AFEC 2018 International study days workshop

AFEC 2018 International study days workshop

Over the last twenty years, material culture studies have occupied a growing place in the social sciences. How does this growing interest in objects and material culture reveal itself in Chinese studies? Choosing from different disciplines and different periods, this AFEC workshop aims to examine how to approach objects in the humanities and social sciences—from everyday objects to natural objects, consumer goods, technical or scientific instruments, objects of study or devotion, or ritual objects and works of art. By bringing together specialists from different fields (history, art history, archaeology, technology, anthropology, literature, sociology, etc.), the workshop explores the life, trajectory and the possible metamorphoses of the value, status and function of objects, as well as the relationships these artefacts have with individuals—raising in addition questions of their social uses—by focusing on their religious, symbolic, political, economic, emotional or memorial dimensions.


This international workshop is organized by the Association française d’études chinoises (AFEC) with the generous support of:



8:45  Welcome - Introductory remarks, Valérie LAVOIX, President of the AFEC


June 15 - Morning session (9:30–12:50), Amphi 2, Inalco

Objects of Memory and Memory of the Object (1)  Chair: Gilles GUIHEUX

9:30   AMAR Nathanel The Lives of Dakouin China: From Waste to Nostalgia

10:00  FLATH James Unmanufacturing Modern China: Industrial Ruins and Post-Industrial Society

10:30  LU Yi Sinological Garbology: Archives and History in Modern China


Objects of Memory and Memory of the Object (2) Chair: Pierre-Emmanuel ROUX

11:20  HAMMOND Kenneth J. A Broadsheet Image of Sixteenth Century Beijing

11:50 LI Geng “Old House Can Tell”: Chinese Lineage Group Re-Activation and Female Agency around Built Heritage

12:20  HOU Song  Historicizing, Poeticizing and Dwelling: The Remembrance and Meaning Negotiation of Trees as Cultural Sites in Late Imperial China


June 15 - Morning session (9:30–12:50), Amphi 3, Inalco

Circulating Objects (1) Chair: John FINLAY

 9:30   WANG Lianming Materialized Identities: Kingfisher Feather and Qing Material Culture

10:00   EBEN V. RACKNITZ Ines  Chinese Zodiac: The Social Life of the Yuanming Yuan’s Circle of Animals

10:30    MONNET Nathalie The Crucial Influence of Books in the Development of Chinese Studies in France


Circulating Objects (2) Chair: Michaela PEJCOCHOVA

11:20   LI Xiaoxuan Bronzes Commodified and the Rise of Commercialization in Eastern Zhou

11:50 LOTZE Johannes Multilingual Objects: Material Culture as Evidence of Ming China’s Global Engagement (1368-1644)

12:20 YU Yusen ChinesePainting as Object: Collecting and (Re)mounting Chinese Painting in Persian Albums, 15th–16th Centuries


June 15 Afternoon session  (2:00–6:00) Amphi 2, Inalco

Social life of Objects: Human-Object Interactions (1) Chair: Francesca DAL LAGO

2:00   LEE Wing Ki The Social Lives of Porcelain Photo as Commemorative Portrait in the 20th Century Chinese Context

2:30   HUANG I-fenFrom Boudoir to Antique shop to Modern Museum: The Social Life of Han Ximeng’s Embroidered Album

3:00   WRIGHT Suzanne E.Jiupai: Performance and Play


Social life of Objects : Human-Object Interactions (2) Chair: Marie LAUREILLARD

3:50   WANG Wenxin “The Decaying Brushstrokes Inscribed Are Where Your Divine Spirits Rest”: The Creation of Painting Inscriptions as Controlling the Past, Present, and Future

4:20  LAURENT Cédric Revaluating Landscape Iconography: Painting and Poetry of Meditation during the 15th & 16th Centuries

4:50 CHAN Pedith Visual Travelogue of Scenic Mountains:Yu Jianhua’s Travel Albums

 5:20  KELLY Thomas The Poetry of Ink in Late Imperial China


June 15 Afternoon session  (2:00–6:00) Amphi 3, Inalco

Object Trajectories: Changes in Meaning or in Value Chair: Ping FOONG

2:00  CHENG Bonnie Meaning and Value in Underground Tombs

2:30   KHAYUTINA Maria He zun zhuan何尊傳: From an Agent in the Early Chinese Polity Formation to the Treasure of the State

3:00  ZHU Pinyan Avalokiteśvara in Gold: The Transformation of a Devotional Image at Dazu Grottoes


Religious and Secular Objects Chair: Vincent DURAND-DASTÈS

3:50 PEJCOCHOVA Michaela From Ritual to Colonial Fantasies: Chinese Ritual Objects as Part of Western Collections of Chinese Art in the Inter-War Period

4:20   XU Lufeng  Usual, disciplined, violent: Buddhist Monks’ Knives in the Shaolin Temple

4:50   CHAMBON Michel Producing and Consuming the Blood of Christ among Chinese Protestants Today

5:20 LEI Yang Creation and Reconstruction of a Soundscape: The Great Buddhist Bell of the Yongle Era in the Local Literature of Peking, 1600-1900

 6:00    Presentation by Olivier de BERNON (EFEO) of the future Museum of Chinese Folk Art



June 16 - Morning session (9:30–12:50), Amphi 6, Inalco 

Collecting Neglected Objects Chair: Delphine SPICQ

 9:30  LEFEVBRE Romain A Decade of Auctions: What Place for Tangut Objects within the Cultural and Historical Legacy of China?

10:00 GRASSKAMP Anna Maritime Matters: Oceans, Objects and Collecting in Early Modern China

10:30  SHAN Fred  Dust of the Song Dynasty: Huang Pilie (1763-1825) and His Collection of Song Editions


Verbal Representation of Objects Chair: Valérie LAVOIX

11:20  CHEN Guangcheng A Name Searching for its Object: The Life of Jia and the Contestation of Authenticity

11:50   KIRKOVA Zornica Facets of the Mountain Censer in Early Medieval Chinese Poetry

12:20  PIRAZZOLI Melinda Lu Xun’s Sense of Objects: Exchange, Consumption and Commodity Fetishism in Lu Xun’s “Medicine” (1919) and “Soaps”


June 16 - Morning session (9:30–12:50), Amphi 7, Inalco 

What Do Objects Tell Us (1)? Chair: Alain THOTE

9:30 FOONG Ping A Dunhuang Imaginary: The case of mistaken identity in the biography of a Tang dynasty votive tablet

10:00 KIM Moonsil Lee The Capacity of Ancient Vessels: Vessel Volumes in the Catalogues from the Song to the Qing Periods, and Now

10:30  ZHANG Jinghong Chinese Tea Serving Pitcher and the Debate Over Its Multiple Cultural Origins


What Do Objects Tell Us (2)? Chair: Daniela CAMPO

11:2SAM-SIN Fresco  From Clan to Empire: The Manchu Shaman’s Changing Toolkit

11:50  YANG Ya-ting Qipao: femininity and modern China