. Worlds Ever More Enchanted' by Bénédicte Brac de la Perrière and Peter A. Jackson (eds.) is for sale both as hardback and ebook now!   

This volume examines the upsurge of spirit cults and diverse forms of magical ritual in Buddhist Southeast Asia by exploring the interplay of neoliberal capitalism, visual media, the network cultures of the Internet, and the politics of cultural heritage and identity. 

Get your copy in the NIAS Press Webshop & follow us on our social media for more information.

Buy the Book here

New Review


Giuseppe Bolotta's Book 'Belittled Citizens. The Cultural Politics of Childhood in Bangkok's Margins' just received a new review in the Anthropological Forum.

Irina Savu Cristea and Tomas Stodulka from Freie Universitität Berlin write: 

"Based on meticulous historical investigation and six years of ethnographic research in a plethora of ‘institutional geographies’ inhabited or transited by dek salam (slum children) in Bangkok, this book is an excellent contribution to psychological anthropology, sociohistorical psychology, anthropology of childhood and self, and Southeast Asian studies more broadly." 

Read the full review here 
& Find the book in our NIAS Press Webshop. 


Find the book here


Shalom India - Discovering South Asian Jewish Identities through Literature

South Asia Talks 2022

Asian Dynamics Initiative at the University of Copenhagen is happy to invite to this South Asia Talks 2022 lecture with professor Heinz Werner Wessler. South Asia Talks 2022 is part of a jubilee series of events held in order to celebrate 10 years of Modern South Asia studies at the University of Copenhagen. Heinz Werner Wessler is professor of indology at Uppsala university. He has worked on Sanskrit literature, early modern and modern literature in Hindi, Urdu, Panjabi and South Asian English. The talk will center on Jewish identities as presented in modern South Asian literatures.

Find more information on the event and register here

Time and date: 13.00  - 15.00 (CEST), Monday 9 May 2022
Asian Dynamics Initiative

"Ethnic Koreans of Kazakhstan Today: Genesis and Evolution of Diasporic Identity

East Asian Lunch Seminar

Approximately 100,000 ethnic Koreans ("Koryo Saram") live in Kazakhstan, mostly in urban areas. This determines the multi-ethnic environment surrounding the diaspora, and its high degree of acculturation. This presentation will deal with the diasporic identity of Kazakhstan's ethnic Koreans. The Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo invites to this event with Yefrem Yefremov, Senior research fellow at the Institute of Asian Studies, Al-Farabi Kazakh National University.

Find more information on the event and register here.

Time and date: 14.15  - 15.45 (CEST), Monday 9 May 2022
Organizer: Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo

In the Shadow of the Palms: More-Than-Human Becomings in West Papua

Open Seminar 

The Stockholm Center for Global Asia in collaboration with the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Stockholm invite to this open seminar with Sophie Chao, Fellow and Lecturer in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Sydney presenting her book "In the Shadow of palms". Sophie Chao examines the multispecies entanglements of oil palm plantations in West Papua, Indonesia, showing how Indigenous Marind communities understand and navigate the social, political, and environmental demands of the oil palm plant.

Find more information on the event and register here.

Time and date: 14.00  - 15.30 (CEST), Monday 9 May 2022
Department of Social Anthropology at the University of StockholmStockholm Center for Global Asia

Engaging China

UiB Academic China Symposium 

The Academic China Forum of the University of Bergen invites to this symposium on China discussing the status and prospects of academic cooperation with Chinese institutions. The theme is investigated through four thematic sessions on Climate Change, Chinese Literature, Sociopolitical Changes and Competence building involving various speakers and panelists.

Find more information and register here.

Time and date: 08.30  - 16.15 (CEST), Wednesday 11 May 2022
Organizer: University of Bergen

The Vortex

Online Book Launch  

The Centre for Development and the Environment at the University of Oslo invites to this book launch event of "The Vortex" with the Scott Carney and Jason Miklian. The authors will discuss the book and their motivations for writing it (including raising awareness of Bangladesh's significant geo-political role in history and unpacking the climate-conflict nexus), followed by a discussion led by Arild Engelsen Ruud and Q&A session.

In November 1970, a storm set a collision course with the most densely populated coastline on Earth. Over the course of just a few hours, the Great Bhola Cyclone would kill 500,000 people and begin a chain reaction of turmoil, genocide, and war. The Vortex is the dramatic story of how that storm sparked a country to revolution.


Find more information and register here.

Time and date: 14.15  - 15.15 (CEST), Wednesday 11 May 2022
Organizer: Centre for Development and Environment at University of Oslo

Tibetian Materialities


The Asian Dynamics Initiative (ADI) at the University of Copenhagen is hosting a workshop on Tibetan Materialities. It will take place at the Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen over the course two days on 12-13 May 2022 and is part of a larger effort to create an international academic forum focused on collaborative, critical thinking and writing for the purpose of shaping new conceptual frameworks, finding synergies for future collaborations, producing conference papers, and writing academic outputs related to Tibetan materialities

Find more information here.

Time and date: 08.30  - 16.15 (CEST), Wednesday 12 - 13 May 2022
Organizer: Asian Dynamics Initiative

Class, Politics and Agrarian Policies in Post-Liberalisation


The Centre for Development and Environment at the University of Oslo invites to this Asianet fokus seminar with Sejuti Das Gupta,  Assistant Professor, James Madison College, Michigan State University. In this seminar, Sejuti Das Gupta analyses India’s agrarian transformation after 2004. Following its loss at these elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) realized the electoral power of the rural proprietary classes and attempted to include them in political settlements in states under BJP rule.

Find more information and register here.

Time and date: 14.30  - 15.30 (CEST), Thursday 12 May 2022
Organizer: Centre for Development and Environment at University of Oslo

China’s Foreign Policy Contradictions

China Talks 

Think China and the Centre for Military Studies, Department of Political Science at the University of Copenhagen invite to another China Talks Lecture, this time hosting Tim Rühlig,  Research Fellow at the German Council on Foreign Relations. Tim will present his newest book “China’s Foreign Policy Contradictions: Lessons from China’s R2P, Hong Kong and WTO Policy”, published in 2022 with Oxford University Press. Drawing on an ethnographic study he demonstrates how competing sources of Chinese Communist Party legitimation coupled with a fragmented institutional structure of the political economy of the party-state explain contradictions in China’s foreign policy. He will further discuss implications for the international order.

Find more information and register here.

Time and date: 16.00  - 17.30 (CEST), Monday 16 May 2022
Organizer: Think China, Centre for Military Studies at University of Copenhagen 

Memory in the Mekong: Regional Identity, Schools, and Politics in Southeast Asia

Book Launch Event 

The Stockholm Center for Global Asia in collaboration with the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Stockholm invite to this open seminar with Will Brehm, University College London, presenting his book "Memory in the Mekong: Regional Identity, Schools, and Politics in Southeast Asia". 

Find more information and register here.

Time and date: 14.00  - 15.30 (CEST), Monday 16 May 2022
Department of Social Anthropology at the University of StockholmStockholm Center for Global Asia 

Myanmar after the military coup: How can/should external actors support popular resistance against the army’s re-consolidation of power?

Open Lecture

The Stockholm Center for Global Asia at Stockholm University  in collaboration with ABF Stockholm, Swedish Defence University and Olof Palme International Center invite to this open lecture on Myanmar with Matilda Ernkrans, Sweden’s Minister for International Development Cooperation, addressing Sweden’s support to Myanmar’s pro-democracy and human rights movement after the coup, and the possibilities for Sweden’s democracy and development support, in general, in complex authoritarian contexts. With his background in research on social movements, and an ongoing project on the ‘Myanmar Spring’, Nyi Nyi Kyaw will address the ‘Myanmar Spring’ after more than a year of resistance, while Elisabeth Olivius will base her talk on her ongoing research about how international actors’ have adapted their modes of engagement in Myanmar for women, peace and security, after the coup, and on the actual requests for such support by womens’ organisations.

Find more information here.

Time and date: 18.00  - 20.00 (CEST), Tuesday 17 May 2022
Stockholm Center for Global Asia 

Categories, Digital Reconfiguration and Mobility in China 



Co-organized by  the Department of Communication, University of Copenhagen, Department of Politics and Society, Aalborg University, and Technologies in Practice group and IT University of Copenhagen this international conference  is a joint opening conference for the Network Categorizing People and Resources in Contemporary China (CatCh) and the Moving Data - Moving People (MDMP) project on mobility and China’s social credit system taking place on 18.05.2022 - 20.05.2022. 

The conference aims to provide an open interdisciplinary forum for discussing the potential of categorization and configuration as original and innovative approaches to study social life, relations, practices, and governance in China. Against a backdrop of increasing digitalization and strained relations of trust, how are technologies of categorization and configuration reproduced and transformed in social relationship and digital governance?  

Keynote speakers are: 

Find more information and the detailed programme here.

Time and date: 10.00  - 18.00 (CEST), 18 - 20 May 2022
Organizer: University of Copenhagen, IT University of Copenhagen, Aalborg University

 Unknown Futures: A Seminar on Hong Kong

Two-Day Seminar 


ThinkChina, Asian Dynamics Initiative, and the Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies at the University of Copenhagen invite to this two-day seminar on Hong Kong's Unknown Future. Where is Hong Kong heading? And how have the developments these past years affected the direction Hong Kong is taking? The seminar explores different aspects of contemporary Hong Kong society through the lens of cultural production, image politics, protest aesthetics, documentary filmmaking and social and political perspectives.

Find more information and the detailed programme here.

Time and date: 10.00  - 16.05 (CEST), 23-24 May 2022
Organizer: Think China, Asian Dynamics Initiative, Cross- Cultural and Regional Studies 

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