Dr Ariel Shangguan: the key word for me is exploring

10 Sep 2021

“I think International Studies is a very diverse and dynamic department, and the same can be said about XJTLU.” Dr Ariel Shangguan says. She joined the Department of International Studies of School of Humanities and Social Sciences on June 2021.

“One of the best things about an institution with a relatively short history is that you haven’t yet set in the ways you do things and therefore has a larger room for innovation and improvement.”

Lying her research interest in how social and political concepts that are rooted in specific intellectual and philosophical traditions become translated and transplanted into different political and cultural context, the key word of doing research for Dr Shangguan is “exploring”.

“I found it both strange and intriguing that when two people from different parts of the world are talking about the same subject, they somehow always assume they understand the subject the same way the other person does.” She says; “though the truth is, under most circumstances, they might have completely different conceptions of the same thing they are talking about.”

“I want to know how concepts and knowledge travel, just like the ways commodities travel, and what happens when they reach their destinations.”

The enthusiasm of discovering the unknown and exploring the uncertainty also brings Dr Shangguan to different conferences and workshops all over the world, “I got to see many places that I would not have gone if it wasn’t for those conferences and I really enjoyed them.”

“This is the best part of doing research, the future is uncertain and that is in a way very exciting.”

By Ying Jiang

10 Sep 2021