The Confucius Institute at PSU & Institute for Asian Studies present -
Dr. Sherman Cochran
The Lius of Shanghai: A Chinese Family in Business, War, and Revolution
DATE: Wednesday, May 29, 2013
TIME: 5:30 PM - Books sales & signing // $39.95 hardback
6:00 PM -Lecture begins
Location: PSU campus, Smith Memorial Student Union, room 238 (1825 Sw Broadway)
In his lecture, Professor Sherman Cochran will discuss family survival strategies and decision making based on a new book that he and his co-author, Professor Andrew Hsieh, have recently published, The Lius of Shanghai (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2013).
From the Sino-Japanese War of 1937-45 to the Communist Revolution of 1949, the onrushing narrative of modern China can drown out the stories of the people who lived it. Yet a remarkable cache of letters from one of China’s most prominent and influential business families, the Lius of Shanghai, sheds new light on this tumultuous era. In their private correspondence, the parents and their twelve children in the Liu family discuss sensitive political issues – should they collaborate with the Japanese occupiers of China? should they flee after the communist takeover of the country? – as well as intimate matters like marital infidelity.
Sherman Cochran, received his Ph.D. from Yale University. He taught at Cornell University for thirty-nine years, becoming the Hu Shih Professor of Chinese History in 2004; he retired from teaching in 2012. In his scholarly work, he has concentrated mainly on Chinese business history. His most recent book, Chinese Medicine Men: Consumer Culture in China and Southeast Asia (Harvard University Press), was awarded the Joseph Levenson Prize by the Association for Asian Studies as the best book published in 2006 on China since 1900. His recent research has been for a book based on two thousand letters exchanged by members of a Chinese business family – father, mother, and twelve children – between the 1920s and the 1950s. This book, The Lius of Shanghai, was published in March 2013.
This lecture event is free and open to the public.