Chinese Department


News & Events Archive


Hum 230 Lecture: Ronald Egan (Stanford), "Giving Women Their Say in Song Dynasty Sources"

ron egan image

Date/Time: Friday, March 3, 11:00-11:50 a.m.

Place: Performing Arts Building 320, Reed College

This talk will discuss the experiences of women during the Song dynasty (960-1279). It will focus primarily on three sources: Li Qingzhao's (1084-1151) writings about her experiences traveling as a woman fleeing the Jurchen invasion of the north and the representation of female identity and agency in male-authored ci poetry and the stories recorded in Hong Mai's 洪邁 (1124-1202) Yijian zhi.

Ronald Egan is the Confucius Institute Professor of Sinology in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at Stanford University. In addition to numerous articles and book chapters, he has published several monographs on Song dynasty literature and aesthetics, including The Burden of Female Talent: The Poet Li Qingzhao and Her History in China (Asia Center, Harvard University, 2014), The Problem of Beauty: Aesthetic Thoughts and Pursuits in Northern Song Dynasty China (Asia Center, Harvard University, 2006, translated into Chinese as 美的焦慮:宋代士大夫審美思想與追求 (上海古籍出版社, 2013)), Word, Image, and Deed in the Life of Su Shi (Asia Center, Harvard University, 1994), and The Literary Works of Ou-yang Hsiu (Cambridge University Press, 1984; 2009).

Sinobibliophile Salon @ Reed

Place and Time: Eliot 216, Thursday, November 17, 2016, 4:40-6:00 p.m.

PresenterHyong Rhew, Professor of Chinese and Humanities, Reed College

Title: "釋「得貞屯悔豫,皆八也。」"

Abstract: The process of obtaining an oracle and interpreting it in the Zhouyi tradition remains a matter of scholarly dispute.  Studying the cases of divination recorded in such text as the Zuozhuan and the Guoyu is probably the most promising.  This phrase, quoted from the Jinyu section of the Guoyu, challenges the methods delineated from other many cases. We will thumb through related issues and materials at least to identify issues to consider for studying this topic.

Lecture: Zheng Tiantian, "Health and Social Activism of Self-Identified Gay Men in Postsocialist China."

Zheng Tiantian

Date/Time: Tuesday, November 15, 4:40-6:00 p.m.

Place: Psychology 105, Reed College

Tiantian Zheng is a critically acclaimed anthropologist and ethnographer. Dr. Zheng's work focuses on the cultural politics of gender, sex, class, migration, and power during recent political, economic, and sociocultural transformations in postsocialist China. Her first ethnography (2009), Red Lights: The Lives of Sex Workers in Postsocialist China, traces the intersections among state power, the rise of entrepreneurial masculinity, rural migrant women, and the sex industry. Her second ethnography (2009), Ethnographies of Prostitution in Contemporary China: Gender Relations, HIV/AIDS, and Nationalism, examines the interplay of gender politics, nationalism, and state power in practices of birth control, disease control (STIs and HIV/AIDS), condom use, and control of women’s bodies in the context of postsocialist China’s economic and political liberalization. Her third ethnography (2015), Tongzhi Living: Men Attracted to Men in Postsocialist China, explores the political, economic and cultural aspects of same-sex attracted men’s identities in the context of the international lesbian and gay movement in China. Dr. Zheng has also edited two anthologies of critical anthropological research addressing debates about sex "traffiking," agency and human rights, as well as gender and sexuality across Asia. Finally, Dr. Zheng has been at the forefront of explorations of theory, method and ethics in academic and advocacy work addressing transnational HIV/AIDS treatment and sex work. Her work has been featured in national and international media outlets such as NPR All Things Considered, Trouw Daily Newspaper the Netherlands, Global Times, Time Weekly China, Today’s CNY Women, Aeon Magazine, The Epoch Times, New American Media, and the Danish Broadcasting Corporation.


Lecture: Wendy Swartz (Rutgers), "What Did Reading and Writing Well Mean in Early Medieval China?"

Date/Time: Monday, October 24, 4:30-6:00 p.m.

Place: Performing Arts Building 332, Reed College

Intertextuality lies at the heart of reading and writing practices in early medieval China. Chinese literati between the 3rd and 5th centuries often drew extensively from such texts as the LaoziZhuangzi, and Yijing and their respective commentaries in particular to express their positions on issues ranging from nature to human behavior. Arguing that any meaningful study of intertextuality must involve examining how a text functions as part of a network of textual relations, this talk explores how early medieval writers made use of diverse, heterogeneous sources suited to their needs during a period when boundaries between textual traditions were fluid, repertoires of literary and cultural meanings were expanding, and different intellectual repertoires and branches of learning were closely interconnected.

Wendy Swartz is an Associate Professor of Chinese Literature at Rutgers University. Her research focuses on early medieval Chinese poetry and poetics, literary criticism, and intertextuality. She is the author of Reading Tao Yuanming: Shifting Paradigms of Historical Reception (427-1900) (Harvard University Asia Center, 2008), chief editor of Early Medieval China: A Sourcebook (Columbia University Press, 2014), the translator of the complete poetic works of Xi Kang (3rd c.) in The Poetry of Ruan Ji and Xi Kang (De Gruyter Mouton, forthcoming 2017), and moreover has published numerous articles in leading journals. Her latest monograph project, Reading Philosophy, Writing Poetry: Intertextual Modes of Making Meaning in Early Medieval China, explores intertextuality as a mode of reading and principle of writing in medieval China.

Sinobibliophile Salon @ Reed

Place and Time: Eliot 216, Wednesday, October 12, 2016, 4:40-6:00 p.m.

PresenterMichelle Wang, Assistant Professor of Art History and Humanities, Reed College

Title: "Resurrection: A Zombie Story from Fangmatan"

Abstract: The talk will center on a translation of a short story recorded on bamboo slips dated to the late Warring States period and excavated from the site of Fangmatan near Tianshui, Gansu province. This translation takes into account new philological and paleographical studies of the text in the last five years, which build on the story's initial transcription at the time of its excavation in 1986.


Workshop: New Frontiers in the Study of Medieval China: On Muzhiming

Date/Time: Monday, May 23 and Tuesday, May 24, 9 a.m.–5 p.m.

Place: Performing Arts Building 332, Reed College

Keynote speaker: RONG Xinjiang (Peking University)

ParticipantsRobert Ashmore (University of California Berkeley), Stephanie Balkwil (University of Southern California), Stephen Bokenkamp (Arizona State University), Jessey Choo (Rutgers), Tim Davis (Brigham Young), Patricia Ebrey (University of Washington), Paul Kroll (University of Colorado-Boulder), LU Yang (Peking University), LUO Xin (Peking University), David McMullen (University of Cambridge), MENG Xianshi (Peking University), Anna Shields (Princeton University), Wang Ping (University of Washington), YAO Ping (California State University-Los Angeles) 

For more information, see the New Frontiers in the Study of Medieval China website.

Sinobibliophile Salon @ Reed

Place and Time: Eliot 414  Wednesday, April 13, 2016, 4:40 p.m.

Presenter: Ken Brashier, Professor of Religion at Reed College

Title: "The Dao That Can Be Tested: Song Emperor Huizong Sets a Daoist Question for the Civil Service Examination"

Abstract: In 1115, Song Emperor Huizong set a Laozi-inspired question for the civil service examination, and he indeed had opinions as to how that question should be answered. His question alludes to at least half a dozen passages in the Laozi (a.k.a.Daode jing) itself, but of course the Laozi is notoriously enigmatic. However, Huizong has also written his own commentary to the Laozi and so those allusions in the examination perhaps carried a certain amount of baggage for him. In our translation session, we'll look at all three of these layers -- the examination itself, the Laozi passages to which it alludes, and the emperor's own commentary to those passages. As as group, let us attempt to piece together the emperor's intentions and hence pass his examination.

Sinobibliophile Salon @ Reed 

Place and Time: Eliot 414  Wednesday, March 9, 2016, 4:40 p.m.

Presenter: Douglas Fix, Professor of History at Reed College

Title: "Sketching Popular Customs in Taiwan, c. 1833: Two Readings from the Wen su lu 問俗錄."

Sinobibliophile Salon @ Reed

Location and Time: Eliot 414  Wednesday, February 24, 2016, 4:40 p.m.

Presenter: Alexei Ditter, Associate Professor of Chinese at Reed College

Title: “Tomb Epitaph Inscription and Preface for the Joint Burial of his late excellency Yu [Congzhou 從周 (806–51)] of Kuaiji, Gentleman for Court Discussion and Acting Vice Director in the Ministry of Justice and Madam Fang [813–51] of Henan of the Tang” 唐故朝議郎行尚書刑部員外郎會稽余公夫人河南方氏合祔墓誌銘並叙

AALAC Workshop on Contemporary Chinese Cinema
October 9 - October 10, 2015