I am a historian of modern China and its interactions with the world. My research has focused on the history of the Second World War in East Asia and of imperialism(s) in China, but I am also interested in histories of Chinese migration and of the Portuguese community in China, as well as in Sinophone cinema. I have a particular interest in overlooked global encounters and connections whose ambiguities and complexities challenge more conventional narratives.
At Oxford, I teach modern Chinese history and global history. I am also one of the convenors of the International History of East Asia Seminar at the Oxford China Centre.
I hold a DPhil in History from St Antony’s College, Oxford, and two MA degrees (in Chinese Studies and in Historical Research Methods) from SOAS, University of London. I was a visiting scholar at the Institute of Modern History, Academia Sinica, in Taiwan, and attended the 2017 Summer Institute ‘China in a Global World War Two’ at Cambridge.
I am currently working on a monograph, based on my doctoral thesis, on neutrality and collaboration in the South China enclave of Macau during the Second World War in East Asia (1937-1945) and the immediate post-war period. Macau, the first and last European colonial settlement in China, was the only foreign-administered territory to remain unoccupied by Japan throughout the war. Through a variety of previously unused Portuguese, Chinese, and British sources collected in various countries I explore Chinese wartime diplomacy, the uses and abuses of neutrality in the enclave, and the layers of interaction and collaboration involving Chinese of various factions, Japanese, British, Portuguese and many others. This project combines aspects of international, imperial, war, intelligence, and social history.
I am also developing new research on the relocation of schools from China to Macau during the Second World War, as well as a project on representations of that conflict in Chinese and world cinema.
I currently teach:
Approaches to History
China since 1900
The Global Twentieth Century, 1930-2003
Disciplines of History
Inter-imperial Humanitarianism: The Macau Delegation of the Portuguese Red Cross during the Second World War