Ph.D., Stanford University, 2002
medical anthropology, science and technology studies, theory and methodology, traditional Chinese medicine, globalization, feminism, China
SBSG 3316 | 949-824-8167
Professor Mei Zhan conducts research in the areas of medical anthropology, science and technology studies, globalization and transnationalism, and China studies. Professor Zhan conducted field research on the “worlding” of traditional Chinese medicine in Shanghai and the San Francisco Bay Area over a ten-year period (1995-2005). This multi-sited research focuses on the processes of interaction, rupture, and displacement in the translocal formation of knowledges, identities, and communities. Professor Zhan’s research and writing highlight that what we have come to call “traditional Chinese medicine” is made through—rather than prior to—various translocal encounters and from discrepant locations. Her work shows that dynamic forms of traditional Chinese medicine emerge through specific kinds of encounters, as these encounters also produce uneven and shifting visions, understandings, and practices of what makes up the world and our places in it.
Professor Zhan is currently working on an ethnographic project that investigates alternative ways of thinking, doing and being human. It explores the emergence of “Daoist ethic” in contemporary China–how analytics centered on the dynamic “oneness” of all things are animated and articulated across disparate sites in everyday life and especially through medical and other forms of entrepreneurship.
Professor Zhan teaches courses on the History of Anthropological Theory, the Anthropology of Knowledge, Humanism and Posthumanism, the Ethnography of Encounters, China and Globalization, among others.