Many Alumni of the Asian Studies Program have written, asking "what ever happened to...?"
The following update on full-time faculty and long-time part-time faculty who taught or are currently teaching in the Asian Studies Program at SUNY New Paltz has been assembled from publicly available sources, such as websites and other sources, as well as their own recollections and that of their families
in an effort to help answer "what ever happened to..."
Many former faculty were members of the Department of Asian Studies, which existed between 1969 and 1976, while others were members of disciplinary departments and have participated in the college-wide interdisciplinary Asian Studies Program in the years since 1976
All current faculty members are in disciplinary departments but participate in the college-wide Asian Studies Program Kristine Harris is the current Director of the Asian Studies Program at SUNY New Paltz
PAST ASIAN STUDIES FACULTY
Peter S. Wright was Chairman of the Division of Area Studies and Geography at SUNY New Paltz between 1965 and 1971, and was instrumental in hiring most of the early faculty in Asian Studies, African Studies, Latin American Studies, as well as Middle Eastern Studies. In addition, he played a key role in curricular development that lead to the requirement that all students at SUNY New Paltz took both an Introduction to Asia and an Introduction to Africa course as part of their General Education program.
Peter shares some of his thoughts about those early days as well as news of his life after New Paltz:
"I have very happy memories of six exciting years participating in the development of African, Asian, Latin American, and Middle Eastern Study programs and the establishment of a Geography Department at a time when similar studies were being encouraged throughout SUNY and indeed throughout the U.S.A. At New Paltz the inspiration came from Bill Haggerty, the internationally conscious President of the College, and his enthusiasm and active promotion helped to spur the whole of SUNY in the same direction. It seemed at that time that there was indeed a new nationwide realisation that the U.S.A. with its rapidly extending global interests needed to learn far more about the wider world in which it was operating. For a brief period, a dozen years or so, the new emphasis produced excellent and challenging results, which have been very valuable, but all too soon public support and interest waned and many of the international study programs across the nation withered and died. SUNY and New Paltz were not immune.
After a one year sabbatical in 1971-2 and another one year's leave, enabling me to launch a Canadian branch of the tiny Friends' World College (headquartered on Long Island with branches in Mexico, U.K., India, Japan, and
Kenya) I returned to SUNY to work in New Paltz for the new Empire State College from 1973-1980 - with Irving Barnett, and in always close contact with SUNY New Paltz. This was fascinating and challenging work. We also conducted classes for prisoners in two New York State correctional institutions.
I retired in 1980 and my academic activities came to an end. I spent eight years in rural Oregon and there became involved in the establishment of a center for socially and mentally handicapped children and, later, in a countywide peace campaign. I also traveled to China, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, India, Pakistan, Europe, Egypt, East and South Africa, Seychelles, and the Caribbean.
In 1990 I moved to the Seattle area and have been residing there since then.
I would have very much enjoyed attending the Asian Studies reunion on October 4th - and the College Reunion Weekend on the 3rd and 4th. It would be great to meet the survivors of the Division of Area Studies and Geography again after so many years! However it is a very long way to travel from Seattle and I have now begun to restrict my journeys!" Email: Perite@aol.com
John Alphonso Karkala (English and World Literature/South Asian Literature)
College mourns passing of Professor Emeritus John Alphonso Karkala
It is with sadness that the College shares the news of the passing of John Alphonso Karkala, who taught courses in English and world literature at New Paltz for more than two decades.
Karkala was born in 1923 in South Kanara, India. He studied comparative and world literature at London University and Columbia University, and earned his Ph. D in 1964. Prior to completing his studies, Karkala also served for seven years in the Indian Foreign Service at outposts in London, Geneva and New York.
After earning his doctorate degree, Karkala taught courses in what were then called the “Oriental Humanities” at Columbia and at City College, before joining the faculty at SUNY New Paltz.
At the College, Karkala taught courses in mythology and fable, the great books of Asian cultures, Composition and Shakespeare. He published prolifically during his scholarly career, with a particular focus on literature published in English by Indian authors. He retired as Professor Emeritus in 1988.
An obituary published on Jan. 8, 2017 describes Karkala as “a remarkable man who was loved and admired by all who met and knew him.”
It continues: “He was a critical thinker with an ingenious mind. His kindness and admiration for all those around him, as well as his deep understanding of life itself, made him memorable for his family, friends, students and colleagues. His spirit will live on in his work and all who knew him.”
Karkala died peacefully on Dec. 18, 2016, surrounded by his wife Leena and his children Siita, Krishna and Uma.
At the college, John taught Myth, Symbol, Fable and Great Books: Asia in addition to courses on Shakespeare and Composition. Among his many publications are: Indo-English Literature in the Nineteenth Century (1970), Bibliography of Indo-English Literature: A Checklist of Works by Indian Authors in English, 1800-1966 (with Leena Karkala) (1974), (19xx ), Vedic Vision (19xx) According to a July 2000 NewsPulse, John "participated in a roundtable discussion and presented a paper on teaching epics in world literature at the annual meeting of the American Comparative Literature Association, held at Yale University in February. Alphonso-Karkala's paper included strategies for developing a world epics course; comparative discussion of Hellenic, Semetic, Indic and Chinese epics; and a critical framework for analyzing and interpreting the nature of heroic action. The arguments were subsumed under the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization's principle of "globalizing the disciplines" with diversity in regional species. Alphonso-Karkala is continuing his research in comparative world literature at Columbia University, where he is also a member of seminars on Shakespeare and Indology/South Asia." Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Usha M. Luther (formerly Usha Agarwal ) (Asian Studies/South Asian History) returned to India after leaving New Paltz. She writes the following: "I am full of sweet memories of the place and people. I had the pleasure to work at SUNY New Paltz for nearly 10 years (1967 to1976). The entire environment energized me so much that I continuously developed news courses in South Asian History and Culture and Women in Development and Gandhian Thought. I had the distinct honor to co-chair the College's Gandhi Centenary Celebration Committee at New Paltz in 1969 with Prof. Robert W. Pyle and chair the College's International Women"s Year"s Committee in 1975. I was then a tenured Associate Professor of South Asian History. I was happy to teach a course on Gandhian philosophy to Carl Robinson in Stormville Prison N.Y. in 1974-1975. It was also a challenge to chair the first Computer Conference on Women Issues at New York with International Hotline and participate in the United Nations Seminar held at the World Trade center in 1975. I had accepted to do so only at the personal request of the Chairperson, Board of trustees of SUNY, Mrs. Elizabeth T. Moore. It was a successful endeavor so much so that when I was leaving the University for good, Beth graciously sent a carton of French Champagne for my farewell party. Yes, Ron all this--- not to mention my frequent visits to India for study and varied interactions with scholars, members of the Parliament and the then Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi.
After returning to India, I conducted an intensive research on historical routes of the North Western Indian Sub-continent and Anatolia. Based at the Jawaharlal University, I evolved and developed a rather ingenuous methodology for mapping out route networks called Dimensional categorization of Network Components (DCNC). The research was fully sponsored by the Indian Council of Social Sciences Research and Indian Council of Historical Research and the University Grants Commission. I also chaired the Indian National Cartographic Association - Delhi Chapter for a year and published research findings in national and international journals. My major work on a new atlas is nearing completion. It is designed to include 82 maps, about 35 lists and a comprehensive bibliography with index. I have published three books: Historical Route Network of Anatolia (Istanbul-Izmir-Konya): 1550"s to 1850"s: A Methodological Study (Ankara: Turkish Historical Society, 1989), (released by the late R. Shanker Dayal Sharma, Vice President of India ), Historical Routes of North West Indian Subcontinent, Lahore to Delhi: 1550"s to 1850"s A.D: Network Analysis through DCNC- Micro Methodology (New Delhi: Sagar Publications), and a book of poems in Hindi called Urvadiyan [Valleys of the Heart]. The American Biographical Institute has given me several awards including Woman of the Year in 1991 and 2001, Twentieth Century Achievement Award etc.
Presently I am seriously involved in Nature Cure. After acquiring necessary certification and diploma on naturopathy, I have set up "Luther"s Nature Cure Clinic" at DLF, Gurgaon and am practicing with great zeal, learning to apply new techniques of alternative medicines all the time. I am also a Reiki Master and have been fairly successful in distance healing. I would be happy to help you or other alumni to get over different types of ailments without any medication through Reiki distance healing free of charge. My contact address is Dr.Usha M Luther, 100/27, Silver Oaks Apartment, DLF City, Phase-I, GURGAON - 122 002 INDIA." Email: email@example.com
Irving Barnett (Economics/Asian Studies). Professor Emeritus Irving Barnett passed away on March 22, 2006. Dedicating a career of 22 years at SUNY New Paltz beginning in 1966, Barnett served as a professor in the Division of Area Studies and Geography, then Asian Studies and finally in Economics. Prior to coming to SUNY New Paltz, Barnett taught at Washington College (1955-1966), and he also served while at New Paltz as Dean of two units of Empire State College (1968-1971), an alternative higher education program associated with SUNY.
During his tenure, Barnett was well known for his pursuits in international development, primarily his devotion to China and its leadership role in the changing world order. He taught and conducted research while associated with Beijing University, the Institute of International Management, Beijing Foreign Studies University, and the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in China.
In 1979-80, on a grant from the SUNY research office, Irving Barnett studied the relationship between the Soviet Union and Third World countries that involved visits to Algeria, Libya, Yugoslavia, and an extensive stay in Moscow University. From 1979-1984, primarily in Beijing, China, he taught in 3 universities courses in international economic relations. In 1993, at the invitation of the Xinjiang Academy of Social Sciences, he made a visit to Xinjiang, China, for discussions of economic relations between Siberia, Kazakstan, and Xinjiang. From 1991 to 1995, for the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing, he studied the relationship between China and multinational corporations. That undertaking was proposed to Professor Barnett by Jiang Zemin, then President of China, following a two hour meeting he had with him in Beijing
Irving Barnett's legacy lives on in the influence he had on his students, his contributions to progressive education and international understanding, and the love and inspiration he gave freely to friends, colleagues, and family. His contributions to the Asian Studies Program at SUNY New Paltz are substantial
Professor Barnett is survived by wife, Kerttu Kay Barnett, as well as six children and seven grandchildren.
Jon Bourassa (Art History) taught courses on Asian Art, especially Japanese and Chinese painting, at SUNY New Paltz in the 1980s. He is currently Asian art specialist at the Citigroup Art Advisory unit in New York. For some of his comments concerning investing in Asian Art, visit articles in the Herald Tribune: and Forbes Magazine
Roger Bowen (Political Science) After serving as President of SUNY New Paltz and Professor of Political Science at the college from 1995-2001, Roger Bowen became President and CEO of the Milwaukee Public Museum. According to a news report, he resigned from that post in November 2002 to return to academic writing. In mid-2004, he became General Secretary of the American Association of University Professors in Washington DC. His latest book Japan's Dysfunctional Democracy: The Liberal Democratic Party and Structural Corruption was published by M.E. Sharpe in March 2003.
Gloria Chen (Foreign Languages/Chinese) taught Chinese at SUNY New Paltz from Fall 1996 to Spring 2004. She also taught Chinese calligraphy from Spring 2002 to Spring 2004. After leaving New Paltz, she taught Chinese in High School for Dual Language and Asian Studies in Manhattan and currently resides in Fort Wayne, Indiana where she is studying secondary education. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Amiya Chakravarty (Philosophy) (1901-1986) According to a website with details about "Great Personalities of Visva-Bharati", "Amiya Ckakravarty, one of the greatest of literary critics of the post-Tagorean period, was also well-known as a poet. After graduating from St. Columbus College in Hazaribagh, Amiya Chakravarty joined Visva- Bharati in 1921, first as a student and then as a teacher. He was literary secretary to Rabindranath from 1924 to 1933. He was a close associate of the Poet during this period and shared his thoughts and feelings regarding national and international political events. He was Rabindranath' s travel companion during his tours to Europe and America in 1930 and to Iran and Iraq in 1932. He was awarded a D.Phil in 1937 and during the years 1937 to 1940, he was a Senior Research Fellow at Oxford University. He wrote both poetry and prose, being awarded the Unesco prize for his book, Chalo Jai and the Sahitya Akademi award for Ghare Pherar Din. He also received the Padmabhushan from the Govt. of India and the Desikottama from Visva-Bharati."
Victoria Dashkevich-Purto (Art History). No word about her after leaving New Paltz but a Google search turned up her book Japanese Woodcut Book Illustration from the 17th century to 1867 that was published in 1982. She taught courses on Asian Art, especially Japanese and Chinese painting, at SUNY New Paltz in the late 1980s.
Dan Ehnbom (Art History) taught courses on Asian Art, especially Indian painting and sculpture, at SUNY New Paltz in the late 1980s until 1992. He is currently Associate Professor of Art History and Director of the Center for South Asian Studies at the University of Virginia. Visit his website for a picture as well as research interests and publications. Email: ehnbom@Virginia.EDU and dje6r@Virginia.EDU
Elliott Feldman (Asian Studies/Political Science) taught South Asian Politics, U.S. and Asia, War and Peace in Asia, and Religion and Politics in Asia from 1968 to1977. Since leaving New Paltz, Elliott has worked for the U.S. Customs Service for 25 years: as an import specialist in Detroit; as branch chief for commercial fraud at HQ in Washington, DC; and since 1992 as the Assistant Port Director for Trade in Charlotte, NC. Elliott has performed assignments for U.S. Customs in Liberia, Taiwan, Korea, Mexico, Philippines and Egypt, and has conducted training for WTO and APEC. After Elliott retires on September 3, he hopes to do Customs consulting and assist Sandra, his lovely wife of 14 years, with her tour company Costa Rica Tours Ltd., which specializes in Costa Rica and Panama. Elliott may be reached at email@example.com. He is looking forward to meeting and reminiscing with former students and colleagues at the reunion.
John Frank (Art Studio) taught about South Asian art and developed curricular materials on the Indus Valley civilization. Unable to locate information about him since his retirement.
Lawrence J.C. Huang (Asian Studies/Political Science) taught courses concerning the politics of East Asia from the middle 1960s until 1976. Unable to locate information about him since leaving New Paltz.
Ray Huang (Huang Renyu) (Asian Studies/History) (1918-2000) was born June 25, 1918, in Changsha, China and died January 8, 2000. After an important military service, Ray taught Chinese history at SUNY New Paltz from 1967 to 1980 and had a distinquished academic career over the following twenty years as a writer and lecturer. ( brief bio ) Among his best known books in English are Taxation and Governmental Finance in Sixteenth-century Ming China (1974 Cambridge University Press) 1587, A Year of No Significance (1986 Yale University Press), China: A Macro History (1988 ME Sharpe), and Broadening the Horizon of Chinese History: Discourses, Syntheses, and Comparisons, (1999 ME Sharpe),all of which are described in reviews as "unique" and "must reads" and several were translated into Chinese, French, Japanese, and Korean. Ray published widely in Chinese after leaving SUNY New Paltz and lectured throughout the world. For a listing of some of the Chinese titles, visit http://www.xys.org/pages2/Huang-Renyu.html His Chinese-language autobiography Huang He qing shan: Huang Renyu huiyilu[Yellow River and Blue Mountains] was published in both Taibei and Beijing. More than a dozen books authored by Ray in Chinese have been published posthumously since his death in 2000.
Milton (Jack) Jacobs (Anthropology) At New Paltz until his retirement in 1988, Jack Jacobs taught courses on Southeast Asia. According to a 1998 NewsPulse: he published "two monographs on The Washington Artillery of Louisiana, an Army unit that won decorations in the Civil War and subsequent wars of U.S. involvement, now a decorated unit of the U.S. Army Reserve. Additionally, Jacobs presented two papers at meetings of the American Historical Archaeological Society: "History and Archaeology," in Richmond and "Understanding History Through a Study of Surgery in the United States," in Jamaica. Since his 1988 retirement, Jacobs has taught at Townson State University and Bowie State College, both in Maryland, and has served as a researcher/writer at the Smithsonian Institute. He is newly affiliated with the Washington Philosophical Society and the Archaeological Institute of America."
Wenshan Jia (Communications and Media Department). Wenshan joined SUNY New Paltz in Fall 2000 after teaching at Truman State University in the "show-me state" Missouri and earlier at Northwest University in China. His graduate degrees include a PhD in Communication from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, an MA in Public and Interpersonal Communication from Bowling Green State University, and an MA in Translation Studies and English Language and Literature from Xi'an International Studies University, Xi'an, China. At New Paltz, he taught Interpersonal/Intercultural Communication Seminar, Communication Research Methods, Communication Among Cultures and Intercultural Communication in the Global Workplace. He is proposing an Asian Studies Perspectives course Introduction to East Asian Cultures and Communication.
Wenshan left SUNY New Paltz in Fall 2004, moving on to an Associate Professor position at Chapman University,Orange, CA. Visit his current website at http://www.chapman.edu/sca/comm/faculty/jia.asp
His current research interests are intercultural communication theory grounded in East-West interactions, Chinese communication and culture, and intercultural communication in the global workplace. Among his recent books are The Remaking of the Chinese Character and Identity in the 21st Century: The Chinese Face Practices (Ablex, 2001) which made the "Outstanding Academic Book" list in Choice magazine of the American Library Association in November 2002 and was the lead editor for Chinese Communication Theory and Research: Reflections, New Frontiers and New Directions (Ablex, 2002), which made the "Outstanding Academic Book" list in December 2002. He has also received academic book awards for book chapter and encyclopedia entries, and has been interviewed on various topics by media institutions such as the Voice of America (VOA), Xinhua News Agency and local media bodies such as Poughkeepsie Journal and Times-Herald Record. He also has been guest speaker at The American Forum for Global Education in New York City and a plenary speaker at two intercultural communication conferences. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sipra Bose Johnson (Anthropology) was a member of the New Paltz Anthropology Department from 1964 until her
retirement in 1996, teaching a variety of courses including The Cultures of India, The Culture of China, Culture of the Middle East, Cultural Anthropology, General Anthropology, World Peasantry, and The Modern World. She also served as the Special Assistant to the Vice-President for Academic Affairs for five years. Her special interest in India, both personal--she spent her childhood there before immigrating to the United States with her parents--and academic, was broadened with more then four subsequent years living and working in India, where she lectured widely and had opportunities to do research. Since leaving New Paltz, Sipra has indulged in her passion for international travel with trips to India, Vietnam, West Africa, Borneo, Cuba, Mexico, Italy, Costa Rica and England. Presently she is involved in the work of the Center for Lifetime Studies (CLS), Marist College's program for the continued intellectual growth of retired peoples. At CLS she continues to teach, develop curriculum as well as take courses. Email: email@example.com
Ronald G. Knapp (Geography) joined the Department of Geography at SUNY New Paltz in 1968, teaching Geography of Asia, History & Philosophy of Geography, Historical Geography, USSR, World Geography through Film, Physical Geography, Contemporary China, and Understanding China, was Chair of the Department of Geography from 1995-2001, and was active in the Asian Studies Program before "retiring"¨ in 2001.
He has served as the Executive Secretary of the New York Conference on Asian Studies/NYCAS from 1999 to the present. Now, he spends his time writing and lecturing about China as well as volunteering at the Mohonk Preserve. He has been President of the Board of Directors at the Mohonk Preserve since 2005.
For information about his professional writings and other activities, visit his website: http://www.newpaltz.edu/~knappr
David Krikun (History/Vietnam) writes, "I came to New Paltz from the University of Wisconsin in 1965, just as the Vietnam War was rapidly expanding. Consuming and shaping my life, I decided--along with many others of my generation--not to let this tragedy be forgotten, and so in the 1970s I began teaching various courses on the Vietnam War.
In 2000, Ron Knapp and I decided to extend our trip to China with a visit to Hanoi. It was a memorable experience for both of us." David retired from SUNY New Paltz in 2003 but continues to teach courses in his specialty. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jane Lee (Asian Studies/Chinese Language) taught Chinese language at SUNY New Paltz for nearly a dozen years from the late 1970s through the 1980s and played the key role in initiating a student exchange program with Peking University in 1979. Jane died in the early 1990s.
Pao-king Li (Chinese Language) was the first and only full-time tenured Professor of Chinese Language and Literature at SUNY New Paltz from the middle 1960s to 1976. Unable to locate information about him since leaving New Paltz.
Channing Liem (Political Science/Asian Studies) According to a Princeton University Alumni Weekly obituary: "Channing Liem *46: Channing Liem, emeritus professor of politics at SUNY-New Paltz and activist for Korean unification, died of a stroke January 24, 1996. He was 86. Born in North Korea, he earned his AB in Pyongyang. In 1930 he came to the U.S., studied at Lafayette College and at the NYC Biblical Seminary, where he met his wife. He was pastor of the Korean Church and Institute in NYC and earned his MA and PhD in politics at Princeton in 1943 and 1946. He taught several years at Chatham College in Pittsburgh and at SUNY-New Paltz, where he rose to department chairman in political science. Liem was one year the Korean ambassador to the United Nations on behalf of the reform government of Chang Myon, resigning when the Park Chung Hee military coup took over. He is survived by his wife, Popai, a daughter, three sons, and five grandchildren, all active in support of a free, united Korea. His remains, by his wish, will be interred in Korea after its reunification.
According to a press release, an archive was established in honor of Channing Liem and his wife Popai at the University of California, Berkeley. This archive includes "vintage Korean American publications pertaining to Korea's struggle against Japanese colonialism, 1910 - 1945, up through the present-day struggles for democracy and reunification...Channing Liem was ambassador to the United Nations from 1960 to 1961 for the Republic of Korea, for the liberal reform government of Chang Myon, which was later ousted by a military coup led by Park Chung Hee. Liem resigned in protest of the coup and became a leader in the movement of overseas Koreans for democracy and reunification."
Some reflections on life in New Paltz by Ramsay Liem, Channing Liem's son and a Professor at Boston College who specializes in Asian American/Korean American Studies (intergenerational transmission of political trauma); Social and Community Psychology (human rights and mental health); Cultural Psychology (ethnic identity; culture and emotion):
"I did not live in NP for many years being away at college etc for much of the time. However, NP and my parents' home were always places of retreat and rejuvenation for me and my family - my wife Joan and daughters Yul-San and Wol-san. Not only was it a place of beautry and calm, but a chance to keep in touch with my parents' work on behalf of Korean democratization and unification, to exchange ideas about what next needed to be done, and to inspire my daughters to learn about their Korean heritage and the continuing challenges of creating a sovereign, vital, and above all unified Korea. Joan always felt rejuvenated after our visits home - and often says it was one of the few places she could get a solid nights sleep and escape from her dutries as director of the Clinical Psychdology training program at U. Mass. Boston. Yul-san and Wol-san carry on the legacy of both my parents' work now being fully involved in Korean community development in New York City and the struggle for a just U.S./Korea policy. In additon Wol-san is studying Korean, Korean American, and ethnic studies at NYU and Yul-san is applying her training in the arts to her Korean community and Korea solidarity work. In my high school and college years I also worked part-time at Mohonk Lake House and have only fond memories of friendships and beautiful surroundings from those years. Even earlier, I spent several summers in NP when my father taught summer courses at the university before joining the faculty full-time. A clear memory is fishing for carp in the Walkill River with an old-timer who worked at a Pontiac garage that I believe was at the site of the antique clock store just around the corner from the old Homestead Bar. Those were indeed good times."
John Lin (Political Science) (1928-1979) taught at the college in the Department of Political Science. His courses included American Government and Politics as well as some Asian related courses. John was quite active in college governance before his death at the age of 51 in 1979.
Alfred H. Marks (English & World Literatures), who taught American Literature, Japanese Literature, Hudson Valley Studies, and a lot of Freshman English at New Paltz from 1963 to 1985, has been working at many tasks since he retired. He has published many articles on Nathaniel Hawthorne and translated much Japanese literature. He was President of the John Burroughs Association from 1985-90, and has served as New Paltz Town/Village Historian since 1992 and has published much on that subject. He traveled to England and France and Germany in 2000 with a group tracing New Paltz ancestry. The Sister-City Program the Village entered into in 1995 with a small town in Okayama Prefecture has received much of his attention. He traveled to Osa-cho, as the town is called, in 1998 and 2002 with visiting delegations. New Paltz has received one group of visitors from Japan this year and will receive two more before this year ends. The 325th anniversary of the town and the 175th anniversary of the village this year are also keeping him busy. Email: email@example.com
Hugo Munsterberg (Art History) (1916-1995) According to the website "Great Books for Great Readers": "Hugo Munsterberg was born in Berlin, Germany, in 1916, and came to the United States in 1935. After receiving a doctorate in art history from Harvard in 1941, he spent four years in the U.S. Army. An internationally recognized expert on Far Eastern art, Professor Munsterberg taught at Michigan State University and the International Christian University (Tokyo)...." before joining the faculty at SUNY New Paltz.
He came to SUNY New Paltz in 1958 as the first art historian in a department dedicated to art education and studio art. During the next two decades, he taught about art from all periods and all countries in addition to creating a full roster of courses about Asian art. Hugo introduced Asian--actually all of the non-Western--courses to the curriculum in the Department of Art History. He developed a slide library, organized exhibitions for the ever-expanding College Art Gallery, and steadily recruited colleagues. By the time of his retirement as Professor Emeritus in 1979, the department had an art history major with faculty and specialized courses to match. After leaving New Paltz, Professor Munsterberg continued to teach courses on Asian art at Bard College and Parsons School of Design/New School University in New York City. He also lectured and organized several exhibitions. He continued to travel extensively, including to the Far East. His last trip was to unified Germany in 1991. There he was able to visit places in what had been East Germany that he had not seen since his childhood.
His numerous books include A Short History of Chinese Art (1949), Twentieth Century Painting (1951), The Landscape Painting of China and Japan (1955), The Arts of Japan: An Illustrated History (1957), The Folk Arts of Japan (1958), The Art of the Chinese Sculptor (1960), The Ceramic Art of Japan; A Handbook for Collectors (1964), Arts of Japan from the Munsterberg Collection (1964), Zen & Oriental Art (1965), Mingei: Folk Arts of Old Japan (1965), Chinese Buddhist Bronzes (1967), Art of the Far East (1968), A Short History of Chinese Art (1969), Art of India and Southeast Asia (1970), Dragons in Chinese Art (1971), Sculpture of the Orient (1972), The Arts of China (1972), A History of Women Artists (1975), The Art of Modern Japan: From the Meiji Restoration to the Meiji Centennial, 1868-1968 (1978), Many of these books have been reprinted over the years.
Hugo Munsterberg continued to be a prolific author, with seven books published after his retirement from New Paltz in 1979: Dictionary of Chinese and Japanese Art (1981), The Japanese Print: A Historical Guide (1982), The Crown of Life. Artistic Creativity in Old Age (1983), Symbolism in Ancient Chinese Art (1986), and A History of Women Artists (1988) appeared while he was still alive. Unspoken Bequest: The Contribution of German Jews to German Culture (1995) came out just after his death in February of that year. The Japanese Kimono (Oxford University Press' "Images of Asia" series, 1996) was revised by his daughter Marjorie under his supervision during the last months of his life. Finally, World Ceramics: From Prehistoric to Modern Times (1998) was completed by his daughter, who is its co-author.
Rosette Renshaw (Music) came to SUNY New Paltz in 1967 as Professor of Musicology, teaching courses in music theorty as well as those concerning Asian musice. She arranged many visits to campus by outstanding Indian musicians such as Ravi Shankar, Ali Akbar Khan, Amir Khan, and others. She made many trips back to India, including yearly visits to India and
Assam in her last years. She died in 1998. Two years or so before her death she was involved in restoring the valuable papers concerning the classes of Nadia Boulanger, which she had managed to secure from one of Boulanger's assistants, who had been keeping them for years under her bed. Rosette's library was given to the University of Ottawa Library. While at New Paltz, she also produced numerous video tapes dealing with the music of Japan as well as South Asia.
Marleigh Grayer Ryan (Foreign Languages/Japanese Language and Literature/Asian American History and Literature) came to SUNY New Paltz in 1981 from the University of Iowa where she had chaired the Department of Asian Languages and Literatures. At New Paltz, she served as the Dean of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and taught Japanese language, Japanese literature in translation and courses on Japanese aesthetics, including theatre and film. From 1990 until her retirement on the last day of 1998, she chaired the Asian Studies Program, with particular attention to developing opportunities for students to live and study in Asia. She took great pleasure in working with Ron Knapp to develop the New York Conference on Asian Studies; together they chaired a major conference of that organization in the fall of 1998, when actors from the Japanese Noh Theatre performed at New Paltz for the first time.
The courses she developed at New Paltz included Beauty in Japan, Japanese Fiction, Japanese Poetry, Japanese Theatre, and a historical study of Asian Americans with particular emphasis on their artistic achievements. She is the author of two books and numerous articles on modern Japanese fiction, most recently a study of a work by the Nobel laureate Oe Kenzaburo. She studied in Japan as a Ford Foundation Fellow, and was a fellow of the Woodrow Wilson
International Center for Scholars in 1988-89.
She served as the first Executive Secretary of the New York Conference on Asian Studies (NYCAS) from 1990 to 1999. On her retirement, the New York Conference on Asian Studies honored Marleigh with the establishment of the Marleigh Grayer Ryan Student Prizes. Granted each year to both undergraduate and graduate students, these prizes encourage the development of excellence in the scholarly writing of papers dealing with Asia. For additional information on the MGR Student Prizes and the archive of prizewinning papers, visit http://www.newpaltz.edu/asianstudies/nycas/MGRPrizeGuidelines2003.htm
Marleigh moved to Cambridge MA in the spring of 1999, where she is an associate in research at the Reischauer Institute for Japanese Studies at Harvard University. She organized a Study Group on contemporary Asian American Literature at the RIJS from 2000-2002, which brought prominent novelists, filmmakers and poets to speak about their work with Boston area faculty, students and the public. Currently she is offering a study group on Oe Kenzaburo and his brother-in-law, famed filmmaker Itami Juzo for the Harvard Institute for Learning in Retirement.
In the summer of 2001 she had the great pleasure of traveling to China for the first time with a group of faculty and teachers organized by Ron Knapp in celebration of the publication of his landmark study of Chinese vernacular architecture.
Chigurupati Rama Seshu (Economics) (1935-2002) C.R. Seshu arrived in New Paltz in 1967 as a visiting lecturer in the Department of Economics and Politics where, over the years, he taught the full range of economics courses as well as those dealing with Asian economic systems as well as of those of the Pacific Basin. Seshu was born in India on June 15, 1935. He received his bachelor's degree in economics in 1956 from Andhra University, A.P, India, and his master's degree in economics from Saugor University, M.P., India. He moved to New York City in 1960 and attended the Graduate School of Business Administration at New York University performing coursework in business administration, marketing and management. He earned his Ph.D. in economics in 1972 from the New School for Social Research. Seshu died on July 13, 2002.
Parbati Sircar (Geography) (1923-1996) taught courses on Climatology, Physical Geography, Africa, and World Geography in the Department of Geography at SUNY New Paltz from 1966-1985. Before coming to SUNY New Paltz, he was a lecturer in Geography at Calcutta University, then taught at the Universities of Delhi and Punjab before joining the newly established University of Nigeria, Nsukka, as the founder and head of its Department of Geography in 1961, where he also served as the Dean of the Faculty of Social Studies. Upon his retirement, he and his wife returned to India where he maintained a busy professional life until he died on December 19, 1996 in Calcutta. In "retirement," he kept busy writing articles, editing journals, delivering lectures, teaching as a distinguished Honorary Professor of Geography at Calcutta University, and serving on the governing bodies of several learned societies. He was President of the Geographical Society of India. Additional information on his life and his obituary appear at http://www.newpaltz.edu/geography/news.html#sircar
Liming Tang (Theatre Arts), an artist and scenic designer professor for many of theature productions at the college, left SUNY New Paltz in 2003. For the New York Conference on Asian Studies at Skidmore College in October 2002, she and Xiaohuan Lee prepared an extraordinary series of large format paintings titled Ancient Strategies of China Email:
Pao-chen Tseng (Foreign Languages/Chinese) taught Chinese at the college from ???? to ???? Unable to locate information about him since leaving New Paltz.
Prem Verma (Asian Studies) taught Sanskrit during the 1970s as an adjunct. Unable to locate information about her since leaving New Paltz.
Michael Willis (Art History) became Assistant Keeper of the North Indian and Himalayan Collections in the Department of Oriental Antiquities at the British Museum after leaving New Paltz, where he taught for two academic years between 1992 and 1994. He reported in early September 2003 that he has been appointed Professor of South Asian Studies at De Montfort Univesity, Leicester and will continue as a visiting curator in the Department of Asia in the British Museum for three years. Michael is the author of Temples of Gopaksetra: A Regional History of Architecture and Sculpture in Central India AD 600-900 (2001), co-author (with Julia Shaw and Joe Cribb) of, Buddhist Reliquaries from Ancient India (2000), Inscriptions of Gopaksetra: Materials for the History of Central India (1996), and other works on sacred architecture, inscriptions and sculpture of Asia. According the British Museum's department of Oriental Antinquities' website, he "is directing a research project in and around the city of Vidisha in central India. The aim of this project is to examine ancient Vidisha through historical and human geography, religion, archaeology, epigraphy, architecture, vernacular building and other facets of material culture. He is, as well, completing a catalogue of The British Museum's holdings of North Indian temple sculpture." Email: Mwillis@thebritishmuseum.ac.uk
Cao Wei (Foreign Languages/Chinese) taught Chinese at the college from ???? to ???? while pursuing a graduate degree in ?????. She is now employed by IBM as ??????.
Alex Young (Asian Studies/Political Science) Since leaving SUNY New Paltz, Alex Young has been busy writing article and giving lectures. A Google search, revealed the following: Second Japan-Taiwan Dialogue on the theme of "The Role of Japan and Taiwan in the Asia-Pacific Region in the 21st Century" in Tokyo on July 12-13, 2001 Unable to locate additional information about him since leaving New Paltz.
Setsuko Young (Foreign Languages) taught Japanese language at the college for many years prior to 1980. Unable to locate information about her since leaving New Paltz.
Kil-Young Lee (formerly Kil-Young Zo) (Asian Studies/Japanese History) writes from Korea, "I lived at New Paltz for ten years and left the town in 1977 for good. After experiencing a certain challenging job at the Institute for Diplomacy and National Defense, Seoul, Korea, for a couple of years, I finally settled down with a teaching job at Dongguk University, Seoul, where I stayed for twenty consecutive years. Now that I am comfortably retired, I generally am doing things which I missed doing in years past. Looking back over my life, I have been given more than adequate livelihood for living, and was given the opportunity to receive higher education, and then was able to practice what I had been trained for in a respected profession. It was a glorious life, for which I am profoundly grateful."
CURRENT ASIAN STUDIES FACULTY
The short answer for "what ever happened to..." the following faculty
is that they are now teaching at SUNY New Paltz!
As members of the revitalized Asian Studies Program,
all are very active teachers and scholars
who continue to carry out the college's longstanding commitment to Asian Studies.
Elizabeth (Lulu) Brotherton (Art History) After graduating from Princeton University, Lulu joined the college"s Department of Art History in 1994 and has been teaching surveys of the arts of China, Japan, and India as well as seminars focusing on individual themes or periods of East Asian art history (Survey of Japanese Art, Survey of South Asian Art, The Arts of Early China, The Arts of Later China, Japanese Arts of the Edo Period, The Figure in the Landscape in Chinese Painting, Word and Image in Chinese and Japanese Art, and Images and Ideas in Asian Art). Her publications include articles in Artibus Asiae ("Beyond the Written Word: Li Gonglin's Illustrations of Tao Yuanming's 'Returning Home'" and Archives of Asian Art ("Two Farewell Paintings of the Late Northern Song"). Visit Lulu's homepage at http://www.newpaltz.edu/~brothere/ Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Victor C. de Munck (Anthropology) arrived in New Paltz in 1998 and has been teaching a range of Antropology courses, including Cultures of India. Among his books are Seasonal Cycles: A Study of Social Change and Continuity in a Sri Lankan Village (1993), an edited volume Romantic Love and Sexual Behavior: Perspectives from the Social Sciences (1998). During the 2002-2003 academic year, he was a Fulbright Teaching/Research Associate at Vilnius University in Lithuania. Email: email@example.com
Heinz Insu Fenkl (English) According to The Endicott Studio's website: "Heinz Insu Fenkl is an author, editor, translator, mythic scholar, and the director of the Creative Writing Program at the State University of New York, New Paltz. He is also the director of ISIS: The Interstitial Studies Institute at SUNY, New Paltz. His fiction includes Memories of My Ghost Brother, an autobiographical, Interstitial novel about growing up in Korea as a bi-racial child in the '60s. On the strength of this book he was named a Barnes and Noble 'Great New Writer' and Pen/Hemingway finalist in 1997. His second novel, Shadows Bend (a collaborative work, published under a pseudonym) was an innovative, dark 'road novel' about H.P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, and Clark Ashton Smith. He has also published short fiction in a variety of journals and magazines, as well as numerous articles on folklore and myth.
Heinz was raised in Korea and (in his later years) Germany and the United States. Graduating from Vassar, he studied folklore and shamanism as a Fulbright Scholar in Korea and dream research under a grant from the University of California. Before his appointment to his current position at SUNY, he taught a range of courses at Vassar, Bard, Sarah Lawrence, and Yonsei University (Korea), including Asian/American Folk Traditions, East Asian Folklore, Korean Literature, Asian American Literature, and Native American Literature, in addition to Creative Writing. He has published translations of Korean fiction and folklore, and is co-editor of Kori: The Beacon Anthology of Korean American Literature. Currently he is at work on a sequel to Memories of My Ghost Brother, and on a volume of Korean myths, legends, and folk tales: Old, Old Days When Tigers Smoked Tobacco Pipes. He also writes regular columns on mythic topics for Realms of Fantasy magazine." He also co-edited Century of the Tiger: One Hundred Years of Korean Culture in America (Hawaii 2003), a special commemorative issue of the journal MANOA, and will be speaking at the Smithsonian as part of the year-long celebration of Korean culture in 2003. Among the Asian Studies courses he teaches are Asian Americans and Great Books: Asian Classics. For more information on Insu, including his courses, fiction, and translations, visit his website at http://www.geocities.com/Area51/Rampart/2627/fenklpage.html Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kristine Harris (History) arrived in New Paltz from Columbia University in 1996. As Director of the Asian Studies Program since 1999, Kristine has played a key role in the revitalization of the college's Asian Studies Program, guiding development of a new Asian Studies Major to replace the "contract major," and new courses for the program. Among the courses she teaches are Modern China, Women in China, Modern Japan, History of Traditional China, Chinese Cinema, and, for graduate students in teaching, Modern East Asia.
She writes, "Running the Asian Studies Program at SUNY New Paltz is so invigorating because it links students and faculty from a dozen different disciplines who are all share a serious interest in the region. There's a real sense of community. We come together often during the year--whether it's for special guest lectures, the Spring Festival Party, or a program development retreat at Mohonk Preserve--and always feel a lot of energy and excitement as we explore new territory. In the past few years, Asian Studies faculty has collaborated on developing our curriculum in new directions. We're welcoming more first-year students into Chinese and Japanese language study, and are also emphasizing study abroad opportunities, incorporating new library resources and research methods on Asia into our teaching, even offering new modular courses in calligraphy and music. Renewing contact with so many Asian Studies alumni has been especially gratifying, since we've been able to learn about the numerous accomplishments of graduates working in diverse fields, including government, business, medicine, and academia. Faculty and current students are truly looking forward to greeting Asian Studies alumni at the reunion."
Kristine first began studying Asia as a double major in Chinese language and English literature at Wellesley College, after living in Japan and Southeast Asia during the 1970s-80s. Her first visit to Beijing in 1984 on a CET-Wellesley summer language study program reinforced her interest in Chinese history, which became her primary field of study for the M.A. and Ph.D at Columbia. She has pursued research in China and Japan on fellowships from the Fulbright Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies. Kristine says, "My scholarship focuses on modern Chinese cultural history, with special attention to changes in cinema and theater. I'm fascinated by the active role filmmakers and dramatists played in forging new concepts of national identity, political community, gender, and class, throughout the wars, revolutions, and upheavals of the twentieth century." Her recent publications include "The Goddess: Fallen Woman of Shanghai." In Chinese Films in Focus: 26 New Takes, edited by Christopher Berry (London: British Film Institute, 2003); "The Romance of the Western Chamber and the Classical Subject Film in 1920s Shanghai," In Cinema and Urban Culture in Shanghai, 1922-1943, edited by Yingjin Zhang (Stanford University Press, 1999); and "A Symposium on Peony Pavilion" [a co-authored theater review of the Peter Sellars production at UC Berkeley], in Threepenny Review XX (78), 2 (Summer 1999). Visit Kristine's website for more information about her courses, research, and interests: http://www.newpaltz.edu/~harrisk/ Email: email@example.com
Ping Jin (Music) was born in Shenyang, China and studied composition at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. In 1990 he came to the United States to study composition at Syracuse University and the University of Cincinnati's College-Conservatory of Music, where he received his doctorate. Ping Jin has been on the faculty of SUNY New Paltz since 1998. He teaches music theory, counterpoint, composition, computer music, and world music. As a composer, his interests lie in the integration of Western and Eastern aesthetics. This semester he is offering a new course, Pop Music of China.
His music has been performed by such groups as Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, Ear Play, The Newstead Trio. Among Ping Jin's publications are The Happiness of the Snowflakes, written for soprano and piano, which won the first prize at the National Contest for Art Song Writing in China in 1988, and Autumn Moon in the Qing Temple, for piano solo. Both works were published by the Musical Works in Beijing. Three pieces for Chinese instrument ensemble, Xi Fang Zang, Xing Xiang Zi, and Eternal Panorama, were released on China Record label. His A Buddhist Nunnery Incantation, written for pipa solo, was released on CD in a project funded by the City of Cincinnati. His piano trio, Xipi's Themes from Peking Opera, was released on Prince Productions label. His two pieces Lullaby and A little Brook, written for The Newstead Trio, will be released on Prince Productions label later this year.
Ping Jin is currently working on a new piece written for two Chinese instruments. It is scheduled to be premiered in Paris, France, in March 2004. Subsequent performances of the piece will be in New York City and Boston in April. Ping Jin can be reached through Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Yuko Matsubara (Foreign Languages) writes, "After graduating from a Japanese university, I studied in the U.K and received a B.A in English language teaching. I also received an M.A in Second Language Education from SUNY New Paltz in 2002. I joined SUNY New Paltz in 1998 and I have been teaching Elementary Japanese, Intermediate Japanese, and Advanced Japanese ever since. I also teach advanced level courses at Vassar college. My personal interests include studying languages and becoming an expert in the traditional Japanese tea ceremony. I attended a Finnish government course in 1996 in Rauma, Finland, which was administrered by the Finnish Ministry of Education. As a teacher, I am happiest when I witness my students using Japanese promptly." Email: email@example.com
Lawrence McGlinn (Geography) According to Larry McGlinn's website: "I am an assistant professor of geography here at SUNY-New Paltz. I teach a wide range of geography classes including: Geographic Information Systems, Physical Geography, Resource Management, World Geography, and whatever else might need teaching. I got my bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Kansas in East Asian Language and Culture, and Geography, respectively. My PhD is in Geography from Penn State University. My research interests include man-made hazards, especially how they affect human populations, Asian immigration to the United States, and the use of GIS in education." Although Larry has not yet taught an Asian Studies course at SUNY New Paltz, he has indicated that he would like to at some point. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bruce Milem (Philosophy) is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Coordinator of the Religious Studies Program at New Paltz. He received a B.A. in Historical Studies at the University of Texas at Dallas and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Philosophy from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Before coming to New Paltz in 2001, Bruce taught at the University of Montana, Hendrix College in Arkansas, Western Oregon University, and the University of Oregon. Bruce regularly teaches a course in Chinese and Japanese Philosophy, and about half of his Religions of the World course is devoted to Asian religions. He also teaches courses in the philosophy of religion. His publications and research are primarily in philosophy of religion and medieval Western philosophy, including a book on Meister Eckhart, a medieval Christian philosopher whose thinking contains ideas similar to some Hindu and Buddhist teachings. Email: email@example.com
Christopher (Chris) Robins (Foreign Languages/Japanese Language) received his BA in English from the University of Vermont 1984 and earned his Ph.D. in Japanese Language & Literature from Indiana University in 1999. In the three years prior to arriving to teach in the Department of Foreign Languages at New Paltz in Fall 1999, he carried out dissertation research at Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan. At SUNY New Paltz, Chris has been teaching Japanese language classes as well as Japanese Fiction, Japanese Poetry, Japanese Aesthetics and Culture, and the history and literature of Asian Americans in a course with the same title Asian Americans.
Chris writes, "I feel extremely fortunate to have come to New Paltz: the campus happens to be located in one of the most beautiful areas imaginable, the village and campus communities are extremely friendly and rich in talents and diversity, but most
importantly, in terms of the life and atmosphere on campus, I really enjoy the wide array of students from all backgrounds who create a very cosmopolitan feeling in the midst of the rural setting."
His research interests include topics related to modern Japanese nationalism,especially in relation to literary canonicity/Japanese public school literature textbooks, and "traditional" aesthetics. Some of his recent work intended for publication includes a book-length manuscript entitled Revealing Divisions: Inoue Hisashi's Attack on Modern Japanese Nationalism, an article in English, "Aesthetic Nationalism in Japanese High School Literature (kokugo) Textbooks," and in Japanese, "Bigakuteki mohou ka kokkashugi mohan? Koukou kokugo kyoukasho e no ugachi [Aesthetic imitation or a nationalist model? Taking a peek at national language high school textbooks]." Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jonathan (Yoni) Schwartz (Political Science) received his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Toronto (Canada) in 2001. In the process of obtaining the degree, he spent quite a bit of time studying and conducting research in Asia, including two years in Taiwan and a year in Jiangsu province. He has since returned to China on numerous occasions, generally to conduct research. Yoni writes, "My current focus is on environment and civil society. Specifically, I focus on the role civil society organizations - NGOs - can play in protecting China's environment. Recently I have begun a cooperative research project with the Center for the study of Bioterrorism and Emerging Infections at St. Louis University. The initial focus is on the public health system in China. We are particularly interested in drawing lessons from the Chinese experience dealing with SARS. I arrived in New Paltz in summer 2001 and immediately began teaching a range of political science courses, among which are World Development, Environment and Development, United States and China, and the International Politics of the Asia-Pacific." Among his recent publications are: "The Impact of State Capacity on Enforcement of Environmental Policies: The Case of China," Journal of Environment and Development 12(1) (March 2003); "Canada's Role in Chinese Environmental Protection," Journal of Canadian Foreign Policy 10(2) (Winter 2003); "Chinese Perceptions of the Environment," in Edward Davis (ed.) Encyclopedia of Contemporary Chinese Culture (Routledge, 2003); and "Conducting Research in China: Impediments and Some Options," Issues and Studies, vol. 37(6) (November/D