Chu, Cecilia 朱慰先
BAA (Ryerson); MA (PolyU); MSc (HKU); PhD (UC Berkeley)

Cecilia L. Chu is Assistant Professor in the Division of Landscape Architecture at the University of Hong Kong, where she teaches urban theory, urban design, and architectural and landscape history. Dr. Chu worked as a professional designer in Canada and Hong Kong and research consultant for several NGOs focusing on urban design and conservation strategies. Her areas of expertise include history and theory of architecture and urbanism, heritage conservation, urban design, and cultural landscapes in Asia. Her articles have been published in a number of anthologies and leading academic journals, including Journal of Historical Geography, Urban Studies, Geoforum, Habitat International, Planning Perspectives, Design Issues, and Traditional Dwellings and Settlements Review. She is Principal Investigator of two research projects funded by the Hong Kong Research Grants Council (RGC): Speculative Urbanism: Modernist Planning and Housing Practices in Colonial Hong Kong, 1912-1939; and Shaping a New Moral Topography: Emergent Roles of Landscape Design in the Planning of Chinese Cities, 1911-1949. Dr. Chu is an editorial board member of the Journal of Royal Asiatic Society Hong Kong (JRASHK) and advisory council member of the International Association for the Study of Traditional Environments (IASTE). She earned her Ph.D. in Architecture from the University of California, Berkeley.

Recent Publications  

Chu, Cecilia L. Speculative Modern: Colonial Urban Development and the Making of Hong Kong 1880-1950 (under contract with Routledge, to be published in its Planning, History and Environment Series, 2019).

Chu, Cecilia L. “‘Placing ‘Asia’ against the ‘West’: Occidentalism and the Production of Architectural Images in Shanghai and Hong Kong.” Architectural Theory Review (in press, to be published in December 2018).

Chu, Cecilia L. “The Afterlives of Modern Housing.” In Routledge Companion to Contemporary Architectural History, edited by Duanfang Lu. London; New York: Routledge (in press, to be published in August 2018).

Chu, Cecilia L. “The Propensity of Things: The Portuguese Calcada and Its Historicity.” Current Anthropology (in press, to be published in August 2018).

Chu, Cecilia L. and Zhiyong Liang. “建构理想的家居:20世纪初期中国大众刊物中的现代居所概念” [Conceptualizing the Ideal Home: The Modern Dwelling in Mass-market Journals in Early 20th Century China]. 時代建築 Time + Architecture 3 (2018): 106-111.

Chu, Cecilia L. “Envisioning Future Pasts: Heritage and Emergent Activism in Postcolonial Macau and Hong Kong.” In Urban Asias: Essays on Futurity Past and Present, edited by Tim Bunnell and Daniel P.S. Goh, 64-76. Berlin: Jovis Verlag, 2018.

Chu, Cecilia L. “Constructing a New Domestic Discourse: The Modern Home in Architectural Journals and Mass Market Texts in Early 20th Century China.” Journal of Architecture 22, 6 (September 2017): 1066-1091.

Chu, Cecilia L. “Narrating the Mall City.” In Stefan Al, ed., Mall City: Hong Kong’s Dreamworlds of Consumption, 83-90. Hong Kong University Press, 2016.

Chu, Cecilia L. “Spectacular Macau: Visioning Futures for A World Heritage City.” Geoforum 65 (October 2015): 440-450.

Chu, Cecilia L. and Romola Sanyal. “Spectacular Cities of Our Time.” Geoforum 65 (October 2015): 399-402.

Chu, Cecilia L. “Aspects of Urbanization in China: Shanghai, Hong Kong, Guangzhou” (Book review). Planning Perspectives 30, 4 (2015), 665-668.

Chu, Cecilia. “Shanzheng and Gongde: Moral Regulation and Narratives of ‘Good Government’ in Colonial Hong Kong.” Journal of Historical Geography 42 (October 2013), 180-192.

Chu, Cecilia. “Combating Nuisance: Sanitation, Regulation, and the Politics of Property in Colonial Hong Kong.” In Robert Peckham and David Pomfret, eds., Imperial Contagions: Medicine and the Cultures of Planning in Asia, 17-36. Hong Kong University Press, 2013.

Chu, Cecilia. “Between Typologies and Representation: The Tong Lau and the Discourse of the ‘Chinese House.’” In Mrinalini Rajagopalan and Madhuri Desai, eds., Colonial Frames, Nationalist Histories: Imperial Legacies, Architecture, and Modernity, 253-283. Ashgate, 2012.

Chu, Cecilia. “Non West Modernist Past: On Architecture and Modernities” (Book review). Traditional Dwellings and Settlements Review 23, 2 (Spring 2012): 90-91.

Chu, Cecilia. “People Power as Exception: Three Controversies over Privatization in Posthandover Hong Kong.” Urban Studies 47, 8 (July 2010): 1773-1792.