May 17, 2022

Tonight SECWAC Hosts Zoom Presentation on ‘Crisis in the Uyghur Region’

Joshua Freeman

LYME/OLD LYME/AREAWIDE — On Tuesday, May 25, at 6 p.m., the Southeast Connecticut World Affairs Council (SECWAC) presents Joshua Freeman of Princeton University speaking on Crisis in the Uyghur Region: Xinjiang, 2017 to the Present.

The presentation will be online via Zoom.

Registration required.

The event is free for members, the fee for guests is $20.

The link to join us will be emailed with your registration confirmation. Zoom meetings will be used:

Freeman is a historian of 20th-century China and Inner Asia. His research centers around official culture and nation formation in China’s northwestern borderlands, and in particular the cultural history of the transborder Uyghur nation.

He received his Ph.D. in Inner Asian and Altaic Studies at Harvard University in 2019, where his research received support from the Social Science Research Council, Fulbright-IIE, and multiple centers at Harvard.

On the basis of his dissertation, he is currently at work on a book manuscript titled “Print Communism: Uyghur National Culture in Twentieth-Century China.”

Drawing on cultural, literary, and political history, this study demonstrates that socialist policies, implemented in northwest China’s Xinjiang region from the 1930s through the late 20th century, enabled the small Sino-Soviet frontier community of Ili to transform its local culture into the new Uyghur national culture.

Examining this process offers insight into the nexus between socialism and nation formation at the intersection of the Chinese, Soviet, and Islamic worlds.

Freeman’s work as a cultural historian is informed and inspired by the seven years he spent living in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region.

In addition to working extensively there as a translator, he completed a master’s degree in Uyghur literature at Xinjiang Normal University with a thesis on Uyghur modernist poetry, which he composed and defended in Uyghur.

He has translated (link is external) the work of a number of Uyghur poets into English and has published widely in American literary journals.

At Princeton, Freeman lectures on Chinese and Inner Asian history in the Department of East Asian Studies.

If you are new to Zoom virtual meetings and would like to learn more about how to join the event, visit for more information. Also, feel free to call 860-912-5718 for technical advice prior to the event. It will not be possible to resolve issues during the meeting.

A link to the recording will be shared via email following the meeting.


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