Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Autumn, what autumn?

The night time temp had plummeted into single figures, but the peak daytime temps still reach over 20. I'm not sure what's going on exactly.

Last night I had an interesting dinner - an old Chinese classmate from SOAS invited me and our fellow SOAS student Laure out for hotpot. At the dinner table were the curator of the new art museum in the Forbidden City, Professor Whitfield (Chinese art) from SOAS, another SOAS art PhD and a Chiense art auctioneer as well as our friend, who is also in antiques. So no guesses as to the nature of dinner table conversation. The hotpot was quite delicious - the best i've had.

I was saddened to hear about the politicking at SOAS, it seems that they too are suffering from hatchetmen. A new librarian was hired, who apparently has no knowledge of East Asian languages, along with a new director. Between them they tried to sack all the specialist librarians, but only managed ot fire two of them (the others getting off because their contracts were from pre 1996 and therefore different in style).

The reaction to this has been 19 senior staff resignations, and the severance of funding from the Japan Foundation and the Korea Foundation, amongst other things. However, they are not yielding.

It sounds like Durham all over again.


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