Politics/melancholy in Asia
The first time I tried to learn to use a scanner and PhotoShop to design the cover of IACS was eleven years ago, in an afternoon. I was ignorant then, just messing around, scanning the word “movements” in different languages. I didn’t know what the cover would look like, or the nature of the journal. These unknown languages were provided by different friends and institutions. IACS would be established then, and Beng Huat was also in the office. I didn’t know what the professors were talking about and why they were so busy and excited. Furthermore, the cover and the layout we designed would become various picturesque colors, such as orange, fluorescent green, blood red...etc, all arranged on the bookshelf in the office.
I always take each new issue back home. The IACS journals and Gundam Plastic Models (Gunpla) were the most beautiful sights in my home.
As a reader, maybe most of the gratification and frustration are the same—the difference of the words and tones in the articles. It is the direct difference before I enter into the field which I do not understand. The ways of telling stories are so different, such as lyrical tone and intensive statement. Often, the desire that wants to resonate with the tone brings me to a standstill. This (bad) habit of wanting to keep up with the rhythm and meaning makes me feel a kind of slowness that I have never experienced before—no matter in Chinese or American English reading modes.
Shengxun Zheng is a PhD candidate of Chinese Department, Tsing Hua University, Taiwan.