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Sydney China Visiting Fellows

Meet our visiting fellows
The Sydney China Visitors program, co-hosted by the Department of Chinese Studies and the China Studies Centre, invites innovative and respected Chinese Studies researchers from around the world.

The Sydney China Distinguished Fellowship, established through the generous support of Hong Kong-based alumni James Lee, recognises senior scholars specialising in modern and contemporary Chinese literature, culture or translation studies. The Sydney China Fellowship invites early and mid-career scholars specialising in any field, historical or contemporary, related broadly to China or the Chinese world.

2018 - 2019 Sydney China Distinguished Fellows

2018 - 2019 Sydney China Fellows


Professor Yueguo Gu

Professor GU Yueguo is a professor and head of the Corpus Linguistics Department, and director of the Corpus and Computational Linguistics Research Centre, at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing. He is also Special Titled Professor and Director at the China Multilingual Multimodal Corpora and Big Data Research Centre, Beijing Foreign Studies University. His research interests include pragmatics, discourse analysis, corpus linguistics, rhetoric and online education. His recent publications include The Routledge Handbook of Pragmatics (co-edited), The Encyclopedia of Chinese Language and Linguistics (co-edited, 5-volumes, Brill), Using the Computer in ELT, Pragmatics and Discourse Studies, and Chinese Painting. He has been awarded five national research prizes and was made a K. C. Wong Fellow of the British Academy in 1997.

Fellowship period: 30 July – 25 August 2018

Professor Heike Holbig

Professor Heike Holbig is a professor of political science with a focus on China and East Asia at Goethe University Frankfurt, and a senior research fellow at the German Institute of Global and Area Studies in Hamburg. Trained in Chinese studies, economics and political science, she aims to foster the dialogue between social sciences and the humanities. Her research focuses on the role of ideology and language in the legitimation of the party regime as well as on state-society relations in contemporary China. Wider research interests include China’s international relations discourses, comparative authoritarianism and East Asian area studies. Her current project is entitled Sounds of Silence in Wang Xiaobo's Work: Exit, Voice and/or Loyalty?

Fellowship period: 10 October – 7 November 2018

Professor Timothy Cheek

Professor Timothy Cheek is a professor and Louis Cha Chair in Chinese Research at the Institute of Asian Research and Department of History at the University of British Columbia (UBC) and director of the UBC Institute of Asian Research. His research, teaching and translating focus on the modern history of China, especially the role of Chinese intellectuals in the twentieth century and the history of the Chinese Communist Party. In recent years Cheek has been working with some Chinese intellectuals to explore avenues of collaborative research and translation. His books include The Intellectual in Modern Chinese History (2015), Living with Reform: China Since 1989 (2006), Mao Zedong and China’s Revolutions (2002) and Propaganda and Culture in Mao’s China (1997).

Fellowship period: 22 April – 18 May 2019

Professor Wendy Larson

Professor Wendy Larson is a professor emerita of East Asian languages and literature at the University of Oregon. Her research monographs include Zhang Yimou: Globalization and the Subject of Culture (Cambria 2017); From Ah Q to Lei Feng: Freud and Revolutionary Spirit in 20th Century China (Stanford UP 2009); Women and Writing in Modern China (Stanford UP 1998); and Literary Authority and the Chinese Writer: Ambivalence and Autobiography (Duke UP 1991). Her present research project compares cultural optimism under capitalism and socialism, with a focus on China and the West.

Fellowship period: 5 – 31 August 2019


Dr Jinghong Zhang

Dr Jinghong Zhang is an anthropologist and filmmaker whose research looks at the consumption of tea and wine in China, and the cultural interaction between China, East Asia and Australia through these commodities. She is an associate professor at the Centre for Social Sciences, Southern University of Science and Technology in Shenzhen. She completed her PhD at the Australian National University and was a postdoctoral fellow at ANU’s Australian Centre on China in the World. Her monograph Puer Tea: Ancient Caravans and Urban Chic (2014) was awarded Best Book in Social Sciences by the International Convention of Asia Scholars in 2015.

Fellowship period: 19 July – 30 August 2018

Dr Dan Chen

Dr Dan Chen is an assistant professor of political science and Asian studies at Elizabethtown College, Pennsylvania. Her research concerns media politics and public opinion in China. She received her PhD in Political Science from the University of Kansas. She is currently working on a book titled Convenient Criticism: Local Media and Governance in Urbanizing China. Her research has been published in the International Journal of Public Opinion Research, Political Research Quarterly, China Quarterly, Modern China, Journal of East Asian Studies, and Journal of Contemporary China.

Fellowship period: 30 July – 10 September 2018

Dr Ying Qian

Dr Ying Qian is an assistant professor in Chinese cinema and media studies at Columbia University. Her research interests include film and media theories and practices, documentary cinema, and global histories and imaginaries of revolution and post-socialism. She has published widely in academic journals and is currently completing a book entitled Visionary Realities: Documentary Cinema in Revolutionary China, which takes documentary aesthetics and epistemology as a prism to investigate intertwined histories of media practice, industrial modernity and revolutionary politics. She received her PhD from Harvard University, was a postdoctoral fellow at the Australian National University, and has been a filmmaker, critic and film programmer.

Fellowship period: 15 August – 10 October 2018

Associate Professor David G. Atwill

Associate Professor David G. Atwill is an associate professor of history at Penn State University where he teaches a broad range of courses on China, Tibet, and world history. His most recent book, Islamic Shangri-La: Inter-Asian Relations and Lhasa’s Muslim Communities, 1600 to 1960 (2018), traces the rise of the Tibetan Muslim community from the 17th century to the present. More recently, his research has been divided between a biography of the mid-19th century Qing official Lin Zexu and a broader study of High Asia (1900-1950).

Fellowship period: 20 February - 20 March 2019

Dr Corey Byrnes

Dr Corey Byrnes is an assistant professor of Chinese culture at Northwestern University, where he teaches courses in Chinese literature, visual culture, and the environmental humanities. He received a PhD in Chinese Literature from the University of California at Berkeley in 2013. His book, Fixing Landscape: A Techno-Poetic History of China’s Three Gorges approaches the 2500-year-long representational tradition inspired by the Three Gorges region of southwestern China from the perspective of the recently completed Three Gorges Dam, which displaced well over one million people and radically transformed the ecology and culture of the upper Yangzi River.

Fellowship period: 1 May – 12 June 2019

Dr Hao Chen

Dr Hao Chen completed his PhD at Peking University and since 2011 has been an assistant professor in the Department of History at Renmin University, Beijing. His research and teaching has focused on the medical and cultural history of China, especially between the 6th and 13th centuries. He is interested in medical expertise and identity figuration, healing and belief, divination and astrology, bodily sensations and expressions, materiality, textuality and reading practices of Chinese manuscript culture and early print books, emotions, memory and narratives of trauma. Since 2013 he has begun to work on the modern historiography of ancient or traditional medicine and related fields in Republican China, from a transnational or global perspective.

Fellowship period: 24 June – 21 July 2019

Learn more about our fellows

We caught up with some of our fellows to learn more about their research and their experience as fellows at the University of Sydney.