Wandi Wang

Wandi Wang

Specialization: Classical Chinese literature, literati taste culture, Gastropoetics


Wandi Wang is a fifth-year Ph.D. candidate currently working on premodern Chinese poetics, aesthetics, and literati taste, with a focus on the Song dynasty. She received her master’s degree from Stanford University and studied for one year as a Ph.D. student at the University of Washington before joining the EAL&C Department at UC Santa Barbara. Now she is working with Thomas Mazanec, Xiaorong Li, Peter Sturman, and Michael Fuller.

Her dissertation “Taste and Gastropoetics in Traditional China, 9th-17th cent CE,” explores how literati taste and aesthetics construct gastronomy as a literati art, and how gastronomic writings relate to politics, society, ethics, and literature. It speaks to the fields of literary history, art history, religion, sensory culture, material culture, and food studies, to tell a new story about the emergence of classical literati ideals from the Song to the Ming dynasty. Her writings will be featured in the forthcoming Journal of Song-Yuan Studies.

Wandi Wang is also a journalist and book writer specializing in biography and oral history. She has published a joint biography of the former curator of Harvard-Yenching Library, Eugene Wu, and his wife, Nadine Wu about their legendary lives and how Mr. Wu contributed to creating a field and organization for East Asian libraries. The book was published in both simplified and traditional characters by two prestigious publishing houses, the National Library of China Press in Beijing and Linking Publishing Company in Taipei. She is now completing the oral history of Chun Shum, the famous bibliographer, scholar, and the former curator of the rare book collection of Harvard-Yenching Library.