WengCheong Lam

Assistant Professor

Office NAH 323  
Office Tel. 39437705  
Email wlam"at"  
Education qualification A.B, M.A. Peking University
Ph.D Harvard University
Languages Cantonese, English, Putonghua, Japanese (Basic)  


Prof. Lam is an assistant professor of anthropological archaeology working in mainland China. His research currently focuses on the economic system and social development during the Bronze Age and Han Empire. His research incorporates interests in various archaeological techniques including metallurgy, zooarchaeology and GIS (Geographic Information System) to study the craft production and exchange network during one of the most critical periods in Chinese history. He has conducted archaeological research in Shaanxi to investigate the ancient iron economy in the Han capital area since 2011. New research is focused on the Han exchange network in provincial centers and imperial expansion of the Han dynasty. Current research and writing projects focus on the social development in Early China including: the change of craft production system and iron technology, the anthropology of commodities, interregional interaction, cultural transmission, and the market system of food.

Research interests

Archaeology, metallurgy, zooarchaeology, GIS in archaeology, development of metal technology in China, history of material culture and art in ancient China, craft production, gender archaeology, commodities and economic anthropology

Geographical areas of research

Mainland China, Southeast Asia

Courses taught

ANTH 1770 Understanding Archaeology

ANTH 2760 China’s Cultural Heritage

HIST 4140A History of Material Culture in Ancient China

Current research

"Development of the Iron Industry in the Guanzhong Basin during the Han  period: Scientific Analyses of Manufacturing Waste from the Taicheng Foundry (funded by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage)"

" The eastern territory of the Western Zhou Dynasty (funded by the The National Social Science Fund of China)"

Selected Publications

Book chapters and journal articles
2015 “Shang Elite Burials”, “Western Zhou State Cemeteries”, “Long-distance Exchange”, “Divination and Shamanism”, “Human and Animal Sacrifices”, “Commoner Burials”, “The Use of Jade”, and “Confucianism and Early Taoism”. Entries for 30-Second Ancient China, Zhuang Yijie, eds. London, Ivy Press.
2014 Everything old is new again? Rethinking the transition to the cast iron production in the Central Plains of China. Journal of Anthropological Research 70(4): 511-542.

(和种建荣, 雷兴山合編) 周公庙商周时期聚落动物资源利用初识.考古与文物 2013(3):45-54.

2013 (和种建荣, 陈建立合編) 试谈铁作坊中废弃冶铸遗物整理的理念与实践. 南方文物. 2013(3): 117-124.
2011 东山文化的若干问题再检讨. 南方民族考古(第七卷), 四川大学博物馆, 四川大学考古学系, 成都文物考古研究所, eds. Pp. 113-135. 北京:科学出版社.
2008 西周时期晋国墓葬所见性别差异初探. 古代文明(vol.7), 北京大学考古学研究中心, 北京大学震旦古代文明研究中心, eds. Pp. 109-158. 北京: 文物出版社.