Transnational China Research Hub


About the Project
Powerful narratives of China’s “rise” and “rejuvenation” in China and the U.S. have led to a heightened awareness of Chinese impacts outside its borders and around the world. This awareness has not made traditional area studies irrelevant, but rather calls for a more thorough update to the China research enterprise, its foundations nation-based, state-centered, and land-bound. Given our national and global conjunctures – continuous COVID-related disruptions, uncertain U.S.-China relations, high nationalisms, and anti-Asian racism – the study of Chinese connections and influences beyond the territorial nation-state is not only more urgent than ever, but can no longer be separate from the core of China studies. Instead, transnational perspectives can be better integrated with traditional approaches to provide a more complex and diverse understanding of Chinese worlds.

Led by Shelly Chan (History) in collaboration with Ben Read (Politics) and Yiman Wang (Film and Digital Media), the Transnational China Research Hub aims toward these intellectual goals and is funded by a competitive grant from the UCSC Office of Research in Spring 2022. Open to all researchers, we seek to advance cutting-edge, rigorous work related to China and/or transnational and transregional issues.

The Hub has three main areas of focus:

Empires, Nations, and Diasporas: by rethinking these phenomena as long-historical, cross-regional, and interconnected processes shaping and shaped by China.

Contested Borderlands: by exploring the regions of Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, Tibet, and Xinjiang.

The Global South: by examining Chinese connections with Southeast Asia, South Asia, Central Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America.

Please visit the Transnational China Research Hub website to learn more about upcoming events and resources.

Faculty Participants
Shelly Chan (History)
Ben Read (Politics)
Yiman Wang (Film & Digital Media)

Nancy Chen (Anthropology)
Chris Connery (Literature and Histcon)
Sarah Chang (PhD Candidate, History)
Evelyn Char (PhD Candidate, HAVC)
Ania Gricuk (PhD Student, History)
Yannong He (PhD Candidate, Politics)
Xiao Li (Digital Humanist)
Joshua Tan (PhD Candidate, History)
Jonathan Van Harmelen (PhD Candidate, History)

News & Events

May 12-13, 2023: Transnational Turns and the Future of China Studies

November 9, 2022: Chih-Ming Wang, Retelling Chinese Stories in the Era of Global China: On Ha Jin’s Immigrant Novels

November 1, 2022: Ching Kwan Lee, Hong Kong: Global China’s Restive Frontier