Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations and the College
Ariel Fox works on the intersection of literary and economic imaginaries in late imperial China. She is particularly interested in the ways in which drama was used by late imperial audiences to make sense of an emergent global economy. Her current book project, “Commercial Acts: Money, Merchants, and Markets in Late Imperial Chinese Drama,” examines how the performance of commerce both on and off the 17th-century stage made possible the imagination of new loci of power outside of the imperial state. She is also working on several projects that engage with problems of money and meaning across a range of genres. One project traces the transformations of money into man and man into money in narratives from the Six Dynasties to the Qing. Another explores the cornucopia as object and idea in late imperial literary, visual, and material culture. She is broadly interested in the economics of entertainment, the figure of the merchant in literary and philosophical discourse, and narrative and cartographic representations of overseas travel.
Fox received a PhD in East Asian languages and civilizations from Harvard University and a BA in East Asian studies from Columbia University. During the 2014–15 academic year, she was a postdoctoral fellow in the Institute of Chinese Literature and Philosophy at Academia Sinica.