Daniel Fried

Associate Professor, Faculty of Arts - East Asian Studies Dept


Associate Professor, Faculty of Arts - East Asian Studies Dept



I specialize in comparative approaches to classical Chinese literature and intellectual history, addressing topics of how reading and writing practices are conceived and contextualized in ancient and medieval China, and how these compare to European modes of textuality.

In my recent book, Dao and Sign in History, these interests take the form of an investigation of Daoist semiotics: the first part of the work discusses this tradition in comparison with Continental philosophy of the relation of language to ethics, and the second examines the historical uses of Daoist semiotic thought in Six Dynasties China.

Currently, I am working on a book about the effect of printing on the changing character of Song dynasty reading and intellectual life.

I also do have subsidiary research interests in modern Chinese literature, as well as in European literatures, and often teach these topics, as well as courses in literary theory, at the undergraduate level. However, I only accept new graduate students who are planning to work on topics in Chinese literature or philosophy from the Warring States period through the Southern Song dynasty. 

Scholarly Activities

Research - Co-Editor, Routledge Studies in Comparative Chinese Literature and Culture

May 2020 - Ongoing

Routledge Studies in Comparative Chinese Literature and Culture is a new scholarly series intended to bridge Anglophone and Sinophone discussions of Chinese literary and cultural engagements with the rest of the world. Proposals for innovative, high-quality research on any subject within this field are welcome.

Research - Founding Chair, MLA Forum in pre-14th Century Chinese Literature

20180101 - 20181231

I organized the MLA forum in pre-14th century Chinese literature, and served as the first chair of the forum.

Admin - President, Association of Chinese and Comparative Literature

20171101 - 20190801


Dao and Sign in History: Daoist Arche-Semiotics in Ancient and Medieval China
Author(s): Daniel Fried
External Link: http://www.sunypress.edu/p-6614-dao-and-sign-in-history.aspx