Literature Program
 

Friday, February 8, 2019 at 4:00 p.m.

Yan Liu

Scholars @ Hallwalls

Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center, a space for experimental art, music, and film located in the heart of downtown Buffalo at Delaware and Tupper, is the perfect setting for the eighth year of the Humanities Institute's Scholars@Hallwalls lecture series. These monthly presentations feature one fellow's research in an engaging lecture with lively follow-up conversation. This year's lineup highlights the interdisciplinary range of humanities research at UB.

Talks are on Friday afternoons at 4 pm and are free and open to the public. Complimentary wine and hors d'oeuvres are served. Please join us for any or all of the Scholars@Hallwalls talks!

"Use poison to attack poison: Medicine, illness, and society in early imperial China"

Yan Liu, History

How does medicine help us understand society? Using Chinese medicine as an example, my talk shows the conception of illness and the therapeutic rationale of deploying poisons in first-millennium China. Liu identifies a striking parallel: Just like doctors' use of potent drugs to eliminate malign entities out of a physical body, the state established stringent policies to expel poisoners, especially women poisoners, to remedy a social body. The medical use of poisons in China, therefore, reveals the far-reaching repercussions of the ideas of illness and therapy in social imagination and political ruling.