Yuanfei Wang
Assistant Professor

Basic Information

245 Joseph Brown


PhD, East Asian Languages and Civilizations, University of Pennsylvania, 2013



I specialize in late imperial Chinese literature, maritime history, and the interaction between Chinese literature, world history, and world literature in premodern times. My first book manuscript examines how late Ming Chinese scholars composed histories and vernacular fiction to narrate outlaws, pirates, emigrants, and foreign peoples on the seas. This monograph brings to light the important role Chinese literature plays during the Ming empire’s cross-border military and cultural encounters with her East Asian and Southeast Asian neighbors on the seas.


I have two new book-length projects. One is about affect in late imperial Chinese fiction, and the other is about Chinese literature and migration in the Indian Ocean.


Selected Publications:

Writing the Piracy War: Unofficial History, Vernacular Fiction, and the Problem of Imperial Identity in Late Ming China (1550-1644)  (under review)


“Chinese Literature and the World,” Teaching Volume on the Global Middle Ages, edited by Geraldine Heng, published by MLA, forthcoming.


“The Novel and the Sea in Sixteenth Century China,” a special volume published by Xiamen University, China, forthcoming.


“Java in Discord: Unofficial History, Vernacular Fiction, and the Discourse of Imperial Identity in Late Ming China (1570-1620),” positions: asia critique, forthcoming.


“Blank Scriptures of Xiyou ji: Interpretive Flexibility and Religious Stability in Post-1949 Adaptations of Journey to the West,” co-authored with Nathan Faries, The Assimilation of Yogic Religions through Pop Culture, ed. Paul Hackett, Lexington Books, 2017. pp.33-63.


“Magical Weapons and Adorable Exotica: Imperial Fetishism in a Sixteenth-Century Chinese Novel,” Sino-Platonic Papers, no. 193,  2009. pp.98-121. 


Selected Awards:

Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation For International Scholarly Exchange Scholar Grant, 2018-2019

UGA Willson Center Research Fellowship, 2018-2019

UGA Faculty Research Grant, 2017-2018

UGA Willson Center Research Seminar, 2017-2019

NEH Summer Institute Confucian Asia, 2016

SSRC Postdoctoral Fellowship for Transregional Research, 2013-2014


Professional Website: 


Research Interests:

Premodern and modern Chinese literature, drama, and film; race and ethnicity studies