Saussy's first book, The Problem of a Chinese Aesthetic (Stanford UP, 1993), discussed the tradition of commentary that has grown up around the early Chinese poetry collection Shi jing (known in English as the Book of Songs). His most recent book is Great Walls of Discourse and Other Adventures in Cultural China (Harvard University Asia Center, 2001), an account of the ways of knowing and describing specific to China scholarship. He is an avid cyclist, memorizer of verb paradigms and lyric poetry, and contributor to a variety of art installations. His articles range widely, from the imaginary universal languages of Athanasius Kircher to Chinese musicology to the great Qing dynasty novel Honglou meng. He edited the American Comparative Literature Association's 2004 report on the state of the discipline.
Haun Saussy joined the Yale faculty in 2004. Prior to that, he had been chairman of the comparative literature department at Stanford University. He is the son of Tupper Saussy. Raised in suburban Nashville,Tennessee, he attended Deerfield Academy and then received his B.A. (Greek and Comparative Literature) from Duke University in 1981. He received his M.Phil and Ph.D from Yale in Comparative Literature. Between undergraduate and graduate schools, he studied linguistics and Chinese in Paris and Taiwan.