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The Philippines and Vietnam’s Responses to the Permanent Court of Arbitration’s Final Award on the Arbitration Case Initiated by the Philippines Against China over the South China Sea (July 2016)

Abstract

In July 2016, the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) issued its final award on the South China Sea dispute between the Philippines and China that caught the attention of the international community. Since this was the first time that a claimant in the South China Sea had ever referred the case to an international juridical body in an effort to settle the dispute, the responses of both claimant and non-claimant stakeholders were awaited. Realising the relevance of the issue, I conduct a comparative study of the responses to the PCA’s final award to two major claimants with similar positions on the South China Sea—the Philippines and Vietnam. The main aim of this study is to indicate the similarities and/or differences in the way these two states responded to the final decisions of the PCA. The study finds that even though both the Philippines and Vietnam reacted to the award in a similar manner, the motives behind their responses were different. In general, the South China Sea policy of the Philippines has always been less consistent than that of Vietnam, which can be explained through each state’s foreign policy tendencies.

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East Asian Technical Cooperation Initiatives in Central America: A Comparative Analysis of Japan and South Korea in Guatemala

Abstract

This article describes the similarities and differences of Japanese and South Korean technical co-operation approaches in Guatemala. The literature review illustrates the transition from an initially donor-centric results chain approach towards one that is increasingly recipient-balanced due to new cooperation principles such as horizontality and demand-drivenness. Such approaches are mainly fostered by the rise of new emerging donors on the international development cooperation horizon, such as the advocates of South-South Development Cooperation (SSDC).

An analysis based on a framework by the Network of Southern Think Tanks (NeST) concludes that Japanese and Korean technical cooperation approaches are markedly similar, most notably in regard to officially proclaimed technical cooperation standards and commitments. Differences result from the degree of related implementation: Japan achieves higher results based on relative deficiencies in reporting by Korea as well as comparatively shorter bilateral Korean-Guatemalan relations. Similarities are fostered by analogous institutional and project related structures, stemming from an argued learning and simulation approach by Korea from the long-standing experiences of Japan. Lastly, it is argued that the growing assimilation of the traditional and the SSDC concept, as well as the increasing engagement of both countries in triangular cooperation contribute to the identified similarities.

Open access
The Stranger and Others: The Life and Legacy of the Japanese Ethnologist Oka Masao

Abstract

Oka Masao (1898–1982) was a leading figure in the establishment of Japanese ethnology (cultural anthropology) since the 1930s and taught many of the next generation of ethnologists from Japan. He travelled to Vienna in 1929 to learn the methodology for studying the ethnogenesis of his own country, putting forward theories that questioned tennō-ideology of the time and became highly influential. During the war, he pushed for the establishment of an Ethnic Research Institute (Minken) to support the government in their ethnic policy in the occupied territories. Oka was also the founder of Japanese Studies at the University of Vienna in 1938. Despite these important—and at time controversial—roles, he is relatively unknown today. This article introduces recent scholarship on Oka’s life and legacy. It raises important questions about the role of ethnologists in politically sensitive times and counter-balances the Anglo-American narrative of the history of ethnology or social and cultural anthropology of Japan.

Open access
Queer desire in Japanese TV series

Abstract

This article provides an analysis of representations of sexual minorities in Japanese TV series. It outlines how homosexual and queer desire is depicted and how stereotypes and tropes are used in the construction of queer characters in this media format. The article also illuminates the ways in which TV series differentiate between depictions of same-sex romance and opposite-sex romance. The corpus of analysed TV series spans a period of twenty-five years. Thus, the analysis also sheds light on changes in the representation of sexual minorities over time. Examples from recent TV series point to a more positive and sometimes didactic approach towards the topic of homosexuality in Japanese mainstream media.

Open access
The Cultural and Educational Dimension of the “New Silk Road:” The Re-invention of Mongolness at the Sino-Tibetan Borderlands

Abstract

In October 2013, Xí Jìnpíng presented not only an ambitious infrastructure project but a strategic initiative that promoted connections in many regards: the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). One in-tended strategic value of this initiative is the improvement of relations between China and its neigh-bours as well as the improvement of dialogue among different civilizations. Emphasis is placed on the importance of the shared historical cultural heritage of the involved ethnic groups, while the idea of a ‘harmonious society’ is promoted at the same time. The aim of this article is to shed light on how China expands its soft power through civilizational connections along the Sino-Mongolian-Russian Economic Corridor by referring to the Silk Road Academic Belt. This article is based on ethnographic field research in Hénán Mongol Autonomous County in the Sino-Tibetan borderlands of Qīnghǎi Province during an international conference titled “Historical and Cultural Links be-tween Mongolia and Tibet,” held in July 2017.1

Open access
Adriana Bittel: Meta and intertextual accents of writing

Abstract

This essay proposed to analyze the profile of Adriana Bittel’s writing with deep meta and intertextual accents. In a transgressive and textual framework of the 80’s generation prose, the work presents a new way of approaching the narrative by intentionally disposing all its mechanisms of conception, in a context in which the fiction self-comments and brings the reader with all the tools and components of “textual engineering”.

Open access
Aspects of anthropomorphism in food advertising

Abstract

The article outlines the evolution of anthropomorphism, from the prehistoric phase in the contemporary one, along with related concepts such as animism and personification. A number of food brands now use this metaphorical language to influence consumers behavior. Anthropomorphic archetype becomes thus the stereotype of communication strategies and the environment in which messages propagate is governed by the paradigm of corporeality. The rhetoric of many advertising campaigns “sex exploits” successfully the cliché of carnal seduction, namely to arouse gastronomic appetite by the erotic appetite.

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The Bread of God: religious and symbolic aspects of bakery

Abstract

The present conference discusses the symbolic meaning of bread in the religious mentality of the Ancient Near East. We will find that bread, besides being a food necessary for its existence, also represented a cultural archetype that summed up and assumed in itself either different divinities of Oriental civilizations, or had a ritual-sacrificial character, in order to facilitate man rather immortality.

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“The case”of the philosopher Vasile Băncilă – writings from youth.

Abstract

Vasile Băncilă is a thinker to be placed where he fits in the hierarchy of values of Romanian philosophers. Therefore, this text invokes some “start-up frames”, through which we offer a range of accents of the reception of the intellectual and philosophical dowry left by the author. Vasile Băncilă left posterity printed texts, but also thousands of sheets written over four decades of life, unfinished and not ready to be printed. Some of them are from his youth; on some of these focuses this text, namely on what meant for the young philosophy professor Vasile Băncilă the act or the process of philosophizing.

Open access