International Summer Seminar “From late imperial to Republican China: continuities and ruptures”

La Rochelle, France
6-10th Sep 2021
Application deadline: 15th Jun 2021

Coordination: Paola Calanca (École française d’Extrême-Orient, Paris), Chen Hsi-Yuan (Institute of History and Philology, Academia Sinica, Taipei), Luca Gabbiani (École française d’Extrême-Orient, Paris), François Gipouloux (Centre national de la recherche scientifique, Paris), Lian Lingling (Institute of Modern History, Academia Sinica, Taipei), Xavier Paulès (École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Paris), Wu Jen-shu (Institute of Modern History, Academia Sinica, Taipei)

Organisation: Centre national de la recherche scientifique, École française d’Extrême-Orient, École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Campus France (Orchid Program)

Application form:


This Summer Seminar programme is aimed at students from different disciplines in the humanities and social sciences, dealing with Chinese historical studies. The selected period stretches from late imperial China (broadly the Ming and Qing dynasties) to the Republic (first half of the 20th century). It offers an optimal stage for the study of large-scale processes and syntheses in link with world history. By focusing on this period, the Summer Seminar’s approach will aim at providing a new comparative meaning to Chinese history and the humanities in a global perspective. The programme will place a strong emphasis on sources to facilitate better knowledge and access to the different types of documents in an interdisciplinary perspective.    

Purpose and Format:

The purpose of this international Summer Seminar is to offer students enrolled in graduate (MA and Ph.D.) and post-doctoral programs of Chinese studies in European universities a week of intensive work, mixing textual approaches and methodological and historiographic debates. 
The format will combine direct confrontation with sources and open debates on recent developments in the discipline. It will enable the participants to strengthen their ability to approach the primary Chinese historical documentation of the period and their mastery of the techniques specific to the historian of China. It will also allow the participants to gain an in-depth understanding of the major theoretical and historiographical issues of the day, as well as of the main research trends in the last decades regarding the thematic fields selected, so as to enable each of them to consider his or her own research in the light of these questions and the context underlying them. 
Planned to last five full days, the Summer Seminar will be divided into ten sessions, which will allow participants to work together alternately on the reading and translation of primary sources (mornings) and to discuss in groups the recent orientations of historiographical and theoretical debates on the history of modern China (afternoons).
All the reading material and a detailed program of the Summer Seminar will be made available to the participants beforehand. 


The Summer Seminar will admit fifteen to twenty graduate students (MA and Ph.D. levels) as well as post-docs (within three years of the degree) from different disciplines in the humanities and social sciences recruited from various European universities. 
They will be supervised by the seven organizers and two or three additional invited scholars.

Summer Seminar work languages:

English and Chinese will be the work languages during the Summer Seminar.

Dates and Location:

The Summer Seminar will be held over the week of 6-10 September 2021. It will take place at « La Vieille Perrotine » (Saint-Pierre d’Oléron). Practical details will be provided to the participants upon confirmation of their selection.

Application process: 

Prospective participants are asked to apply by filling in the following application form All applications should be accompanied by a cover letter, a CV and a description of the candidate’s research project. The application deadline is set to 15 June 2021.  

Accommodation and travel allowance:

Lodging and meals will be covered for all participants during their stay at Île d’Oléron, as well as transportation to and from La Rochelle to « La Vieille Perrotine ».
A travel allowance may be provided to some participants. In such a case, the request should be clearly notified in the candidate’s cover letter and an itemized travel budget to and from La Rochelle should be added to the application. 

Sanitary protocol:

All the applicable sanitary measures enacted by the French authorities at the time of the Summer Seminar will be strictly followed during the participants’ stay at « La Vieille Perrotine ». Updated details regarding eventual travel requisites to France will be regularly announced to the participants, up to the time of their travel.


Download this announcement in .doc format: International Summer Seminar, From late imperial to Republican China. Continuities and ruptures