Home - IVR 2024

Yun-Ru Chen (National Taiwan University, Taiwan)

Yun-Ru Chen is an associate professor of law at National Taiwan University. Her research interests focus on the versatility of the family across multiple levels from transnational perspectives, ranging from strategies in individual lives, its positions in the political economy of transforming states, to its roles in constructing national identities. She teaches areas of family law, legal history, legal theory (critical legal studies & legal realism), and globalization of law.

Taking colonial Taiwan as the vantage point, Prof. Chen’s doctoral dissertation suggests that ideas about nations and families were far from homogenous in the colonial encounter. She argues that it is not necessary that family law should play a reactionary role in developing nationalism in non-western societies. Her dissertation, awarded the best East Asian law thesis at Harvard Law School (The Yong K. Kim Prize), is being adapted into a book with the provisional title, “Paradoxes of the National Family Law in (Post-)Colonial East Asia: Taiwan as the Nexus.” Drawing on firsthand litigation records across successive political regimes, she has written extensively about how ordinary men and women interact with governmental entities, emphasizing how they adopt (and transform) both new and traditional methods of narrating legal stories. Currently, she is investigating the contractual, fluid, and thus "unorthodox" aspects of family traditions in Taiwan and East Asia.

Professor Chen received her Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD) from Harvard Law School and completed her master's degree and Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.), with a minor in Economics, at National Taiwan University. She also successfully passed both the bar and judicial exams in Taiwan. At present, she is engaged as a guest researcher at the Waseda Institute for East Asian Legal Studies and serves as the secretary-general of the Taiwanese Legal History Association.