Zhuqing Li Appointed Head of Library Exploration and Research for East Asia

Dr. Zhuqing Li

The Library is thrilled to announce the appointment of Zhuqing Li as the Head of Library Exploration and Research for East Asia in the Center for Library Exploration and Research (CLEAR). She reports to the Director of Library Exploration and Research.

Zhuqing previously served as the Library’s Faculty Curator for East Asian Collections on a part-time basis along with her appointment as Visiting Associate Professor of East Asian Studies. As Faculty Curator, she established a stellar record of achievement in teaching and scholarly project development, bringing students and collections together to develop new and exciting scholarly projects that combine traditional and digital methods. Zhuqing led a collaborative, global team of scholars and Brown undergraduates to create Depicting Glory: Rare Objects from the Late Qing to the Republic of China, a digital project that presents a group of rare Chinese objects drawn from across the Brown University Library. 

In her new role, Zhuqing will expand CLEAR’s footprint to include student research-driven experiences rooted in the Library’s East Asian collections and increase scholarly and public engagement centered on East Asian materials.  In addition, she will continue to teach as Visiting Associate Professor of East Asian Studies.

Zhuqing Li

A linguist specializing in Chinese historical linguistics and dialectology, Zhuqing received her Ph.D. in East Asian Language and Literature from the University of Washington and taught at Boston College for 13 years before coming to Brown. Her research has focused on the study of the Chinese language, the historical experiences of Chinese returnees, and the linguistic aspects of Chinese-English translation.

Zhuqing is the author of five books, most recently including Daughters of the Flower Fragrant Garden: Two Sisters Separated by China’s Civil War (W. W. Norton & Company, 2022), the remarkable true story of two sisters (Zhuqing’s aunts) who were inseparable as children and whose lives are irrevocably disrupted when the “bamboo curtain” drops overnight between Communist mainland China and Nationalist Taiwan. Her other books are Reinventing China: Experience of Contemporary Returnees from the West (Bridge 21, 2016), Minnan-English Dictionary (Dunwoody Press, 2008), The Structure of Fuzhou Dialect (Dunwoody Press, 2002), and Fuzhou-English Dictionary (Dunwoody Press, 1998), as well as numerous academic articles.

Brown’s East Asian Collection

The East Asian Collection, located on the third floor of the Rockefeller Library in the traditionally styled Gardner Room, holds nearly 200,000 volumes of East Asian language print books in addition to print serials, audio-video materials, and electronic resources. The collection was developed from an initial gift of approximately 30,000 volumes donated to Brown in 1961 by the noted sinologist Charles Sidney Gardner. Dr. Li Wang, Curator of the East Asian Collection, and Toshiyuki Minami, Senior Library Specialist, offer students and researchers support in their use of the collection and will continue to collaborate with Zhuqing.