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'Asia Review' Makes Its Premier on Campus

By Laura E. Rosenbaum

Hong Kong's governor and other politicians and scholars debate the island's prospects in the debut issue of the Harvard Asia Pacific Review, published this week.

The new twice-yearly publication will present "all sorts of different perspectives on Asia and Asian Development," said Jeffrey C. Lau '98, editor-in-chief of the student-run magazine.

The first, 88-page issue of the glossy publication comes after more than a year of fundraising and editorial effort.

"There were a lot of Asian cultural magazines and the [Harvard] International Review which deals...with issues in Asia sometimes," Lau said. "But we felt there was a void for a magazine which deals with all aspects of Asia--both the culture on one hand and the economics and the politics on the other," Lau said.

While the publication also has faculty advisors, they play a relatively small role.

"I wish I had had a greater hand in assisting, but the credit goes to its editors and to the people who have put this together," said William C. Kirby, chair of the Council of East Asian Studies and an advisor for the magazine. "Students did all the work and took all the initiative."

Organizers of the Review spent the summer raising the $20,000 needed to publish the first issue. According to Lau, the magazine received "some major contributions that enabled us to put together a fairly professional magazine."

The debut copy focuses largely on political and economic issues, particularly on Hong Kong's future after China assumes control in July, 1997. Organizers plan to incorporate more cultural elements in the future.

The spring issue will cover "everything from architecture to fiction," Lau said, citing the possibility of articles by Jackie Chan and other Asian actors and directors.

The magazine is being distributed free to students through the East Asian Studies department and at libraries across campus.

The Review will also be available off-campus by subscription.

"We want [the Review] to be there for students, but also for the country and the world," said Executive Editor Kathrine A. Meyers '97-'98.

In the next few weeks, editors of the Review will hold an introductory meeting to recruit more students for the publication.

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