Subject: This Month in Mongolian Studies - April 2021

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In this Issue:

ACMS Announcements 

ACMS Sponsored Programs and Events

Vacancies and Fellowships

Grants, Scholarships, Calls for Papers

New Resources

Other News and Events

Recent Books

This Month in Mongolian Studies is a monthly listing of selected academic activities, resources and other material related to Mongolia. This list is based on information the ACMS has received and is presented as a service to its members. If you would like to submit information to be included in next month's issue please contact the ACMS at
This publication is supported in part by memberships.  Please consider becoming a member of the ACMS, or renewing your membership by visiting our website at

Note: This issue of the newsletter has undergone some experimental changes in design. We would love to hear your feedback on what you like and where you think we could improve! 

Thank you!

ACMS Announcements, News and Media References

The First Course of ACMS Online Field School 2021 Successfully Launched!

Digitizing Mongolian, the first course of the ACMS Online Field School 2021, started on March 10.
Taught by Dr. Marissa J. Smith (UC Berkeley), this eight-session course will promote international
interest in and development of the digitization and use of Mongolian language sources by practitioners
and researchers in a range of fields and sectors, strengthening participants’ skills in fields of data
science, digital humanities, and Mongolian language and culture.

The course has 178 students so far, 69 from North America, 38 from Europe, and 68 from Asia. The
lessons are live streamed and hosted on the e-learning platform of ACMS. The Digitizing Mongolian will conclude on April 28. On April 5, the second course of OFS, titled "Mining and Environment in Northern Mongolia," with Dr. Gantulga Bayasgalan (Mongolian University of Science and Technology) will begin. The Online Field School is open to everyone, and will provide opportunities to learn about Mongolia from different disciplinary perspectives, including digital humanities, geology, environmental studies, buddhism, journalism, climate change, public health, literature, and renewable energy.

The Online Intensive Mongolian Language Program Deadline Extended!

The eight-week Online Intensive Mongolian Language (OIML) Program's application deadline has been extended from April 1 to April 15, 2021. The online language program is slated to be held from June 7 to August 6, 2021. The 2021 OIML program will admit up to three cohorts out of the four levels of Mongolian aptitude, which are Beginner (Level 1), Lower-Intermediate (Level 2), Upper-Intermediate (Level 3), and Advanced (Level 4). Some of our members may recall that we held the Level 4 course successfully last summer.

Each applicant will be tested for Mongolian language proficiency and enrolled into the appropriate level. Each cohort will admit up to five students. Tuition for each course is $2000 as described in the program costs section. A limited number of Language Program Fellowships from the US Department of State will provide stipends of up to $2,000 to cover tuition costs for US citizens applicants based on merit and need.

ACMS Sponsored Programs and Events
Please note that our VSS programming is alternating monthly between Mongolian and English as part of our larger plan to create inclusive and accessible discourse. April events are "The 'Монголын эзэнт гүрний түүх' series" panel and a lecture on archaeology. Both events will be held in Mongolian.

The ACMS Virtual Panel Series on "Twentieth Century of Mongolia" was hosted on March 23, with professors from MIT, Columbia, and Rutgers University, to discuss the literature, science, and women's movement of the Mongolian People's Republic period. The event garnered over 200 interests on Facebook, and has been viewed over 800 times on the live stream, as of March 25. The comments received on Zoom, Facebook, and email were overall extremely positive, thanking the speakers--and the ACMS for the initiative to introduce the experts' work to the general public.

The abridged, annotated, and bilingually subtitled recording of the March events are soon going to be uploaded on the ACMS YouTube channel.
Dr. Petya Andreeva of the New School presented "Zoomorphism as elitism: Iron-Age Legacy in the Mongol Empire" on March 19. Dr. Andreeva's presentation garnered over 970 views on her live stream. Dr. Andreeva's presentation focused on the zoomorphic patterns on the artifacts found in Mongol Empire-era, which was also found in the Xiongnu era.

Vacancies and Fellowships

Institute for Advanced Study at Indiana University Bloomington Digital Repository Research Fellowship 2021

The Institute for Advanced Study at IUB is now accepting applications for its 2021 Virtual Repository Research Fellowship (RRF). Revised for 2021, this year’s fellowship is entirely virtual. Fellows will be awarded $3,000 after successful completion of their fellowship terms, to be detailed in award letters. The fellowship period must be between June and August of 2021.

This year’s fellowship provides funding for a fellowship for a community scholar or faculty member from outside IUB to conduct in-depth research in digital collections identified by the 2021 partner repositories. The ideal fellowship arrangement is two weeks of focused research using the collection items and tools provided (remotely) by the repository. If a different timing is desired, it should be proposed and explained in the application. These repositories are participating in 2021:
  • Archives of Traditional Music
  • IU Moving Image Archive
  • Indiana University Museum of Anthropology and Archaeology
  • IU Paleontology Collection
  • Wylie House Museum
  • University Archives
Individuals who wish to work with an IUB repository not listed here are not eligible for the RRF fellowship this year. Please check back in 2022. IU Bloomington partner repositories will make portions of their collections available online for selected faculty or community scholar research fellows. The mode of access will depend on the repository. 

Assistant Professor, Asian Religions in University of Regina (one-year term position)

The Department of Gender, Religion, and Critical Studies at the University of Regina is seeking to hire a one-year term appointment at the rank of Assistant Professor to teach in the Asian Religions concentration of its Religious Studies program. The anticipated date of commencement is 1 July 2021, depending on the availability of the successful candidate.

More information can be found on the Faculty of Arts and the Gender, Religion, and Critical Studies websites.

To Apply

Review of applications will begin on April 9, 2021 and continue until the position is filled. Candidates are strongly encouraged to submit their application materials immediately.

Please note that short-listed candidates will be asked to have original transcripts and confidential letters of reference sent directly to: Office of the Dean, Faculty of Arts, University of Regina, 3737 Wascana Parkway, Regina, SK S4S 0A2, or emailed to:

Visiting Assistant Professor of Asian Art, University of Richmond

The Department of Art and Art History at the University of Richmond invites applications for a full-time, visiting assistant professor position in Asian Art beginning August 2021. This a non-tenure track appointment, annually renewable for up to two years, contingent upon performance, budget, and continued need. The successful candidate must demonstrate promise of scholarly distinction, as well as excellence in teaching. Teaching load is six units per year at the introductory and upper-level. Experience with instructional technologies is required. PhD expected prior to appointment.

The University of Richmond is committed to developing a diverse workforce and student body, and to modeling an inclusive campus community which values the expression of difference in ways that promote excellence in teaching, learning, personal development, and institutional success. Our academic community strongly encourages applications that are in keeping with this commitment. For more information on the department of Art and Art History, please visit the department’s website at

Review of applications will commence on April 1, 2021 and continue until the position is filled. Questions about the position should be addressed to the Chair of the Search Committee, Tanja Softic:

Visiting Assistant Professor of History, East Asia Department, Haverford College

Haverford College seeks to hire a full-time Visiting Assistant Professor of History for the academic year 2021-2022 who specializes in Premodern East Asia (pre-1800), with a particular interest in candidates whose research focuses on China.

Haverford College is a highly selective residential liberal arts college located in suburban Philadelphia, enrolling approximately 1200 undergraduates. Committed to superb teaching and research, it offers small class sizes and competitive salary and benefits. See the History department's website at

The college will consider candidates with PhDs (ABD considered) from both History and East Asian Studies departments. Interdisciplinary approaches are welcome.The visitor will teach a total of five courses over the academic year, including classes at the introductory and intermediate levels, upper-division courses in the candidate’s area of specialty, and advising undergraduate senior theses in the spring.

Candidates should submit application materials via Interfolio. Materials should include a cover letter, c. v., writing sample, and three letters of recommendation. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.
Curatorial Assistant at Freer Gallery of Art/Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

The Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Asian Art, are located on the National Mall in Washington, DC. Committed to preserving, exhibiting, and interpreting exemplary works of art, the Freer and Sackler house exceptional collections of Asian art, with more than 42,000 objects dating from the Neolithic period to today. Renowned and iconic objects originate from China, Japan, Korea, South and Southeast Asia, the ancient Near East, and the Islamic world. The Freer Gallery also holds a significant group of American works of art largely dating to the late nineteenth century. It boasts the world’s largest collection of diverse works by James McNeill Whistler, including the famed Peacock Room.

Candidates will be expected to work on all aspects of curatorial work (exhibitions, collections, and publications, both physical and digital, as well as public programs) and oversee administrative and financial tasks within the Curatorial Department of the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery.

Job Type: Full-time

Salary: 60,129-62,133

Inquiries should be made to

Grants, Scholarships, and Calls for Paper

Call for Papers: 2021 Glorisun International Intensive Program on Buddhism with Harvard University, August 4–25 (online)

The Glorisun Global Network for Buddhist Studies, whose founding members include Peking University, UBC, Princeton, Yale, Harvard, U Hamburg, Cambridge and Oxford, and University of Hong Kong, cordially invites applications for an intensive program on Buddhist Studies. Lasting from August 4 to August 25, 2021, this program is composed of two segments: Segment 1 from August 4 – 13 and Segment 2 from August 18 – 25, which are connected by an intersegmental conference and a student forum (August 14-17; detailed below).

The backbone of this program consists of nine lectures and lecture series delivered by international scholars:
  • Paul COPP (Chicago): “Buddhism as ‘Material Religion’”
  • Imre GALAMBOS (Cambridge): “Buddhist texts across languages: The manuscripts of Central Asia” (Lecture Series, Segment 2)
  • Eric GREENE (Yale): “Buddhist Meditation in Early Medieval China: From An Shigao to Early Chan” (Lecture Series, Segment 1)
  • Jinhua JIA 賈晉華 (U Macau): “Perspectives in the Study of Classical Chan Buddhism”
  • Lori MEEKS (USC): “Genres of Buddhist Preaching in Medieval and Early Modern Japan”
  • Ulrike ROESLER (Oxford): “The Buddhist Scriptures in Tibet: Canon and Apocrypha” (Lecture Series, Segment 2)
  • Barend TER HAAR (Hamburg): “Lay approaches to Buddhism” (Lecture Series, Segment 2)
  • Eugene WANG 汪悅進 (Harvard): “Buddhist Worldmaking: Chinese Cases” (Lecture Series, Segment 1)
  • ZHAN Ru 湛如 (PekingU): “From Buddha-gayā to Nara: Pan-Asian Shifting of artistic, doctrinal and textual motifs in Buddhism” (Lecture Series Segment 1)
  • The theme for the intersegmental conference (scheduled for Aug 14-16) for this year’s intensive program is “East Asian Buddhist Worldmaking.” The conference will bring together 25–30 top scholars from all over the world. Student participants are encouraged to attend and, if they have relevant papers, present at the conference. Details of the conference are available
In addition to participating in these lectures and the intersegmental conference, student participants are also encouraged to present their research papers to their program instructors, lecturers, and their peer participants. Participants are required to take part in all of the activities supported by the program, including the lecture series, the conference, and student forum. Outstanding students may be selected and invited to carry out short-term (3–12 months long) research at UBC and UBC’s partner universities in East Asia, Europe and North America that are linked together through a large SSHRC-sponsored international and interdisciplinary project on Buddhism and East Asian Religions ( This may further bring them the opportunity of pursuing doctoral degrees or doing postdoctoral research at these top universities.

We will be delivering the intensive program online using Zoom. More details will be provided at a closer date. Please send in your applications by April 15, 2021.

Call for Chapter Proposals: The Postcolonial Bildungsroman

Originally an 18th-century German innovation, the bildungsroman became a popular literary genre across the Anglo-American world during the 19th century. A ‘coming of age’ novel about young adults in search of meaning and happiness, the bildungsroman was the literary medium of choice for many writers - including Twain, Dickens, and Kipling - looking to explore the moral and psychological developments of characters traversing unfamiliar worlds, and thereby, encountering new challenges, experiences, and adventures. Since the 20th century, there has been a revival of interest in this genre in the Global South. Writers and thinkers from post-colonies across Asia, Europe, Africa, the Americas, and New Zealand, have turned to the bildungsroman to explore new stories about belonging, self-determinacy, cultural authenticity and spiritual awakening.

The editors aim to investigate how a nineteenth-century literary genre, originally meant for expressing local European concerns, has now been resurrected as one of the most cosmopolitan mediums for communicating global ideas. This volume will bring together essays on diverse fields of literature, narrative, and critical theory that interrogate the different articulations of the bildungsroman and examine the intersection of traditional forms with modern questions of identity and disruption. We are particularly interested in projects that explore how the bildungsroman is reimagined by writers from a wide range of formerly colonized regions including (but not limited to) South and South East and East Asia, the Middle East, the US, Latin America, Canada, regions across Africa and the African diaspora, Caribbean, Australia, and New Zealand? Contributors can consider the following questions as possible starting points (without being limited by them): how can focusing on the ‘coming of age’ story-cycle engage, for instance, recent concerns highlighted by eco-critical, queer, and/or Marxist readings of 20th- and 21st century texts; in what ways can the genre informs readings of human rights and personhood; how does examining texts through bildungsroman generic explications amplify voices reacting to colonial pasts?

Please submit a CV and a 300-word abstract by 15th June 2021. Full Drafts of approx. 7000 words will be due in January 2022. We have received positive interest for publication from Routledge. Interested participants may contact co-editors Dr. Arnab Dutta Roy ( and Dr. Matthew C. Jones (

Call for Associate Editors: Environmental Humanities 2021

Environmental Humanities is an international, open-access journal that aims to invigorate current interdisciplinary humanities research on the environment. The journal is published by Duke University Press and co-edited by Dolly Jørgensen (University of Stavanger) and Franklin Ginn (University of Bristol).

The journal is currently looking to take on new Associate Editors to join the existing Editorial Team.

Position description

Applicants for these positions should have a strong interest in the interdisciplinary environmental humanities (in line with the journal’s mandate) and would enhance the journal’s geographical, cultural, disciplinary and linguistic diversity.

Associate Editors will be appointed for a three year period starting in July 2021. It is a voluntary unpaid position.

Application process

Those interested in an Associate Editor position with Environmental Humanities should submit a CV with a short (1 page) cover letter outlining their relevant experience and interest in the position and the journal.

Applications should be submitted by 15 May 2021.

To submit an application, please send a single PDF document with your surname as the file name to with the subject line Associate Editor.

Call for Papers: Special Issue of Religions, "Buddhist Architecture in East Asia"

This Issue focuses on the Buddhist architecture in East Asia. Over the last two thousand years since its legendary introduction to the Han court in the first century, Buddhism has transformed not only people’s intellectual and practical lives but also the built environments of East Asia. From Mount Kunlun to the Japanese Isles, from the Mongolian prairie to the coasts of the South China Sea, mountains were carved for devotion and hermitic practices, cities were rebuilt for new religious life, and new architectural types were created to honor the relics of the enlightened ones and to cope with the evolving religion as it was gradually integrated with the local cultures. The articles in this Issue are aimed to capture the scope and diversity of Buddhist architecture in East Asia, and at the same time, to reflect the front lines of research in the field.

The scholarship on East Asian Buddhist architecture has also been highly focused on the more publicized dominating cultures of China, Japan, and Korea. In this collection, we encourage discussions of examples from the neglected regions in the field and cultures of religious hybridity from those countries, as well as the rich and colorful Buddhist landscapes of Mongolia, Vietnam, etc. We are especially interested in the Buddhist architectural traditions along cultural borders, regions that used to be independent regimes in the past but are now within the borders of a modern country such as the ones named above (e.g., the Ryukyu Islands).

We also want to go beyond the well-established scholarships on stylistic changes, technical development of architectural carpentry, and the typological studies of halls and pagodas. We are especially interested in the way architecture is built for and shaped by the Buddhist practice of a given community, the way architecture is integrated into the spiritual life and material culture, and the way different art forms, both spatial and performing arts, share common themes and concepts with architecture to foster a comprehensive culture that sustains the life and identity of a place. These are significant issues not only for the scholarship on architectural history, but also meaningful for the contemporary building of our own life and faith.

Contact Info:
Assistant Editor of Religions: Ms. Kiki Zhang (

Call for Book Proposals: Northeast Asian Studies at Amsterdam University Press

This series presents groundbreaking research on North East Asia, a vast region encompassing the Russian Far East, Siberia, northern China, Mongolia, Japan, and Korea.

Despite its strategic significance, studies of North East Asia remain fragmented and pigeonholed within the academic traditions of Eastern European, postsocialist and Asian studies. The series seeks to address this gap by publishing innovative monographs and edited volumes spanning the region beyond national boundaries. Ranging from migration and crossborder trade to urban development and climate change, the series foregrounds contemporary and emerging issues, and make critical interventions in both regional studies and in the field of social sciences.

Scholars with a book project and/or a manuscript should contact the series editors: Prof. Caroline Humphrey, University of Cambridge, and Franck Billé, University of California Berkeley.

New Resources

Digital collections related to Mongolia we discovered in March, 2021:

  • "ACMS Dissertation Database" This is a bit of a shameless plug, but the list of over 100 PhD, Masters, and other dissertations is one of the many hidden gems in our website. Copies of the dissertations may be found either at the libraries of the institutions that conferred the degrees or for purchase online at Proquest Online. Scholars are encouraged to provide electronic copies of their dissertations and theses to the American Center for Mongolian Studies in order to make them available as a resource to other scholars doing work in the region by contacting us at

Selected scholarly articles published in March, 2021:

Other News and Events

Critique to Franck Billé's Sinophobia (2015) | Substack
The moment when Franck Billé’s Sinophobia appeared on [Manlai Chonos'] radar he felt there was something missing. In this essay [he] will try to articulate that ‘miss’ ...

Did the Black Death Rampage Across the World a Century Earlier Than Previously Thought? |The Smithsonian
Scholar Monica Green combined the science of genetics with the study of old texts to reach a new hypothesis about the plague...
How Mongolian metal became a cultural phenomenon | Kerrang!
Who made HU? We chart the rise of The HU and the Mongolian metal scene...

April 9, 2021 4:00 PM CDT
The Mongol Impact: Why Weave When you Can Paint or Sculpt?
Speaker: Yong Cho (UC Riverside)

A webinar, co-sponsored by the Art History and Transnational Asian Studies at Rice University

March 19, 2021 12:30 PM - 2:30 PM PDT
Dairy Cultures: Milk Fermentation, Heritage and Microbial Biogeographies in Mongolia
Speaker: Bjorn Reichhardt (Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History)

Lecture series at Centre for Society, Technology, and Development (STandD), McGill University
March 17, 2021 10:00 AM EDT
Evolutionism in Historical Representations of 'Nomads'
Speaker: David Sneath (Cambridge University)

CEAS Classroom Series at UPenn
March 3, 2021 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM EST
Why Chinggis Khan can't get an exit visa: China's Great State legacy
Speaker: Timothy Brook (University of British Columbia)
Moderator: Gray Tuttle (Professor at Columbia University)

Contact Information
Ling-Wei Kung

Choose image
February 27, 2021 4:00 PM EST
Elections, Virtual Reality, and Climate Change: What Can Anthropology of Mongolia Offer 
Speaker: Dr. Manduhai Buyandelger, (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

This was a keynote address at the Association of Central Eurasian Students (ACES) Conference.
February 25, 2021, 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM EST
The Ger for the 21st Century: Air pollution and coal in the ger-districts of Mongolia
Panel: Mark Gardner, William Braham, and Achilles Kallergis (Center for Environmental Building + Design (CEBD) at the University of Pennsylvania)

February 24, 2021, 4:30 PM GMT
Veterinary Science, Zud, and Wolves: Environmental and Animal History of Collectivization in Mongolia
Speaker: Kenneth Linden (Indiana University)
Research Seminar, MIASU, Cambridge University

February 14, 2021, 4:30 PM GMT
Tsagaan Sar 2021: Year of the Ox! Virtual Celebration
Host: Friends of Mongolia
Music performances, videos, interviews and more
February 9, 2021, 4:30 PM GMT
Why the Mongol Conquests? Sources and Explanations of the 1211 Campaigns against North China
Speaker: Christopher Atwood (University of Pennsylvania)
Research Seminar, MIASU, Cambridge University
Access Passcode: 7Mlz8!md

February 3, 2021, 1:15 PM EST
Settler Nativization in the Inner Eurasian Borderlands of the Qing and Russian Empires
Speaker: Wei-chieh Tsai (Shenzhen University)
Inner Asian and Altaic Studies Lecture Series, Harvard University

Recent Books

The Rise of the Mongols: Five Chinese Sources by Christopher Atwood

Page: 264. Price: 48 USD
Rise of the Mongols offers readers a selection of five important works that detail the rise of the Mongol Empire through Chinese eyes. Three of these works were written by officials of South China's Southern Song dynasty and two are from officials from North China writing in the service of the Mongol rulers. Together, these accounts offer a view of the early Mongol Empire very different not just from those of Muslim and Christian travelers and chroniclers, but also from the Mongol tradition embodied in The Secret History of Mongols.
The five Chinese source texts (in English translation, each with their own preface): Selections from Random Notes from Court and Country since the Jianyan Years, vol.2, by Li Xinchuan, "A Memorandum on the Mong-Tatars," by Zhao Gong, "A Sketch of the Black Tatars," by Peng Daya and Xu Ting, "Spirit-Path Stele for His Honor Yelü, Director of the Secretariat," by Song Zizhen, "Notes on a Journey," by Zhang Dehui. Also included are an introduction, index, bibliography, and appendices covering notes on the texts, tables and charts, and a glossary of Chinese and transcribed terms.

Christopher Atwood is the chair of the East Asian Languages and Civilizations Department, and a professor, Mongolian and Chinese Frontier & Ethnic History
Transforming Inner Mongolia: Commerce, Migration, and Colonization on the Qing Frontier by Yi Wang
Page: 336. Price: 105 USD
This groundbreaking book analyzes the dramatic impact of Han Chinese migration into Inner Mongolia during the Qing era. In the first detailed history in English, Yi Wang explores how processes of commercial expansion, land reclamation, and Catholic proselytism transformed the Mongol frontier long before it was officially colonized and incorporated into the Chinese state. Wang reconstructs the socioeconomic, cultural, and administrative history of Inner Mongolia at a time of unprecedented Chinese expansion into its peripheries and China’s integration into the global frameworks of capitalism and the...

Yi Wang is associate professor of history at Binghamton University.
Contemporary Mongolia: Political, economic and strategic chronicle of a nomadic country by Antoine Marie (in French)
Page: 242. Price: 25 Euro
Mongolia is mainly known in Europe for the conquests of the most illustrious of its emperors, Genghis Khan, or for the survival of a pastoral nomadism. These two elements explain the attraction of a growing number of tourists in search of exoticism and authenticity, and give rise to a varied literary production, in particular numerous travelogues...

Antoine Maire is an associate researcher at the Foundation for Strategic Research (FRS)...
Mixing Medicines: Ecologies of Care in Buddhist Siberia by Tatiana Chudakova
Page: 288. Price: 32 USD
Traditional medicine enjoys widespread appeal in today’s Russia, an appeal that has often been framed either as a holdover from pre-Soviet times or as the symptom of capitalist growing pains and vanishing Soviet modes of life. Mixing Medicines seeks to reconsider these logics of emptiness and replenishment. Set in Buryatia, a semi-autonomous indigenous republic in Southeastern Siberia, the book offers an ethnography of the institutionalization of Tibetan medicine, a botanically-based therapeutic practice framed as at once foreign, international, and local to Russia’s Buddhist regions...

Tatiana Chudakova is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Tufts University.
American Center for Mongolian Studies, 642 Williams Hall, 255 S. 36th St, Philadelphia, PA 19104, United States
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