Loretta LOU 盧凝德

Loretta LOU 盧凝德

Lecturer & UM Macao Fellow in Social Sciences





2017                PhD in Anthropology, University of Oxford

2008                MSc (by Research) in Social Anthropology, University of Edinburgh

2006                B.A., University of Washington, Seattle


  • Environmental anthropology
  • Medical anthropology
  • Anthropology of ethics and morality
  • Social movements studies
  • Hong Kong, China, Macau

Dr. Loretta Lou is an anthropologist with research interests in environment, well-being, social movements, morality and ethics. Geographically she focuses on Greater China, including Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan. After she received her DPhil in Anthropology from the University of Oxford, she worked as a Research Fellow at the University of Warwick before joining the University of Macau as a Lecturer of Sociology & Macao Fellow in Social Sciences.

Dr. Lou’s doctoral project was an ethnographic study of a new way of living called ‘Green Living’ in Hong Kong. She was interested in the implications of Green Living for self-understanding, social relations, everyday ethics, social movements, and the ways these domains were being shaped by Hong Kong’s social and political climate since the handover in 1997. Building on her previous research on environmentalism in Asia, her postdoctoral research at Warwick focused on the ways Chinese people make sense of toxic pollution, their everyday experiences of (in)justice, and their psychological coping mechanisms. More broadly, her research in China and Hong Kong have led her to explore notions of freedom, responsibility, and the politics of complicity and victimhood in contemporary Chinese society.



Peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters

2021 “Casino capitalism in the era of COVID-19: Examining Macau’s pandemic response”, in Special Issue “COVID-19 and Chinese Societies—Challenges, Impacts and Responses”, edited by Tai-lok Lui. Social Transformations in Chinese Societies, volume 17(1).

2019  “The Struggle for Sustainable Waste Management in Hong Kong: 1950s–2010s,” Worldwide Waste: Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies, 2(1): 11, 1–12. [co-authored with Fabian, N]

2019  “Freedom as ethical practices: On the possibility of freedom through freeganism and freecycling in Hong Kong,” Asian Anthropology, volume 18, issue 4, pp.249-265.

2018  “In the Absence of a Peasantry, What, Then, is a Hong Kong Farmer?” in Gilded  Age: Made in China Yearbook 2017, edited by Ivan Franceschini, Nicholas Loubere. pp.174-177. Canberra: ANU Press.

2017   “The material culture of green living in Hong Kong,” in Anthropology Now. April: Volume 9 (1), pp.70-79.


Other publications

2020   “Can a hot spring resort coexist with a chemical industry park? The case in Jiangsu, China.” In Toxic News (20th edition), 17 November [co-authored with Wang, Y].

2018   “Village Besieged: An Elegy for Victims and Protest Against Taiwan’s Petrochemical Pollution.” In Toxic News (11th edition), 1 November.

2016   “Beyond Miracles: How Traditional Chinese Medicine Establishes Professional Legitimacy in Post-colonial Macau,” in Somatosphere: Science, Medicine, and Anthropology.

2014   “Hong Kong’s Vegan Guru,” in China Dialogue, 16 April.


Book reviews

2019   “Bullshit Jobs: A Conversation with David Graeber,” in Made in China: A Quarterly on Chinese Labour, Civil Society, and Rights, volume 4, issue 2, pp.138-143.

2018 Review of Transforming Patriarchy: Chinese Families in the Twenty-First Century (2016), edited by Gonçalo Santos and Stevan Harrell, in The China Quarterly, volume 233, pp.258-260.

2017    Review of Anthropology of China: China as Ethnographic and Theoretical Critique (2016), by Charlotte Bruckermann and Stephan Feuchtwang, in LSE Review of Books.

2015   Review of Ethical Eating in the Postsocialist and Socialist World, edited by Melissa L. Caldwell, Jakob Klein, and Yuson Jung (2014), in Allegra: Anthropology, Law, Art & World.

2014  Review of Green Politics in China: Environmental Governance and State–Society Relations, by Joy Zhang and Michael Barr (2014), in The China Journal. Issue (72), pp.176-178.