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Paul Buell, Ph.D.

Title: Part Time Faculty

Office: Dahlonega
View CV
Areas of Expertise: Mongols, Central Asia, China, Japan, Korea, Indian Ocean, Age of Exploration, Medieval Europe

Courses Taught


  • Chinese history
  • The Silk Road
  • Chinese Medicine

Western Washington University, Bellingham Washington

  • Introductory courses in East Asian history
  • The Japanese History series: ancient, Medieval, and Modern
  • East Asian literature in translation, in humanities, religion, mythology and folklore, traditional Chinese medicine, Classical Chinese, Mongolian, and Western Civilization.


  • Ph.D., History, University of Washington, 1977
  • M.A., Chinese, University of Washington, 1968
  • Certificate in C Programming, C Programming, University of Washington, 1966

Research/Special Interests

Currently working on books on Central Asia foods and foodways and exchanges (Reaktion, London) and on Arabic Medicine as practiced in China (Brill). My Historical Dictionary of the Mongol World Empire and its Successor States, second edition, with Francesca Fiaschetti is in press. More long term I am working on a study of the inner world of the early Mongols based on the Secret History of the Mongols entitled World of the Heavenly Qan (with Francesca again) and completing by Kazakh-English Dictionary with Moldir Oskenbey. Special interest in the history of distillation and distilled liquors.


See CV. Over 200 publications not counting reviews


A Soup for the Qan: Chinese Dietary Medicine of the Mongol Era as Seen in Hu Sihui's Yinshan Zhengyao,  introduction, translation, text, notes, with Eugene N. Anderson, appendix by Charles Perry, second revised and expanded edition, E. J. Brill (Sir Henry Wellcome Asian Series 9), Leiden and Boston, 2010.


“The Ethos of Sate and Society in the Early Mongol Empire: Chingiz Khan to Güyük,” with Judy Kolbas, in Timothy May, ed., The Mongols and Post-Mongol Asia: Studies in Honour of David O. Morgan, Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, 26, 1-2 (January, 2016), 43-64


“Early Mongolian Geographical Connections,” Journal of Asian History (Special Issue “Chinese and Asian Geographical and Cartographical Views on Central Asia and its Adjacent Regions”), 49 (2015), 1/2, 19-29

“The Early Indian Ocean Trade in Medicinals: Some Indications from Chinese Sources,” in Angela Schottenhammer, ed., Tribute, Trade and Smuggling, Wiesbaden: Otto Harrasowitz, 2014: 133-140

With Ana G. Valenzuela-Zapata, María de la Paz Solano-Pérez, and Park Hyunhee, “'Huichol Stills': A Century of Anthropology—Technology Transfer and Innovation," in Crossroads, 8, (2013), 157-191

“Qubilai and the Rats,” Sudhoffs Archiv, Band 96 (2012), 2 (Dec), p. 127-144.

“Greek and Chinese Horse Medicine: déjà vu All Over Again,” with Timothy May and Dave Ramey, Sudhoffs Archiv, 94 (2010), 1 (June), 31-56

“Some Royal Mongol Ladies: Alaqa-beki, *Ergene-Qatun and Others,” World History Connected, 2010, digital at

“How did Persian and other western Medical Knowledge Move East, and Chinese west? A Look at the Role of Rashīd al-Dīn and others,” Asian Medicine, Tradition and Modernity, 3 (2007), 278-94


"Korea Unfolds, an Exhibition of Korean Culture and Folk Art," Wing Luke Asian Museum, 1988

"Nourishment of Life and of the Soul: Asian-American Approaches to Healing and Medicine," Wing Luke Asian Museum, 1988

"Chinese Medicine on the Golden Mountain," Wing Luke Asian Museum, 1984-5

"Tibet, the Roof of the World," Wing Luke Asian Museum, 1983

Conference Organizer

International Workshop, University of Salzburg, History Department, Max Planck Institute, Horst Görtz Institute, May 11, 12, 13, 2015: “Recovery of Traditional Technologies I: A Comparative Study of Past and Present Fermentation and Associated Distillation Technologies in Eurasia and Their Roots”

Work Experience

Academic Experience


  • Part-time Faculty
    Department of History, Anthropology and Philosophy
    University of North Georgia


  • Lecturer
    Department of Independent Learning
    Western Washington University
    Bellingham, Washington


  • Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter,
    Charité Medical University,
    Berlin, Germany


  • Visiting Scholar, then Affiliate
    Max-Planck Institute,
    Berlin, Germany


  • Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter,
    Charité Medical University,
    Berlin, Germany


  • Instructor
    Department of Independent Learning
    Western Washington University
    Bellingham, Washington


  • Visiting Assistant Professor
    Department of History
    Western Washington University
    Bellingham, Washington


  • Lecturer in Humanities
    Department of Liberal Studies
    Western Washington University
    Bellingham, Washington


  • Research Associate
    Department of Uralic and Altaic Studies
    Indiana University
    Bloomington, Indiana

Business Experience (select)


  • Consultant
    Foreign Broadcast Information Service
    Washington, D.C.


  • Intelligence Research Specialist, GS-9
    U.S. Bureau of the Census
    Washington D.C.


Personal Information

Married. Lives in Seattle, Washington. Has two sons, three grandchildren.

Primary Research Languages

Chinese, Mongolian, Tibetan, Classical Greek, Latin, Icelandic, Kazakh, Portuguese

Other Languages

German, French, Russian, Japanese, Uzbek, Turkish, Persian, Danish, Faeroese, Anglo-Saxon


Programming Languages: C, C++, including Microsoft Foundatino Classes experience, Visual Basic

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