The Chinese University of Hong Kong Department of History Department of History
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TSE Wai Kit Wicky
TSE Wai Kit Wicky

BA, MPhil (CUHK); PhD (University of Pennsylvania)
Associate Professor, Department of History, CUHK; Associate Director, Centre for Chinese History, CUHK

Room 102, 1/F, Fung King Hey Building, CUHK, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong
(852) 3943 1762

I am interested in the military and social history of China in the period between the third century BC and the sixth century AD. My research mainly follows five tracks. The first asks the question of what violence meant and how notions of violence competed with one another. The second focuses on how warfare shaped, and was being shaped by, various social, cultural, and political factors. The third explores how real and imagined frontiers formed and the factors determined their shifting. The fourth examines the emergence of regional cultures and identities under the façade of a unified empire. The fifth concerns how the above four aspects associated with the development of political culture in early and early medieval China.

For teaching, I was fortunate enough to have many good mentors, from whom I have learned how to be a committed teacher. I believe teaching is the one profession that creates all other professions; therefore, I am proud to be a teacher and devote myself wholeheartedly to teaching my students. And I would love to keep on my passion of teaching and sharing my intellectual pursuit with students.

Research Interests
  • History of Violence
  • History of Warfare
  • Formation of Frontier
  • Regional cultures and identities
  • Political Culture
Selected Publications


  • The Collapse of China’s Later Han Dynasty, 25–220 CE: The Northwest Borderlands and the Edge of Empire (London: Routledge, 2018).
  • Chinese edition: 劉子鈞 譯《東漢的崩潰:西北邊陲與帝國之緣邊》 (上海:東方出版中心, 2023)。



  • Edited, with Introduction, China and Asia: A Journal in Historical Studies2 (2023): “Special Issue on War as a Means of Cultural Transfer”.


Articles and book chapters

  • “The Tactical Role of Rivers in Early Chinese Warfare.” Journal of Chinese Military History 12 (2023): 7-23.   DOI:10.1163/22127453-bja10017
  •  “Early Imperial China.” In Oxford Bibliographies in Chinese Studies. Ed. Tim Wright. New York: Oxford University Press, 2021.
    DOI: 10.1093/OBO/9780199920082-0192.
  • 〈亂世中的曙光——錢穆對中古早期歷史的一些看法〉(Ch’ien Mu’s view of early medieval China),載李帆、黃兆強、區志堅主編《重訪錢穆》(Revisiting Ch’ien Mu) (臺北:秀威資訊科技股份有限公司, 2021), pp. 203-212.
  • “Opportunism in Foreign Affairs in First Century BCE China: Chen Tang, His Fellows, and Their Patrons.” T’oung Pao 107 (2021): 233-261.
  • 〈在理想與現實之間:《大學衍義補》所見丘濬的軍事觀 〉(Between Ideal and Reality: Qiu Jun’s View of Military Affairs in the Daxue yanyi bu) 《明史研究論叢》 18(2021): 37-46.
  • “Violence and Warfare in Early Imperial China,” in The Cambridge World History of Violence, Volume I: The Prehistoric and Ancient Worlds, edited by Garrett G. Fagan, Linda Fibiger, Mark Hudson and Matthew Trundle (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020), pp. 277-295.
  • 〈漢帝國緣邊與內部的「游離群體」―—兼論秦漢帝國天下觀的想像與現實〉(A preliminary survey of the free-floating elements in early imperial China). 동서인문 (東西人文) Journal of East-West Humanities vol. 12 (2019): 45-65.
  •  “Fabricating Legitimacy in a Peripheral Regime: Imperial Loyalism and Regionalism in the Northwestern Borderlands under the Rule of the Former Liang (301-376).” Early Medieval China 24 (2018): 108-130.
  • “The Latter Han Empire and the End of Antiquity,” in the Routledge Handbook of Early Chinese History, edited by Paul Goldin (London: Routledge, 2018), pp. 180-196.
  •  “Warfare,” in the Routledge Handbook of Early Chinese History, edited by Paul Goldin (London: Routledge, 2018), pp. 319-335.
  •  “Cutting the Enemy’s Line of Supply: The Rise of the Tactic and Its Use in Early Chinese Warfare.” Journal of Chinese Military History 6.2 (2017): 131-156.
  • 〈何謂「中古」?——「中古」一詞及其指涉時段在中國史學中的模塑〉,載《中國中古史集刊》(第二輯),北京:商務印書館,2016,頁 3-19。
  • 〈漢宣帝一朝的大戰略取向及其決策原因試探 〉,載黎明釗編 《漢帝國的制度與社會秩序》香港:牛津大學出版社,2012,頁185-206。
  • 〈論漢高帝一朝的北境動亂〉, 《漢學研究 》25.1 (2007): 31-58。
  • 〈長平之戰(前260): 大戰略失調所導致的軍事災難〉,《中國文化研究所學報 》45 (2005): 1-22。
  • 〈「正統」、「德運」與「漢化」──略論北魏的推定德運〉, 收入黎明釗、李廣健、范家偉主編:《史學傳薪:社會、學術、文化的探索》,香港:中華書局, 頁131-153。
  • 〈孫吳彈性外交述論〉,《漢學研究 》22.1 (2004): 21-46。
  • 〈高歡「功臣集團」的形成與東魏的政治衝突〉,《中國文化研究所學報》 新11期 (2002): 85-118.


Book reviews

  • 社會與文化史視野的中國武術──讀《止戈為武:中華武術在香江(增訂版)》與《緯武經文:創建中國武術的近代歷程》《讀書雜誌》2022.5: 115-118
  • “Review of Yuri Pines, The Book of Lord Shang: Apologetics of State Power in Early China.” Journal of Chinese Military History 8 (2019): 107-109.
  • “Review of Rafe de Crespigny, Fire over Luoyang: A History of the Later Han Dynasty, 23-220 AD.” Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society Series 3, 2017. doi:10.1017/S1356186317000074
  • “Review of K. E. Brashier, Public Memory in Early China,” Frontiers of History in China 1.1 (2016): 163-166.
  • “Review of Military Culture in Imperial China, edited by Nicola Di Cosmo,” Frontiers of History in China 6.3 (2011): 463-466
  • “Review of Mark Edward Lewis, China between Empires: The Northern and Southern Dynasties.” (in Chinese) 漢學研究 (Chinese Studies) 28.1 (March 2010): 389-396.
  • “Review of David A. Graff, Medieval Chinese Warfare, 300-900.” (in Chinese) 漢學研究 (Chinese Studies) 20.2 (Dec 2002): 431-438.
  • “Review of Li Ping, Bei Wei Pingcheng shidai (The Pingcheng Era of the Northern Wei Dynasty, 386-534 CE)” 評李憑《北魏平城時代》. 新史學 (New History) Vol. XI, no. 4 (Dec 2000): 123-129.
Research Projects
Year Research Project
2023-2025 The “Free-floating Elements” in Early Imperial China —The Illicit Mobility of the Runaway Population and Bureaucratic Responses
General Research Fund (GRF) by the HKSAR Research Grants Council
2021-2023 In the Thick of War — Depicting Military Operational Experiences in Early and Early Medieval China
General Research Fund (GRF) by the HKSAR Research Grants Council
2020-2021 The Vision of Empire and Statecraft in First-Century B.C. China
Direct Grant for Research by Faculty of Arts, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
2018-2020 War as a Necessary Evil—Violence and Warfare in Early Medieval China
General Research Fund (GRF) by the HKSAR Research Grants Council
2016-2018 Forging a New Political Order on the Edge of the Empire—Legitimacy, Ethnicity, and the Northwestern Borderlands in Early Medieval China
Early Career Scheme (ECS) by the HKSAR Research Grants Council
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