Mary Ting Yi Lui is a professor of American studies and history at Yale University. Her primary research interests include Asian American history, urban history, women's and gender studies, and public history. She is the author of The Chinatown Trunk Mystery: Murder, Miscegenation, and Other Dangerous Encounters in Turn-of-the-Century New York City (2005), a cowinner of the best history book prize from the Association of Asian American Studies. The book uses a unsolved 1909 murder case to examine race, gender, and interracial sexual relations in the cultural, social, and spatial formation of New York City Chinatown from 1870 to 1920. She is currently working on a new book entitled "Making Model Minorities: Asian Americans, Race, and Citizenship in Cold War America at Home and Abroad," which examines the history of Asian Americans and U.S. cultural diplomacy in Asia in the early years of the Cold War.
This lecture discusses the ways in which scholars of history can use the built environment as a means to understanding the past. The lecture discusses how historians should understand the built environment as shaped by social relations and political and cultural ideologies such as race and gender. This lecture discusses what the field of cultural geography has to offer historians.