My principal interests are maritime history and the ways that flows of trade, people, and goods have shaped life in China and East Asia from the early-modern period to the present. My first book project, called Sealords Live in Vain, tells the story of how the maritime province of Fujian in southeast China was transformed by trade and piracy into an outlaw frontier in the 17th century. In future projects, I hope to examine topics such as population mobility in Chinese history and also the rise of robotics and cybernetics in East Asia.
I offer the following fields for the PhD qualifying examination. For explanations of fields, see the "Graduate Overview" page in the Graduate Handbook.
I will not be accepting students for admission in fall 2015.
Courses Offered (subject to change)
- HIS 143 Modern China, Syllabus
- HIS 141 Modern East Asia
- HIS 243 The Chinese Revolution
- HIS 245 Tibet: History and Myth
- HIS 247 The Korean War, Syllabus
- HIS 248 The Samurai
- HIS 340W/440 Modernity through East Asian Eyes
- "The Empire's Scorched Shore: Coastal China, 1633-1683" The Journal of Early Modern History (forthcoming, 2013).
- "Night Thoughts of a Hungry Ghost-Writer: Chen Bulei and the Life of Service in Republican China." Modern Chinese Literature and Culture, Vol. 19, No. 1 (Spring 2007), pp. 1-59.
- "The Men Who Would Not Be Amban, and the One Who Would: Four Frontline Officials and Qing Tibet Policy, 1905-1911." Modern China, Vol. 34, No. 2 (April 1, 2008), pp. 210-246.
- "To Protect and Preserve: Resisting the 'Destroy the Four Olds' Campaign, 1966-1967." Chapter 2 in Joseph Esherick, Paul Pickowicz, and Andrew Walder, eds. The Chinese Cultural Revolution as History (Stanford University Press, 2006), pp. 64-95