Head of the Asian Studies Department
Professor of History, Asian Studies and Philosophy
Curriculum VitaeDownload CV
- PhD, University of Hawaii, 1986
- MPhil, University of Hong Kong, 1981
- BA, University of Hong Kong, 1975
I specialize in the intellectual history of late imperial China. With abiding interests in Confucianism as a dynamic and multifaceted tradition, my work is situated at the intersection of various fields: history, philosophy and religious studies. Apart from Cheng-Zhu Confucianism in the Early Qing: Li Guangdi and Qing Learning (2001), and Mirroring the Past: The Writing and Use of History in Imperial China (2005), I have edited several volumes, and published scores of book chapters and articles in a variety of major academic periodicals, including Journal of the History of Ideas, Journal of Chinese Religions, Philosophy East and West, Journal of Chinese Philosophy and Journal of World History.
I am completing a book on the jinwen (New Script) classical commentaries in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century China. While the work is primarily an investigation of the distinct hermeneutical disciplines and philosophical concerns of a Confucian exegetical tradition, it also explores the interpretive possibilities opened up by contemporary Western theories of reading and understanding.
Here at Penn State, I direct the Asian Studies Program. I also work with various academic publishers and organizations in multiple editorial and administrative capacities. I am co-editor of the book series on ‘History of Chinese Thought,’ National University of Taiwan Press. I serve as Associate Editor and Book Review Editor with the Journal of Chinese Philosophy, and sit on the editorial board of Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy. I am a member of the Steering Committee of both the ‘Confucian Tradition Group’ and ‘Religions in Chinese and Indian Cultures: A Comparative Perspective Consultation Group’ of the American Academy of Religion. For a decade, I have chaired the University Seminar on Neo-Confucianism at Columbia University.
“The Commentarial Tradition.” With John Henderson. In Amy Olberding, ed., Dao Companion to the Analects. Dordrecht and New York: Springer Publishing, 2014. Pp. 37-54.
“Private Historical Writing in Late Imperial China.” In Daniel Woolf, Jose Rabasa, Edoardo Tortarolo, and Masayuki Sato, eds., The Oxford History of Historical Writing, Vol. 3. Oxford and London: Oxford University Press, 2012. Pp. 60-79.
“Li Guangdi and the Philosophy of Human Nature.” In John Makeham, ed., Dao Companion to Neo-Confucian Philosophy. Dordrecht and New York: Springer Publishing, 2010. Pp. 381-398.
Philosophy of the Yi: Unity and Dialectics. Co-edited with Chung-ying Cheng. Journal Supplement Series to the Journal of Chinese Philosophy. London: Wiley-Blackwell, 2009.
The Imperative of Understanding: Chinese Philosophy, Comparative Philosophy, and Onto-Hermeneutics. Editor. New York: Global Scholarly Publications, 2008.
Mirroring the Past: The Writing and Use of History in Imperial China. With Q. Edward Wang. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2005. (“Outstanding Academic Title,” Choice)
Awards and Service:
Co-editor of book series, ‘History of Chinese Thought,’ National University of Taiwan Press (2009 - present)
Associate Editor and Book Review Editor of the Journal of Chinese Philosophy (2001 - present)
Visiting Fellow, Research Centre for Chinese Philosophy and Culture, Chinese University of Hong Kong (2006)
Visiting Professor, City University of Hong Kong (2005)
HIST 585 – Culture and Society in Late Imperial China
RLST - Introduction to Chinese and Japanese Religions
HIST 175 - Modern East Asia