March China Seminar

Global Islam and China’s Muslim Problem:  From Confrontation to Sincization in Xinjiang


Dr. Dru C. Gladney
Professor and Chair of Anthropology
Pomona College

This talk examines the rise of the “Xinjiang Problem” in Sino-US relations and the recent events involving the Uyghur in China’s Northwest Region. Some have suggested that China has already engaged in a “genocide” in Xinjiang as early as the July 5, 2009 riots in Urumqi. While the state media attribute the Uyghur activism to radical Islam and separatism, none of the protestors have called for jihad or an independent “Eastern Turkistan,” and the former US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo on his last day in office formally listed the treatment of the Uyghur as “genocide.” President Biden’s administration has not backed away from this designation. Internationally, the Uyghur diaspora helped to call global attention to the “education camps” that Chinese media initially denied, then attempted to re-shape as “vocational centers” through carefully edited reporting and selective coverage. This talk suggests that President Xi Jinping’s “Belt and Road Initiative” lies behind China’s increasingly severe treatment of the Uyghur, and sets the harsh policy shift in the context of rising co-dependency between China and the Middle East due to heightened energy and security concerns.

Dr. Dru C. Gladney is Professor and Chair of Anthropology at Pomona College in Claremont, California and recent President of the Pacific Basin Institute. 

In addition to a Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from the University of Washington, Seattle, Dr. Gladney has three M.A. degrees in religion, philosophy, and anthropology. He has also held faculty positions and post-doctoral fellowships at Cambridge University, Harvard University, China Minzu University, Shanghai University for Politics and Law, the University of Southern California, the University of Hawai’i and the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton. He has authored or edited 6 books and over 100 academic articles, as well as having served as a Senior Fellow at the East-West Center and the inaugural Dean of the Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies. Dr. Gladney’s father, Capt. Benjamin Curtis Gladney, served as a pilot during WWII in the China-Burma-India theatre, successfully completing 60 missions flying the infamous “Hump” air route between Assam, India and Southwest China.

February China Seminar

Event begins at 2:00 p.m. HST via Zoom.
Keith B. Richburg will be joining us from Hong Kong. This program will not be recorded and remarks by Mr. Richburg are considered off-the-record. Event is free but registration is required.



Keith B. Richburg
Director of the Journalism and Media Studies Centre
University of Hong Kong

Keith B. Richburg, Director of the Journalism and Media Studies Centre at the University of Hong Kong, spent more than 20 years overseas for The Washington Post, serving as bureau chief in Beijing, Paris, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Nairobi and Manila as well as New York City. He also was the Post’s Foreign Editor during 2005–2007. Richburg was Journalist-in-Residence at the East-West Center in Hawaii in 1990 and was president of the Hong Kong Foreign Correspondents Club in 1997, during the year of Hong Kong’s handover to China. Now a Professor of Practice in Hong Kong, he teaches courses on Feature Writing, Covering China and Covering Global Affairs, while continuing his career as a freelance writer and an author. [Keith B. Richburg’s full bio]

January China Seminar


Denny Roy, PhD
Senior Fellow
East-West Center

Chinese officials are describing the current relationship between the United States and the People’s Republic of China as the worst since the two countries established official diplomatic relations in 1979.  Yet Beijing also clearly wants to bring the relationship back from what many commentators are describing as a new cold war.  Beijing is sending the new Biden Administration signals as to how to restore a more cooperative and less hostile relationship.  This seminar will survey the main points of China’s pitch, and how the US government is likely to react.  The situation is complicated by both the structure of the international system and by the domestic politics in each country; China and the United States are two major powers competing for influence over the same region, and both governments are also playing to audiences at home who expect success from their own leaders.

Dr. Denny Roy’s work has focused mostly on Asia Pacific security issues, particularly those involving China.  Recently, Dr. Roy has written on Chinese foreign policy, the North Korea nuclear weapons crisis, China-Japan relations, and China-Taiwan relations.  His interests include not only traditional military-strategic matters and foreign policy, but also international relations theory and human rights politics. [Click here to view full bio of Dr. Roy]