Weiting Guo

Limited Term Assistant Professor
Office: AQ 6232
Email: weitingg@sfu.ca 

Areas of Study: TAIWAN


I was born and raised in Taipei, a city known for its pop culture and night markets. I became interested in Chinese history when I studied law at the National Taiwan University (NTU). After my master programs at the law schools of NTU and the University of Southern California (USC), I entered the University of British Columbia and received my Ph.D. in Asian Studies.

My major interest lies in law and violence, local politics, and crime and punishment in Taiwan and late imperial China. I am currently revising my dissertation for publication as a monograph entitled Rough Justice: Summary Execution and Legal Culture in Qing China, 1644-1911. Drawing on abundant sources from central and local archives, Rough Justice examines how the extensive use of an extraordinary punishment gave rise to the culture of rough justice and significantly transformed the criminal justice system before the advent of Westernization.

My latest project explores law and local society in 19th-century coastal China (especially Zhejiang) and Taiwan, with a particular focus on the negotiation between legality and illegality. I currently serve as the Secretary of the International Society for Chinese Law and History (ISCLH) and the External Advisory Committe Member of North American Taiwan Studies Association (NATSA).

Research Interests

Social and legal history of China and Taiwan (circa 1800 to the present).


Routledge Companion to Chinese Legal History, co-edited with Thomas Buoye (Routledge, forthcoming)


  • "Zhang Gang’s Diary: Life and Politics in Japanese-occupied Wenzhou," in Japanese Occupation of China: New Inquiries and Texts, edited by Norman Smith, Craig Smith, and Jonathan Henshaw (Vancouver: UBC Press, forthcoming)
  • “A Different Kind of War: Summary Execution and the Politics of Men of Force in Late-Qing China, 1864–1911,” in Global Lynching and Collective Violence: Vol. 1: Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, edited by Michael J. Pfeifer (Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2017), 34–77.
  • “Social Practice and Judicial Politics in ‘Grave Destruction’ Cases in Qing Taiwan, 1683–1895,” in Chinese Law: Knowledge, Practice, and Transformation, 1530s to 1950s, eds. Li Chen and Madeleine Zelin (Leiden: Brill, February 2015).
  • “Living with Disputes: Zhang Gang Diary (1888–1942) and the Life of a Community Mediator in Late Qing and Republican China,” Journal of the Canadian Historical Association 24.2 (2013)


  • Harvard Yenching Library
  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC)
  • Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation