Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 2011;
M.A., University of California, Berkeley, 2007;
Università di Roma "La Sapienza", 2000.
My primary focus is early China. I am particularly interested in the ways imperial authority was represented and justified in the historiography, literature, and material culture of the Western Han Dynasty (3rd-1st century BCE). My current research concentrates on discourses about the legitimation of power and on the relationship between human agency and metaphysical forces. Through a cross-cultural analysis that involves the ancient Mediterranean world and Greco-Roman historiography, I historicize different approaches to divinity, monotheism, public and private ritual behaviors, and institutionalized religion. My final goal is the establishment, between East and West, of a shared vocabulary for the "sacred," and of an open dialogue that entails different understandings and practices concerning the perceived moral bases of societies and individual rights. I teach courses on ancient Asian civilizations as well as on comparative political, cultural, and religious history.
Essays in Edited Volumes
Fellowships and Awards