Billy and his comrade-in-scholarship Isvan Champa
have created an incredible website on Cham studies and now are developing it. https://chamstudies.net/
Below Billy introduces to you Isvan, the website they created, and other people who also study Cham. Actually, Billy and Isvan collaborated on the piece:
Olga asked me to write a few words to introduce a Vietnam Studies related website to you: Chamstudies.net
This website is committed to the preservation and promotion of the cultural values of the Champa
civilization, and serves as a space for the dissemination of research in the field of Cham studies. With this in mind, Chamstudies.net
actively circulates collections of scholarly resources and short essays, as well as information pertaining to conferences and scholarships.
is the brainchild of Isvan Champa
(MA Hawai’i, current PhD student at the University of Queensland).
Isvan had been running a Vietnamese academic site “Young Anthropologists” after he completed his Masters at Hawai’I and returned to Vietnam to begin a significant body of fieldwork on Austronesian ethnic minorities. When I say significant, I mean that his mastery of languages quickly jumped from English, Vietnamese and Cham, to the inclusion of four others: Raglai, Churu, Ede and Jarai.
When I first met Isvan we had shared the idea of starting a new academic journal that would address the need of bringing Cham studies to readership who were themselves Cham in Vietnam. Such a journal did not exist at the time. There was the literary serial Tagalau and the almost entirely historical-studies focused Champaka. Neither was focused on bringing together Champa and Cham studies into a single multidisciplinary project, a la Journal of Vietnamese Studies, however, which we upheld as a model. In 2012 “Young Anthropologists” was going strong and I joined the founding editorial board of Tapuk Bhap Roh Duah Ilimo Cam (Journal of Cham Studies) in 2012.
Tapuk Bhap Roh Duah Ilimo Cam is primarily an academic journal, published in Vietnamese, in Vietnam, although the journal has included English and Japanese abstracts of the articles published. It is produced by the Cham-UNESCO research center in Ho Chi Minh City, and bridges the gap between the popular scholarly output of the Cham community and Vietnamese language academic publishing. Primarily headed by the efforts of Sakaya (Dr. Truong Van Mon), the center also published a Cham-Vietnamese-English 16,000-word dictionary in 2014, which I was one among a number of co-authors on. Later in 2014, Dr. Toshihiko Shine & Sakaya published a Japanese version of the same dictionary.
As Tagalau, Tapuk Bhap Roh Duah Ilimo Cam
were already covering the necessary journal publication markets for Champa
and Cham studies, Isvan
saw a new problem, however. There were still many scholars of Champa
and the Cham who were working outside of Vietnam who weren’t using the works of those inside, and vice versa. The main problem was access. Print materials could be brought in and out, but shipping and transportation were tedious means of exchanging knowledge. Chamstudies.net
was founded to mitigate that problem in 2015.
On the initial board of Chamstudies.net Isvan
invited myself and Julie T. Underhill, as we were graduate students and researchers covering substantially different topics in the field. We then invited Dr. Mohammend
Bin Abdul Effendy (NUS, Singapore) and Dave Paulson (PhD, candidate, Temple) to join us. Currently the website features presentations in Vietnamese, Malay, English of new articles, links to
downloadable and more difficult to find resources, announcements for scholarships, profiles of researchers and more. We have particularly been focusing on circulating announcements that will allow other students and young researchers from Vietnam to study abroad. When Isvan
was admitted to the University of Queensland this was a major break for all of us, and we hope that more students will be able to bridge the research gap by working across borders in the Americas, Europe and the Pacific, as well as Vietnam, Cambodia and Malaysia.
The main features of the website, as it stands, are collections of your standards area of Art and Literature, Culture, History, Language, and Religion. Although we also have a substantial media collection, and a worthwhile “Network” section that will give you a sense of the field of Cham Studies. While there are many websites that feature articles on the Cham, ours is the only one that hosts a substantive amount of English, Vietnamese, Cham and Malay language material. We welcome French and Cambodian material as well, and have been working with many Cham studies scholars in Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, France, Japan and the United States to expand our collections.
Should you have any questions, OR wish to contribute something, please don’t hesitate to contact: firstname.lastname@example.org. »
(Red and bold is mine. Olga).