Celebration events

50th Anniversary Reception and Events


Celebration Reception - 25 October

We were delighted that some 270 alumni, former and current staff, diplomatic representatives from the regions we study, the Vice-Chancellor and other supporters from around the University and beyond attended the reception to celebrate 50 years of East Asian Studies at Leeds. It was wonderful to see alumni and staff from as far back as the 1963 cohort come back to Leeds and to hear their stories, and to discover what they had got up to since graduating.

What happened?

We will leave the programme up for a while yet just as a reminder of the variety of events that took place over the weekend - we've added a few comments for information. We are especially grateful to those alumni who gave talks, and to our current students who contributed their talents and time to make this a success.

New comments and photos are still being posted on Facebook, so don't forget to follow us there. 

Thursday 24 October 

5:30pm in the Centenary Gallery (Parkinson Building): Talk by journalist, photographer and Leeds alumnus Peter Griffiths (Chinese 1971) about life as a foreign correspondent in Mao’s China. Many thanks to Peter for entertaining us with his stories, hilarious and tragic, from his time in 1970s China, and for his evocative photos of China at that time.

Friday 25 October

12:00-5:00: Alumni will give career talks on careers in journalism, education, PR, marketing and finance, and politics. All welcome, especially current and recently graduated students. At the Centenary Gallery. Continued with two more sessions on other careers on the Saturday.

5:30-8:00pm: Anniversary Reception in the Parkinson Court. 

Saturday 26 October - Departmental Open Day

Our Open Day provides a wonderful opportunity to learn about the Department's history, see and hear about what some of our alumni have done, listen to talks about elements of Chinese culture, and browse our outstanding exhibitions. There's even something for the kids! 

10:00-12:00 Alumni career talks 2: Business development; 'Doing it my way'. Centenary Gallery.

11:00-12:00 Guided tour of the stunning 'Phoenixes and Dragons' exhibition of late Qing dynasty costumes, embroidery and tapestry at ULITA, the University's Archive of International Textiles, led by the Department's Dr Alison Hardie. (This exhibition closes on 29 November, so if you haven't seen it yet, do make the time to see it.)

12:00-1:00 Lunchtime performances of Beijing Opera, Thai dance and a Japanese pop song by our current students. Parkinson Court.

12:00-2:00 A team of current EAS students will take on an Alumni team (or two) in a 7-a-side East Asian Studies football match! Gryphon Sports Centre. After trailing for most of the game, the alumni team came from behind to win by a late goal.  

1:00-4:30 Children's crafts East Asian Studies foyer, 4th floor, Michael Sadler Building. Thank you to everyone who helped with this - it was a tremendous success.

1:00-2:00 Alumni career talks 3: Diplomatic service. Centenary Gallery.

1:00-2:00 Talk about the work of fashion photographer and artist Chen Man by current student David Ball. Stanley and Audrey Burton Gallery, off Parkinson Court. 

2:00-3:30 Early Days at Leeds: Lattimore and Students Informal talks about the life and legacy of founding professor Owen Lattimore, led by Dr Judith Nordby and Nicholas Loubere, and recollections by some of our 1960s graduates. Plenty of opportunities for questions. Centenary Gallery.

4:00-5:30 Screening of the film When China Met Africa, co-directed by Leeds alumnus Marc Francis and his brother Nick. Centenary Gallery. More information about the film can be found here.

7:00pm : Dinner at Red Chilli Chinese Restaurant.

Sunday 27 October

The Owen Lattimore Memorial Bike Ride: Unfortunately had to postpone this owing to the very poor weather forecast for the weekend, which included gales that could have been dangerous. As the days are getting shorter, we will now look to hold this in spring next year.


In between these activities, do take time to visit the displays and exhibitions that we are putting on as part of the celebrations. These will be on throughout, though some exhibitions are subject to gallery opening times:

  • A display about the history of East Asian Studies at Leeds from its inception as the Department of Chinese Studies in 1963 until now. Parkinson Court.
  • A display tracing the fascinating life of the Department’s founder, Professor Owen Lattimore (1900-1989), focusing on his time at Leeds. Parkinson Court.
  • An exhibition of photographs from the Cultural Revolution by Leeds alumnus Peter Griffiths. Parkinson Court.
  • Identify yourself and others in the graduation photographs that will be up on the walls in the Department. You can also do this on the EAS50 Facebook page beforehand. If you have copies of your graduation photos or other group photos from your time at Leeds, do bring these with you so we can scan them for our records. East Asian Studies, 4th floor, Michael Sadler Building.
  • If you can't make the guided tour of the 'Phoenixes and Dragons' exhibition of late Qing dynasty costumes on the Saturday morning, the ULITA gallery is open Tuesdays - Thursdays 09:30 - 16:30, Fridays by appointment.
  • A retrospective of selected photos from the annual Eye on Asia competition, featuring student photographs from their travels around Asia. Parkinson Court.
This page is maintained by David Pattinson. Last updated 19 November 2013.