Photo Poetics: Chinese Lyricism and Modern Media Culture, Shengqing Wu (Columbia University Press, December 2020)
Photo Poetics: Chinese Lyricism and Modern Media Culture, Shengqing Wu (Columbia University Press, December 2020)

Chinese poetry has a long history of interaction with the visual arts. Classical aesthetic thought held that painting, calligraphy, and poetry were cross-fertilizing and mutually enriching. What happened when the Chinese poetic tradition encountered photography, a transformative technology and presumably realistic medium that reshaped seeing and representing the world?

Confucianism and Sacred Space: The Confucius Temple from Imperial China to Today, Chin-shing Huang, Jonathan Chin (trans), Chin-shing Huang (trans), (Columbia University Press, December 2020)
Confucianism and Sacred Space: The Confucius Temple from Imperial China to Today, Chin-shing Huang, Jonathan Chin (trans), Chin-shing Huang (trans), (Columbia University Press, December 2020)

Temples dedicated to Confucius are found throughout China and across East Asia, dating back over two thousand years. These sacred and magnificent sanctuaries hold deep cultural and political significance.

Tonal Intelligence: The Aesthetics of Asian Inscrutability During the Long Cold War,  Sunny Xiang (Columbia University Press, December 2020)
Tonal Intelligence: The Aesthetics of Asian Inscrutability During the Long Cold War, Sunny Xiang (Columbia University Press, December 2020)

Why were US intelligence organizations so preoccupied with demystifying East and Southeast Asia during the mid-20th century? Sunny Xiang offers a new way of understanding the American cold war in Asia by tracing aesthetic manifestations of “Oriental inscrutability” across a wide range of texts. She examines how cold war regimes of suspicious thinking produced an ambiguity between “Oriental” enemies and Asian allies, contributing to the conflict’s status as both a “real war” and a “long peace.”

The Refugee Aesthetic: Reimagining Southeast Asian America, Timothy K August (Temple University Press, December 2020)
The Refugee Aesthetic: Reimagining Southeast Asian America, Timothy K August (Temple University Press, December 2020)

The refugee is conventionally considered a powerless figure, eagerly cast aside by both migrant and host communities. In his book, The Refugee Aesthetic, Timothy August investigates how and why a number of Southeast Asian American artists and writers have recently embraced the figure of the refugee as a particularly transformative position.

Graphic Migrations: Precarity and Gender in India and the Diaspora, Kavita Daiya (Temple University Press, November 2020)
Graphic Migrations: Precarity and Gender in India and the Diaspora, Kavita Daiya (Temple University Press, November 2020)

In Graphic Migrations: Precarity and Gender in India and the Diaspora, Kavita Daiya provides a literary and cultural archive of refugee stories and experiences to respond to the question “What is created?” after decolonization and the 1947 Partition of India.