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Documenting Westerners in Nineteenth-Century China & Japan: New Sources and Perspectives

Photo of Nagasaki courtesy of Glover Garden in Nagasaki
Event - Sainsbury Institute

木曜日 22 6月, 2017 - 金曜日 23 6月, 2017

Sainsbury Institute, 64 The Close, Norwich NR1 4DH


Dr Robert Hellyer
Dr Robert Fletcher

About the Symposium

The symposium will examine the influence and contributions of Westerners in nineteenth-century East Asia, with a focus on how personal correspondences can serve as historical sources. The two-day gathering will explore two Nagasaki-based British merchants, William Alt and Frederick Ringer (a native of Norwich), as well as Charles Richardson, a Shanghai-based merchant killed near Yokohama in 1862, an event that led to an armed clash between Britain and the Satsuma domain the following year. The symposium will also include papers on various merchants, missionaries, and diplomats in East and Southeast Asia, as well as perspectives on British maritime commerce during the nineteenth century.

The symposium is free to attend and open to students and scholars interested in the subject.
Registration is essential as seats are limited. Please contact the Sainsbury Institute to book your place on 01603 597 507 or email us.


Day One: Thursday June 22

1-1:30 Greetings, Opening Remarks

Panel 1 | 1:30PM-3:30 European Merchants in Nineteenth-Century East Asia

Robert Hellyer (Wake Forest University, USA)
William Alt: What His Letters Tell Us About a Young British Merchant in China & Japan

Harald Fuess (Heidelberg University, Germany)
Dejima as the Gun Island of Nagasaki in the 1860s

Fukuoka Mariko (National Museum of Japanese History, Japan)
Casper Brennwald: Trading Activities of a Swiss Merchant in Nineteenth-century Asia, Europe & the United States

Victoria Manthorpe (Independent Scholar, Britain)
Frederick Ringer: King of Nagasaki

Discussant: Sherzod Muminov (Cambridge University, Britain)

3:45-4:00 Tea Break

Panel 2 | 4:00-5:30 C.L. Richardson and the Namamugi Incident

Robert Fletcher (University of Warwick, Britain)
The Road to Namamugi: the Shanghai Letters of Charles Lenox Richardson

Nakatake Kanami (Yokohama Archives of History, Japan)
The Namamugi Incident’s Influence on Foreign and Japanese Societies in Yokohama

Discussant: Nadine Willems (University of East Anglia, Britain)

Day Two Friday June 23

Panel 3 | 9:00AM-11:00AM British Imperial Contexts and Connections

Ranald Noel-Paton (Independent Scholar, Britain)
The Life of George Windsor Earl

Annette Bainbridge (Independent Scholar, New Zealand)
The Charlotte Jane: National Symbol and Global Reality

Nicole Coolidge Rousmaniere (IFAC Handa Curator for Japanese Arts, British Museum, Britain)
Collecting Japan for Britain: Augustus Wollaston Franks’ Evolving Strategy for Acquiring Japanese Material Culture for the British Museum, 1860-80s

Discussant: Angus Lockyer (SOAS, Britain)

11:00-11:15 Tea Break

Panel 4 | 11:15-12:45 Diplomacy in China and Japan

Sano Mayuko (International Research Center for Japanese Studies/University of Nagasaki, Japan)
Disturbed by Merchants? Rutherford Alcock’s Eastern Diplomacy

Victoria Manthorpe (Independent Scholar, Britain)
“Thank God You Are English:” a Globetrotter’s Consular and Mercantile Contacts in Kobe at the Turn of the Nineteenth Century

Discussant: Simon Kaner (SISJAC and University of East Anglia, Britain)

Lunch break: 12:45-1:30

Panel 1:30-3:30 Westerners in Nineteenth-Century China

Song-Chuan Chen (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
Who’s Afraid of a Chinese Ghost? European Merchants and Ancestor Worship in the Treaty Ports, 1845–1914

Shengfang Chou (University of Warwick, Britain)
Chinese as Fear: Images Produced by British Photographer John Thomson and His Illustrations of China and of Its People ca. 1870

Lars Laamann (SOAS, Britain)
John Nevius (1829–1893) – Propagating Christianity, Exorcising Demons

Discussant: Janet Hunter (LSE, Britain)

3:30-4:00 Tea Break

4:00-5:00 Concluding Remarks on Symposium & General Discussion

Hans van de Ven (Cambridge University, Britain), general comments

Symposium organised by Dr Robert Hellyer and Dr Robert Fletcher.

Supported by

Image: Photo of Nagasaki courtesy of Glover Garden in Nagasaki

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