Dr Yi-Li Wu


E:  [email protected]
W: http://independent.academia.edu/YiLiWu

I am a historian of Chinese medicine who is interested in the multiple intersections of society, culture, and the body in the late imperial period (16th to 19th centuries). My published work includes a monograph on the history of gynecology, as well as chapters and articles on medical illustration, forensic medicine, the treatment of wounds, and Chinese views of Western anatomical science. My current projects include a comparative study of Chinese and Korean gynecology in the seventeenth century and a book-length project on the history of “medicine for injuries” in China.

I hold a Ph.D. in history and an M.A. in international relations from Yale University, and a B.A. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley. I was previously a faculty member at Albion College (USA) for 13 years, teaching courses on East Asian history and the comparative history of medicine.  From 2012 to 2015 I was a Research Fellow at EASTmedicine. At present, I am a Center Associate of the Lieberthal-Rogel Center for Chinese Studies at the University of Michigan.  


Reproducing Women:  Medicine, Metaphor and Childbirth in Late Imperial China. University of California Press, 2010.  Awarded the Margaret W. Rossiter Book Prize, History of Science Society, 2011
“Bodily knowledge and Western learning in late imperial China: The case of Wang Shixiong (1808-68).” In Howard Chiang, ed., Historical Epistemology and the Making of Modern Chinese Medicine, 80-112. Manchester: University of Manchester Press, 2015.

“Between the living and the dead: Traumatic injuries and forensic medicine in the mid-Qing.” Frontiers of History in China, 10.1(March 2015):38-73.

Co-authored with Tina Phillips Johnson. “Maternal and child health in the 19th and 20th centuries.” In Bridie Andrews and Mary Bullock, eds., Medical Transitions in Twentieth Century China, 51-58. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2014.

“The Qing period.” In TJ Hinrichs and Linda L. Barnes, eds., Chinese Medicine and Healing: An Illustrated History, 160-207.  Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2012.

“Body, gender, and disease: The female breast in late imperial Chinese medicine.” Late Imperial China, 32.1(June 2011):83-128.

“The gendered medical iconography of The Golden Mirror.” Asian Medicine: Tradition and Modernity, 4.2 (2009):452-491.

“Ghost fetuses, false pregnancies, and the parameters of medical uncertainty in classical Chinese gynecology.” Nan Nü: Men, Women, and Gender in Early and Imperial China, 4.2 (2002):170-206. Chinese translation published in Li Zhende, ed. Xingbie, shenti yu yiliao (Gender, body, and medicine). Taipei: Lianjing chuban shiye gufen youxian gongsi, 2008 and in Deng Xiaonan, Wang Zheng, You Jianmin, eds. Zhongguo funü shi duben (A reader on Chinese women’s history). Beijing: Beijing Daxue chubanshe, 2011.

“The Bamboo Grove Monastery and popular gynecology in Qing China.” Late Imperial China, 21.1(June 2000): 41-76.

Pen and glasses on written paper


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