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Department of Archaeology

 

Biography

 

Dr Guohua YANG is from central China, close to the Yellow River. He took an MA in Public Archaeology at UCL Institute of Archaeology and in the history of art and archaeology at SOAS, University of London (2003-04). He was employed as Deputy Director, Expert Committee of China Cultural Heritage Foundation, in the Ministry of Culture, P.R. China (2008-10).  In addition, he worked as a Heritage Expert (National Programme Assistant for Culture) at UNESCO Office Beijing (2008-09) focussed on the production of an international textbook: Paper Conservation Guidelines: The Methodology of Paper Conservation and Paper Making Traditions in East Asia. He also worked as a free-lance Assistant Researcher on the project “Chinese Sites for UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List: Presentation and Management” for SOAS, University of London, UK, in collaboration with Bologna University, Italy (2009-10). He is the author of World Heritage in China (English and Chinese), Beijing: Central Party Literature Press, 2008. He came to University of Cambridge in 2009 to start a PhD in Archaeology on World Heritage Studies, under the supervision of Professor Marie Louise Stig Sørensen (Supervisor) and Professor Martin Jones (Advisor). Dr Yang is currently Senior Research Associate, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research (and a Post-Doctoral Member of the Cambridge Heritage Research Centre), and Co-Principal Investigator of the Project “The Yangshao Culture: 100 Year Research History and Heritage Impact” (2018-24), at the Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge. 

Research

 

Dr Yang's interest is ancient cultures and ancient civilizations of China. Previous projects have investigated the use of the concept of patriotism in the state promotion of heritage in China, the ideological significance of World Heritage designation, and development of the Chinese script.

In his current position as Senior Research Associate and Co-Principal Investigator on the project ‘Yangshao Culture: 100 Year Research History and Heritage Impact’; he focus on the roles of substantial historiographic research and museum studies and investigate constructions in the dissemination of a notion of the Yanshao Culture as regional and national heritage. This research will investigate what effects emerging practices of Heritage Studies and museums building programs have on the state’s ideological use of the Yangshao Culture, and whether the notions of authenticity, difference and uniqueness on which local museums are based will undermine the ‘official narrative’ which uses Yangshao Culture objects to legitimise the current ethnic configuration of China.

 

Publications

Key publications: 

 

Yang, G. & M.L.S. Sørensen 2022. A journey back in time: The Character of the Yangshao Culture in 100 Objects (English and Chinese), Shaanxi Normal University General Publishing House. (accepted and forthcoming book)

Sørensen, M.L.S. & G. Yang 2022. Clever Hands: How to look at the Yangshao Culture Painted Pottery (English and Chinese), Shaanxi Normal University General Publishing House. (accepted and forthcoming book)

Sørensen, M.L.S. & G. Yang 2022. “‘Discipline Formation’: the Yangshao Culture and the European Influences in the Development of a Modern Chinese Archaeology”, European Review, Cambridge University Press. (accepted and forthcoming paper)

Sørensen, M.L.S. & G. Yang 2022. “Under the Surface: Development of an explorative archaeology in China”, Archaeology, History, Philosophy and Heritage: Essays in Honour of Tim Murray, Springer. (accepted and forthcoming paper)

Sørensen, M.L.S. and G. Yang. “The 100 Years Anniversary of the Discovery of the Yangshao Culture: the nature of a celebration”, CHRC Bulletin, October 2021: 12: 2-3.

Yang, G.; Sørensen, M.L.S. and B. Davenport. News on the research project “Yangshao Culture: 100 Year Research History and Heritage Impact”, CHRC Bulletin, on 15 January 2019: 1-2.    

Yang, G. & S. Tan 2013. Mysterious, Holy, Imperial: Splendours of Jade in the Yuzu Museum of Art in China (English and Chinese). Beijing: China Social Sciences Press.

Yang, G. 2008. World Heritage in China (English and Chinese). Beijing: Zhongyang wenxian chubanshe (Central Party Literature Press).

Yang, G. 2007. (ed.) The Handbook of Marks on Chinese Ceramics (for Gerald’s new edition), UK.

Yang, G. 2005. (ed.) Ancient Chinese Bronze Vessels Overseas (for T. Wang’s project), History of Art and Archaeology Department, SOAS and UCL Institute of Archaeology, University of London, UK.

Yang, G. 2001. (ed.) The Collected Works of Sanmenxia Archaeology, for Xu, H. & H. Yang. Singapore Trend (F.E.) Publishing Centre and Beijing: National Archives Press.

Yang, G. 2000. (ed.) The Discoveries and Researches of Guo State Tombs Sites, for Wang, B. Singapore Trend (F.E.) Publishing Centre and Beijing: China Social Science Academy Press.

Yang, G. 1996. Shijimo de muyangren (The End of the Century Shepherd). Beijing: International Culture Press (a book of Chinese poetry).

 

Other publications: 

Publications (including paper presentation): 

Yang, G. gave a paper Presentation of “Yangshao Culture and Yellow River Civilisation” at Luoyang Forum in Luoyang City, 24th October 2021.

Yang, G. gave a paper Presentation of “Yangshao Culture and World Heritage” to the First International Forum of the Yangshao Culture in Mianchi, 20th October 2021.

Yang, G. gave a paper Presentation of “The Yangshao Culture: 100 Year Research History and Heritage Impact” at the Architecture College, Taiyuan University of Technology, 14th August 2021.

Sørensen, M.L.S. and G. Yang. 2021 “Chinese archaeologists launch the fourth excavation at the Yangshao village site in the 99th year since Anderson’s first excavation in 1921”. (Project Updates | Cambridge Heritage Research Centre https://www.heritage.arch.cam.ac.uk/research-projects/yangshao/project-updates)

Sørensen, M.L.S. and G. Yang. “Heritage and politics: Chinese President Xi Jinping stresses ‘better understanding of Chinese civilization through archaeology’”, CHRC Bulletin, Nov. 2020: 22-3.

Yang, G. “The Yangshao Culture: 100 Year Research History and Heritage Impact” was presented to the Education Section in the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, in London on 10 April 2019.

Yang, G. and B. Davenport. Project poster presentation “The Yangshao Culture: 100 Year Research History and Heritage Impact” produced for the CHRC Heritage fair at the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research in Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge in October 2018.

 

Other Professional Activities

 

Dr Yang is a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland (since 2021) and a Fellow of the Cambridge University Philosophical Society (since 2012). He is a Visiting Professor at the Taiyuan University of Technology and Honorary Professor at the Architecture College of Taiyuan University of Technology from 2021. Currently, he is also a Member of the Editorial Board of The International Journal of Chinese Character Studies. He has been a Council Member of the International Artists’ Association since 1999.

 

Job Titles

Senior Research Associate, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research
Co-Principal Investigator, Yangshao Culture: 100 Year Research History and Heritage Impact

General Info

Not available for consultancy
Research Expertise / Fields of study: 
Museum Studies
Socio-Politics of the Past
Archaeological Theory
Heritage Management
Environmental Archaeology, Geoarchaeology, and Landscape studies
Cultural Heritage

Contact Details

gy216[at]cam.ac.uk
McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research
Department of Archaeology
Downing Street
Cambridge
CB2 3ER

Affiliations

Person keywords: 
East Asia, Neolithic, Museum Studies, Heritage Studies and Archaeology
Subjects: 
Archaeology
Heritage Studies
Themes: 
Environment, Landscapes and Settlement
Material Culture
Heritage
Geographical areas: 
Central Asia
East Asia
Periods of interest: 
Copper/Bronze Age
Neolithic
Other Historical
Other Prehistory