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Linh Vu

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Assistant Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 4302
Affiliated Faculty
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 4302
Biography

Linh D. Vu is an assistant professor of history in the School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies at Arizona State University. She studies legal, social, and cultural history of the war dead in twentieth-century China. Her other projects include war commemoration, terrorism, and unconventional nationalist ideologies at the turn of the twentieth century in East and Southeast Asia. She offers courses on such topics as violence, revolutions, personal narratives, the family, and legal history in modern China. She currently serves in the undergraduate committee for the history unit and the committee for the online MA in WWII studies, and participates in activities at the Center for Asian Research. Her language skills include: Vietnamese (native speaker), Mandarin Chinese, Classical Chinese, Japanese (reading), and French (reading).

Education
  • Ph.D. University of California-Berkeley, 2017
  • M.A. University of Hawai'i at Manoa, Honolulu, HI, 2009
  • Taiwan National Normal University, Taipei, Summer 2007
  • B.A. Connecticut College, New London, CT, 2007
  • John Cabot University, Rome, Italy, Fall 2005                                                                                                                                                         
Research Interests

My current manuscript, Martyrs, Memorials, and the Makings of Modern China's Necro-Constituency, examines the efforts of the Chinese nation-state to record, commemorate, and compensate for militant and civilian dead and how such efforts transformed social and cultural institutions. I analyze such republican government policies as the tracking of casualties, the compilation of martyrs’ biographies, the construction of county martyrs’ shrines, and the distribution of gratuities to families of the war dead. In the context of twentieth-century China, fallen soldiers and civilians gained posthumous significance by serving as intimate bonds between the new political regime and the old familial lineage, as haunting ghosts of the local community, as ancestral deities of the imagined nation-state, and as bones of contention in international disputes. I demonstrate how the nation-state’s effort to manage its war dead touches upon multiple facets of China’s modernity, significantly altering the relationships between the state and society, the nation and the family, and the living and the dead. Moreover, seeking answers to how and why institutions and individuals of twentieth-century China constructed posthumous identities to deal with unprecedented level of deaths, my research advances original knowledge by addressing our humanistic desire to reconcile with the afterlife or the lack thereof.

Research Activity

ARCHIVAL RESEARCH:

  • 2015-2016: Second Historical Archives (Nanjing), Jiangsu Provincial Archives, Nanjing Municipal Archives, Nanjing Library, Chongqing Municipal Archives, Guangzhou Municipal Archives, Guangdong Provincial Archives
  • 2014: Academia Historica, Nationalist Party Commission Archives, and National Central Library (Taipei)
  • 2013: Archives Nationales d'Outre-Mer (Aix-en-Provence); British National Archives & British Library
  • 2012: Academia Historica & National Central Library (Taipei); Shanghai Municipal Archives & Shanghai Library
  • 2011: No. 1 National Archives & Han-Nom Research Library (Hanoi)
Spring 2019
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 303Studies in Asian History
HST 384Modern China: 1700 to Present
Fall 2018
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 303Studies in Asian History
HST 494Special Topics
HST 495Methods of Historical Inquiry
Spring 2018
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 303Studies in Asian History
HST 494Special Topics
HST 495Methods of Historical Inquiry
Fall 2017
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 303Studies in Asian History
Presentations

2018:

-Panel Organizer: “Imprints of Violence: Objects, Sites, and Memory.” Presenter: “Recasting Violence: China’s War of Resistance and the Spirit-Molding Scholarly Society.” Association for Asian Studies Annual ConferenceWashington DC (March 22-25) 

 

2017:

- “War Commemoration in Postwar China,” China in Global World War II, Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities, Cambridge University, Cambridge (July 3-14)

-Panel Organizer: “Charting Intersections and Interstices in East Asian Memoryscapes.” Presenter: “Nationalist Religiosity and the Making of Republican Memorial Space in Wartime and Postwar Chongqing, 1938-1949.” Association for Asian Studies Annual Conference, Toronto (March 16-19)

 

2016:

- “War Commemoration and Nationalist Religiosity: Loyal Sacrifice Shrines in Republican China, 1912-1949,” UCSIA Summer School on Religion, Culture, and Society, University of Antwerp, Antwerp (August 27-September 4)

- “Tales of Three Loyal Sacrifice Shrines in China’s Wartime Capital,” War and Society in Modern China Workshop, University of Washington, Seattle (July 22-25)

- “Feminine Narratives of War,” Asia on Its Own Terms Workshop, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv (May 14-June 17)

 

2015:

- Panel Organizer: “Grievances Against the State, Legacies of War, and Legal Discourses in Twentieth- Century East Asia.” Presenter: “Exchanging Life for Honor: Compensation Policies for Revolutionaries’ Families in Republican China, 1911-1949,” American Society for Legal History Annual Conference, Washington DC (October 29-November 1)

- “Soldierly Ideals in Republican China through Martyrs’ Biographies and Petition Letters,” The ‘Good Soldier’ - Ideal, Instrument of Manipulation or Contradiction, Air Force Academy, Trondheim, Norway (October 14-17)

- “County Martyrs’ Shrines in Republican China,” International Workshop and Conference on “War and Society in Modern China,” Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing (July 10-13)

- Panel Co-organizer: “Hagiographic Discourses and Communities of Belonging: Digital Approaches to Martyrdom in 19th- and 20th-Century China and Vietnam.” Presenter: “The Making of the Yellow Flower Hill (Huanghuagang) Martyrs in the Early Republic,” Association for Asian Studies-in-Asia Annual Conference, Taipei (June 22-25)

- Invited Lecturer, “Bones of Contention: Chinese Soldiers Buried in India, Burma, and Papua New Guinea during World War II,” National Central Library, Taipei (March 20) (delivered in Chinese)

- “The Dead and the Nation,” International Doctoral Student Workshop, Academia Sinica, Taipei (January 19-23) (delivered in Chinese)

- “Loyalty and Sacrifice Shrines in Republican China,” International Dissertation Workshop, National Chengchi University, Taipei (January 11-18)

 

2014:

- “Multiple Modernities and Chinese Republican Martyrdom,” International Summer School on “Multiple Modernities,” University of Göttingen, Göttingen (September 1-6) 

- “Making Republican Revolutionary Martyrdom: The Yellow Flower Hill Uprising and Its Commemoration during the 1910s and 1920s,” International Conference on Modern China in Global Contexts, 1600-Present, Academia Sinica, Taipei (August 11-13)

- “Republic of Martyrs: Compensation Policies in Republican China,” Law & Society Annual Conference, Minneapolis (May 29-31)

- Summer Institute on Conducting Archival Research (SICAR), Andrew W. Mellon Foundation/George Washington University, Washington DC (May 17-25)

 

2013:

- “Grave Concerns: China’s Overseas Military Graves and International Politics,” Sites of Knowledge: Space, Locality, and Circulation between Asia and Europe, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg (August 4-8)

- “Death of the Patriarch, Memory of the Martyr: The Family and the State in Modern China,” Social Lives of Dead Bodies in Modern China, Brown University, Providence (June 14-16)

- Winter Institute on Han Religion, Academia Sinica, Taipei & Tainan (January 4-12)

 

2012:

- “Allegiances and Patronage across the Late Nineteenth-Century Guangxi-Tonkin Border,” The South China Sea: Re-Assessing Regional Order in Asia, Institute of East Asian Studies at University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley (September 7-8)

- Summer Seminars in Asian Arts, Religion and History, Fudan University, Shanghai (June 24-July 3)

-“It’s Personal! Allegiances and Patronage Across the Late Nineteenth-Century Guangxi-Tonkin Border,” Association for Asian Studies Annual Conference, Toronto (March 16-19)

 

2011:

- “Under the Rubber Regime: Plantation Workers in Cochinchina (1918-1945),” 6th Singapore Graduate Forum on Southeast Asian Studies, Asian Research Institute, National University of Singapore, Singapore (July 11-15)

- “Understanding China’s Colonial Experience: A Comparative Study of “Semicolonialism” in China, Siam, and Indochina,” World History Association Annual Conference, Capital Normal University, Beijing (July 7-10)

- “Carless and Careless: Automobile Accidents in French Indochina,” Association for Asian Studies Annual Conference in Japan, International Christian University, Tokyo (June 25-26)

- Winter Institute on Modern Chinese History, Academia Sinica, Taipei (January 3-13)

 

2009:

- “‘Alternative Chastity’ in Feng Menglong’s Vernacular Stories,” Western Conference for the Association of Asian Studies (WCAAS), University of Arizona, Tucson (October 23-24)

- “New Women and New Literature” from The Ladies’ Journal,” Fudan University-UCLA Workshop in Scholarly Translation, Shanghai (August 1-30)

- “Female Revolutionaries in the Vietnamese Nationalist Party,” Phi Alpha Theta 25th Annual Hawai’i Regional Conference, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu (March 14)

- “Women’s Suicides in Early Twentieth-Century China and Vietnam: Perils in the Family,” 8th East-West Center International Graduate Student Conference, Honolulu (February 12-14)

Honors / Awards
  • Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation Grant, 2017
  • F. Hilary Conroy Award, Association for Asian Studies, 2017
  • American Historical Association’s Council Annual Meeting Travel Grant, 2017
  • Dissertation Normative Time Fellowship, UC Berkeley, 2016-2017
  • Helen Gan-Richard Aston Fellowship for Chinese Economic and Social History, UC Berkeley, 2015-2016
  • U.S. Fulbright Student Research Grant (Visiting Scholar, Nanjing University, Jiangsu, China), 2014-2015
  • Association for Asian Studies (AAS) China and Inner Asia Council (CIAC) Small Grant, 2014-2015
  • Republic of China East Asian Fellowship, UC Berkeley, 2014-2015
  • Taiwan National Central Library’s Center for Chinese Studies Scholarly Research Grant, 2014
  • Haas Junior Scholar Fellowships, UC Berkeley, 2013-2014 & 2016-2017
  • Liu Family Graduate Research Fellowship in Chinese Studies, UC Berkeley, 2013-2014
  • Eugene Cota-Robles Fellowship, UC Berkeley, 2010-2012
Professional Associations
  • American Historical Association
  • Association for Asian Studies
  • American Legal History Society
  • Society for the Study of Chinese Religions