Haoming Liu

Professor of Chinese and Japanese
Pictured: Haoming Liu - Man with a suit and glasses standing outside with grass and trees in the background.

Professor Dr. Liu graduated with a B.L. from Peking University in 1985.  After graduation, he worked as an editor in the section for foreign language and literature at the Peking University Press before joining the Center for Research on Concepts and Cognition under the tutelage of Dr. Douglas R. Hofstadter at Indiana University in Bloomington (IUB) in 1989.  He was subsequently admitted to the Comparative Literature program at IUB where he was awarded M.A. in comparative literature. He went on to pursue a doctoral degree in the Department of Comparative Literature at Yale University with the late Professor Cyrus Hamlin of German and Comparative Literature as his Doktorvater.  He graduated with Ph.D. from Yale in 2001.  He then taught at Wellesley College, Wesleyan University, and Bard College. Since 2003, he has been teaching at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York. He is now professor in the Department of Chinese and Japanese and Asian Studies Program and is currently serving as department chair for Chinese and Japanese.   In the past decade, he was on the faculty of German Department at Nanjing University in China for three years and more recently was a research fellow in the Lyric-in-Transition project at University of Trier in Germany.  He was awarded a grant from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) based in Germany and a fellowship from the Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences at Peking University. Over the years, he gave many talks and lectures in the world including Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, and Universität Trier in Germany and Peking University, Fudan University, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Nanjing University and many other institutions in China.

Dr. Liu commands several languages including German, French, Classical Greek and Latin as well as Chinese and English. His research field includes classical and modern Chinese literature, English and American poetry, German Romantic and modern poetry, ancient Greek and Roman poetry as well as literary theory and German Idealist and hermeneutic philosophy.

Early in 2021, his Chinese translation of the complete Victory Odes of Pindar, the first ever in the Chinese-speaking world, was published by the Peking University Press. Simultaneously, his translation with an in-depth commentary of Horace Odes (the first two books) was published in Shanghai by the Shanghai Normal University Press. His new book, A Poetical and Archaeological Tour of Sicily, is scheduled to appear in 2023. Also forthcoming is a monograph on Chinese and Western comparative classical textual criticism. His past publications include English monographs on Ezra Pound, Zhou Zuoren, Fei Ming, and Gadamer’s hermeneutic theory on the one hand and Chinese translations and studies of R.M. Rilke’s Duino Elegies and Friedrich Hölderlin’s poetry and poetical fragments of the period between 1800 and 1807 on the other.  He also published a collection of essays on poetry and culture. When he was still at Peking University, he played a central role in the collective translation project of Hofstadter’s Gödel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Gold Braid, which has been a best-seller since its publication by the Commercial Press. He is currently working on a monograph on the theoretical issue of allegory and on an annotated Chinese translation of Hölderlin’s odes.

BL, Peking University (北京大学); MA, Indiana University-Bloomington; MPhil, PhD, Yale University
At Vassar since 2003


Eleanor Butler Sanders Hall
Box 506

Research and Academic Interests

Modern Chinese Literature
Ancient Chinese Literature
Modern Chinese Poetry
Western Poetry
Literary Theory
Translation Theory

Departments and Programs


ASIA/CHJA 366 Seminar in Transcending the Limit: Literary Theory in the East-West Context
CHIN 105 Elementary Chinese

In the Media

“This article presents a short introductory analysis and appreciation of one the most outstanding and remarkable translations from German literature into the Chinese language from the last decades, the translation of the late hymns of Friedrich Hölderlin (1770–1843) by the Chinese scholar and translator Liu Haoming.”
—Hans Peter Hoffmann. Published online 2016-06-07. arcadia: International Journal of Literary Culture / Internationale Zeitschrift für literarische Kultur

“Haoming Liu’s ambitious, demanding, and intensely interesting ‘Pharmaka and Volgar’ Eloquio: Speech and Ideogrammic Writing in Ezra Pound’s Canto XCVIII’ (Asia Major 22: 179-214) shows that this late poem ‘actually focuses on the issue of writing and its relation to speech’ rather than the dualistic morality and Confucianism most apparent at first reading.”
—Alec Marsh and Matthew Hofer. “Pound and Eliot.” American Literary Scholarship 2009, no. 1 (2009): 153-176.


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