Centre of South East Asian Studies Events
The events draw a varied audience with an interest in the region.
All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise stated.
Registration is essential to guarantee a place.
For further information contact the Centres and Institutes Office.
Please note that every effort has been made to ensure that the information contained on the website is as accurate as possible. We cannot guarantee, however, that subsequent changes have not been made. Please be advised to check information relating to scheduled events by using the contact information provided.
- Masterclass with Gina Apostol
The two-day workshop will consist of discussions around the place of history and/or its silences in writing post-colonial fiction, followed by workshop critiques of works from the fellows.
- Mahākāla, Heruka and Avalokiteśvara in SE Asia
Dr Claudine Bautze-Picron
Claudine tales a fresh look at the function of the images of these three SE Asian deities in their homeland, Bihar/Bengal.
- Stylistic analysis of Central Javanese art and its use in solving problems of historiography
Professor Marijke Klokke (University of Leiden)
- Mapping Agglomeration in Early Mainland Southeast Asia
Phacharaphorn Phanomvan (University of Oxford)
Where did growth come from? A macro perspective on urban data in first millennium CE mainland Southeast Asia.
- The place of bronze drums in Southeast Asian Buddhist art production and associated ritual practices: transformations of heritage
Anna Karlström (Uppsala University)
- Malay Literature and the Qur'an
Prof Peter G. Riddell (Melbourne School of Theology)
A survey of the Qur’an’s role in the development of the Malay literary tradition
- The Play of Language, Art and Ritual: Interpretation of Iconography at Banteay Srei Temple, Angkor
Siyonn Sophearith (Royal University of Fine Arts, Cambodia/UC California, Berkeley)
This paper aims, firstly, to explore how intricate play on language, art and ritual can be understood to have inspired this thematic choice; and, secondly, to explore the meaning of the Indic ‘killing’ theme in the Khmer socio-religious context of the time of the temple’s construction.
- Democracy in Indonesia: Cultural Perspectives
Prominent Indonesian writers Djenar Maesa Ayu, Leila S. Chudori and Norman Erikson Pasaribu talk about their perspective on the Indonesian cultural scene in this key election year.
- Indonesian Genre and Cult Comics, 1939-2019, A Mini Comics Exhibition
An exhibition showcasing Indonesian popular genre comics from fantasy strips in the colonial days to independent comics today.
- The Warrior & Fantasy Films from Indonesia
This film screening session presents the Mondo Macabro version of Jaka Sembung (The Warrior), a classic exploitation Indonesian film directed by Sisworo Gautama Putra in 1981.
- Cult Texts: From Cult Comics to Cult Movies
Hikmat Darmawan, Ekky Imanjaya
This event will discuss the significance of the films and the comics and the adaptation process, as well as fan culture and the cult status of the media.
- Seven Men-Tigers & Blood, Guts, and Bad Acting
This film screening highlights the attempt of restoration of a cult film adapted from a cult book with a comic aesthetic sensibility.
- Garuda Power: The Spirit Within and Gundala trailer
This documentary underlines the history of Indonesian action films, starting from as early as Chinese-influenced martial arts movies (1930s), including the trend of super hero comic book adaptations of the 1970s.
- Documenting Fantasy in Indonesia
Pete Tombs, Bastian Meiresonne, Iain Robert Smith
A talk with the film practitioners on their works related to Indonesian cult movies adapted from comics and other books.
- Wiro Sableng
Film screening of Wiro Sableng, directed by Angga Sasongko and produced by Lala Timothy from Lifelike Pictures in 2018.
- Digital literacy and the democratic process: Indonesia’s hoaks crisis
Isabel Dunstan (Chatham House)
Isabel Dunstan, Academy Asia Fellow at Chatham House, will discuss Indonesia’s public and private responses to ‘hoaks’, as disinformation is known locally, following fieldwork to understand how various institutions in Indonesia are promoting positive internet use and digital literacy
- Motions of this Kind Colloquium
Two-day interdisciplinary colloquium and performance programme taking place alongside an attendant exhibition of the same name, the first institutional exhibition in the UK dedicated to recent contemporary art practices from the Philippines.
- Motions Of This Kind: Propositions & Problems of Belatedness
First institutional exhibition in the UK dedicated to recent contemporary art practices from the Philippines.
- The Song of Kieu: Vietnam’s National Epic
Timothy Allen (translator), Dr Dana Healy (Senior Lecturer in Vietnamese Studies) and Henry Eliot (Creative Editor of Penguin Classics)
In this lively new translation, Timothy Allen reworks Nguyen Du’s epic poem for the 21st century English-language reader.
- ASEAN Film Festival
A week-long festival showcasing South East Asian contemporary feature films from each of the ten ASEAN-member nations.
- Ramen Teh (Ramen Shop)
Director: Eric Khoo
Join us on the opening night of the ASEAN Film Festival with a screening of Ramen Teh (Ramen Shop).
- Decolonising the History of Art and Archaeology: Publishing Cultures in Southeast Asia and Beyond
This workshop examines the state of the field of the History of Art and Archaeology in a range of non-Western areas through the prism of publishing cultures.
- Apa Ada Dengan Rina (What’s so special about Rina?)
Director: Halif Haji Mohamad, Farid Azlan Ghani
Bruneian comedy feature film released in 2013.
- Legend of Muay Thai 9 Satra
Director: Pongsa Kornsri, Gun Phansuwon and Nat Yoswatananont
UK premiere of the 2018 Thai animated fantasy film.
- Price of Love
Director: Matthew Robinson
Film screening of award-winning Cambodian family film released in 2016.
- Keluarga Cemara (Cemara’s Family)
Director: Yandy Laurens
The film screening will be followed by a panel discussion conducted by the Indonesia Film Society and The Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia.
- Sabaidee Luangprabang (Hello Luangprabang)
Director: Sakchai Deenan
2008 romantic drama film directed by Sakchai Deenan.
- Rise of the Legend (Lee Chong Wei)
Director: Teng Bee
2018 Malaysian biopic film directed by Teng Bee about the inspirational story of national icon Lee Chong Wei.
- Annotating Colonial Histories: José Rizal and The Rethinking of Filipino Identity in 19th Century England
Prof Jose Victor Z. Torres (De La Salle University-Manila)
To celebrate the launch of Sentro Rizal London, Philippine Studies at SOAS with the Philippine Embassy and the National Commission on Culture presents a discussion on Rizal, rewriting Philippine history and the formation of the Philippine nation-state.
2018 film from Myanmar based on the book of the same name.
- The Tailor
Director: Trần Bửu Lộc, Nguyễn Lê Phương Khanh
2017 Vietnamese drama film directed by Trần Bửu Lộc and Nguyễn Lê Phương Khanh.
- Kung Paano Siya Nawala (How she left me)
Director: Joel Ruiz
2018 drama and romance film directed by Joel Ruiz.
- The Outcome of the Elections and Its Implications for Indonesian Politics Over the Next Five Years
Dr. Michael Buehler (SOAS), Liston Siregar (BBC Academy), and Isabel Dunstan (Chatham House)
Indonesia is holding its 5th general election in April 2019. A panel of experts will discuss the outcome of the elections and its implications for Indonesian politics over the next five years.
- The Belt & Road Initiative: International Responses
This conference is designed to examine how this flagship foreign policy initiative of President Xi Jinping is affecting the key regions in the world along both the Silk Road Economic Belt and the Maritime Silk Road, and how countries thus affected are responding.
- Mindanao: Cartographies of History, Identity and Representation
The Annual Philippine Studies Conference SOAS focuses its 2019 edition on Mindanao. It seeks to gather academics, policymakers, cultural workers and artists to map the contours of Mindanao’s porous and overlapping ethnolinguistic homelands and its conceptual and physical sites of representation, identity formation, and conflict.
- Indonesian Poetry Translation Centre Workshop
Join translator Soe-Tjen Marching to explore Indonesian poetry with a Poetry Translation Centre workshop, looking at the work of poet Shinta Miranda.
- 2019 Indonesia Kontemporer
The annual Indonesia Kontemporer takes place this year on Saturday 5 October. Artists and crafts people participating in this event hailed from many parts of the world outside Indonesia.
- Hindu Buddhist Java: Examining the Evolution of Dress on Sculpture
Dr Lesley Pullen (Post-Doctoral Research Associate)
- Masterclass with Ambeth Ocampo
The two-hour masterclass will feature a presentation of key themes, resources and methods in researching Jose Rizal in London and Europe by Prof Ocampo.
- Maps, Rizal and the Emergence of Nation
Ambeth Ocampo and his legendary expertise on anything Jose Rizal in his first public lecture in London after sixteen years.
- Ethnic Politics in North Sumatra
Dr Budi Agustono (University of Sumatera Utara, Medan)
This seminar examines the ethnic politics in North Sumatra, one of the 33 provinces in Indonesia.
- How do we achieve fair access to quality higher education in practice? Insights from Indonesia
Dr Elisa Brewis (UCL Institute of Education)
This talk explores how national policies and institutional teaching practices can support the goal of inclusive higher education, drawing on fieldwork from Indonesia.
- Old Mon inscriptions and the Dvāravatī culture
Hunter Ian Watson (National University of Singapore)
This presentation will elaborate on debates about what the name Dvāravatī implies and how it should be used.
- Prayut’s Rejection of Parliamentary Sovereignty Undermines Thai System of Checks and Balances
Dr Titipol Phakdeewanich (Ubon Ratchathani University)
Parliamentary sovereignty, the notion that supreme power is vested in the House of Parliament; which receives consent from the people to represent their interests and to scrutinise the government in order to hold government accountable. Instead, General Prayut has regarded the House as supporting institution for the function of the executive.
- Buddhist in Public, Animist in Private: Semicolonialism and Outlines for an Enchanted History of Thai Modernity
Prof Peter A. Jackson (Australian National University, Canberra)
- New Approaches to the Study of Buddhist and Hindu Metal Images of Indonesia
Mathilde Mechling (Leiden University and Université Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris 3)
This presentation will show that a combination of art historical methods with archaeometallurgy, archaeology, and religious studies deepens our understanding of Indonesian metal images, and at the same time, substantiates the growing perception that the Indonesian Archipelago played an active role in various religious developments and trading systems across Asia.
- Film Screening: Soil Without Land
Nontawat Numbenchapol (Director)
Film screening followed by a conversation with Rachel Harrison and independent curator Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani.
- Negara Brunei Darussalam: The birth, growth and sustainability of absolutism in the neo-traditional theatre state
Mu’izz Abdul Khalid (National University of Singapore/King’s College London)
A seminar focusing on the birth, development and sustainability of absolutism in Negara Brunei Darussalam by PhD Candidate of National University Singapore and current visiting doctoral student of King’s College London, Mu’izz Abdul Khalid.
- Area Studies and the Urgent Need for Global Intercultural Dialogue
Geir Helgesen (SOAS Centre of Korean Studies/Fudan Development Institute, Shanghai), Chunrong Liu (Fudan Development Institute, Shanghai and NIAS, Copenhagen University), Rachel Harrison (SOAS)
In this roundtable discussion we propose that, given the precarious and fragile state of the world, it is essential for Area Studies to play a more important role.