Elites, Networks and Power in Modern China


DHLab Pamphlets

The Pamphlet collection of the DHLab on the PEERS platform proposes work-in-progress research notes as well as methodological papers by the ENP-China team. The work-in-progress notes present preliminary results of experiments and research produced in the course of research before submission to academic journals. The methodological notes develop aspects of methods that usually cannot find their place in a published paper or on a specific aspect of a research question.

DH Lab Pamphlet 1

This inaugural issue of the DH Lab Pamphlet is devoted to our experiments in exploring and studying the Biographical Dictionary of Republican China edited by Howard L. Boorman.

DH Lab Pamphlet 2

This second issue of the Digital History Pamphlet Collection aims at introducing the Consolidated National Advertising Co, one of the largest Chinese advertising agencies established prior to 1949. Drawing on Who’s Who, historical newspapers and Shanghai Municipal Archives, and harnessing social network analysis and visualizing tools, we propose to build a collective biography of the Consolidated group and his main actors.

DH Lab Pamphlet 3

This issue of the DH Lab Pamphlet presents unpublished papers, though not exclusively, that examine aspects of the Shanghai elites through fiction — a study of three Shanghai novels — and propose a macro-historical reading of Shanghai history

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ENP-China Publications

Knowledge, Power, and Networks – Elites in Transition in Modern China

The ENP-China project is pleased to announce the publication of the first book resulting from the ENP-China team’s work and the meetings and discussions that we organized with a group of international “like-minded” historians.

At the level of the chapters written by the members of the team, we are indebted to the collaborative work carried out with our colleagues in computer science/NLP/data science.

The contributors include a broad array of young and seasoned historians: Cécile Armand (Aix-Marseille University), Peter E. Hamilton (Lingnan University), Christian Henriot (Aix-Marseille University), Marilyn Levine (Central Washington University), Ling-ling Lien (Academia Sinica, Institute of Modern History), Yi-tang Lin (University of Geneva), Henrike Rudolf (University of Göttingen), Brett Sheehan (University of Southern California), Huei-min Sun (Academia Sinica, Institute of Modern History).

This volume was co-edited with two historians who belong to the next generation of China scholars, Sun Huei-min and Cécile Armand. I am particularly proud, on the book cover, to be framed between these two talented women.

The book is advertised on the website of Brill. We hope it will be a milestone in rethinking historical research in the direction of an integrated, data-rich history. It should be the first of a series of collective works that explore original, even unpublished sources, with innovative methods.

In the past decades, the world has watched the rise of China as an economic and military power and the emergence of Chinese transnational elites. What may seem like an entirely new phenomenon marks the revival of a trend initiated at the end of the Qing. There distribution of power, wealth, and knowledge among the newly formed elites matured during the Republican period.

This volume demonstrates both the difficulty and the value of re-thinking the elites in modern China. It establishes that the study of the dynamic tensions within the elite and among elite groups in this epochal era is within reach if we are prepared to embrace forms of historical inquiry that integrate the abundant and even limitless historical resources and to engage with the rich repertoire of digital techniques/instruments available and question our previous research paradigms. This renewed approach brings historical research closer to an integrative data-rich history of modern China.

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