My research focuses on the cultural and religious history of early China. I work largely with paleographical materials, such as inscribed bronze vessels and bamboo manuscripts, and take a special interest in “alternate histories” and other texts that didn’t make it into the classical canon.

To date, my work has concentrated on the Western Zhou era (ca. 11th-8th c. BCE), a time of sage kings and culture heroes. My current monograph project, entitled Bound by Bronze: Ritual and Kingship in Western Zhou China, explores the royal ritual of that period based on contemporary bronze inscriptions. Recently, I have begun a second line of research on the ideological, literary, and aesthetic concerns behind later tales of Western Zhou history in sources ranging from ancient manuscripts to modern science fiction.

Research interests:

  • Early Chinese history
  • Archaeology of religion
  • Ritual studies
  • Kingship in comparative perspective
  • Inscriptions and manuscripts
  • Historiography as literature
  • Ancient history in popular media.


Past Affiliations

PhD Student, Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, Division of Humanities, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Columbia University (past)

European Studies, Language Studies, Classics, Asian Studies, Chinese, History, Japanese
BA, Dartmouth College
PhD, Columbia University
MPhil, Columbia University
MA, Columbia University