Assistant Professor of History
Ph.D. University of California, Irvine
Professor Shi specializes in Chinese history. Broadly speaking, her research so far has been focusing on investigating traditional China’s dramatic encounters with the modern world from late 19th to early 20th century, analyzing the subsequent social and cultural changes, reconfigurations, continuities and discontinuities that a variety of Chinese individuals and groups experienced during this process. Specifically, her current research interests include the history of late Qing and Republican China; women and gender; history of religion and “superstition;” history of charity and philanthropy; responses to natural disasters.
She is currently working on a book tentatively titled At Home in the World: Women and Charity in China, 1870s-1930s. It examines how some noncareer married women moved out of domestic seclusion and became active and effective actors in the newly opened public world through charitable and religious activities during a crucial transitional period of Chinese history. It highlights the significance of religious and charitable activities as forms of social, civic, and political engagement, socializing, and networking for Chinese women. Additionally, it adds a much-needed and indispensable gender perspective to the burgeoning historiography on modern Chinese philanthropy.
Selected Honors and Awards
“Wei Cheng: From an Elite Novel to a Popular Metaphor.” In China in 2008: A Year of Great Significance, edited by Kate Merkel-Hess, Kenneth Pomeranz and Jeffrey N. Wasserstrom, Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2009, 248-51.
“Terracotta Ambassadors, the First Emperor, and the ‘Cursed’ Farmers,” The China Beat Blog (An academic blog blogging how the East is read), Aug. 3, 2008.