The year 2020 has been a severely challenging year for cross-national academic exchanges. In order to promote continuous exchanges between Taiwanese and international colleagues in the field of sinology, the National Central Library and the Monumenta Serica Sinological Research Center of Fu Jen Catholic University, the Institute Monumenta Serica in Sankt Augustin, Germany, the Department of Religious Studies of Fu Jen Catholic University, and the Chinese Studies Department of the University of Warsaw, Poland, and other organizations, between September 23 and September 25, 2020, jointly hosted the 2020 International Conference on Chinese Scholars international seminar, Encounter Between Christianity and Daoism: Classics, Interpretation and Dialogues and the Forum of Young Scholars and Sinology Group Workshop series of activities.
The main topic of this conference's series of activities was the development of Christianity in modern China, focusing on interpretation of—and dialogue concerning—the classics, and outlining inter-cultural conflict, reconciliation and diversity of development. The conference arranged a total of 12 special lectures and one Forum of Young Scholars and Sinology Group Workshop. Fifteen special papers were published, and there were more than 50 participating scholars. In addition to local scholars from Taiwan, there were scholars from ten other countries, including Singapore, Malaysia, India, Russia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland, France, Sweden, and the United States.
Director-General Shu-hsien Tseng of the National Central Library and Director of the Sinology Research Center stated in the opening speech on September 23 that the National Central Library, as an important exchange platform for Taiwan, connecting local and international sinological circles, has long established close relationships between sinological institutions at home and abroad. Interaction between scholars of sinology has not only promoted academic, publishing, and scholarly exchanges, which can be regarded as international benchmarks, but also involves a close cooperative relationship with the National Central Library. Examples in recent years have been the joint hosting in 2014 of the International Conference on Missionaries and Sinology: Missionaries’ Contributions to the Understanding of China and Taiwan symposium, and that in 2016 of the China-Europe Sinology Studies: Language and Culture, Literature and History, Religion and Philosophy seminar at Jagiellonian University in Poland. In 2019, she was also personally invited to participate and deliver a paper in Siegburg, Germany, in the international symposium Sinology – Chinese/China Studies – Guoxue: Their Interrelation, Methodologies, and Impact, held by the Institute Monumenta Serica in Sankt Augustin, Germany, and the Monumenta Serica Sinological Research Center of Fu Jen Catholic University. This was not only good interaction, but also encouraged more academic partners to participate in cooperation.
The National Central Library is responsible for national document collection, under its mission to provide important academic research resources. In research on Taoism, for example, the collection is like the Song Dynasty miniature book, Compilation of Pictures with Explanations and Tautology and Mutual Annotation of Lao Zi's Daode Jing and the other more than 300 types of ancient books of the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties. All the other various academic databases are also rich in value. As the pandemic rages around the world, it is all the more rare for scholars at home and abroad to be able to continue to obtain academic resources on sinology through multiple channels. In addition to lectures by senior researchers in this seminar, the Forum of Young Scholars and Sinology Group Workshop, which was launched on September 25, was supported by senior scholars, and young scholars continuing the academic tradition of sinological research, inter-disciplinary dialogue and the advancement of scholarly dissemination and exchange network relations.
A richer conference report will be published in the Chinese Studies Newsletter to be published at the end of February 2021. Please keep an eye on the online viewing website: https://ccs.ncl.edu.tw/publish2.aspx