Lecture by Tenzin Tethong, If Not the Middle Way: Alternatives for the Tibetan People

News item posted on: July 20th, 2009
If Not the Middle Way:
Alternatives for the Tibetan People


Tenzin Tethong, President of the Dalai Lama Foundation and Chair of the Committee of 100 for Tibet, is the former Chairman of the Kashag (the Tibetan Cabinet) and U.S. representative of the Dalai Lama. He has taught in both History and Continuing Studies at Stanford University.

Tenzin Tethong will talk about how and why the Tibetan struggle in exile has changed from Independence to accommodation, and what the real prospects are for the Tibetan people in gaining any concessions from the Chinese leadership, or for redefining their struggle for greater freedom.




Lecture by Yongdrol K. Tsongkha, Life Among the People of Choni

News item posted on: July 7th, 2009
Life Among the People of Choni:
A Lost Tibetan Kingdom
Yongdrol K. Tsongkha

Yongdrol K. Tsongkha

Choni is a beautiful place on the north-eastern edge of the Tibetan Plateau. Still rarely known to the western world, it was a Tibetan Principality with over 500 years of history and a vital cultural centre on the Chinese-Tibetan Borderlands. Eighty years ago, Joseph Francis Rock (1884-1962), one of the last classic explorers, geographer, linguist and botanist, set foot on the Tibetan Plateau, embarking on his extensive expeditions in this area. His remarkable article in National Geographic in 1928, “Life Among the Lamas of Choni,” was the first written piece to vividly reveal to the world the mysteries of the religious festivals in Tibetan monasteries. His works and studies were testimony to a lost culture and tradition. His extraordinary visual materials of the Chinese-Tibetan borderlands and its people is unique and remains invaluable to the history of this region. Beyond this, the man is a fascinating character and his personal papers are rich in the texture and personality of their author.

Eighty years later, this carefully crafted documentary follows in the footsteps of this legendary explorer. By blending over 500 original photographs from Rock’s expeditions with modern images, and by weaving an extensively research chronology via narration and excerpts from his dairies, the film not only shows how eastern Tibet looked in the 1920s, but also portrays how the same places and people look now. It is a memorial meeting of the east and west, a long lasting dialogue between the past and the present.

Lecture by Chu Shulong, China’s "Tibet Issue" in a Changing Global Era

News item posted on: April 3rd, 2009
China’s “Tibet Issue” in a Changing Global Era:
A View From Beijing
Professor Chu Shulong

Chu Shulong at the University of Virginia, April 8, 2009

Dr. Chu Shulong is a Professor of Political Science and International Relations at the School of Public Policy and Management and is the deputy director of the Institute of International Strategic and Development Studies at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. From September 2006 until June 2007 he was a visiting fellow at the Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC. He was previously director for the North American Studies Division of the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations. He is also a Professor at China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Party School and an advisor to China’s Central Television (CCTV) international reporting. Dr. Chu’s research covers political theory and Chinese politics, international relations, focusing on U.S. China policy and the Sino-U.S. relations, Asian security, and Chinese foreign and security policies. His most recent publications include The Sino-US Relations in the Post-Cold War Era; Basic Theories of International Relations; The World, the U.S., and China; Political Theories; and a forthcoming book, The Peaceful Rise and Development: China’s Foreign Strategy and Policy. Dr. Chu received a B.A. from Dalian Foreign Languages University, an M.A. in Law from the Beijing University of International Relations, and a Ph.D. in Political Science from the George Washington University.

Autonomy and Nationalities Law in China: A Panel Discussion by Katherine P. Kaup, Peng Qian and Tashi Rabgey

News item posted on: March 3rd, 2009
China’s Nationalities Law: Prospects for Reform and Autonomy

Katherine P. Kaup, Furman University

Peng Qian, Central University for Nationalities, Beijing

Tashi Rabgey, University of Virginia

Sponsored by the East Asia Center

Lecture by Dr. Geoff Childs, Development Approach in Rural Tibet

News item posted on: February 1st, 2009
Development Approach in Rural Tibet

By Dr. Geoff Childs, Associate Professor, Sociocultural Ph.D., Indiana University

The Tibet Center presents: Rural Tibet is in the throes of major changes. Recent research has revealed that a number of intersecting factors have prompted most farming households to employ a new economic paradigm—“going for income,” i.e., seeking non-farm income outside of the village. As a result, over the past decade the rural economy has been transformed from one heavily reliant on subsistence farming to one where 75 percent of the average a2692household’s income derives from off-farm activities. Consequently, a new rural Tibet is emerging wherein farming households are making complex cost-benefit decisions about how to employ their human and non-human resources to participate in China’s new market economy. Along with this paradigm shift, the recent reorientation of the state’s development priorities in China’s Eleventh Five-Year Plan (2006-10) is also beginning to impact rural Tibet in ways that previous five-year plans have not. The current plan calls for a new “people-first” (ch. yiren weiben) approach to development in which the state commits large sums of money not only for large infra-structure programs, as in the past, but also for programs that reach directly to village households. The purposes of this paper are to analyze how the policy shift is being operationalized, and how it is impacting the lives of rural Tibetans.

Sponsored by the East Asia Center, Religious Studies, and the Department of Anthropology

Lecture by Manla Kyi, Language and Education Policy in Tibet

News item posted on: December 24th, 2008
The Development of Language and Education Policy in Tibet

By Manla Kyi (Manlaji), PhD Candiate, Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong

Manla Kyi at the 2009 Education Symposium

Manla Kyi at the 2009 Education Symposium

Manla Kyi has extensive experience in teaching, research, and development work in Tibetan areas. Her research interests include language policy, language and minority rights, and multiculturalism in education. In the 1990s, she served as an English teacher and administrator at Qinghai Nationalities University in Xining, Qinghai Province, P.R.China. She has also worked as a program officer in education projects for a non-government organization in Tibetan areas of China. She holds a Master of Education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and is currently completing a doctorate at the University of Hong Kong.

Lecture by Yue Gang, Tibet After the Olympics

News item posted on: September 5th, 2008
Tibet After the Olympics: A View from the Edge

By Yue Gang, Chair of Asian Studies at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill

Yue Gang is the Chair of Asian Studies at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. He is a prominent Sinologist with a strong interest in Tibet, and has published on Tibetan writers writing in Chinese. His research is concerned with Chinese cultural production of Tibetan themes, the development of the “Shangri-La” eco-tourism zone in Eastern Tibet, and recent social changes in the multi-ethnic regions of Western China.