Red MCAA logo with tan bamboo image and 2022 in the center.

71st MCAA September 16-18

This year the Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs will be held at The University of Kansas, Lawrence campus, Kansas Student Union. You can find directions to the Union under "Contact Us" on the menu to the left. 



We invite all conference participants to go on a guided tour of KU's Asian collections at the Spencer Research Library, Spencer Museum of Art, and Watson Library while you are at the conference. Click "Guided Tours" on the main menu for more information.


Each panel room will have a PC/projector/screen for those panelists who will have a PowerPoint or other form of electronic presentation. The password and user name will be posted next to the computers. We suggest you save your presentation on the cloud and on a thumb drive in case there are technical difficulties with the internet.


The problem with the registration form has been corrected. The early registration fees should once again be available to registrants until 11:59 PM tonight. If the registration form is still showing the higher fees, clear your browser cache or use a different browser to register because your browser is still reading the previous incorrect version of the form.

6/30/2022: FACEBOOK

The 71st Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs now has a Facebook group for conference attendees who wish to meet other participants, share ideas, and post travel and accommodation inquiries. 


Keynote Speaker

Kamran Asdar Ali, University of Texas-Austin

Saturday, September 17th @ 6:30 pm (during banquet)

"Female Desire, Forbidden Love and Forgotten Archives: Sexual Politics in 1960s Pakistani Cinema"

My address will focus on the film Saheli (1961) to open up the question of domestic life and sexuality in Pakistan by turning to an underused archive, cinema. Indeed, by concentrating primarily on women’s lives as depicted in this film, I do not seek to dismiss the importance of other studies, but to make an added and necessary argument. It enables me to make visible and audible those instances that may have historically enabled women (and men) in Pakistan to create emotional fields and varied forms of connections to each other. The argument will help me discuss women’s representation in the popular media in Pakistan in order to create a different archive of cultural and sexual politics and histories. Following this argument, I seek to further discuss Neela Parbat, a 1969 Pakistani Urdu film directed by Ahmad Bashir. The film did not do well at the box office and dealt with the theme of incest and other sexual themes. It was only the second film that received an “Adult Only” certificate (the other being the horror film, Zinda Lash). The paper will lay out the plot and historicize the genre of these two films, while putting forward a discussion on how themes of same sex desire, incest and other “taboo” subjects were brought forward in Pakistani cinema.


Presidential Luncheon Panel

Saturday, September 17th @ 12:00 pm

"Global Asia and Science, Technology, Environment, and Medicine"

Dr. Hiromi Mizuno, President of the Midwest Conference on Asian Affairs (University of Minnesota, History), will lead the discussion with panelists Megan Greene (University of Kansas, History), Ian Baird (University of Wisconsin, Madison, Geography), and Susan Burns (University of Chicago, History). 


Graduate Workshops


Friday, September 16th

1:45 -  3:15 p.m., Demystifying Academic Book Publication, by Joyce Harrison (Editor in Chief, University of Kansas Press)

3:30 - 5:00 p.m., Roundtable with Asian Studies Acquisition and Series Editors

Saturday, September 17th

1:45 - 3:15 p.m., Career Exploration and Planning Tools, by Nicole Reitz (KU Office of Graduate Studies)


Asian Collection Tours

Spencer Research Library, Rare Asian Materials: Friday, September 16th, 1:45 - 2:30 pm & Saturday, September 17th, 10:15 - 11:00 pm

Spencer Museum of Art, Challenging Power Exhibition: Saturday, September 17th, 1:45 - 2:30 pm

Watson LibraryAsian Studies on the Prairie: Saturday, 3:30 - 4:15 pm

See our "Collections Tours" page for more details.