Reading Group

Contrasting Memories—A Reading Group on Colonialism and Decolonialism

Contrasting Memories—A Reading Group on Colonialism and Decolonialism
© Cecil Mariani

Fri, 29.10.2021 2:00 PM



Language: English
Price: Free, No Registration Needed

Related links


Kementerian Pendidikan dan Kebudayaan Galeri Nasional Indonesia MAIIAM Contemporary Art Museum Nationalgalerie Berlin Singapore Art Museum

This reading group discusses readings by Takao Fusuyama and Teresia K. Teaiwa.

28 October 2021
8 PM Honolulu

29 October 2021
8 AM Berlin / 1 PM Jakarta/Bangkok / 2 PM Singapore / 3 PM Tokyo / 4 PM Sydney

Takao Fusayama’s account of his time in Sumatra in A Japanese Memoir of Sumatra, 1945-1946: Love and Hatred in the Liberation War offers an intimate look into Indonesia’s post-Independence era. By 1945 the country had already experienced multiple changes in command—from the Dutch, to the Japanese, to the then newly-formed Indonesian government.

In contrast, Teresia K. Teaiwa’s paper “bikinis and other s/pacific n/oceans” focuses on the forced migration experienced by the citizens of Bikini Atoll. Between 1946 and 1958, the Marshall Islands atoll was used by the United States as a test site for nuclear weapons.

How might we gain a more nuanced understanding of the relations between the Indonesian, the Dutch and the Japanese communities during the liberation war in Indonesia, specifically in Sumatra? How might we articulate and relate to the trauma and dispossession of Pacific Islanders brought by American neo-colonialism? Must the notion of the gift always be read through the lens of expansive generosity, or might it be better understood as a dual-edged sword that could have unforeseen consequences?


Barbara Watson Andaya is professor of Asian Studies at the University of Hawai‘i.
From 2005 to 2005 she was president of the American Association of Asian Studies. She has been the recipient of a John Simon Guggenheim Award, and the University of Hawai‘i Regents Medal for Excellence in Research. Her specific area of expertise is the western Malay-Indonesia archipelago, about which she has published widely while maintaining an active teaching and research interest all across Southeast Asia. She is the General Editor of the forthcoming new Cambridge History of Southeast Asia and is completing a book on gender and sexuality in Southeast Asia.


Antariksa is an independent historian and artist. In 1999 he co-founded KUNCI Study Forum & Collective, a collective focusing on experiments with methods in producing and sharing knowledge through the acts of studying together at the intersections between affective, manual and intellectual labor. His main research interest is art history and the mobility of ideas in Japanese-occupied Asia during the 1930s-1940s.

Greg Dvorak is professor of Pacific and Asian cultural studies in the Waseda University Graduate School of Culture and Communication Studies and undergraduate School of International Liberal Studies. Having spent his life between the Marshall Islands, the United States, and Japan, he teaches and researches mainly on themes of postcolonial memory, gender, militarism, resistance and art in the Oceania region, particularly where Japanese and American empires intersect in Micronesia. Founder of the grassroots art/academic network Project Sango, he serves as a co-curator for art from Northern Oceania in the upcoming 10th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art and has helped to advise other exhibitions such as the inaugural Honolulu Biennial. He is the author of Coral and Concrete: Remembering Kwajalein Atoll between Japan, America, and the Marshall Islands (University of Hawaiʻi Press, 2018) among other publications.

Hsu Fang-Tze is a lecturer at the Department of Communications and New Media Department, National University of Singapore (NUS), and a curator of the NUS Museum. She holds a Ph.D. in Cultural Studies from the National University of Singapore. Her dissertation research was supported by the President’s Graduate Fellowship and the FASS Promising Graduate Scholar Award. Her research interests include formation of visual modernity, Cold War aesthetics, memory, philosophies of technology, and the embodiment of artistic praxis in everyday life.

Live on

Galeri Nasional
Goethe-Institut Indonesien
Goethe-Institut Thailand
Goethe-Institut Singapore
Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart – Berlin
MAIIAM Contemporary Art Museum
Singapore Art Museum

Singapore Art Museum


Kementerian Pendidikan dan Kebudayaan Galeri Nasional Indonesia MAIIAM Contemporary Art Museum Nationalgalerie Berlin Singapore Art Museum