Weekly Wanderings: Not a Kid Anymore Edition

▪ I turned 34 in the middle of October, meaning that I’m now in the last year of ever qualifying for any “____ under 35” lists. Getting older doesn’t, in and of itself, bother me, although I have been having a few more “Whoa, [incredibly successful person] is only X years old, what have I … Continue reading Weekly Wanderings: Not a Kid Anymore Edition

Weekly Wanderings: Nittany Lions Edition

▪ I spent last Tuesday and Wednesday visiting Penn State, where history professors David Atwill and Kate Merkel-Hess (a fellow UCI History graduate) had invited me to talk with their grad students about getting a PhD and then going into a non-academic career. I also gave a presentation on the Zhang Leping biography that I’ve … Continue reading Weekly Wanderings: Nittany Lions Edition

Weekly Wanderings: Failure and Success Edition

I’ve made the executive decision (because it’s my blog and therefore I’m the executive) to abandon the pretense that these “Weekly Wanderings” posts are always going to be published on Fridays, because the past month has shown me I can only manage that 50% of the time. So now my goal is to get them … Continue reading Weekly Wanderings: Failure and Success Edition

Weekly Wanderings: September 16, 2016

▪ There’s a crisp bite to the air in the mornings here now and the trees across from my house are beginning to acquire a rust-color tinge. This can only mean one thing: FALL IS COMING. Woot woot woot. I’m especially excited this year because Michigan is known for its apple cider mills, and there’s … Continue reading Weekly Wanderings: September 16, 2016

Weekly Wanderings: September 9, 2016

I decided to start a new feature here at the blog, as I often find myself holding on to little thoughts that are too long for tweets but not big enough to become blog posts of their own. “Weekly Wanderings [of my brain]” will appear here on Fridays and serve as a catch-all for stuff … Continue reading Weekly Wanderings: September 9, 2016

The Diplomat — “The Currency Question: Andrew Jackson and Chairman Mao”

Later this year, Jeff Wasserstrom and I are going to collaborate on a third edition of China in the 21st Century: What Everyone Needs to Know*, so we’ve started making notes on parts of the book that will need updating. With this week’s announcement that Andrew Jackson will no longer be the face of the … Continue reading The Diplomat — “The Currency Question: Andrew Jackson and Chairman Mao”

Ms. Magazine blog: “The Faulty Logic of China’s Most Radical Experiment”

I have a new post at the Ms. Magazine blog, a review of journalist Mei Fong’s recent book, One Child: The Story of China’s Most Radical Experiment. An excerpt: On Oct. 29, 2015, the Chinese government announced that it was moving away from the one-child policy it had enacted more than 35 years before. After nearly four decades … Continue reading Ms. Magazine blog: “The Faulty Logic of China’s Most Radical Experiment”

The Uncompromising Jill Lepore

I’ve mentioned here before my enormous history-geek fangirling for Harvard professor and New Yorker staff writer Jill Lepore. Lepore is an excellent example of someone who works inside and outside “the academy” (aka the university) with equal success, which is one of the reasons I have so much admiration for her (the other being the … Continue reading The Uncompromising Jill Lepore