Public Programs And Events

Critical History Today: Doing Transnational History: The Case of the Chinese Question

Critical History Today: Doing Transnational History: The Case of the Chinese Question

Room G529, 80 Fifth Avenue
General Public 

Historical Studies is pleased to host Mae Ngai, Lung Family Professor of Asian American Studies and Professor of History at Columbia. This talk will reflect on the research and writing of her forthcoming book, The Chinese Question: The Gold Rushes and Global Politics. The book is a history of the Chinese diaspora as it spread to Anglo-American settler societies, the rise of a global racial discourse advocating for exclusion, and the consequences for Chinese immigration and China’s economic position in the world.

What does it mean to practice transnational—and even more ambitiously, global—history? The theme of Critical History Today builds upon our shared commitment to developing modes of historical analysis that speak to the urgent concerns of the present and promote rigorous engagement between history and other branches of the humanities and social sciences. 

Ngai's research and teaching concern immigration, citizenship, and nationalism. She is the author of Impossible Subjects: Illegal Aliens and the Making of Modern America (2004) and The Lucky Ones: One Family and the Extraordinary Invention of Chinese America (2010). She has held fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Institute for Advanced Study, the Cullman Center at the NY Public Library, and the Kluge Center of the Library of Congress, among others. Ngai writes opinion and commentary on immigration history and policy for the NY Times, Washington Post, Dissent, and others. She is a member of the board of trustees of the Tenement Museum.

Presented by the Historical Studies program at New School for Social Research and Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts

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