Elizabeth Remick

Contact Info:
Tufts University
Dept. of Political Science
Packard Hall
Medford, MA 02155

Office: 617.627.5848
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Associate Professor

Comparative Politics, East Asia

Ph.D., Cornell University, 1996

Elizabeth Remick is Associate Professor of Political Science at Tufts University. She teaches courses on Chinese Politics, political corruption, and gender, work and politics in East Asia. Her current project examines a historical issue from Republican China (1911-1949): how the system of prostitution affected the construction of local state institutions in different parts of the country. It looks at the ways local governments' decisions about how (or whether) to tax and regulate prostitution influenced their ability to build modern states that could provide roads, armies, schools, and other governmental functions. The book argues that states' decisions about the gendered business of prostitution thus had a direct effect on the structure and function of local states.

Professor Remick holds a B.A. in Political Science and Chinese Language from Wellesley College, and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Government from Cornell University. Before coming to Tufts, she taught at the University of Oregon, and also taught English at the Xiangtan Mining Institute in Xiangtan, Hunan, China. She received a China Research Award from the American Council of Learned Societies/Social Science Research Council in 2002, and held a post-doctoral fellowship from the Harvard University Fairbank Center for East Asian Research in 2000. In 2000, she received the Tufts University Undergraduate Initiative in Teaching (UNITE) Award for Junior faculty.

Chinese Politics
Comparative Revolutions
Gender, Work and Politics in East Asia
Seminar: Power and Politics in China
Seminar: State Building in Europe and Asia
Sophomore Seminar: Comparative Political Corruption
International Research Colloquium II



  • Building Local States: China in the Republican and Post-Mao Eras. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Asia Center Press, East Asian Monograph Series. 2004.
  • Regulating Prostitution in China: Gender and Local Statebuilding 1900-1937. Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 2014.


  • "Police-Run Brothels in Republican Kunming." In journal Modern China, vol. 33 #4 (October 2007), pp. 423-461.
  • "Prostitution Taxes and Local State-Building in Republican China." In journal Modern China vol. 29 #1 (January 2003), pp. 38-70.
  • "The Significance of Variation in Local States: The Case of Twentieth-Century China." In journal Comparative Politics vol. 34 #4 (July 2002), pp. 399-418.
  • "Big Plans, Empty Pockets: Local Exactions in Republican and Post-Mao China." In journal Twentieth-Century China Vol. XXV No. 1 (November 1999), pp. 43-70.

Book Reviews

  • Review of Elaine Jeffreys, China, Sex and Prostitution (Routledge, 2004), for China Quarterly, 181 (March 2005): 179-180.
  • Review of Tyrene White, ed., China Briefing 2000 (Westview, 2000), for China Quarterly, 165 (March 2001): 195-197.