Announcements

THE UNIVERSITY SEMINARS & COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY PRESS announce the twenty-seventh series of the

LEONARD HASTINGS SCHOFF MEMORIAL LECTURES

Madeleine Zelin

Dean Lung Professor of Chinese Studies; Professor of History and East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia University


CHINA SEMI-INCORPORATED: THE BATTLE FOR A CHINESE LEGAL MODERNITY IN THE EARLY TWENTIETH CENTURY

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 11, 2019, 8 PM

I: The “Company” Will Save Us: Utopian Visions of the Corporation in Late Qing China

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2019, 8 PM

II: Local Knowledge, Legal Transplants and the Struggle over Limited Liability

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 25, 2019, 8 PM

III: What is Law when East meets West: The Lessons of the Ming Sung Umbrella Factory Case in the Shanghai International Mixed Court


Law was central to China’s early twentieth-century transformation from empire to republic. This transformation not only uprooted the foundations of political life. It demanded the fashioning of a new and uniquely Chinese legal modernity in the shadow of Western extraterritorial privilege. In order to understand the ways in which law developed on contested ground in places like early twentieth-century China, it may be useful to look at seemingly small struggles that reveal the larger processes at work. In these three lectures, we will examine just such a struggle. In the first lecture, we will see how the idea of the company was naturalized within a Chinese moral universe and came to represent law as the source of western power. In the second, we will trace the resurrection of the customary realm as it challenged the hegemony of law on the books and the notion that before the arrival of Europeans China had no private law. Finally, in the third lecture, we will take a position as observers to the struggle between Chinese custom and the arrogance of Western legal universality at extraterritoriality’s premier forum, the Shanghai International Mixed Court.


Madeleine Zelin is Dean Lung Professor of Chinese Studies and Professor of History and East Asian Languages and Cultures at Columbia University. Beginning with her first book, The Magistrates Tael, Zelin’s work has focused on the intersection of formal and informal institutions in the economic, political and legal development of China. The Merchants of Zigong: Industrial Enterprise in Early Modern China was awarded the 2006 Allan Sharlin Memorial Prize of the Social Science History Association, the 2006 Fairbank Prize of the Association for Asian Studies and the 2007 Humanities Book Prize of the International Convention on Asian Studies. Zelin served many years as director of the Weatherhead East Asian Institute and as Director of Columbia University ’s East Asian National Resource Center. Outside the university she has worked to promote understanding of China in the US and as an integral part of teaching and research in the social sciences, in roles including Co-Director of the Luce Foundation-AAS Project on Emerging Fields in Asian Studies-Economic History, and as a member of the Board of Trustees of the National Committee for US-China Relations. She is an avid New York amateur flutist.


LECTURES ARE FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

All lectures are held in Faculty House, 64 Morningside Drive

Reception immediately following each lecture


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