Associate Professor of Comparative Literature and East Asian Studies
Tamara Chin works on comparative and intersectional approaches to the ancient world and to historical narrative, with a focus on early Chinese texts, Han dynasty literature and economic thought, the Afro-Eurasian ‘Silk Road,’ and the modern politics of antiquity. Her research and teaching in these areas often explore the connections between social history and aesthetic form.
She received her BA from Harvard College in Classics and Literature and PhD from UC Berkeley in Comparative Literature.
She is currently completing two books: a monograph on the modern historiography of ancient contact and exchange entitled The Silk Road Idea, and a sourcebook of original translations, Readings in Early Chinese Economic Thought.
Her first book, Savage Exchange: Han Imperialism, Chinese Literary Style, and the Economic Imagination (Harvard, 2014; pbk 2020) received the American Comparative Literature Association Harry Levin Prize; Honorable Mention for the Association of Asian Studies Joseph Levenson Pre-1900 China Book Prize; International Convention of Asia Scholars Ground-Breaking Subject Matter Accolade.