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Online Exhibition on Sayyid `Uthman of Batavia

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From 1 December 2014 until 23 January 2015, the ‘Oude UB’ or Old University Library at Rapenburg 70, Leiden, highlighted aspects of the life and work of Sayyid `Uthman in the exhibition Sayyid `Uthman of Batavia (1822-1914): A Life in the Service of Islam and the Colonial Administration. This exhibition is now available online.

Sayyid ‘Uthman was the most prominent Islam scholar of his era in the Netherlands East Indies, providing guidance to the Muslim community. In 1889 the famous Dutch Islam scholar Christiaan Snouck Hurgronje engaged his services as an advisor and informant to the Colonial Government.

The exhibition was organised on the occasion of the publication of a monograph on Sayyid `Uthman by Dr Nico Kaptein (LIAS) in 2014. It was a joint effort of the Art Commission Oude UB, Leiden University Libraries and the Leiden University Centre for the Study of Islam and Society (LUCIS). The exhibition displayed a selection of objects from the special collections of the Leiden University Libraries, including the recently incorporated collection ot the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV), and showed how well the UBL and KITLV collections complement and reinforce each other.

The objects have long since been returned to the stacks and vaults of the University Library, but the Sayyid ‘Uthman exhibition is now permanently available in English online for the benefit of the academic community in the Netherlands, Indonesia and beyond. To view the exhibition, please visit the Leiden University website and click on the image thumbnail.

(reported by Dr. Nico J.G. Kaptein)

Genealogical tree of the descendants of the Prophet Muhammad (Courtesy of Old University Library, Leiden)

Genealogical tree of the descendants of the Prophet Muhammad (Courtesy of Old University Library, Leiden)

Southeast Asian photographic collections of the École française d’Extrême-Orient (EFEO) online

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From 1933, the EFEO engaged the services of a professional photographer, Jean Manikus, assisted by Nguyen Huu Tho, who created a photographic service that worked until 1959, resulting in the important heritage collections of the EFEO. When, under the pressure of political events, the EFEO had to move its headquarters from Hanoi to Saigon in September 1954, a copy of the photographic collection was sent to Paris where the headquarters of the School were eventually installed in 1961. The EFEO library in Paris was thus created, taking over from that of Hanoi.

Today, more than 180,000 photographic items are kept at the library in Paris. The media, reflecting the evolution of photographic techniques, are different in nature: glass plates with silver gelatino-bromide; negatives; slides; silver prints and colors; digital photos. The themes illustrate the richness of the disciplines researched at the EFEO: architecture, archeology, epigraphy, ethnography, art history etc. Because of the history of the School and its missions, Cambodia and Vietnam are particularly well represented in the collections and, to a lesser extent, Laos and Thailand.

These photographs attract major academic interest, complementing historical mission reports and publications in periodicals. In 2002, a digitization campaign was initiated in order to ensure the conservation of photographs and to disseminate the digitized photos to the academic community and the general public.

The content of the website (text, graphics etc.) is protected by legislation on intellectual property. Any reproduction, total or partial reproduction, any use, any adjustment or modification by any means and  by any person without the permission of the EFEO is strictly prohibited.
To access the digital photo collections please visit the EFEO website.
Online presentation of the EFEO photo collections

Online presentation of the EFEO photo collections

Update: SEALG Annual Meeting 2015

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The SEALG Annual Meeting 2015 is being organized as a joint conference with the SAALG (South Asia Archive and Library Group) and will take place in Paris on Friday 3rd and Saturday 4th July 2015. This will be just before the EurASEAA15 Conference in Paris (6-10 July).

The SEALG/SAALG conference will give participants the chance to explore France’s collections and connections with South and Southeast Asia.

The tentative programme of the conference is as follows:

Friday, 3rd July:

– SEALG and SAALG meet at École française d’Extrême-Orient (EFEO), Maison de l’Asie, 22, avenue du President Wilson, 75116, Paris for a mixture of SEA and SA topic talks during the day

Theme: “The French Connection – with South and Southeast Asia”

Confirmed speakers:

– Rachel Guidoni: Major South Asia Collections in French Libraries

– Arundhati Virmani: South Asia Collections at the Marseille’s Chamber of Commerce

– Mrs J. Filliozat: The odyssey of the Pali manuscript EFEO collection

– Holger Warnk: The Nachlass of Maurice Durand in the Library of Southeast Asian Studies in Frankfurt

– Cécile Capot: The history of the EFEO library

– Isabelle Dion and Olivia Pelletier: Archives about Indochina in the national overseas archives (ANOM)

– Jérôme Petit: Missionaries, travellers and scholars: the building of an Indian manuscripts collection at the National Library of France

– François Lagirarde: The Lanna Manuscripts Project at the EFEO

On Friday evening there will be the chance to meet socially at the conference dinner (not included in the fee, venue to be confirmed).

Saturday, 4th July

– On Saturday at 10am there will be a visit to the Musée Guimet, 6 Place d’Iéna- 75116, Paris, including a guided tour of selected collections and a visit to the library.

– On Saturday afternoon the SEALG AGM and another session of talks will be held at Musée Guimet.

Confirmed speakers for the SEALG Panel:

– Annabel Teh Gallop: Digitisation of Malay and Indonesian manuscripts: an overview

– Claudia Götze-Sam: From Special Subject Collection to Scientific Information Service: What does it mean for the Southeast Asian collection of the Berlin State Library?

– Liubov Goriaeva: French Studies of Malay-Indonesian written tradition: a Glance from Russia

– Jotika Khur-Yearn: Where the French and the Shan Meet: The Shan Political and Social Movements in the Reserved Zones of Upper Mekong Regions in the late 19th and early 20th centuries

– Doris Jedamski: Ephemera – the Forgotten Ones?

The fee for the whole conference is £30 and includes talks, lunch and refreshments on Friday plus the visit to Musee Guimet on Saturday morning and additional SEALG talks on Saturday afternoon.

This year to help with planning we will be asking participants to book a place and to pay the conference fee in advance. To book a place please send an email , specifying which sessions you plan to attend, and whether you would like to attend the Saturday evening dinner (excluded from the conference fee). The final day for booking will be 22nd June and payment will be required by Friday 26th June.

For further information and recommended accommodation please enquire by email .

If you wish to present a paper at the SEALG session on Saturday afternoon, please contact Doris Jedamski by email.

We are looking forward to meet you in Paris!

5th International Conference on Lao Studies 2016

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July 8-10, 2016 at Thammasat University, Bangkok, Thailand

The International Conference on Lao Studies (ICLS) is held once every three years (starting after 2007), rotating among various academic institutions around the world. In 2005, Northern Illinois University became the first host of the First Lao Studies conference, followed by Arizona State University in 2007, Khon Kaen Univeristy, Thailand in 2010, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2013.

The main purpose of the Lao Studies conferences is to provide an international forum for scholars to present and discuss various aspects of ethno-linguistic groups of Laos, the Lao Isan, cross-border ethnic groups in Laos’ neighboring countries, and overseas Lao.

The Lao PDR today has a population of more than six million people, comprising an amazing complex of ethnolinguistic groups. Moreover, the number of ethnic Lao people outside of the Lao PDR, including the Lao “diaspora” numbers as many as twenty-five million. In recent years there has been an increased interest in Laos and its peoples as subjects of serious discussion by scholars and the interested public alike. Indeed, there has been a flowering of scholarly publications on topics pertaining to Laos in the last several decades and a growing interest cultivated by the international media with its global reach. The First International Conference on Lao Studies at the Northern Illinois University heralded the burgeoning of a growing interest in Lao studies among a new generation of scholars. The subsequent conferences will build on that momentum.

Theme

The theme of the Fifth International Conference on Lao Studies is “Lao PDR in the ASEAN Context” with particular (though not exclusive) emphasis on the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC).

All Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states have committed to creating a region which is highly competitive, equitable in economic development and fully integrated into the global economy. The establishment of the AEC in 2015 will bring enormous opportunities as well as great challenges for the individual member countries in the region, especially for Lao PDR.

Suggested topics for the conference range from economic studies, social sciences, studies on culture, language and history, art, literature, music, Buddhism, traditional knowledge, education, environment and health, and much more. For more details and deadlines for submission of paper presentations, posters, performances etc. please visit the conference homepage.

Laos09

Southeast Asia in the British Pathé Film Archive

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British Pathé was once a dominant feature of the British cinema experience. Before the advent of television, millions around the globe came to movie theatres for their weekly dose of filmed news. The birth of this phenomenon took place when renowned French filmmaker Charles Pathé came to London in 1910 to introduce an innovative medium to British audiences – the cinema newsreel.

Over the course of a century, British Pathé reported on everything from armed conflicts and seismic political crises to the curious hobbies and eccentric lives of ordinary British people. In so doing, the organisation set the benchmark for cinematic journalism, blending information and entertainment with unparalleled success and influencing whole generations of Britons.

British Pathé is considered to be the most comprehensive newsreel archive in the world and is a treasure trove of 85,000 films unrivalled in their historical and cultural significance. Spanning the years from 1896 to 1976, the collection includes footage from around the globe of major events, famous people, fashion trends, travel, science and culture. Over the last 40 years, this material has been used extensively by broadcasters, production companies, corporations, publishers, teachers and museums, among many others. Now most of the material is available publicly via the British Pathé website for viewing and educational purposes.

Almost 300 film clips can be found for Indochina, for example. Although most of the footage is related to the war in Indochina, there are also clips documenting the lives of ordinary people, the cultural traditions of various ethnic groups and outstanding Southeast Asian landscapes.

A keyword search for “Burma” reveals over 200 film clips. One particularly interesting short film documents the Water Festival as is was celebrated in Yangon in 1946. Another very rare film shows footage of East African soldiers who fought in Burma in the 1940s.

Just over one hundred clips are related to Thailand/Siam, mainly covering state visits, political events and some cultural topics. A very short film gives insight into the life of young Prince Ananda at his school in Lausanne. Fun to watch is a documentation of Prince Birabongse winning the Ulster T.T. race in Northern Ireland.

Hundreds more films deal with events in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Brunei, including the coronation of the Sultan of Johor in 1960.

 

The Emergence of Theravada Buddhism in Cambodia: Southeast Asian Perspectives

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Symposium to be held on July 3, 2015

Oganised by THE SOUTHEAST ASIA ART AND ARCHAEOLOGY ACADEMIC PROGRAMME AT SOAS

Mainland Southeast Asia underwent major civilizational transitions when the Hindu-Mahayana Buddhist Angkorian Empire met its end over the 13th-15th centuries and Theravada Buddhism emerged in its wake. While Angkor remained a reference for the new states that developed across the mainland, Theravada Buddhism structured the cultural, social and political forms which continue to define the region. Given the importance of these changes, astonishingly little is understood about how it actually happened, notably in the Angkorian heartland itself. By supporting interdisciplinary exchange on the Theravadin material heritage across the Southeast Asian region (including Sri Lanka) during this transitional period this symposium aims to begin to redress this gap in our regional understandings.

Knowledge on the emergence of Theravada Buddhism in Cambodia is partially due to the nature of the transformation itself: marking an abrupt halt in the prolific stone temple construction, statuary production and epigraphic composition which had characterized the Angkorian Kingdom for more than four centuries, the early Cambodian Theravadin complex left relatively little easily accessible material evidence for its future study.

This relative lack has been compounded by scholarly privileging of the spectacular accomplishments of Angkor since the beginning of modern scholarship in the colonial period. Times did change however, and it is time that the body of research on the early post-Angkorian period in the post-colonial era be collectively evaluated and pursued.

Temples and stupas were built and rebuilt, statues were sculpted and retouched, texts were composed and recomposed, practices evolved and legends were born.

Out of this work, the Cambodian state was given new life in and beyond Angkor and, in such, confirmed the hold Theravada had across the region.

The dominant structuring of modern scholarship on the basis of national borders has further limited our understandings of the phenomenon at hand. Certain Theravadin forms and practices came to Cambodia from somewhere else at this time. From where? Why?

And how? What can be discerned about and from the specificities of the Cambodian complex in relation to its Theravadin relatives? By bringing together scholars from across the region, and across disciplines, we aim to break new ground on early Cambodian Theravada and, in turn, shed light on mainland developments as a whole.

Requests for more detailed information and expressions of interest should be sent to:

sg74@soas.ac.uk and at50@soas.ac.uk

SEALG Annual Meeting 2015

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Dear members and friends of the Southeast Asia Library Group,

We are glad to inform you that the next SEALG Annual Meeting is being organized as a joint conference with the SAALG (South Asia Archive and Library Group) and will take place in Paris on Friday 3rd and Saturday 4th July 2015. This will be just before the EurASEAA15 Conference in Paris (6-10 July).
The tentative format of the Annual Meeting is as follows:

Friday, 3rd July:
– SEALG and SAALG meet at EFEO for a mixture of SEA and SA topic talks during the day
Theme: “The French Connection – with South and Southeast Asia”
Venue and time : more details will be circulated nearer the time
– joint SAALG and SEALG dinner

Saturday, 4th July
– visit to the Musee Guimet in the morning
– SEALG panel of additional talks on topics other than the “French Connection” – a Call for Papers will be circulated to SEALG members soon

Please keep following this blog for updates!

On behalf of the SEALG committee and chair,

Doris Jedamski (d.a.jedamski@library.leidenuniv.nl)

Southeast Asian exhibits at Musee Guimet

Southeast Asian exhibits at Musee Guimet

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