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Claire Li

Visiting Assistant Professor



  2. Phone: (610) 328-8157
  3. Kohlberg 306
Claire Li

Prior to joining the instructional faculty at Swarthmore College, I taught at UC-Irvine and Pomona College as well as in the private sector. I have taught Chinese language classes at all levels, including team teaching for under-division courses and independent design and instruction of content-based fourth-year courses. At Swarthmore, I will teach language courses, primarily second- and third-year Chinese, as well as literary and cultural courses, such as “Taiwan in Transition under Japanese Colonial Rule: Literature, Material Culture, and Social Movements.”

My research projects have consisted of border-crossing studies on distinctive elements of East Asian writing in relation to aesthetics, identity formation, modernization, gender, and environmental issues. For example, I examine how classical Sino-writing, as a lingua franca, was practiced among Taiwanese, Japanese, and Chinese literati and bureaucrats, and how classical Sino-writing was reconfigured in colonial Taiwan as a medium for colonial operation and a site revealing detour paths of identity formation. I also look into how the duality of oral sounds and written characters were employed in literary production that needs to be heard in the reading process by contemporary readers for recovery of the hermeneutic horizon of literary and historic understanding that has been overlooked in our era. My latest research plan is to expand the scope of my research to include early 20th-century female Asian journalists and activists, as examples of women who brought to fruition the potential mobility endowed by their education and historical era.