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CEAS History

See below for a historical timeline of events at the KU Center for East Asian Studies. The links on the menu to the left have photos and videos related to the Center's history.

50 Years of the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Kansas

A Historical Timeline Prepared by Bill Tsutsui & Leslie vonHolten


Thomas R. Smith appointed associate professor of geography. Smith offers the first East Asian area studies course at KU in the fall semester.


George Beckmann joins the Department of History.


First “Summer Institute on Asia” held at KU (under the direction of George Beckmann). The Institute is repeated the following three summers, offering courses such as “The Modernization of China and Japan” and “Southeast Asia in Modern Times.”

Fifth annual Conference on Asian Affairs (predecessor of the Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs) is held at KU.


Congress passes the National Defense Education Act. Title VI of the act provides for federal support of language and area studies programs at U.S. universities.


Committee on East Asian Studies formed with George Beckmann as chair.

Kansas Legislature approves program in East Asian Studies.

The Center for East Asian Studies founded, supported by an NDEA grant. George Beckmann is the first director.

Benjamin Wallacker appointed in Oriental Languages & Literatures and begins instruction in Chinese; 24 students enroll.


Thomas R. Smith becomes acting director of the Center.

Edgar Wickberg joins the Department of History, and Carl Lande is appointed in the Department of Political Science.

Instruction in third-year Chinese is added.


Thomas R. Smith assumes CEAS directorship.

Oriental Languages & Literatures established with “semi-departmental status”

within CEAS.

First two East Asian Studies co-majors (Robert A. Christianson and John Ross) graduate.

Felix Moos joins the Department of Anthropology; Klaus Pringsheim joins Political Science; and Leon Zolbrod joins OL&L. Karl Lo is named East Asian cataloguer in Watson Library.

Instruction in Japanese begins; 29 students enroll during the first year.


Norman Jacobs joins the Department of Sociology.

Edgar Snow delivers a guest lecture at KU.

First Summer Japanese Institute; 16 students complete the introductory course in Japanese.

Grant Goodman joins the Department of History, and Chi-chou Huang joins Oriental Languages & Literatures.

Ford Foundation grant supports development of an experimental curriculum of internationally oriented introductory courses and a new “Eastern-Western” civilizations program. Robert Burton hired to develop a course in Eastern Civilizations.


Intensive Summer Program in East Asian Languages, sponsored by KU and U of Colorado, held in Lawrence; 39 students complete courses in Chinese and Japanese. Among the Japanese language students is high school senior Jill Kleinberg.

Frank H.H. King joins the Department of Economics, and Toshihiko Sato is appointed in Oriental Languages & Literature.


Oriental Languages & Literatures established as a department under the acting chairmanship of Benjamin Wallacker. The BA degree in OL&L is approved.

The East Asian Library is established as a departmental library.

Total annual enrollment in East Asian language courses tops 100 for the first time.

A Certificate in East Asian Language and Area Studies, offered in conjunction with the MA degree in a discipline, is approved.

Frank King serves as acting director of the Center for the fall semester.


Robert Burton becomes acting chair of Oriental Languages & Literature.

The East Asian Series (under the auspices of the University Press and CEAS) is approved by the University Press Committee.

First BAs in OL&L awarded to Rita Krusemark, Roger Meyer, and Julie Winkler.

Wallace Johnson joins OL&L, and Chae-jin Lee joins the Department of Political Science. Chu-tsing Li is appointed full professor in the Department of Art History.


Center moves to “temporary quarters” at Oread Hall (1135 Maine Street) from its previous office in 16 Strong E.

John Dardess joins the Department of History; Alfonso Verdu joins the Department of Philosophy; Nobleza Asuncion-Lande joins Speech & Drama; and Carl Leban and Grace Wan join Oriental Languages & Literatures. Carl Lande returns to KU.


The Center moves to offices at 1332 Louisiana Street, once home to Phi Kappa Tau fraternity.

Kansas Board of Regents approves offering of MA degrees in East Asian Studies and Oriental Languages & Literature.

Edgar Wickberg assumes acting chairmanship of OL&L.

KU hosts the annual MCAA meeting.

Robert McColl joins the Department of Geography. Laurence Sickman (director of the Nelson Gallery of Art in Kansas City) is appointed lecturer in the Department of the History of Art.


CEAS faculty begin offering courses at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth.

Felix Moos becomes Center director following Thomas R. Smith’s departure to become chair of the Geography Department. Grant Goodman becomes chair of the East Asian Studies program.

Chung-kai Huang becomes head of the East Asian Library.

Richard Spear appointed associate professor and chair of Oriental Languages & Literatures. Andrew Tsubaki joins the Department of Theatre & Film, and Joseph Kuo is appointed in OL&L.


The East Asian Library adds its 50,000th volume.

G. Cameron “Cappy” Hurst joins the Department of History, Harry Lindquist joins Anthropology, and Robert Rorex joins the History of Art.

KU offers Korean language for the first time, and is only the seventh American university to do so. (Courses discontinued in 1973 for financial reasons.)


Jayhawk House founded in Osaka by Makoto and Yuriko Saito. For more than 15 years, a KU graduate student would annually be sent to the house and teach English language classes in exchange for room and board.


East Asian Studies building (1332 Louisiana Street) is firebombed, causing $4000 damage to a rear porch. The University Daily Kansan receives a letter the following day claiming that “the Kansas Revolutionary Army firebombed the East Asian Studies Center in solidarity with the National Liberation Front of Vietnam.”

Intensive Summer Institute in Chinese and Japanese loses federal funding; enrollment drops by over 50% from previous year.

Paul McCarthy joins Oriental Languages & Literatures. Daniel Bays joins the Department of History.


Eugene Carvalho becomes head of the East Asian Library.

The “February Sisters”—30 women and four children—occupy the East Asian Studies building (1332 Louisiana St.). Among their demands is a program in women’s studies and more women in the university administration.

Richard Spear resigns as chair of Oriental Languages & Literature. Carl Leban is appointed acting chair.


Over the period from 1959 to 1973, KU awards 130 BAs, 44 MAs, and 5 PhDs in East Asian fields.

Guest speakers during the 1973-1974 academic year include Susan Sontag (discussing her recent trip to the PRC), Lucien Pye, and Ezra Vogel.

Grant Goodman visits Japan as a special representative of the Mid-America State Universities Association to investigate possible student and faculty exchanges with Japanese institutions.

Kansas Regents Universities Council of Chief Academic Officers (COCAO) places both East Asian Studies and Oriental Languages & Literature MA degrees on probation for 3 years due to their small number of annual graduates.

Intensive summer institute becomes part of the regular summer school curriculum.

Akira Yamamoto joins the Departments of Anthropology and Linguistics.

10-week non-credit course in conversational Japanese offered by CEAS at Johnson County Community College.


Center office moves to 106 Strong Hall.

Kansas Board of Regents decides to merge MA degrees in East Asian Studies and Oriental Languages & Literatures.

Grant Goodman participates in a second Kansas trade and investment mission to Japan.


Joseph Kuo offers conversational Chinese class in Kansas City for the first time.

Chae-jin Lee is interim chair of East Asian Studies while Grant Goodman is on leave at University College, Dublin.


$60,000 grant received from the Rockefeller Foundation and the Sumitomo Fund to study “Japan and the U.S. in the Pacific.” CEAS participants are Grant Goodman, Carl and Nobleza Lande, Chae-jin Lee, and Felix Moos.

Kansas Regents Universities Council of Chief Academic Officers (COCAO) designates East Asian Studies a “unique regional resource” deserving continuing state support.

Chae-jin Lee accompanies a group of American farmers and agricultural experts (organized by the Rural Affairs Division of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Kansas City) to the PRC.

Association of Students in Asian Studies (ASIAS) founded. Over the following years the group would organize calligraphy and origami classes, film series, language tables, and faculty presentations.

Japan America Student Conference held at KU.

Chae-jin Lee and Cappy Hurst become co-chairs of the East Asian Studies Program and co-directors of CEAS.

Richard Spear returns as chair of Oriental Languages & Literatures.

Kimiko Yamamoto joins OL&L; Christine Kanda appointed in Art History.

Pilot study-abroad program in Taiwan, organized by Wallace Johnson, is launched. Four KU students spend the 1976-1977 academic year taking regular classes in Chinese at National Taiwan University.


Japan Foundation grant supports a visiting professorship for the 1977-1978 academic year. Ichiro Inukai (Kyoto Sangyo University) offers courses in Japanese business and economic development.

Alger Hiss speaks at KU on “U.S. Foreign Policy in Asia.”

Grace Wan wins the Amoco Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching.

KU’s summer language institute is the fifth largest summer Chinese and Japanese school in the U.S. Only Hawaii, Middlebury, Washington (Seattle), and Berkeley are larger in terms of enrollments.

Stephen Addiss joins the History of Art department.

Korean language classes are resumed.

 “Kansas at Ewha” program inaugurated. Six American students (including two from KU) spend the academic year studying Korean Language & Culture at Ewha Woman’s University.

Oriental Languages & Literature and the East Asian Studies Program are merged into a new Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures. Cappy Hurst and Chae-jin Lee become co-chairs of EALC and remain co-directors of CEAS.


Chu-tsing Li is named Judith Harris Murphy Distinguished Professor of the History of Art.

Helen Foresman Spencer Museum of Art opens with Oriental Gallery on its third floor.

Patrick Scanlan joins the East Asian Library as Chinese bibliographer.

Faubion Bowers is Rose Morgan Visiting Professor in East Asian Languages & Cultures.

Jonathan Unger joins the EALC Department.

Student exchanges with Tsukuba University are inaugurated; seven KU students attend.

John Dardess appointed associate director of CEAS while Cappy Hurst is on leave.


A Fulbright-Hays grant supports a visiting professorship in Korean politics (held by Se Hee Yoo during the 1979-1980 academic year).

Joseph Kuo receives a two-year Office of Education grant to monitor, record, and edit broadcasts from Radio Beijing.

KU Chancellor Archie Dykes visits Taiwan.

Sister state/province relationship established between Kansas and Henan, PRC.


China Map and Imagery Repository Center, a national resource for maps and images of China, is established by Bob McColl.

Chu-tsing Li directs an interdisciplinary faculty seminar, “East and West: Contrasts, Parallels, Exchanges,” under the auspices of the KU Center for Humanistic Studies.

Agreements for cooperative exchange programs finalized between KU and Nankai University, and KU and Nanjing University. A General Agreement for Academic Cooperation is signed by KU and Zhengzhou University (Henan province). A similar agreement is signed with Henan Medical College.

Annual summer workshop for high school and community college teachers inaugurated by CEAS; 25 teachers explore “East Asia: The Arts and Crafts of Buddhism” with Cappy Hurst.

Gary Bjorge named assistant librarian/Chinese bibliographer at the East Asian Library.

Conference, “China’s Economy and Trade,” is sponsored by CEAS, the Kansas Department of Economic Development, and the International Relations Council of Kansas City.

Major exhibition on the Tokaido Road, organized by Stephen Addiss and funded by an NEH grant, is staged at the Spencer Museum.

Among CEAS visiting lecturers for 1980-1981 are Ikuhiko Hata (Takushoku University), Jonathan Spence, and Earl Miner.


CEAS sponsors a “Colloquium on Asian Security Policies,” a series of five lectures by visiting scholars.

The Center is able to award summer FLAS/National Resource Fellowships for the first time.

 “Mid-America Summer Session for Intensive Chinese and Japanese,” co-sponsored by CEAS and the University of Denver, is held in Lawrence. This cooperative program continues (with Title VI funding) until 1985.

Andrew Tsubaki is appointed associate director of CEAS.


The “Japan Traveling Scholars’ Seminar,” sponsored by the Japan Foundation and led by Toru Haga of Tokyo University, visits KU.

Andrew Markus joins the Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures.

Henan Archeological Study Tour organized by CEAS. A delegation of 34 KU faculty, alumni, and friends travels to sites in Henan province under the leadership of Del Shankel, professor of Microbiology.

Dan Bays becomes co-director of CEAS after Chae-jin Lee is appointed associate dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Cappy Hurst continues as co-director of the Center and chair of EALC.

KU hosts “Mongol Month,” organized by Wallace Johnson. Speakers include Herbert Franke and Joseph Fletcher.

Center hosts the Third Annual Conference on International Affairs, focusing on “U.S.-Japan Relations in the 1980s.” The keynote speech is delivered by Senator Nancy Kassebaum.

CEAS offices move from 106 Strong Hall to 105 Lippincott Hall.


Grace Wan Prize in Chinese Language Study established upon her retirement from KU.

Pok-chi Lau (School of Fine Arts) becomes a member of CEAS.

Genji Okubo presents a series of seven lectures at KU on “Japan Since 1945: The Emergence of Contemporary Japan.”

First issue of the Kansas–East Asia Commercial Bulletin is issued by CEAS.

CEAS sponsors “Colloquium on U.S.-China Economic and Trade Relations,” a series of six public lectures by visiting scholars.

Cappy Hurst resigns as co-director of CEAS and chair of EALC to serve as a staff associate for Universities Field Staff International in Seoul. Dan Bays becomes director of CEAS and Andrew Tsubaki assumes the chairmanship of the Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures.

KU hosts the 32nd annual meeting of the MCAA.


100,000th volume in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean added to the East Asian Library.

Gary Bjorge becomes acting director of CEAS while Dan Bays is on leave in Taiwan. Bjorge resigns in September to take a position at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth.

Keith McMahon joins the East Asian Languages & Cultures department.

Robert Minor becomes acting director of CEAS.


NRC grant is not renewed for the 1985-1987 cycle. KU is ranked 14th in the competition and only the top 13 centers are funded. As a result, Korean language offerings are dropped and outreach classes are drastically scaled back.

Zuo-huang Chen, the first conductor selected by the Chinese government to study in the United States, spends 1985-1987 at KU as the director of the University of Kansas Symphony Orchestra. Upon his return to China in 1987, he will become the conductor of the Beijing Symphony Orchestra. In November 1986, he is awarded the HOPE teaching award by the KU senior class.

Ju-yen Teng becomes Assistant East Asian Librarian.

Faculty and student exchange agreement signed between the KU School of Law and the Peking University School of Law.

Dan Bays resumes his post as CEAS director.

Exhibition, “Japanese Ghosts and Demons: Art of the Supernatural,” supported by an NEH grant, is staged at the Spencer Museum.

Patricia Weiss, assistant director of the Economic Education Program in the School of Education, is named an associate member of CEAS.


Wallace Johnson receives a grant from the Department of Education to acquire an advanced Chinese word processing system and produce an advanced textbook on Chinese composition.

James Butler joins the Kansas Geological Survey.

Agreement on a student exchange program signed by Henan province governor He Zhukang and Kansas governor John Carlin.

$80,000 endowment for fellowships in Chinese art history donated in memory of Mr. and Mrs. H.M. Lee of Hong Kong.

Cappy Hurst returns as director of CEAS.

First Asian American International Film Festival, underwritten by AT&T, screens 15 recent Asian and Asian American films at KU.

Cappy Hurst organizes symposium, “Cosmopolitan Xenophobics: Cultural Nationalism in the Republic of Korea.”

Talk Chinese, a weekly five-minute spot, runs on KJHK, KU’s student radio station.


Margaret Childs joins the Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures; Vickie Fu Doll is appointed Chinese bibliographer in the East Asian Library. New associate members of CEAS include George Frederickson (Public Administration), Norman Gee (Art), Da-hsiang Lien (Economics), Thomas Weiss (Economics), and De-min Wu (Economics).

CEAS sponsors symposium “U.S.-Korea Trade: Problems and Prospects.”

First annual International Careers Conference, co-sponsored by the Center, is held at KU.

Higuchi Japanese Language Award is endowed in memory of Professor Takeru “Tak” Higuchi, Regents’ Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry.

Okubo Award, which recognizes outstanding student essays on Japan, is created in memory of Genji Okubo, a long-time supporter of CEAS.

New organization for KU undergraduates, the Society for East Asian Studies, is formed. Over the following years, the Society would show films and sponsor talks and roundtables, among other activities.

Symposium on Korean politics held at KU. The keynote speaker is Kyung-won Kim, South Korean ambassador to the United States.


Chancellor Gene Budig visits Korea.

Exhibition, “Japanese Women Artists, 1600-1900,” partially funded by the NEH and the Japan-United States Friendship Commission, is staged at the Spencer Museum of Art.

KU Executive Vice Chancellor Judith Ramaley, accompanied by Cappy Hurst and Dan Bays, visits Japan, China, and Hong Kong.

Robert Kleinberg joins the Department of Political Science.

Herman W. Mast III (KU ’63, East Asian Studies) and Linda Wang Mast commit to the endowment of the Mast-Wang Family Chair in Chinese History.

Bronze sculpture by Taiwanese artist Ju Ming, “Tai Chi Figure,” dedicated in front of the KU School of Law.


Kimiko Yamamoto is co-winner of the Outstanding Woman of the Year Award, given by the KU Commission on the Status of Women.

Fukushima Keido Roshi, Chief Abbot of Tofukuji in Kyoto, makes his first annual visit to KU.

Grant Goodman retires from the University of Kansas.

First KU East Asian Language Conference held. The symposium, “Japan and the U.S.: Both Sides of the Pacific,” boasts keynote speaker Nobuo Matsunaga, Japanese ambassador to the United States.

Conference, “Getting to Know the Competition: The Cultural Dimensions of Doing Business in East Asia,” is sponsored by CEAS and funded by the Kansas Committee for the Humanities.

A Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad grant funds a study trip to Japan and Korea for nine KU business professors. Cappy Hurst is the group leader.

Elaine Gerbert joins the Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures.

Liu Binyan speaks at KU on “China’s Crisis: Prospects for the Future.” KU faculty hold a panel discussion, “The Events in Beijing, June 1989: Four Perspectives.”


The Center receives a three-year grant from the United States Information Agency to support faculty exchanges with Nankai University. A total of 13 professors eventually participate in exchanges under this program.

John Head joins the School of Law.

KU sponsors award-winning documentary, “Quiet Passages: The Japanese War Bride Experience,” produced by Chico Herbison and Jerry Schultz.

Felix Moos and Clyde Stoltenberg become acting co-directors of the Center while Cappy Hurst serves as dean of CUNY-Lehman College’s campus in Hiroshima.

Maggie Childs becomes chair of East Asian Languages & Cultures.

Marsha Weidner joins the Department of History of Art; David Lambertson becomes a “diplomat in residence” at KU.


Memorial plaque to Robert Burton dedicated in the East Asian Library.

Formal exchange agreement between Kanagawa University and KU finalized.

CEAS receives a three-year grant from the Korea Research Foundation to support faculty positions in Korean studies.

CEAS co-sponsors a professional development seminar, “Education for a Better World: Current U.S.-Japan Issues.”

Two East Asian Language & Cultures majors—Margaret Baptist (’91) and James Vincent (’90)—receive Mellon Fellowships in the Humanities.

Eleven students participate in a KU program (led by Maggie Childs) on Japanese language, business and society at Kanagawa University’s Hiratsuka campus.

NEH summer seminar, “Modern Chinese Art and Culture,” directed by Chu-tsing Li, is held at KU.

CEAS co-sponsors first “Asian-American Festival” at KU, featuring speakers, films, art displays, and performances. Organizers are Paul Lim (English) and Jerry Schultz (program assistant, CEAS).


Akira Yamamoto wins the Byron T. Shutz Award (for distinguished teaching).

Norihito Tanaka is a Fulbright Visiting Lecturer at the KU School of Business.

Cappy Hurst returns as CEAS director after 2 years in Japan.

Amy McNair and John Teramoto join the Art History department; Ray Christensen joins Political Science.


CEAS co-sponsors the seminar “Joint Ventures and Culture in East Asia” at the Regents’ Center.

EALC major Munro Richardson (’93) wins a Rhodes Scholarship to study Chinese at Oxford.

Niswander Family Awards for outstanding students of Japanese, Chinese, and Korean are established by Rex and Sonoko Niswander in honor of Rex’s father, John Niswander.

Kenkyusha Dictionary Award for excellence in Japanese language study is established by the Agrek Corporation.

Daniel Stevenson joins the Department of Religious Studies; William Tsutsui is appointed in History. Visiting faculty include Miwa Stevenson (Art History).

Keith McMahon serves as acting chair of EALC while Maggie Childs is on sabbatical.


Roger Shimomura named University Distinguished Professor.

Dan Bays receives a three-year grant from the Pew Charitable Trusts to preserve and analyze materials relating to Christianity in China.

CEAS and KU Martial Arts Research Society sponsor a symposium, “Philosophy of Karate-do: A Japanese Art As Applied in the U.S.”

Society for East Asian Studies sponsors a faculty panel discussion, “Human Rights Issues of East Asia.”

Sheng-li Feng joins East Asian Languages & Cultures, and William Samonides joins the History of Art department. Hyaewol Choi assumes a visiting appointment in Korean language and society in EALC. Vickie Fu Doll is appointed as the interim head and Chinese Studies librarian of the East Asian Library.

A delegation of 15 Korean legislators participate in a KU Workshop on Local Autonomy, organized by George Frederickson and funded by the United States Information Agency.


Pat Weiss, outreach director at CEAS, receives grants from the Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership and the Rocky Mountain Regional Japan project to support a series of teacher workshops, “The Building Bridges Project: Teaching About Japan in Rural and Multicultural School Districts of the Rocky Mountain/Great Plains Region.”

Kimiko Yamamoto is acting chair of East Asian Languages & Cultures while Maggie Childs is a visiting professor at Columbia University.

 “The Jade Studio: Masterpieces of Ming and Qing Painting and Calligraphy from the Wong Nan-p’ing Collection” is exhibited at the Spencer Museum.

John Dardess named director of CEAS after Cappy Hurst leaves KU to become chair of the Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.

United States Information Agency funds a summer-long exchange program between the KU School of Journalism and Korea. Nine Korean journalists visit KU in July and August.

David Lambertson, new director of International Development at KU, becomes an associate member of CEAS.

In commemoration of its 70th anniversary, Kanagawa University donates 150 volumes of Japanese books per year for five years to the East Asian Library.


CEAS sponsors symposium, “China and the World Trade Organization.”

Andrew Tsubaki directs Rashomon at the University Theatre. Associated events include lectures, workshops, films and a major symposium on “multicultural theatre.”

CEAS sponsors faculty panel discussion, “China and Hong Kong.”

Marsha Weidner (and three collaborators) receive a grant from the Asian Cultural Council to lead an on-site graduate seminar in China.

Keith McMahon becomes chair of the Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures.

CEAS offices move upstairs to 205 Lippincott Hall.

Greg Simpson (Psychology) is elected an associate member of CEAS.

Tamaki Foundation Scholarships for study abroad in Japan awarded through CEAS for the first time.


Gene Carvalho retires as director of the East Asian Library.

Deborah Peterson begins teaching Chinese in the Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures.

Chancellor Robert Hemenway visits Japan as a guest of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

CEAS sponsors the “Mid America-Japan Information Bridge Conference” with funding from the Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership.

CEAS is among the sponsors of an international conference, “Visuality in Modern Japanese Culture,” organized by Elaine Gerbert and visiting professor Livia Monnet.

Livia Monnet of the University of Montreal is Hall Center Visiting Professor in the Humanities.

Symposium, “Hong Kong Connections: Political, Cultural, Professional,” held at the Regents’ Center in Overland Park.

The Rex and Sonoko Niswander Program on Okinawa and Pacific Security is organized by CEAS. Almost 200 people attend an afternoon panel at KU and an evening program in Kansas City.

Pat Weiss travels to Japan as the educational consultant for a PBS project, Passport to Japan—Konnichiwa: Family, School, Community and Tradition.


George Frederickson receives the Order of Diplomatic Service medal from the South Korean government for his years of promoting friendship between the United States and Korea.

Marsha Weidner becomes CEAS director.

CEAS co-sponsors an international symposium, “Beyond Bushido: Recent Work in Japanese Military History,” organized by Bill Tsutsui.

Conference, “Terms of Engagement: Most Favored Nation Trading Status for China,” is organized by Terry Weidner and co-sponsored by CEAS.

John Teramoto and Akira and Kimiko Yamamoto organize a panel at the Central States Anthropological Society featuring five papers by KU graduate students originally written for the interdisciplinary course “Eye, Brush and Lens: Travel and its Visual Record in Tokugawa and Meiji Japan.”

Fiona Yap joins the Department of Political Science. In October, Michiko Ito arrives at KU to become Japanese Studies Bibliographer in the East Asian Library.

Eric Rath joins the Department of History, Ed Canda joins the School of Social Welfare, and Catherine Shenoy joins the School of Business.

Nancy Hope joins CEAS as outreach coordinator following Patricia Weiss’s retirement from the University of Kansas.

Robert Basow and Thomas Volek (Journalism), Mary Zimmerman (Health Policy & Management), and Larry Martin (Systematics & Ecology) join CEAS as associate members.

With other KU area studies centers, CEAS co-organizes the conference “The Environment: World Perspectives.”

CEAS establishes its Speakers’ Bureau, making faculty expertise available to schools and community groups.

The Center for East Asian Studies Electronic Publication Series is launched with James Halsema’s “Diary of the 1940 JASC Conference,” edited by Grant Goodman.

Christopher Anderson joins the School of Business, and Sherry Fowler joins the History of Art department; both become CEAS faculty members. Dale Slusser (KU Endowment) becomes an associate member of CEAS.

Carl Lande and Andrew Tsubaki retire from the University of Kansas.

Bill Tsutsui becomes acting director of CEAS following Marsha Weidner’s NEH fellowship award.

CEAS participates on a symposium about women missionaries in East Asia in conjunction with the publication of Kate Hansen: The Grandest Mission on Earth: From Kansas to Japan, 1907-1951.

CEAS joins with Johnson County Community College and the University of Hawaii to sponsor “Translating China: Perceptions and Misperceptions,” a symposium about how cultural expression is transmitted and given meaning.

CEAS hosts a daylong symposium exploring the effect of globalization in China and Japan, including cultural exchanges such as Pokemon in the United States and jazz in Japan.

Arienne Dwyer joins the Department of Anthropology, and Yoonmi Nam joins the School of Fine Arts.

Margaret Childs becomes acting director of CEAS while Bill Tsutsui takes research leave.

The East Asian Library collection boasts 185,700 volumes: 117,570 in Chinese, 65,630 in Japanese, and 2,500 in Korean. This is on top of 1,420 periodical titles and the main library’s 324,800 East Asian titles in western languages.

The Kansas Consortium for Teaching about Asia (KCTA) is formed in CEAS, with the mission to work with K-12 educators to enhance the teaching and study of East Asia. The project is supported by a grant from the Freeman Foundation of New York and Stowe, Vermont.

Robert McColl, Kimiko Yamamoto, and John Dardess retire from the University of Kansas.

Megan Greene joins the Department of History, William Lindsey joins the Department of Religious Studies, and Thomas Huang joins the Department of Industrial Design.

Elaine Gerbert becomes director of CEAS.

The Freeman Foundation of New York City and Stowe, Vermont, awards CEAS $2 million to increase understanding of East Asia in Kansas. The gift is used to establish the Kansas/Asia Scholars programs and the Kansas/Asia Community Connection, as well as to seed four new faculty positions at KU.

Chalmers Johnson (University of California, San Diego) gives the inaugural Grant Goodman Distinguished Lecture in Japanese Studies.

CEAS co-hosts the “Cold War Conference” at Johnson County Community College.

Yan Bing Zhang (Communication Studies), Tailan Chi (Business), John Kennedy (Political Science), Jie Zhang (Linguistics), and Raj Bhala (School of Law) join the CEAS faculty.

Kansas Asia Scholars Program begins. Nine KU students go to Japan, and six go to Korea. The China trip is postponed until December due to the SARS epidemic.

CEAS co-sponsors the international conference, “Muslim Cultures along the Silk Roads,” with the KU Center for Russian, Eastern European, and Eurasian Studies and funding by the U.S. Department of Education and private donors.

Akira Iriye, Charles Warren professor and chair of the Department of History at Harvard University, delivers the 2003 Grant Goodman Distinguished Lecture in Japanese Studies, “Japanese Imperialism in the Age of Globalization.”

CEAS hosts a series of events exploring the culture and history of Okinawa, supported by KU alum Rex Niswander.

CEAS begins the Kansas Committee for International Education in the Schools (KCIES) to evaluate the resources for international education in Kansas, advocate and publicize international education around the state, and draft specific plans for future activities.

Bill Tsutsui serves as acting director of CEAS while director Elaine Gerbert works on a project supported by an NEH Faculty Research Fellowship.

Marsha Haufler wins the 2004 Provost’s Award for Leadership in International Education.

Michael Baskett (Theatre & Film); Sanae Eda (East Asian Languages & Cultures); Kelly Chong (Sociology); So Yeon Park (Art); and Jie Han and Yong Bai (Civil, Environmental, & Architectural Engineering) join CEAS faculty.

Randi Hacker, outreach coordinator, and Jun Fu, accounting specialist, join the CEAS staff.

Kansas Asia Scholars return to Japan, China, and Korea under the guidance of program directors Pat Graham, Sheree Willis, and Ed Canda.

The Kansas Consortium for Teaching about Asia takes 22 K-12 educators to China and Japan.

An inflatable Godzilla looms over downtown Lawrence as part of the “In Godzilla’s Footsteps: Japanese Pop Culture Icons on the Global Stage” conference organized by Bill Tsutsui and Michiko Ito.

Emiko Ohnuki-Tierney, professor of Anthropology at the University of Madison–Wisconsin, delivers the 2004 Grant Goodman Distinguished Lecture in Japanese Studies, "Doomed by Idealism? Death, Cherry Blossoms, and the Intellectual Trajectories of Japan's Tokkotai (Kamikaze) Pilots.”

Bob Basow wins the first CEAS Faculty Service Award.

Uyghur language classes are offered by Arienne Dwyer for the first time at KU.

Marsha Haufler serves as acting director of CEAS.

Political Science Professor Emeritus Carl Lande dies. He is survived by his wife, Communication Studies Professor Nobleza Asuncion-Lande, also a long-time CEAS faculty member.

East Asian Languages & Cultures Professor Emeritus Joseph Cheng Kuo dies. He is survived by his daughter Rose Kuo and three sons, John, David, and Simon.

Crispin Williams joins the Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures to teach Chinese. Lecturers Maija Devine (Korean language) and Champa Lhunpo (Tibetan language) also join EALC, and graduate student Mahire Yakup begins teaching Uyghur.

Alison Gabriele joins the Department of Linguistics; Woochan Shim joins the School of Social Welfare; and Jane Zhao joins the School of Business faculty.

CEAS and the Office of International Programs host two conferences, “Korea Today” and “The Korean War in Historical Perspective,” in conjunction with the dedication of KU’s Korean War Memorial.

 “Postcards from Asia” by Randi Hacker and Bill Tsutsui begins airing on KANU 91.5 FM.

Art History Professor Chu-tsing Li is honored with a conference, “Perspectives on Chinese Art: New Approaches and Reflections on Forty Years of Scholarship” at Arizona State University and the Phoenix Art Museum.

In Beijing, KU Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor David Shulenburger and Ma Jianfei, the Deputy Director–General of the National Office of Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language, sign a memorandum of understanding, thus beginning the early stages of the Confucius Institute at the University of Kansas.

John Nathan, Takashima Professor of Japanese Cultural Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara, delivers the 2005 Grant Goodman Distinguished Lecture in Japanese Studies, “Japan Unbound: The Unraveling of U.S.-Japan Relations.”

Michael Baskett wins CEAS Faculty Service Award.

Elaine Gerbert returns as director of CEAS.

The Confucius Institute at the University of Kansas is launched on May 4 at the KU Edwards Campus in Overland Park.

The EALC MA–MBA degree program is launched.

Former Consul General of Japan to Kansas City Takao Shibata begins a three-year term as the KU Chancellor’s Lecturer.

John Head (Law) wins the 2006 Provost’s Award for Leadership in International Education.

CEAS welcomes new faculty members Jin Yi (Economics), So-Min Cheong (Geography), Robert Fiorentino (Linguistics), Tien-tsung Lee (Journalism), Xingong Li (Geography), Ketty Wong (Music), and Johnny Kim (Social Welfare).

Leslie von Holten, program assistant, joins the CEAS staff.

Jennifer Robertson, University of Michigan, delivers the 2006 Grant Goodman Distinguished Lecture in Japanese Studies, “Artificial Humans (jinzō ningen) in Japan.”

CEAS office manager and accountant Jun Fu is honored as KU’s September Employee of the Month.

Professor Emeritus Andrew Tsubaki is awarded the Order of the Sacred Treasure (Zuihou Shojushou), the Japanese Emperor’s Award, one of Japan’s highest honors, in recognition of his lifetime devotion to using education to pass along the traditions of Japanese culture.

John Kennedy wins CEAS Faculty Service Award.

Marsha Haufler again becomes acting director of CEAS; Megan Greene is named associate director.

CEAS welcomes new faculty members Kris Imants Ercums (Spencer Museum of Art), Maki Kaneko (Art History), Yang Lu (History), Akiko Takeyama (Anthropology and Women’s Studies), and Kyoim Yun (East Asian Languages & Cultures).

Wallace Johnson, Professor of East Asian Languages & Cultures, dies. He is survived by his wife, former KU Classics instructor Dr. Diantha (Haviland) Johnson and his son, Wallace Johnson III.

Bill Tsutsui wins the 2007 Woodyard International Educator Award (formerly the Provost’s Award for Leadership in International Education).

Anthropology and Linguistics Professor Akira Yamamoto retires from the University of Kansas.

CEAS hosts the inaugural Mid-Autumn Festival Moon-Viewing Party on the front lawn of the Dole Institute of Politics.

Harry Harootunian, Max Palevsky Professor of History & Civilizations, Emeritus, University of Chicago, delivers the 2007 Grant Goodman Distinguished Lecture in Japanese Studies, “The Good Japanese: Disciplining Democracy.”

Sanae Eda wins CEAS Faculty Service Award.

Ed Canda wins the 2007 Woodyard International Educator Award, the third year in a row the award is given to a CEAS faculty member (and fourth time since its beginning in 1999).

Professor Emeritus Akira Yamamoto is given the Career Achievement Award from the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

Yan Li joins the faculty of East Asian Languages & Cultures. Dongbin Kim (School of Education), ChangHwan Kim (Sociology), and Michael Taylor (Geography) become associate members of CEAS.

Bill Tsutsui is promoted to associate dean of International Studies, CLAS. Sheree Willis is named the new executive director of the Confucius Institute at KU.

CEAS hosts the international conference “Olympian Desires: Building Bodies and Nations in East Asia.” Michael Baskett and Bill Tsutsui are co-organizers.

The KU School of Social Welfare, under the direction of Ed Canda, hosts an international conference, “Positive Youth Development through Strengths and Spirituality: Perspectives from Korea and North America. The Korean Culture Show, which was open to the public, attracts over 400 people.

William Kelly, Sumitomo Professor of Japanese Studies, Yale University, delivers the 2008 Grant Goodman Distinguished Lecture in Japanese Studies, “Japan As a Sporting Nation: Baseball, Judo, Sumo, Soccer!”

Bill Tsutsui wins CEAS Faculty Service Award.

Megan Greene becomes director of CEAS.

Hui Faye Xiao joins the Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures.

CEAS hosts the international conference, “The Opening of Western China: Problems and Prospects,” which examined ethnicity, the environment, and economic development issues facing Western China.

Samuel Yamashita, Henry E. Sheffield Professor of History at Pomona College, delivers the 2009 Grant Goodman Distinguished Lecture in Japanese Studies, “Coercion, Compliance, and Resistance in Wartime Japan, 1942–1945.”

Peter K. Bol, Charles H. Carswell Professor of East Asian Languages & Civilizations and Director, Center for Geographic Analysis at Harvard University, delivers the first Wallace S. Johnson Memorial Lecture in Medieval Chinese Culture.

The Undergraduate Asian Studies Initiative, funded by the Freeman Foundation and administered through CEAS, hosts three artists-in-residence: Chinese opera and film director Chen Shi-Zheng, journalist Li Rong, and conceptual artist Wang Tiande.

Vickie Doll wins CEAS Faculty Service Award.


East Asia Events

During Spring 2022, there will be a mix of virtual and in-person events. Please check our events page & follow us on social media @KUEastAsia for updates. 


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FLAS Fellowships are available through CEAS for the study of Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Tibetan, and Uyghur. Learn more at Deadline for application is December 20. Find more information here.

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