Melanie Meng Xue
I am Assistant Professor of Economic History at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). My research interests include political economy, gender, folklore, and early modern and modern Chinese history.
My work examines the rise of women, the self-perpetuation of authoritarian regimes, and the evolution of antisocial behavior in the early modern and modern period. By tracing the impact of historical events over time and in various institutional settings, my work centers on the role of values, beliefs and norms in shaping economic and political disparities.
In studying folklore, I discovered oral traditions are a powerful measure of the historical component of contemporary values, beliefs and norms, connecting history and culture. This line of inquiry has produced a dataset of historical values across countries and ethnic groups through analyzing folklore themes. Full datasets are available here.