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Medicine and modernity: the introduction of Western medicine in China

For discussion

Who is Lu Xun (Lu Hsun), and why is he relevant in this context?

How do we read the two stories (Madicine, and Diary of a Madman)?

Core Readings:

1. On Lu Xun, see the relevant section in any of these (or any other Modern Chinese History textbook in the library):

  • Fairbank, John, and Merle Goldman. China: A New History. Enlarged edition. Harvard University Press: Cambrdige, Mass., 1998.
  • Lau, Joseph S.M. and Howard Goldblatt, eds. The Columbia Anthology of Modern Chinese Literature. New York: Columbia University Press, 1995.
  • McDougall, Bonnie S. The Literature of China in the Twentieth Century. London: Hurst, 1997.
  • Spence, Jonathan D. The Search for Modern China. New York: W. W. Norton, 1990.
  • details on Lu Xun can be found here: and here:
  • The Real Story of Ah-Q and Other Tales of China, translated by Julia Lovell, Penguin Classics.

2. Lu Xun, “Medicine” and "Diary of a Madman" in one of the translations available. There are better translations by Lyell and Lovell, but these online versions will do.

3. Read as much as you can from Lydia Liu, The clash of empires: the invention of China in modern world making.

Further Readings:

Heinrich, Larissa, The Afterlife of Images: Translating the Pathological Body between China and the West (Duke University Press, 2008), 1-37

* Heinrich, Larissa, 'How China Became the "Cradle of Smallpox": Transformations in Discourse, 1726-2002' positions 15.1 (2007): 7-34.

Barnes, Linda, Needles, Herbs, Gods and Ghosts: China, Healing, and the West to 1848 (Harvard University Press, 2005), chapter 4: ‘Sinophiles, Sinophobes, and the Cult of Chinoiserie: 1737- 1804’.

Du, Shi-ran and Qi Han. 'The Contribution of French Jesuits to Chinese Science in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries', Impact of Science on Society, 42.167 (1992): 265-278.

Furth, Charlotte. A Flourishing Yin: Gender in China’s Medical History, 960-1665 (California UP, 1999).

Scheid, Volker. Chinese medicine in contemporary China : plurality and synthesis (Duke University Press, 2002).

Elman, Ben., On Their Own Terms: Science in China, 1550-1900 (Harvard UP, 2005) 

Wu, Yi-Li. 'The Bamboo Grove Monastery and Popular Gynecology in Qing China' Late Imperial China 21.1 (2000): 41-76.

Leung, Angela ki che. 'Medical Instruction and Popularization in Ming-Qing China' Late Imperial China 24.1 (2003): 130-152.

* Angela Ki Che Leung, 'The Business of Vaccination in Nineteenth-Century Canton' Late Imperial China 29.1 (2008): 7-39.

Dorothy Ko, Cinderella's Sisters: A Revisionist History of Footbinding (University of California Press, 2005), chaps. 1-2 (optional 6). [e-book]