Yirui Ma

Position title: TA: History 308 with Lecturer Tyler Lehrer

Email: yma352@wisc.edu

Advisor: Judd Kinzley

Office: 4266 Mosse Humanities Building
Mailbox: 4070 Mosse Humanities Building
Office Hours: By Appointment

Yirui Ma headshot


I am interested in the borderlands history of Ming and Qing China. My MA thesis examines how borders transformed the Liaodong borderland, the southernmost part of the northeast China from the 15th to early 18th centuries. Drawing upon Veritable Records, the Yŏnhaengnok collection, local gazetteers, archives of the Liaodong military commission, travel accounts, commonplace jottings, personal essays, poems, letters, and epitaphs, I argue that the border relationship of Liaodong was largely mediated by local actors rather than at the central level, and that local people on both sides of the borders creatively chose their modes of interaction with the borders, depending on how they understood border(s): as a political technology, an institution, a physical barrier, or a cultural demarcation.

I also work on digital humanities projects.



B.A. Xiamen University


  • East Asian History

MA Title

  • Encompassing Boundaries of the Ming and Early Qing Liaodong

Courses Taught as Instructor

  • Asian/Hist 103