Michael Nylan, professor at the University of California, Berkeley, is specialist of the history of Early China: the seven centuries of Warring States through Eastern Han (475 BC-AD 220). She received formal training at Berkeley, Cambridge University, Harvard, the Institute of Archaeology in Beijing, and Princeton, and informal training from Paul Serruys, Nathan Sivin, and Henry Rosemont, in the fields of the Chinese classics, history of science, and early philosophy.
The classics and masterworks in China and their later reception; material culture and archaeology in China; urban history, from antiquity to contemporary times; pleasure theories in early China through the Song period; the rhetoric of imperial rule.
"Logics of Legitimacy" in the Shangshu, one of the Five Classics of early China
This project aims to produce a new translation of one of the Five Classics of early China, the Documents classic or Shangshu (literally, the Venerable Documents), from a text reconstructed from Western and Eastern Han citations and parallels. The Documents(sometimes misnamed the Book of History) is one of the few compilations to have survived from the period prior to unification in 221 BC, apart from the Shang oracle bone inscriptions (OBI), a small collection of early bronze inscriptions, the Odes classic, and some original layers of the divination classic known as the Book of Changes or Yijing.
Chang'an 26 BCE: An Augustan Age in China? Seattle, University of Washington Press, 2014.
Exemplary Figures: a complete translation of Yang Xiong's Fayan, Seattle, University of Washington Press, March, 2013.
Yang Xiong and the Pleasures of Reading and Classical Learning in Han China, New Haven, The American Oriental Society, 2011.
China's Early Empires, supplement to The Cambridge History of China (vol. 1, Ch'in and Han), co-edited with Michael Loewe, Cambridge University Press, 2010.
The Five "Confucian" Classics, New Haven, Yale University Press, 2001.