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2/26/2007 Linfield professor to discuss Chinese-Japanese relations

McMINNVILLE - The efforts of one Shanghai bookstore owner to soothe Chinese-Japanese relations before World War II will be the focus of an upcoming faculty lecture at Linfield College.

Chris Keaveney, associate professor of Japanese, will present "Man in the Middle: Uchiyama Kanz˘'s Shanghai Bookstore and Sino-Japanese Literary Relations in the Prewar Period" on Wednesday, March 14, at 7:30 p.m. in 201 Riley Hall at Linfield.

Keaveney's talk will focus on the late Uchiyama Kanz˘ (1885-1959), a Christian who ran a Japanese bookstore in Shanghai in the prewar era. Keaveney will discuss Uchiyama's role in Sino-Japanese cultural relations, with special reference to the significance of activities centered in his bookstore in Shanghai, which served as a focal point of relations between the two literary communities from 1919 until the late 1930s. In particular, Keaveney will describe Uchiyama's role as liaison between the two literary communities at a juncture when relations between the two nations were coming apart.

Uchiyama's importance in Sino-Japanese cultural relations during the 1920s and 1930s has yet to be fully assessed, according to Keaveney.

"Among Western scholars, Uchiyama is a scarcely known figure," he said. "In Japan, he is little more than a footnote in prewar literary studies; in China, where his impact on May Fourth literature has been better recognized, circumstances have at times prevented his contributions toward cultural understanding between China and Japan from being more fully appreciated."

Keaveney, who joined the Linfield faculty in 1997, holds a bachelor's degree from Manhattan College and a master's and Ph.D. from Washington University.

The lecture is free and open to the public. The Linfield College faculty lecture series offers one presentation each month by a member of the Linfield faculty. For more information, call 503-883-2409.