Why is Islamic State so Violent?

Description

Islamic State and its predecessors in Iraq have become famous for their violence, even more than their jihadist rival, al-Qaeda. IS is personally brutal while al-Qaeda has typically engaged in mass-atrocities in the past and, more recently has become much less active. There is a deep antipathy between the two, even though they at one time claimed to have merged into a single movement. This lecture is about how the two organisations differ in their attitudes to religion, authority and the purposes of armed revolution and how this is put into effect by violence.

Associate Professor Richard Pennell is al-Tajir Lecturer in the History of the Middle East and Islam in the School of Historical and Philosophical Studies at the University of Melbourne.

When
Wednesday, 14 September 2016, 7:00 pm

Where
Kathleen Fitzpatrick Theatre, Arts West

Booking
Posted in Events, Historical and Philosophical Studies

China as a Polar Great Power

Description

In the last five years China has emerged as a member of the unique club of nations who are powerful at both poles. Polar states are global giants, strong in military, scientific, and economic terms. The concept of a polar great power is relatively unknown in international relations studies. Yet China, a rising power globally, is now widely using this term to sum up its aspirations and symbolise the significance of the polar regions to China’s national interests. Chinese Communist Party General Secretary Xi Jinping first referred to China as a polar great power when he visited Australia in November 2014. China’s focus on becoming a polar great power represents a fundamental re-orientation—a completely new way of imagining the world. China’s signalling that it is poised to enter the ranks of the polar great powers reveals both a deep need for status change in the international system and an awareness of a gap in global geopolitics that China alone has the unique ability to fill. In setting its sights on the polar regions now, China is looking to the mid to long term and planning for its future economic, political, and strategic needs. The Chinese government's stated core national interests in the current era—to maintain China’s social system and state security, to preserve state sovereignty and territorial integrity, and the continued stable development of the economy and society—all require access and engagement in the polar regions. China has global interests and is well on the way to becoming a global great power. In order to succeed in this evolution it must be powerful in the polar regions. China is currently acting out an undeclared foreign policy in the polar regions, and it is a situation that provides a useful indicator of China’s attitude to global governance issues more widely.

Dr Anne-Marie Brady is Professor of Political Science at the University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand, and a Global Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Centre in Washington DC

When
Thursday, 8 September 2016, 5:30 pm

Where
Evan Williams Theatre, Richard Berry G03 Theatre

Booking
Posted in Asia Institute, Events

Chai and Conversation: India Skills – Connecting Demography to Development

Description

By 2025, almost 1 in 5 of the world’s working age population will be Indian. 12 million young, aspiring Indians enter the Indian workforce every year. Skill development has therefore emerged as a key policy priority to leverage India’s demographic dividend and drive economic and social development in the country.

In July 2015, the Government of India launched the 'Skill India' initiative, which seeks to equip over 400 million young Indians with job-oriented skills to enhance their employability. For the first time, a wide range of new policy and programme initiatives were launched to rapidly scale up skill training initiatives for the country’s youth.

This talk uses 'Skill India' as a prism to explore four key questions.

· What is unique about India’s skills challenge? How is India managing it?

· How do young people experience and encounter skill training programmes?

· How does the vision of the 'Skill India' programme connect with the aspirations of young Indian citizens?

· What challenges are encountered when connecting demography to development?

Through an exploration of these questions Dr Divya Nambiar provides insights into the nature of the contemporary Indian state.

Dr Nambiar is Senior Consultant, at the office of the Union Secretary, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India.

When
Friday, 7 October 2016, 1:00 pm

Where
Seminar Room, Australia India Institute, The University of Melbourne, 147-149 Barry Street Carlton

Booking
Posted in Events, Government

“Dr. Alemán”

Description

Based on a true incident, the film Dr Aleman tells the story of Marc (August Diehl), an unexperienced medical doctor from Germany who accepts an internship at a hospital in Santiago de Cali, Colombia, to treat gunshot victims, and soon finds himself in-between a raging gang war in Siloé, one of Cali’s poorest neighborhoods.

Marc isn’t certain of what to expect going in, but it soon becomes clear that the poverty, violence and crime in Cali is more than he bargained for. Alienating his colleagues and his host family while befriending the kids who have been lured into the drug trade, Marc soon finds himself trapped in the centre of the violent conflict between the gangs. When he meets crime boss El Juez (Victor Villegas) things get out of control and Marc has to come to a decision.

With a lot of effort to create authenticity, the movie draws a picture of Colombia’s third-largest city as a pure criminal drug swamp and stages visually the crime statistics of a city, which was ranked in 2013 as the most violent and murderous in the country, and with the 6th highest murder rate in the world. Sadly, this picture clung for a long time to whole Colombia as a feared tourism black hole because of its intertwined civil military conflict and international drug war during last decades. But luckily this image is more and more cracking and Colombia is doing much to turn around its own image as a country that refuses to be bogged down by the dark days.

As a witness of that, Dr Daniela Mueller will speak about her own experiences as DAAD Language Assistant, who lived in Colombia for one year.

When
Tuesday, 6 September 2016, 6:30 pm

Where
South Lecture Theatre, Level 2, Old Arts

Booking
Posted in Events, Languages and Linguistics

Dante at Auschwitz: the Role of Poetry in our World

Description

Is there a degree of suffering and degradation beyond which a man or a woman ceases to be a human being? A point beyond which our spirit dies and only pure physiology survives? And to what extent, if any, may poetry and literary culture be capable of preserving the integrity of our humanity? These are some of the questions that this lecture proposes to consider with reference to two places where extreme suffering is inflicted - the fictional hell imagined by Dante in his Inferno, and the real hell experienced by Primo Levi at Auschwitz and described in If this Is a Man.

When
Thursday, 22 September 2016, 6:00 pm

Where
Room 122, Old Arts Public Lecture Theatre

Booking
Posted in Events, Languages and Linguistics

Sculpture and the Museum: From Fortunate Son to Runaway Child

Description

In 2005, the Director of the National Gallery, London, signalled the long-standing eclipse of sculpture in favour of painting when he noted that "sculpture is what you fall over when you step back from the paintings". The expanded field of contemporary sculptural practice, including installations, conceptual art and commissioned artist interventions, has nonetheless re-energised and revitalised the potential of sculpture to engage with the historical, institutional and even commercial dimensions of the museum.

This lecture will consider the long and complex development from the Renaissance to today with a particular focus on the key role played by sculpture in communicating powerful ideas and associations when placed in dynamic museum exhibition environments.

Presented by Dr Christopher R. Marshall, Senior Lecturer, Art History and Museum Studies, Faculty of Arts, presents the Annual Duldig Lecture of Sculpture. Introduced by Ken Scarlett OAM, Writer and Curator.

Inaugurated in 1986 the Annual Duldig Lecture on Sculpture commemorates the life and work of the artists Karl Duldig and Slawa Duldi (nee Horowitz). This lecture is supported by the Duldig Studio, museum + sculpture garden.

Image: Interior view, Gipsoteca canoviano, Possagno (Treviso)

When
Thursday, 1 September 2016, 6:15 pm

Where
Forum Theatre, Arts West

Booking
Posted in Culture and Communication, Events

Translation of Literature: Chinese Poetry

Description

The Asia Institute Master of Translation and Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies presents a series of special free public lectures by world-renowned scholar of literary translation, Professor John Minford, Australian National University.

This Specialised Translation Lecture will look at various approaches to the translation of Chinese poetry, and explore why some translations have been more successful than others. Professor Minford will consider the work of various translators, including Ezra Pound, Arthur Waley, Kenneth Rexroth, Gary Snyder, and John Scott.

When
Wednesday, 10 August 2016, 11:00 am

Where
Malaysian Theatre (MSD B121), Melbourne School of Design, Masson Road

Booking
Posted in Asia Institute, Events

Translation History: Arthur Waley

Description

The Asia Institute Master of Translation and Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies presents a series of special free public lectures by world-renowned scholar of literary translation, Professor John Minford, Australian National University.

This Translation History lecture will focus on the life and career of the greatest translator of Chinese poetry and fiction of the first half of the twentieth century, Arthur Waley. Professor John Minford will describe the Bloomsbury Group - an influential circle of associated English artists and intellectuals in central London - of which Arthur Waley was a member.

When
Friday, 12 August 2016, 12:00 pm

Where
Alan Gilbert Building Theatre 2 (Room 109), Alan Gilbert Theatre 2

Booking
Posted in Asia Institute, Events

Translation of Literature: Chinese Fiction – The Story of the Stone

Description

The Asia Institute Master of Translation and Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies presents a series of special free public lectures by world-renowned scholar of literary translation, Professor John Minford, Australian National University.

This lecture on Translation of Literature will focus on Chinese Fiction and in particular on The Story of the Stone. Professor Minford will examine the peculiar problems raised by the translation of China’s greatest novel, and look into some of David Hawkes' innovative and masterly solutions in his Penguin Classics translation.

When
Wednesday, 17 August 2016, 11:00 am

Where
Alan Gilbert Building Theatre 2 (Room 109), Alan Gilbert Theatre 2

Booking
Posted in Asia Institute, Events

From ‘The Story of the Stone’ to the ‘I Ching’: Confessions of a translator

Description

The Asia Institute Master of Translation and Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies presents a series of special free public lectures by world-renowned scholar of literary translation, Professor John Minford, Australian National University.

In this engaging lecture, Professor Minford will provide a personal account of his 50 years in Chinese studies, from 'The Story of the Stone' to the 'I Ching'.

When
Wednesday, 17 August 2016, 4:00 pm

Where
Malaysian Theatre (MSD B121) , Melbourne School of Design, Masson Road

Booking
Posted in Asia Institute, Events