Welcome, Gucuse!

Announcing the establishment of the Manchu Studies Group

The rapid growth of interest in the Manchu language and in Manchu studies in recent years, especially among younger scholars in the United States, calls for the establishment of a more permanent organizational framework to facilitate the continued development of Manjuristics. With this in mind, we are pleased to announce the creation of the Manchu Studies Group.

The primary purpose of the Manchu Studies Group (MSG) is to advance and promote informed scholarship on all aspects of Manchu studies, including (but not limited to) history, literature, linguistics, philology, anthropology, religious studies, art history, folklore, material culture, and cultural studies. In addition, it is hoped that MSG will provide a greater sense of community for scholars working in these areas, wherever they may be.  Among our goals are the following:

  • to maintain a website and research portal for Manchu studies that will house a variety of digital resources (texts, links, dictionaries, bibliographies, and so forth)
  • to coordinate a permanent online Manchu Text Workshop for reading and translation of Manchu-language materials, open to all MSG members
  • to assume editorial responsibility for Saksaha, a journal of Manchu studies begun in the 1990s and since then held at Portland State University; a digital archive of all past issues will be housed on the MSG website; subscription to future issues (in electronic form only) will come with membership in MSG
  • to promote the development of scholarship in the field by organizing conference panels for the AAS and other scholarly conferences and by applying (or co-sponsoring applications for) funds as appropriate for meetings and workshops
  • to facilitate individual contact and exchange between scholars and students in the field, both in the US and around the world
  • to develop productive relationships with other scholarly groups in North America, Europe, Australia, China, Japan, and Korea, and to work together with such groups in organizing international conferences, workshops, and training programs
  • to hold an annual meeting to conduct business and review the state of the field, share reports on research conditions in libraries and archives, etc.

Our plan is to hold an initial meeting in San Diego, to coincide with the 2013 meeting of the Association for Asian Studies. The meeting will take place Thursday 21 March at 9:30 pm, in the Edward C room of the Manchester Grand Hyatt.  At that time we will elect officers, adopt a set of bylaws, determine membership fees, and discuss in more detail the activities we wish to sponsor in the short, medium, and long term. We will also formally launch the new website.

If you have not already done so, we invite you to join now. Meantime, please feel free to browse the site. Suggestions for improvement and expansion are welcomed!

Elif Akçetin, Mark Elliott, Devin Fitzgerald, Carla Nappi, and Yulian Wu (founding members)


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