Spying on East Asia: Intelligence and Surveillance in the Age of Information 2020 Conference

Country: USA

City: St. Louis

Abstr. due: 15.05.2020

Dates: 31.10.20 — 01.11.20

Organizing comittee e-mail: yyuqian@wustl.edu

Organizers: Washington University


This two-day conference will focus on secret agents and hidden control during hot, cold, and information wars in East Asia throughout the twentieth century to the present. Competition over information formed an invisible yet vitally important battlefield that had paramount effects on the war front in the first half of the twentieth century. Newly invented media technologies, such as radio, telegram, and tape recording, were mobilized to gather, reproduce, and disseminate intelligence. Secret agents and spies crossed institutional, regional, and national boundaries, destabilizing senses of truth and trust. The prevalence of the espionage genre in East Asia reflects the heightened political tension that persisted throughout the cold war, and also contributes to contemporary imaginations of wartime. Today, new technologies of surveillance and information control have largely reshaped people’s social experience and sense of security, raising pressing questions about power, privacy, and identity.

Bringing together scholars from various disciplines, this conference presents a collective effort to unveil the secrecy and significance of information circulation and control in changing historical contexts. How did hidden forms of control impact the trajectory of social history as well as everyday life? How is the secret world of espionage represented in popular culture? In what ways do new media technologies shape social relations and the production of identity? Topics contributors may wish to consider include:

  1. Spy novels, films and TV dramas
  2. Wartime and Cold War espionage trainings and activities
  3. Disguised identity and the issue of collaboration
  4. Media technology (radio, telegram, recording devices, computer, facial recognition, Artificial Intelligence, etc.) in information gathering and circulation
  5. Surveillance and control
  6. Security and privacy

Related creative approaches and inquires are welcome.

Conference Web-Site: https://networks.h-net.org/node/73374/announcements/5965834/spying-east-asia-intelligence-and-surveillance-age-information