We are pleased to announce the paperback publication of Chinese Law: Knowledge, Practice, and Transformation, 1530s to 1950s, a book co-edited by Madeleine Zelin, the Dean Lung Professor of Chinese Studies at Columbia University, and Li Chen, a Columbia PhD who is Associate Professor of History, Global Asia Studies, and Sociolegal Studies at University of Toronto.
Published by Brill, Chinese Law presents twelve case studies that open a new window onto the historical foundation and transformation of Chinese law and legal culture in late imperial and modern China. Their interdisciplinary analyses provide valuable insights into the multiple roles of law and legal knowledge in structuring social relations, property rights, popular culture, imperial governance, and ideas of modernity; they also provide insight into the roles of law and legal knowledge in giving form to an emerging revolutionary ideology and to policies that continue to affect China to the present day.
Professor Zelin, a pioneering scholar of Chinese legal and economic history, has published such works as The Merchants of Zigong: Industrial Enterprise in Early Modern China (Columbia University Press, 2005), a Study of the Weatherhead East Asian Institute that explores the indigenous roots of Chinese economic culture and business practice. It 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.
Professor Chen, whose PhD advisor at Columbia was Professor Zelin, is the author of Chinese Law in Imperial Eyes: Sovereignty, Justice, and Transcultural Politics (Columbia University Press, 2015), a Study of the Weatherhead East Asian Institute that highlights the centrality of law to modern imperial ideology and politics and brings new insight to the origins of comparative Chinese law in the West, the First Opium War, and foreign extraterritoriality in China. It was awarded the 2018 Joseph Levenson Prize (Pre-1900) from the Association for Asian Studies and received Honorable Mention for the 2017 Peter Gonville Stein Award of the American Society for Legal History.
Please click here to learn more about the book.