First Academic Conference ‘Women in the East: History, Society, Science’

First Academic Conference ‘Women in the East: History, Society, Science’

On March 12, 2021 the School of Asian Studies of the Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs, HSE University, held the conference ‘Women in The East: History, Society, Science’ for the first time.

The conference was attended by more than 90 specialists from 10 countries (Azerbaijan, China, Germany, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Russia, Uzbekistan, Ukraine and Sri Lanka) from 25 cities around the world.

The work of the conference was split into five sections:

  • ‘Women and the “woman question” in the history of the East’,
  • ‘The socio-cultural role and image of women in the East’,
  • ‘Women in the economic, socio-political and legal realities of the modern East’,
  • ‘Women's contribution to world Asian studies’,
  • Student section.

As expected, the discussions went beyond the ‘women’s agenda’ and, thus, the participants were able to discuss numerous related issues related to the cultural, economic, socio-political, and spiritual development of societies in the East; international relations in Asia and Africa; and the history and theory of Asian studies.

Alexandra Sizova, Chair of the Conference Organising Committee, Candidate of Sciences (PhD) in World History, Associate Professor, Head of the Department of Chinese Studies of the School of Asian Studies

‘There has never been such a large multidisciplinary event on women’s issues in Russian Asian studies, where historical and contemporary aspects are considered across the entire spectrum of foreign regions (from Egypt to Japan) as well as the Russian East — from the North Caucasus to the Far East. Event participants also considered the contribution of female researchers to the development of Asian studies. The conference turned out to be innovative and of a large scale.’

The staff at the Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs prepared a thematic photo exhibition featuring famous women from China, Korea, Japan, and the Middle East, as well as distinguished women scholars of Asian studies, especially for the conference.

Conference participants were very appreciative of the discussions and the exhibition. Altai Dulbaa, Ph.D., Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of International Affairs of the Mongolian Academy of Sciences, said that thanks to the conference, she not only listened to interesting papers, but also got a detailed look at the work of HSE University’s School of Asian Studies.

Akhundzadeh Umay Tufan qizi, Chief Consultant at the Centre for Social Research (Azerbaijan), highlighted the diverse and multifaceted nature of the Conference programme. She was particularly interested in the presentations on East Asian countries.

Jayamaha Binari Nicole, a graduate in the ‘Asian and African Studies’ Bachelor’s Programme at the HSE University, said:

‘It is important that the topic of gender studies has been raised more often in the Russian-speaking academic space, especially in the context of Asian and African studies. The research gap in this field opens up a space for a lot of research and discussion, including international participation. The conference was a significant event that not only raised the visibility of women in science, history and culture, but also brought together many researchers from different cities and countries.’