- Associate Professor
- Simon Fraser University
A Social History of Accidents and their Aftermath in the People’s Republic of China, 1949 to the Present
Accidents are a unique window on the social history of China since 1949. During the Mao period, such accidents as crashes and explosions were rarely reported because they tarnished the image of socialist construction. Today, archival documents, internal-circulation periodicals, and declassified dossiers tell a different story: accidents occurred frequently and were a regular site of conflict and negotiation between the party-state and people at the grassroots. My project draws on sources from 8 municipal and provincial archives to investigate how accidents and their aftermath (including battles over blame, compensation, cover-ups, and punishment) reveal alternative narratives and patterns during Mao years--and established a legacy that persists through the current day.
Doing Justice to Rape and Sexual Violence in PRC History
Sexual violence echoes through scholarly and popular histories of socialist China: from the state's publicized efforts to crack down on rapists, to accusations against cadres who demanded sexual favors; from the sent-down youth who were raped in the countryside, to the many sexual abuse charges leveled at so-called enemies. Workshop participants have collected case files related to rape and sexual violence in the PRC, and we propose an interdisciplinary workshop to read a selection of these documents and think seriously about the challenges we face when we try to do a text-based history of rape. The literature on sexual violence in the PRC suggests that we have not yet fully mapped the political, socio-cultural, and discursive realms within which these accusations were recorded.