Prof. Dr. LEI Yi 雷颐

Professor of Late Qing and Modern Chinese History, Institute of Modern History, Chinese Academy of Social Science (CASS)

lei-yiProf. Dr. LEI Yi is a historian of late-Qing and modern China. He is a native of Changsha (Hunan) and joined the Institute of Modern History (CASS) in 1985, where he pursues his research into modern Chinese intellectual history. He uses analyses of late-Qing’s administrative reforms to highlight the paradigm shift from revolution to modernization during the “Reform and Opening period” since 1978.

He publishes extensively on late Qing history and frequently writes essays and comments on current events in the press, in blogs and on Weibo (China’s equivalent of Twitter). Southern People Weekly nominated him for the “2011 List of China’s Most Interesting People”.


  •  A Delayed Modernisation 被延误的现代化 (Daxiang Publishing House, 2002)
  • Li Hongzhang and the Last Four Decades of the Qing Dynasty 李鸿章与晚清四十年, subtitled ‘an old bureaucrat and an empire’ 一个老官僚与一个帝国 (Shanxi People’s Publishing House, 2008)
  • Reflections of a Revolutionary’ 一位革命者的反思, on Li Xin 李新, Tencent History, 腾讯历史 30 July 2010.
  • The Qing Court Manufactured Revolutionaries‘ 清政府恰事革命党的制造厂,Southern Metropolitan Daily 南方都市报, 12 May 2011.
  • They Manufactured Revolution in the Xinhai Year’ 辛亥革命是被逼出来的, Global Times 环球时报, 11 October 2011.


  • Danny Wynn Ye Kwok’s Scientism in Chinese Thought, 1900-1950 (1965);
  • Paul A. Cohen’s Between Tradition and Modernity: Wang T’ao and Reform in late Ch’ing China (1974)
  • Min-chih Chou’s Hu Shih and Intellectual Choice in Modern China (1984).