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Historian writes book on medieval China

April 13, 2009

KALAMAZOO--Dr. Victor C. Xiong, professor of history at Western Michigan University, has written an 856-page installment to a series of historical dictionaries on ancient civilizations and historical eras.

The book, titled "Historical Dictionary of Medieval China," was published this past December by Scarecrow Press Inc. and fills an urgent need for a standard reference tailored to the interest of Western academics and readers.

Xiong is director of WMU's East Asian Studies Program and has written extensively on medieval China. He focuses on Chinese history and archaeology, especially the Sui Tang period with an emphasis on urban, social and cultural history.

A WMU faculty member since 1980, Xiong is an ongoing participant in numerous excavations of early Chinese sites under the auspices of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences' Institute of Archaeology.

He has presented his work around the world, most recently at the Institute for Chinese Studies at Oxford University in England, where he was invited to give a Feb. 24 lecture on "Liu Zhiji and Medieval Chinese Historiography." He also has been invited to present a talk on "The Rise and Fall of Sui Yangdi" April 19 at the Stanford University Center for East Asian Studies.

Xiong was editor of "Early Medieval China," an annual published by the Early Medieval China Group, a professional organization. In addition, he wrote "Emperor Yang of the Sui Dynasty: His Life, Times, and Legacy," published in 2005 by SUNY Press, and "Sui-Tang Chang'an (583–904): A Study in the Urban History of Medieval China," distributed in 2000 by the University of Michigan Press.

Media contact: Jeanne Baron, (269) 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

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