The Magic of Concepts: History and the Economic in Twentieth-Century China
Rebecca E. Karl is Associate Professor of History at New York University. She is the author of Mao Zedong and China in the Twentieth-Century World: A Concise History and Staging the World: Chinese Nationalism at the Turn of the Twentieth Century, and co-translator (with Xueping Zhong) of Cai Xiang's Revolution and Its Narratives: China’s Socialist Literary and Cultural Imaginaries, 1949-1966, all also published by Duke University Press. She co-translated and coedited (with Lydia H. Liu and Dorothy Ko) The Birth of Chinese Feminism: Essential Texts in Transnational Theory.
This afterword in place of a conclusion presents a brief meditation on the problem of the magic concepts in the renewed elaboration in China studies of a sinocentric universalism. By way of conclusion, the afterword intends to be melancholic about the prospects for a genuinely critical China studies for our contemporary times.