Brigham Young University: Y Faculty Visit Asian Scholars

Two BYU faculty members returned last week from a month of conferences and research in Northern Europe.

Drs. Paul Hyer and Sechin Jagchid, both professors of Asian Studies and History, were among 50 persons from 20 different countries to attend an international conference on Inner Asia.

The conference was held in Helsinki, Finland, June 7 through 12. The two represented BYU. at the conference, reporting on their work in the area of Inner Asia as well as the work of other BYU faculty members.

Dr. Hyer and Dr. Jagchid also delivered two research papers at the Helsinki conference. The papers were written about a series of important movements on the China-Mongolian border area. The studies made by Dr. Hyer and Dr. Jagchild will be published in Helsinki.

Identified as the Permanent International Altaistic Conference, the history conference was also attended by several scholars from the Soviet Union, Poland and Hungary. Dr. Hyer said, this was a “rare opportunity for contact with Soviet Bloc scholars.”

Following the convention in Helsinki, the two BYU professors traveled north of the Arctic Circle into the Lapplands, where they observed an international conference of representatives of the Lapps primarily made up of Swedish, Norwegian and Finnish people.

The two professors were hosted by the Lapp people, and on one evening they attended a celebration involving about 300 Lapps dressed in their colorful native costume.

From there, the history professors traveled to Stockholm, Sweden. In Stockholm they were permitted into important archives to review valuable research materials.

Before returning to the United States, Drs. Hyer and Jagchid stopped in Bonn, Germany and London, England. Bonn houses the most outstanding Asian research center in western Europe, said Dr. Hyer.

(Source: Brigham Young University “Daily Universe”, 1976-07-01, p. 8.)