Prof. Dr. Lothar von Falkenhausen

Bild von Lothar von Falkenhausen

Internationales Kolleg für Geisteswissenschaftliche Forschung "Schicksal, Freiheit und Prognose. Bewältigungsstrategien in Ostasien und Europa"
Ulrich-Schalk-Str. 3a
91056 Erlangen

Home Institution: Art History Department, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, UCLA (USA)

IKGF Visiting Fellow Sept. + Dec. 2011

(Last change of profile by end of stay)

IKGF Research Project:

Early Chinese Divination Texts and Bronze Inscriptions

Curriculum Vitae

I was born in Essen, West Germany, in 1959, and attended primary school and high school in Essen. After attending Bonn University with a double major in Sinology and Art History from 1977-1979, I studied archaeology at Peking University on a German Academic Exchange Service scholarship from 1977 to 1979. I thereafter became a graduate student at Harvard University, where I obtained an MA in East Asian Studies in 1982 and a PhD in archaeology in 1988; during that time, I participated in archaeological field work in Korea (1983 and 1984) and studied as a visiting research fellow at Kyoto University with a fellowship from the Japanese Ministry of Education. From 1988 to 1990, I taught as a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Asian Languages at Stanford University, and I spent the 1990-1991 academic year as a Getty Fellow at the Institute of Archaeology, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, in Beijing. After teaching for two years at the University of California, Riverside, I joined the faculty of the Art History Department at UCLA, where I have been teaching ever since; I was promoted to Full Professor in 1996, and since 2004 I have been serving concurrently as Associate Director of the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA. I have served as a visiting professor at the University of Heidelberg (1997), the École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris (1998), Kyôto University (2002-2003), the Chinese University of Hong Kong (2007), and the University of Münster (2008), and I have been affiliated as a visiting researcher with the Academia Sinica, Taiwan (1994-95), the Norwegian Academy of Sciences (2000), and the Research Institute for Humanity and Nature, Kyoto (2003).

My research concerns the archaeology of Bronze Age China, on which I have published two books and more than one hundred articles and reviews; I have also edited approximately half a dozen books, and for several years served as the founding co-editor of the Journal of East Asian Archaeology. In 1999-2004, I was the American PI of the International archaeological field project on Salt Archaeology in the Three Gorges of the Yangzi River; since 2009 I have been UCLA’s representative for the International Archaeological Field School at Yangguanzhai (Shaanxi).

I have been a citizen of the United States since 2004. In 2011, I was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Selected Publications


  • Chinese Society in the Age of Confucius (1000-250 BC): The Archaeological Evidence. Los Angeles: Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, UCLA, 2006.
  • Suspended Music: Chime-Bells in the Culture of Bronze Age China. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1993.

Edited Volumes

  • The Lloyd Cotsen Study Collection of Chinese Bronze Mirrors. 2 volumes. Los Angeles: Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, 2009/2011.
  • Studies of Chinese Art History in Honor of Professor Lothar Ledderose. Cahiers d’Extrême-Asie 17 (2010).
  • Salt Archaeology in China / Zhongguo yanye kaogu 中國鹽業考古. v. 1-2. (editor, with Li Shuicheng 李水城). Beijing: Kexue Chubanshe, 2006/2010.

Book Chapters and Articles (excluding review articles)

  • “The Royal Audience and Its Reflections in Western Zhou Bronze Inscriptions.” To appear in Writing and Literacy in Early China, Li Feng and David Prager Branner (eds.), pp. 239-270. Seattle, Wash.: University of Washington Press, 2011.
  • “The Bronzes of Ying and Their Inscriptions.” In Zhongguo gudai qingtongqi guoji yantaohui lunwenji 中國古代青銅器國際研討會論文集 (Collected Studies on Ancient Chinese Bronzes), Jenny So et al. (ed.), pp. 890-160. Shanghai: Shanghai Bowuguan, and Hong Kong: Xianggang Zhongwen Daxue Wenwuguan, 2010.
  • “Antiquarianism in Eastern Zhou Bronzes, and Its Significance.” To appear in Reinventing the Past: Archaism and Antiquarianism in the Chinese Arts and Visual Culture, Wu Hung (ed.), pp. 77-102. Chicago: ArtMedia Resources, 2010.
  • “From Action to Image in Early Chinese Art.” Cahiers d’Extrême-Asie 17 (2010): 51-91.
  • “The Xinzheng Bronzes and Their Funerary Contexts.” Zhongguo Wenhua Yanjiusuo xuebao tekan 2 (2009): 1-130 (Hong Kong: Chinese University of Hong Kong).
  • “Stages in the Development of “Cities” in pre-Imperial China.” In The Ancient City: New Perspectives on Urbanism in the Old and New World, Joyce Marcus and Jeremy Sabloff (eds.), pp. 209-228. Santa Fé: School of Advanced Studies Press, 2008.
  • “Archaeological Perspectives on the Philosophicization of Royal Zhou Ritual.” In Perceptions of Antiquity in China, Dieter Kuhn and Helga Stahl (ed.), pp. 135-175. Würzburger Sinologische Schriften. Heidelberg: edition forum, 2008.
  • “Xi Zhou tongqi mingwen de xingzhi” 西周銅器銘文的性質 (The nature of Western Zhou bronze inscriptions), Lai Guolong 來國龍 (trsl.). Kaoguxue yanjiu 考古學研究 6 (2006) (Festschrift for Professor Gao Ming), pp. 343-374.
  • “The Inscribed Bronzes from Yangjiacun: New Evidence on Social Structure and Historical Consciousness in Late Western Zhou China (c. 800 BC).” Proceedings of the British Academy 139 (2006): 239-295.
  • “The Salt of Ba: Reflections on the Role of the ‘Peripheries’ in the Production Systems of Bronze Age China.” Arts Asiatiques 61 (2006) (Festschrift for Michèle Pirazzoli-t’Serstevens, Alain Thote [ed.]), pp. 45-56.
  • "The E Jun Qi Metal Tallies: Inscribed Texts and Ritual Contexts." In Text and Ritual in Early China, Martin Kern (ed.), pp. 79-123. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2005.