Wenpeng Xu G'17
Henry Luce Foundation/ACLS Program in China Studies Pre-dissertation Grants for Research in China 2017
University of Illinois at Chicago
Porcelains for the World: Landscape, Technology, and Market Strategies of Ceramic Production in Quanzhou, China (10th - 17th Centuries)
My dissertation examines the dynamic patterns of Quanzhou ceramic production from a centuries-long perspective that emphasizes the fluidity of economic responses of the producers to varied local esthetic preferences and cultural contexts of porcelain use among the diverse consumers. An examination of the geographic locations and geological contexts of kiln sites will provide clue to competitive interactions with other porcelain producers for foreign markets. Geochemical analysis will be conducted to study diachronic changes and sub-regional variation of the ceramic production in Quanzhou. This project will also explore how local porcelain manufacture responded to economic and political pressures (e.g., political turbulence and maritime prohibition periods).