Li Bai and the whale

One of the books I will be using in class this Fall is Sanyan Stories by Feng Menglong. In class we will be using the much condensed version from University of Washington Press, but students will also have the option dipping into the full 3- volume edition for their projects. Feng Menglong (1574-1646) was a […]

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Confucius say….

For many years I have wanted to find a fortune cookie that actually had a piece of paper with “Confucius Say:…” followed by an actual quote from Confucius. I am not betting on it, one because the ‘Confucius Say’ thing is dead in U.S. fortune cookies1 and, more importantly, because Confucius has still not become […]

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A clash of symbols

In the introduction of Julia Lovell’s The Opium War she discusses an incident from November, 2010. David Cameron had gone to China, and it being November he and his team were all wearing poppies. For the British the poppy is a symbol of the war dead of the Great War. It is not really a […]

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History and hats

One book that I use in my classes is Bickers’ Empire Made Me: An Englishman Adrift in Shanghai. The book is the story of William Tinkler, an Englishman who served in the Shanghai Municipal Police. Students sometimes find it hard to warm up to the book because Tinkler is not easy to identify with.1 Bickers […]

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Going Native

Here is something from Edward V. Gulick Teaching in Wartime China: A Photo-Memoir, 1937-1939. ((University of Massachusetts, 1995)) When Gulick came to China he was a young, idealistic part of the wealthy, idealistic Yale in China program. He went on to have a career as a historian of international relations and of China, but at […]

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A memory stirs..

Reading Emily Whewell’s review of this new book on the Chinese and Japanese treaty port systems and extraterritoriality brought back a long-ago scholarly memory. My first seminar paper in graduate school — that small snippet of scholarship which is supposed to prepare callow youth (intellectually speaking) for greater things, and scout a path through the […]

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A memory stirs…

Reading Emily Whewell’s review of this new book on the Chinese and Japanese treaty port systems and extraterritoriality brought back a long-ago scholarly memory. My first seminar paper in graduate school — that small snippet of scholarship which is supposed to prepare callow youth (intellectually speaking) for greater things, and scout a path through the […]

Continue reading →