Photo of Assistant Professor Xiaofei Gao
Assistant Professor


Mailing address:
CU Denver History Department
Campus Box 182
P.O. Box 173364
Denver, CO 80217-3364

Physical Location:
1201 Larimer Street
Room 3102
Denver, CO 80204

Fall 2021 Office Hours: 3:30 pm-5pm on Wednesdays and by appointment, please email.

Expertise Areas
Modern China and East Asia, social history, labor history, gender and sexuality, environmental history, global history

Ph.D., History, University of California, Santa Cruz, 2018

M.A., History, University of California, Santa Cruz, 2013

B.A., History, Nankai University, China, 2008

Xiaofei Gao is a historian of modern China with research interests in social and labor history, gender and sexuality, and environmental history. She is currently working on a book manuscript that argues for the centrality of labor and working men and women to the history of twentieth-century China. It traces the connections between resource extraction, work, and coastal communities in the context of Japanese empire building and Chinese nation making in Northeast China. Her research has been funded by the American Council of Learned Societies Program, Japan Foundation, Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation, and University of California. Before joining CU Denver in 2020, she was a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Asia Center at Harvard University and visiting lecturer at Mount Holyoke College.

Intro to East Asia: Since 1800

Modern China

Global Labor

“Agriculture in the Sea: Seaweed Cultivation in Twentieth-Century Manchuria,” Asia Center Seminar Series, Harvard University, April 26, 2019.

“Contested Coasts: Aquaculture and Rural Industrialization in Socialist China, 1958-78,” Association for Asian Studies 2019 Annual Conference, Denver, March 21-24, 2019.

“Making a Coastal Revolution: Farmers, Fishermen, and Socialism in Northeast China, 1946-76,” Asia Center Fellows Seminar Series, Harvard University, March 1, 2019.

“Catch the Wave: The People’s Fisheries and the Socialist Reform in Chinese Coastal Villages,” The Association for Asian Studies 2018 Annual Conference, Washington, DC., March 22-25, 2018.

“Life and Death in the Fisheries of Northeastern China, 1905-1907,” in Still Facing East: International Scholars on Japanese Culture (Kraków: Wydawnictwo Nowa Strona, 2016), 21-31.

Chinese translation of Gail Hershatter, “Did Rural Chinese Women Have a Revolution? If So, What Remains?” Research on Women in Modern Chinese History (Taipei: Research on Women in Modern Chinese History, Academic Sinica, 2015, Vol. 26), 193–210.

Co-authored with Li Shaobing, “From Moral Instruction to Educational Relief: Transformation of Charitable Institutions in the Cities of Beijing and Tianjin in the Early twentieth Century,” Historical Archives (Beijing: The First Historical Archives of China, Vol. 115, 2009), 97-103. Published in Chinese.