Levi S. Gibbs
Associate Professor of Asian Societies, Cultures, and Languages
My research looks at regional representation and cultural politics in contemporary Chinese literature and performance. My first book, Song King: Connecting People, Places, and Past in Contemporary China (2018), examines how singers and songs come to represent regions, nations, and time periods, in the process becoming discursive sites for issues connected to social change. I have also edited two books—Faces of Tradition in Chinese Performing Arts (2020), which looks at how individual artists, scholars, and their works are influenced by and come to represent broader fields of cultural production, and Social Voices: The Cultural Politics of Singers around the Globe (2023), which explores how professional singers from around the world become topics for conversations regarding a range of cultural politics. The latter is intended to serve as a textbook for college courses at Dartmouth and elsewhere.
Asian Societies, Cultures and Languages
- B.A. Wesleyan University, 2002
- M.A. Ohio State University, 2009
- Ph.D. Ohio State University, 2013
Song King: Connecting People, Places, and Past in Contemporary China. University of Hawaii Press, 2018. Music and Performing Arts in Asia and the Pacific, 6. (2021 Paperback Edition) [CD Album available here]
Social Voices: The Cultural Politics of Singers around the Globe. University of Illinois Press, 2023.
Faces of Tradition in Chinese Performing Arts. Indiana University Press, 2020. Encounters: Explorations in Folklore and Ethnomusicology series.
Faces of Tradition in Chinese Performing Arts. Journal of Folklore Research, Volume 55, Number 1, January–April 2018.
"The Cultural Hybridity of Chineseness: Regional Transgression in Stories of Northern Shaanxi." Prism: Theory and Modern Chinese Literature 18 (2) (2021): 366–384.
"Retelling the Tale of Lan Huahua: Desire, Stigma, and Social Change in Modern China." CHINOPERL: Journal of Chinese Oral and Performing Literature 40 (1) (2021): 16–34.
"Improvised Songs of Praise and Group Sociality in Contemporary Chinese Banquet Culture." International Communication of Chinese Culture 7 (2) (2020): 133-146.
"Going Beyond the Western Pass: Chinese Folk Models of Danger and Abandonment in Songs of Separation." Modern China 46 (5) (2019): 490-520, doi:10.1177/0097700419874888.
"Faces of Tradition in Chinese Performing Arts." Journal of Folklore Research 55 (1) (2018): 1–19. doi:10.2979/jfolkrese.55.1.01
"Chinese Singing Contests as Sites of Negotiation Among Individuals and Traditions." Journal of Folklore Research 55 (1) (2018): 49–75. doi:10.2979/jfolkrese.55.1.03
"'Forming Partnerships': Extramarital Songs and the Promotion of China's 1950 Marriage Law." The China Quarterly, vol. 233 (2018): 211–229, doi:10.1017/S0305741017001692.
"Culture Paves the Way, Economics Comes to Sing the Opera: Chinese Folk Duets and Global Joint Ventures." Asian Ethnology 76 (1) (2017): 43-63.
"Translating Language, Place, and Performance." In Timothy Lloyd, ed. What Folklorists Do: Professional Possibilities in Folklore Studies. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2021. pp. 126–129.
"A Semiotics of Song: Fusing Lyrical and Social Narratives in Contemporary China." In Lijun Zhang and Ziying You, eds. Chinese Folklore Studies Today: Discourse and Practice. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2019. pp. 94–117.
"Folksongs." In Victor Mair, Mark Bender, Levi Gibbs, Peace Lee, and Fu Haihong, "Folklore and Popular Culture." Oxford Bibliographies in Chinese Studies. Ed. Tim Wright. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.
"Folk Drama and Ritual." In Victor Mair, Mark Bender, Levi Gibbs, Peace Lee, and Fu Haihong, "Folklore and Popular Culture." Oxford Bibliographies in Chinese Studies. Ed. Tim Wright. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.
Adam Kielman, Sonic Mobilities: Producing Worlds in Southern China (University of Chicago Press, 2022). Asian Ethnology Vol. 82, No. 1 (2023): 177–181.
Ziying You, Folk Literati, Contested Tradition, and Heritage in Contemporary China: Incense Is Kept Burning (Indiana University Press, 2020). China Review International Vol. 27, No. 1 (2020): 76–81, doi: 10.1353/cri.2020.0021.
Nancy Yunhwa Rao, Chinatown Opera Theater in North America, University of Illinois Press, 2017. China Review International (2016) Vol. 23, No. 2: 187–190, doi: 10.1353/cri.2016.0108.
Ka-ming Wu, Reinventing Chinese Tradition: The Cultural Politics of Late Socialism, University of Illinois Press, 2015. Journal of American Folklore (Summer 2017) Vol. 130, No. 517: 361-363.
Keith Howard, ed. Music as Intangible Cultural Heritage: Policy, Ideology and Practice in the Preservation of East Asian Traditions, Ashgate, 2012. CHIME Journal 20 (2015): 143-146.
Works In Progress
Book Monograph: Inner Other: Morality and Modernity in Tales of China's Yellow Earth
Book Monograph: Culture Workers