Wang Wensheng 王文生

CCS Faculty
Associate Professor, History
Office: Sakamaki B204
Tel: 956-4233
Fax: 956-9600

PhD, MA, University of California, Irvine
MA, BA, Wuhan University

Professor Wang is a historian of late imperial China whose research encompasses three main areas. Firstly, he examines Qing politics, society, and culture leading up to the Opium War, covering topics like empire building, social protest, cultural politics, popular religion, maritime affairs, and foreign relations. Secondly, he explores Sino-Western exchanges by examining China’s interactions with Jesuit science and religion from the late Ming to the late Qing dynasty. Thirdly, he adopts an interdisciplinary and theoretical approach to Chinese history, aiming to foster dialogue between historians and social scientists by promoting synergies between their research agendas and methods. With a broad interest in world history, Professor Wang is keen on placing China in regional and global contexts, both through making comparisons and through examining the empire’s connections with other parts of the world

China-Related Courses

  • HIST 241 Civilizations of Asia
  • HIST 309 East Asian Civilization
  • HIST 411 Society and Culture of Traditional China
  • HIST 419 The Search for Modern China
  • HIST 421 China in World History
  • HIST 661C Seminar in Chinese History: Middle



White Lotus Rebels and South China Pirates: Crisis and Reform in the Qing Empire. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 2014


  • “State Making, Political Sustainability, and Critical Crisis: a Historical and Theoretical Perspective from Qing China.” International Journal of Asian Studies, 2023, 1–19.
  • “Science, Religion and Sino-Western Exchanges: Literati-Jesuit Translation of Euclidean Geometry and Its Reception from Late Ming to Mid-Qing.” Journal of Chinese History, 2022, 1–31.
  • “Sino-Vietnamese Pirates and British Invaders: Maritime Crises, Oceanic Governance and Sovereignty in Mid-Qing China,” Review of Culture, 60 (2019): 46-65.
  • “Towards an Integrated Understanding of Critical Upheavals: From Crisis, to Contentious Politics, to All-encompassing Contentious Crisis,” Journal of Historical Sociology, 30 (2017): 746-767
  • “The Mid-Qing Construction of the South China Sea,” World History Connected, 14 (2017)
  • “Parallels and Connections: Consumption, Environment, and State Formation at Both Ends of Eurasia, 1500-1900AD,” World History Studies 2 (2015): 102-122.