Alternative frames of reference is at the heart of the Inter-Asia Cultural Studies movement. In theory, the search for 'alternative frames' is about interrogating western modernity as the default condition under which scholarly and cultural work is undertaken. In practice, the search for alternative frames creates its own set of difficulties. To what extent are the references evoked by pursuing alternative frames of reference relevant beyond the locations in question? To what extent are they relevant beyond the scholarly community? Tejaswini Niranjana’s Mobilizing India: Women, Music, and Migration between India and Trinidad (2006) injects clarity into the fuzzy, utopian possibility of alternative frames, and shows it to be a tough yet meaningful method.
Eva Tsai (Ph.D., University of Iowa) is Associate Professor of Mass Communication at National Taiwan Normal University. Her publications on Japanese TV culture, stardom in Asia, and academic labor can be found in the journals, Inter-Asia Cultural Studies, Japan Forum, and Modern Chinese Literature and Culture, and the following two anthologies: Feeling “Asian” Modernities: Transnational Consumption of Japanese TV Dramas and East Asian Pop Culture: Analysing the Korean Wave. She is working on a manuscript about Japanese TV drama writers and investigating girl culture through stationery arts and industries.