I was born in a Cantonese river town in South China. First, I began my undergraduate studies in 2008 in business administration at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (Shaw College). However, I gradually realised I was not cut out for it during my two-year internship in a local consultancy firm in Wan Chai. Fortunately, the General Education at CUHK allowed me to explore other exciting subjects outside of my major, ranging from archaeology to film studies. In a class on cultural heritage, I discovered the pleasure of socio-cultural anthropology and became passionate about doing ethnographic research. My graduate training started in Gender Studies (anthropology as the home discipline) at CUHK (M.Phil. 2016), then continued in the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Cambridge (PhD 2021). After having lived in the UK for five years, I am blessed to join the Centre of China Studies, returning to the academic community by which I have been nurtured.
Using long-term intensive fieldwork, my doctoral thesis investigates how digital technology transforms grassroots volunteering and local charities in contemporary China. It provides a historical and ethnographic account of a redress movement aiming to honour and support the Kuomintang veterans who fought in the War of Resistance against Japan (1937-45) but suffered in post-1949 China. This thesis is an extended project from my M.Phil. dissertation that examines the intersection between gender and nationalism in local volunteering for the KMT veterans in Hunan province. I am now working on my first monograph based on my M.Phil. dissertation alongside a co-authored book with my PhD supervisor Dr Adam Yuet Chau on the constitution of the modern Chinese polity. I have been invited to contribute as a reviewer by editors from New Media & Society and Memory Studies.
- the use of digital technology in Chinese NGOs
- charity and volunteering in contemporary China
- war memories and local histories
- gender and Nationalism
- Second World War commemoration in Asia
Books and Edited Volumes
Lin, Zhenru. Making Authentic Heroes: Endangered Masculinities and Gendered Nationalism in Asia. (Under Contract with the Hong Kong University Press)
Journal Articles & Book Chapters
Lin, Zhenru. “Souls of Contention and Incommensurate Mourning: Commemorative Rituals in Contemporary China.” Journal of Contemporary Religion.
Lin, Zhenru. “Remembering forgotten heroes and the idealisation of true love: Veteran memorial activism in contemporary China.” Memory Studies 14, no. 5 (2021): 1081-1105.
A University news story, based on Dr Jacqueline Zhenru Lin’s PhD thesis and her article published in the Journal of Memory Studies, has picked up a CASE award, one of the only significant international awards for Research Communications.
Lin, Zhenru. “The Architecture of the Digital Space.” Feeling Digital and Reimagining Fieldwork during COVID Time Workshop, May 12th-13th, organized by The Hong Kong Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences (HKIHSS), HKU Anthropology Research Network and HKU Department of Sociology.
Lin, Zhenru. “Book Review: Management and Morality: an Ethnographic Exploration of Management Consultancy Seminars.” Social Anthropology/Anthropologie Sociale 28, no. 4 (2020): 1007-08. DOI: 10.1111/1469- 8676.12947.
Lin, Zhenru. “Gendered Moral Codes in China.” Anthropology News website 60, no. 6 (December, 2019): e182-e186.
Current Research Projects
2022–24. PI. “Martyrs to Ghosts, Ghosts to Martyrs: Transnational Commemoration of the Second World War in Asia.” General Research Fund, Hong Kong Research Grants Council.
2022. PI. “the Social Lives of Dead Bodies: Technologies of Identifications and the Politics of Memorialization in China.” Direct Grant for Research, The Chinese University of Hong Kong.
|CHES1000||Introduction to Chinese Studies|
|CHES5110||Selected Themes on Chinese Media|
|CHES6010||China Seminar I|
|CHES6020||China Seminar II|