Lei Hsiang-lin

Field of Study

Years of Stay at HYI

Sep 2004 to Jun 2005

University Affiliation (Current)

University Affiliation

Sean Hsiang-lin Lei is Associate Research Fellow at the Institute of Modern History, Academia Sinica, Taiwan, and Associate Professor at the Institute of Science, Technology and Society (STS) at Yang-ming University. He received his  master’s degree in physical chemistry and Ph.D in science studies from the University of Chicago in 1999. He specializes in the history of medicine, including both biomedicine and traditional medicine, in modern China and Taiwan.  His first book, Neither Donkey nor Horse: Medicine in the Struggle over China’s Modernity (University of Chicago Press, 2014) seeks to understand how Chinese medicine was transformed from an antithesis of modernity into a potent symbol and vehicle for China’s exploration of its own modernity. His on-going research investigates the changing conceptions of the body, selfhood, and moral community through the history of two competing diseases: modern Tuberculosis and laobing (“wasting disorder”), a traditional disease that is caused primarily by various forms of overwork.  Drawing on historical studies, he explores larger issues such as the relationship between modern science and non-Western knowledge traditions, the emergence of the capitalist body in China, and the role of techno-science in the modern transformation of East Asia.

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