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Institute of Asian and Oriental Studies

Lionel S. Fothergill

Lionel S. Fothergill, Dr.

  • Postdoc / Teaching and Research Assistant Chinese Studies


02/2020 – 01/2024 University of Zurich | Zurich, Switzerland
PhD: Sinology
Supervisor: Andrea Riemenschnitter, Prof.
Thesis Title: Transmedial Resemantisations – Myths of the Four Great Novels (Si Da Mingzhu) of Imperial China in Contemporary Culture  
09/2013 – 12/2016 Nankai University | Tianjin, China
MA: Ancient Chinese Literature (古典文學), Ming-Qing Novels (明清小說方向)
Supervisor: Chen Hong (陳洪), Prof. (教授,博士導师)
Thesis Title: 電視連續劇對《水滸傳》的奇幻情節的接受與改造——以魯智深及神話框架為例 (Reception and Transformation in TV Series of Fantastic Story Elements in the Shuihu zhuan: Lu Zhishen and the Mythological Frame)
09/2012 – 08/2013 Nankai University | Tianjin, China
General studies during exchange year
09/2008 – 08/2012 Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg | Heidelberg, Germany
BA: East Asian Studies (Focus China) + Psychology as minor
Supervisors: Gotelind Mueller-Saini, Prof. Dr.; Ylva Mondschein, Dr.
Thesis Title: Das Shuihu zhuan im Fernsehen - Über die Rezeption mythologischer Elemente des Shuihu zhuan in Fernsehserien (Shuihu zhuan on Television: Reception of Mythological Elements from the Shuihu zhuan in Television Series)


Spring semester 2024 MA-Seminar Sprache, Literatur, Medien: Classics on Television – Reassembling Our Stories
Spring semester 2024 Angeleitetes Quellenstudium (Sprache, Literatur, Medien) (MA): Reading Texts Across Media
Spring semester 2022 Chinesische Literatur (Vertiefung): Chinesische Fernsehserien
09/2017 – 01/2020 Lecturer | Qiusuo Honors College, Tianjin Foreign Studies University, Tianjin, China
Oral English, English Essay Writing and BA thesis supervision and examination

Research Interests

Cultural tradition; modern mythology; cultural and ideological control; national identity; transmediality


Fothergill, Lionel Sven; Riemenschnitter, Andrea (2021). The Bandit Who Lost His Zen.Transmedial Resemanticizations of Lu Zhishen in TV Drama. In: Noesselt, Nele. Visualized Narratives : Signs, Symbols and Political Mythology in East Asia, Europe and the US. Baden: Tectum Wissenschaftsverlag, 55–70.

Grants and Awards

2021 Grant for self-organized lecture series 2022–23 “Other Epistemologies: Remapping the Literary Field in the Sinosphere” from the PhF Graduate School, University of Zurich
04/2020 – 08/2023 Swiss National Science Foundation project grant
2013–2016 Chinese Government Scholarship, full scholarship for Masters studies
2012 Exchange scholarship, Heidelberg & Nankai Universities
2010 Outstanding Student Award, College of Chinese Language and Culture, Nankai University
2009 Exchange scholarship, Heidelberg & Nankai Universities