Willmott, William E.

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Willmott, William E.

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William E. Willmott was born in 1932 in Chengdu, China, to Canadian Methodist missionaries. During the Second World War he was sent to India, with other missionaries’ children, to avoid the Japanese invasion. He later attended Oberlin College in Ohio (B.A., sociology), McGill University (M.A., anthropology), and the London School of Economics (Ph.D., social anthropology) – for the latter degree, his research focusing on the Chinese diaspora in Cambodia. His first academic appointment came in 1961, teaching anthropology at the University of British Columbia. While at UBC (1961-1973), Willmott researched the history and social development of the Chinese community in British Columbia. In the course of that research he conducted interviews with prominent members of the local Chinese-Canadian community. He later moved to New Zealand, where he spent the rest of his career as professor of sociology at the University of Canterbury. His teaching and research continued to focus on China and the international Chinese community. He died in 2021.


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Professor of Sociology.

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