Toward a Global Enlightenment: Missionaries, Musical Knowledge, and the Making of Encyclopedias in Eighteenth-Century China and France


Henry Luce Foundation/ACLS Program in China Studies Predissertation-Summer Travel Grants


Historical Musicology


My dissertation explores the processes of information circulation and knowledge formation in the eighteenth century from the important and underexplored perspective of music. Situating the transmission of musical knowledge in a global rather than regional context, my project questions the Eurocentric interpretation of the Enlightenment by bringing to light the important role China played in shaping the Encyclopedic Century. Specifically, my dissertation focuses on two musical treatises written by two Jesuit missionaries serving at the Qing court, and the Chinese and French encyclopedias in which these treatises were incorporated. I argue that Enlightenment was cultivated in both China and France and was shaped and reshaped by deep and frequent missionary contact.