Chinese Students in the United States (The 1911 Princeton Conference of the Chinese Students' Alliance of the Eastern States).

ANR Access ERC Grant


“China’s Great Brain Gain” is a response to the inadequate representations of the Chinese experience with globalization. Its central object of analysis is the systematic reexamination of the role that American-educated Chinese (liumei) played in the birth of what we call “modern China”. Between the First Opium War (1839–42) and the founding of the People’s Republic of China (1949), over 40,000 Chinese students went to study in the United States, intending to return and apply the knowledge they had acquired abroad to “modernize” their country. These returned students represent a wave of brain migration unique in world history, with far-reaching effects that have yet to be fully examined. Our approach is based on the conviction that social actors rather than abstract geopolitical entities are the driving forces of historical change. It is also based on the conviction that a proper reevaluation of the liumei’s contributions must include the quantitative and qualitative analysis of their life trajectories, social networks, and cultural discourses from a transnational and longue durée perspective. Our methodology relies on the systematic collection of historical data from a wide range of multilingual sources, their integration within a digital environment, and their semantic enrichment using advanced techniques of Natural Language Processing. This data-rich history is designed to overcome the limitations of both traditional and “big data” approaches and to enable multidimensional analyses that were not heretofore possible. This project emphasizes feasibility through its well-defined target population and source corpora, its reliance on validated methodologies, and its two-pronged approach combining macro-analyses with selected case studies. By combining cutting-edge digital methods with an intellectually ambitious research agenda, it will profoundly reshape our understanding of modern China and radically transform research practices beyond the field of Chinese studies

Carnet de recherches : https://advertisinghistory.hypotheses.org/
Liumei Biographical Database : https://heurist.huma-num.fr/heurist/?db=Liumei&website&id=33453&pageid=33447