Professor Mo teaches courses on modern China and women’s and gender history. Her research focus on China’s production of its national image. She is currently at work on a book manuscript entitled From Shanghai to Shangri-La: Zhuang Xueben and China’s Ethnographic Frontier. It focuses on the life and work of Shanghai photographer Zhuang Xueben, whose explorations and photography of the Sino-Tibetan frontiers in the 1930s and 1940s provide one of the broadest and most striking visual records of the region and its diverse peoples. This project won a Henry Luce Foundation/ ACLS Program in China Studies Postdoctoral Fellowship. Professor Mo’s first book, Touring China: A History of Travel Culture, 1912-1949, explores how early twentieth century Chinese sightseers described the destinations that they visited, and how their travel accounts gave Chinese readers a means to imagine their vast country. Drawing on an extensive range of sources, this book de-Westernizes the history of tourism in China. In addition to original research, Professor Mo has also been active in academic translation and has translated academic writings in both directions—from English to Chinese and from Chinese to English—forging connections with academic communities in both Anglophone and Sinophone worlds.
Touring China: A History of Travel Culture, 1912-1949 (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2021).
“Boundaries and Crossings: Mobility, Travel, and Society in China, 1500-1953—A Survey of the Field,” Mobility in History, Vol. 6, 2015: 150-157.
“The New Frontier, Zhuang Xueben and Xikang Province,” in Yongtao Du and Jeff Kyong-McClain eds., Chinese History in Geographical Perspective (Lanham, Maryland: Lexington Books, 2013), 121-139.
Chinese translation: Gail Hershatter, “Getting a Life: The Production of 1950s Women Labor Models in Rural Shaanxi,” Chongdu zhongguo nüxing shengming gushi/ Beyond Exemplar Tales: Women’s Biography in Chinese History (Taipei: Wunan Publishing Company, 2011), 59-82.