Personal profile

Personal profile

Hi, I am a Doctor of Philosophy, working at Royal Holloway University as a Lecturer in Political Theory. My monograph in French Le corps ascétique was published in 2023, by Éditions Kimé (Paris). Departing from Nietzsche's Genealogy of Morals, I argue that life-affirming ascetic practice involves techniques of the self that are physiological, emotive, and perceptive in both European and Chinese aesthetic and ethical contexts. My academic publications and presentations can be viewed on Academia. You can also learn more about my lectures, and conference talks, and events on philosophy and art on my Website and Youtube channel

In 2022 I was granted a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Action Award for my research project entitled "Care of the Self and Ethics for the Other". In this project, I compare Foucault’s care ethics and biopolitics to Daoist nourishing life (yangsheng) as an art of living through the practice of bodily techniques — for instance, sexual intercourse and inner alchemy — which transforms the vital forces of yin and yang in lived bodies and the cosmos. 

Currently, I'm working on the transcultural potentials of self-care in Foucault, in relation to the feminist aspect of Chinese philosophy of self-cultivation, where the yin vital force (as the reposing, caring, and grounding energy as opposed to the active yang force) is particularly nourishing and empowering, and thus crucial to the formation of the ethical subject of care.

In the long term, I aim at a transdisciplinary and impact-oriented project on the philosophy of self-cultivation. I'm interested in how Daoism as a way of life—in dialogue with Foucault’s care ethics and biopolitics—contributes to reflections on AI, health and environment.  The Daoist notion of immortality, for instance, considers the durability of all forms of being, including plants, minerals, animals, etc., because the prescription of nourishing life is not exclusive to humans. In this sense, I argue that Daoism possesses rich theoretical resources for considering philosophy in terms of alternative arts of living in the future – as ‘techniques of the self’ to care for the self, others, and the cosmos – in a way that is both critical and prescriptive.

I am the secretary of the executive committee of the Society of European Philosophy (SEP), a member of the British Society for the History of Philosophy (BSHP), and that of the British Society of Aesthetics (BSA) and the Gender Institute (GI) of Royal Holloway College.


Research interests

Nietzsche and Post-Kantian German Philosophy

Chinese Philosophy (Daoism, Confucianism, Buddhism)

20th Century French Philosophy (Phenomenology, Existientialism, Poststructuralism)

Sex, Gender, and Sexuality

Environment, Health, and AI Technology


PY1102 Introductory Ethics Seminar

PY3901 Self-Cultivation in Chinese Philosophy

PY5003 20th Century French Philosophy

PR1520 Introduction to Political Theory

PR2490 Contemporary Political Theory

Summer School Module at University College London: One Week with Chinese Philosophy: Yin-Yang, Body, and Gender

Other work

My satire on ethnic discrimination (against Asian community in particular) in Paris during the pandemics in 2020 on the website of the Buffett Institute for Global Affairs of Northwestern University: Bas les masques !

My talk in French on bodily and spiritual practices of self-cultivation in Chinese ancient philosophy (Neo-Daoism/Xuanxue) in a research presentation contest Paris ("Ma thèse en 180 secondes", with Chinese subtitle): Le corps ascétique. You can also check out the official video of the contest MT180 PSL on YouTube.

My talk in German "Der Körper im antiken China: Ji Kang und seine asketische Praxis" at the University of Freiburg (Germany), available on YouTube.

My discussion on the way in which Daoist epistemology and metaphysics of "suppleness" can help to reconsider crimes and violence, and the potential socio-political impact of this research. I also commented on the interdisciplinary method of the project which engages actively with AI technology, traditional Chinese medicine, social sciences, and education. The recordings of the lecture and the discussion are available on YouTube.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Education/Academic qualification

Education, FHEA, Talent 2, Royal Holloway, University of London

Award Date: 1 Dec 2024

Philosophy, Doctor of Philosophy/PhD, Le corps ascétique, École Normale Supérieure

Award Date: 27 Jul 2020

Philosophy, DAAD Visiting Scholar, Methodology of Nietzsche's Genealogy, University of Freiburg

Award Date: 1 Jul 2019

Philosophy, Master of Arts/MA, THE LIVED BODY IN HEIDEGGER, MERLEAU-PONTY AND DERRIDA, Louisiana State University

Award Date: 18 Dec 2015

English Literature, Bachelor of Arts/BA, Beijing Language and Culture University

Award Date: 19 Jun 2014

English Literature, Exchange Programme, Newcastle University

Award Date: 1 Jul 2013

External positions

Postdoctoral Researcher, Fudan University

Oct 2020Dec 2021

Curator of Academic Publications, École Normale Supérieure

Jan 2017Jul 2018