Wry and Kind Piety: Revisiting Donald Scripps in “The History Boys”

Just under a decade ago, I went through a The History Boys phase (both the play and film)—perhaps due to lingering memories of my high school years in an all-boy’s institution and reliving echoes of the camaraderie, bravado, and insecurities that dog such a testosterone-saturated environment. I resonated with one of the characters so much […]

Asian Representation in Pop Culture: A Lifelong Passion

I’m very much interested in exploring Asian philosophies and culture in both my academic and personal life. Of course, in academia today we must be mindful of our contexts and horizons. While I consider myself Chinese, I’ve grown up in an English-speaking environment. English is my first language rather than Cantonese or Mandarin. There are […]

Conference: “The Inexplicable and the Unfathomable: China and Britain, 1600–1900”

The “Chinese character seems at present inexplicable,” observed Lord Macartney during his celebrated embassy to China in the 1790s, while the Chinese themselves at this time often described “western ocean barbarians” as “unfathomable.” The failure of Macartney’s embassy is well known, not least the Emperor Qianlong’s dismissive comment that “we possess all things. I set […]