Teaching Writing and Teaching at the Intersection of Chinese History and Literature

AHA Session 44
Thursday, January 5, 2017: 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Centennial Ballroom G (Hyatt Regency Denver, Third Floor)
Timothy B. Weston, University of Colorado at Boulder
Madeleine Y. Dong, University of Washington
Charlotte Furth, University of Southern California
Phillip Guingona, Washington State University
Paul S. Ropp, Clark University
Kristin Stapleton, State University of New York at Buffalo

Session Abstract

The Chinese literary tradition is unsurpassed in its richness and variety. Historians who study China have long relied on a wide range of sources to document and interpret times past. The rise of social history has led scholars to reexamine from new perspectives the value of poetry, plays, novels, and other literary forms for the work of historical reconstruction. Our roundtable will explore the possibilities of using different types of literature in research and teaching on aspects of Chinese history, including literature by and about Chinese migrants in Southeast Asia. Members of the roundtable will reflect on their own work at the intersection of history and literature, discussing the challenges they have faced and the approaches they consider most promising. Historians, we believe, have a significant role to play in making Chinese literature accessible to American audiences. In addition to literary works as historical sources, our roundtable will discuss strategies for making Chinese literature better known through historical writing and teaching. In this work, we can learn from colleagues in other fields of historical research. Roundtable participants and audience members will be encouraged to draw attention to excellent models that might be emulated by historians of China.
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