Miriam R. Silverberg: Former Students, Colleagues Honor Historian

Historians in the News

Many of those who have worked with and studied under Miriam R. Silverberg came together to tell poignant and humorous anecdotes about their encounters with her at a two-day symposium on "Imperial Japan and Colonial Sensibility: Affect, Object, Embodiment." The event celebrated the work of its original organizer, Silverberg, including her recently published book Erotic Grotesque Nonsense: The Mass Culture of Japanese Modern Times. Silverberg was unable to attend the Dec. 7-8, 2007 symposium, but will receive a taped recording of the event.

Funding for the event was provided by the Paul I. and Hisako Terasaki Center for Japanese Studies' Nikkei Bruin Fund and the Northeast Asia Council of the Association for Asian Studies. The conference brought together scholars from across the nation including some of Silverberg's former students. The University of Florida's Helen Lee, Stanford's Jun Uchida, Georgetown's Jordan Sand, Hamilton College's Haeng-ja Sachiko Chung, Cal State Fullerton's Kristine Dennehy, UNC-Chapel Hill's Mark Driscoll, Colorado State's Todd Henry, UC San Diego's Takashi Fujitani, UC Irvine's Serk-Bae Suh, the University of Chicago's Michael Bourdaghs, and Duke's Leo Ching discussed the Japanese colonial empire and its aftermath following World War II. UCLA scholars Sondra Hale, Esha De, Mariko Tamanoi, and Seiji Lippit also spoke.

"Miriam's students are spread across the country," Lippit said. "You get a sense of the impact she has had."

The papers presented during the symposium revealed the impact Silverberg's work has had on scholarship in modern Japanese studies.

"[This is] not just a conference for Miriam, but with Miriam," said Sand, co-organizer of the event with Tamanoi. "We have a very interested participant who is interested in hearing what you have to say."...

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