Unbounded Fields: Agricultural Science at the End of the Qing Empire


Henry Luce Foundation/ ACLS Program in China Studies Postdoctoral Fellowships




This project investigates how the conjunction of natural disasters and global integration drove the development of agricultural science in China from the 1870s to the 1920s. Past studies of Chinese agriculture in this period primarily have examined its economic history, while studies of Chinese science in this period have neglected agronomy as a field of technical knowledge and practice. By exploring how Chinese officials and scholars appropriated plants, knowledge, and institutional models of research and extension from other countries, especially Japan and the United States, this project illuminates the connections between ecological crisis, political turmoil, state-building, and agricultural science during the heyday of foreign imperialism in China.