Postdoctoral Teaching Fellows
Postdoctoral Fellows, 2010 – Present
Knox College (2022-2024)
Chirasree Mukherjee (Ph.D. Candidate, School of Politics and Global Studies, Arizona State University)
In her research, Chirasree Mukherjee grapples with intractable conflicts, especially those fought on religious grounds. Relying on both qualitative and quantitative analysis, she concentrates on conflicts between Hinduism and Islam in India to understand how the deep-seated religious cleavage between Hindus and Muslims germinate violence, resulting in intractable conflicts. She is the first woman in her family to pursue a doctoral degree and to travel overseas for higher education in United States.
Moravian College (2021-23)
Dorothee Xiaolong Hou (Ph.D., Comparative Literature, University of California, Davis)
Fields of Interest: Asian Cinema and World Cinema; Modern and Contemporary Sinophone Literature; Globalization, Migration and Urbanization; Language Pedagogy. Critical Theory.
Dorothee’s dissertation is entitled Space, Place, and the “Stories-so-far”: Reimagining China’s Rust Belt in Literature and Film. She is the author of “Literary Review of Hemingway’s ‘Cat in the Rain,’” Research on Modern English Teaching, Jul. 2013, and “Mobility, Displacement and Social Reproduction: Two Recent Films on Women’s Outmigration from China’s Rust Belt,” Remapping the Homeland: Affective Geographies and Cultures of the Chinese Diaspora, edited by Robert Tally and Melody Li, Palgrave Macmillan, forthcoming. Dorothee is also lead author of “The Time-Image and the Unknown in Wong Kar-wai’s Film Art.” The Fascination with Unknown Time, edited by Klaus Oschema, Sibylle Baumbach, and Lena Henningsen, PalgraveMacmillan, 2017. In addition, she is the translator of, Zhai Yueqin, “The Tragic Spirit of the East: The ‘Drama of Sounds’ in Yang Mu’s Poems,” Chinese Literature: Essays, Articles, Reviews. In the fall she will be teaching two courses: “Introduction to Chinese Cinema” and “Monsters in Asian Culture.”
Dr. Hou has accepted a tenure-track position at Moravian College to begin in the 2023-24 academic year.
St. Lawrence University (2021-23)
Irma Hidayana (Ed.D., Teachers College-Columbia University, 2019)
Irma Hidayana is a public health scholar and activist whose research focuses on the impact of the baby food industry on maternal and child health in Southeast Asia. Her dissertation, “Addressing Multinational Corporations’ Aggressive Marketing of Commercial Formula in Indonesia and the Cessation of Breastfeeding through the Design and Evaluation of a Counter-marketing Continuing Education Module,” examines a key public-health problem: multinational corporations’ aggressive marketing of their commercial formula as a breast-milk substitute, which leads to many women around the globe abandoning breastfeeding, and thus missing out on the many health benefits it offers for developing infants and their mothers. This also contributes to the current stunting problem in some developing countries, including Indonesia. Moreover, highly populated countries in Southeast Asia are the biggest target markets for the formula industry—due in part to rising incomes, modernization, urbanization, and globalization in the region, all of which are generating demand for formula. The industry’s marketing practices undermine breastfeeding and harm mothers and infants, which raises serious concerns for global maternal and child health.
She manifests her scholarly works into real-world public health advocacy initiatives. Utilizing the advance of health innovation, she developed an advocacy platform to monitor violations of the WHO-UNICEF International code of marketing of breastmilk substitutes in Indonesia which helps both the government and civil society to protect breastfeeding from unethical marketing practices by the baby food industry. She also co-founded LaporCOVID-19, a citizen-led data project, using an open-source platform that allows people to engage in COVID-19 related data and information advocacy.
Dr. Hidayana received a B.A. in Philosophy from Gadjah Mada University and an MPH in Public Health from Montclair State University. In 2019 she received a Ph.D. in Health Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.
At St. Lawrence, she will be teaching courses on Maternal and Child Health (MCH) in Southeast Asia; commercial determinants of MCH in Southeast Asia; infant and young child feeding culture in Southeast Asia; and breastfeeding and human rights in Southeast Asia.
Wilmington College (2021-22)
Nguyet Nguen (Ph.D., American University, 2019)
Dr. Nguyen was born and raised in Vietnam in one of the most beautiful places on earth called Halong Bay. She completed her Ph.D. in History from American University (Washington, D.C.) via a Fulbright Fellowship in 2019. In addition to her academic training and teaching, Nguyet has worked for NGOs, and governmental agencies, and also as a journalist and interpreter.
Nguyet is passionate about teaching and growing knowledge by sharing ideas; she has found that she learns a great deal from her students. Her research and teaching areas include the Vietnam War and US Foreign Relations, Asian Studies, Asian History, Gender Studies, Imperialism and Decolonization. She is currently working on a manuscript regarding how Vietnamese in both Vietnam and the Vietnamese diaspora initiated and fostered the global antiwar movement, including that in the United States.
At Wilmington College, Nguyet will teach courses on World Civilization, Asian History, and the Vietnam War.
Dr. Nguen began a tenure-track position at the University of Alaska–Southwest in Fall 2022.
Denison University (2020-21)
Jue Liang (Ph.D., University of Virginia, 2020)
Jue Liang is a scholar of Tibetan Buddhist literature, history, and culture. She received her Ph.D. in Religious Studies from the University of Virginia. Her dissertation, Conceiving the Mother of Tibet: The Life, Lives, and Afterlife of the Buddhist Saint Yeshe Tsogyel, examines the literary tradition surrounding the matron saint of Tibet, Yeshe Tsogyel, in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. It also presents the blossoming of this literary tradition in tandem with the efforts to trace their religious pedigree and define what counts as authentic Buddhism by Nyingma Tibetan Buddhists. She is currently working on a second project titled Who Is a Buddhist Feminist: Theorizing Gender and Religion in Contemporary Tibet. It is a study on the history, discourse, and social effects of the khenmo program, a gender-equality initiative that has been taking place at Tibetan Buddhist institutions in China for the past three decades. Jue is also an active participant in discussions on Buddhism in both academic and public forums.
At Denison University, Jue will be teaching courses on Buddhism, Hinduism, and religions in Southeast Asia. She is excited to be introducing students to the many emanations of these religious traditions in the past and present, in places far and near.
Since completing her postdoc, she has held a position as Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion at Denison.
New College of Florida (2019-21)
Kent Cao (Ph.D., Princeton University, 2019)
Kent Cao is a specialist in the field of art and archaeology of early China with a broad interest in the interconnections within East Asia. From art historical and technical perspectives, his first monograph manuscript examines the rise of indigenous bronze industry in the middle Yangtze River region in the latter second millennium BCE. In the fifteenth century BCE, the Erligang state expanded from the Central Plain, and along the way disseminated its highly established form of bronze art and metallurgy. Understanding how the Yangtze region digested this exotic art form and independently developed its own bronze art allows us to better understand the formation of China from a frontier perspective. This work reveals how ideas and technologies were transregionally transmitted in early complex societies. Kent Cao’s next book project explores the revival of bronze archaism and antiquarianism in Song China and Kamakura Japan, and aims to offer a deeper insight into the political aspirations, ritual prestige and artistic regeneration of Medieval East Asia. During his fellowship at NCF, Kent Cao is teaching Mainland, Peninsula and Archipelago: Introduction to East Asian Art and Archaeology, a survey course on the foundational intellectual landmarks in East Asian Art and Archaeology. In the spring, he is teaching Court, Studio, Monastery and Market: Art Production and Circulation in East Asia and Beyond, an upper-division course which brings students to explore the interwoven relations between various agencies in art creation and consumption in East Asia, and its associated exchange with Central Asia and the West, and Think like a Caster: Art, Archaeology and Technology of Bronze Age China, a seminar focuses on close reading and examination of art historical scholarship and archaeological discoveries in the field of Chinese Bronze Studies.
Kent won the Getty/ACLS Postdoctoral Fellowship in the History of Art, and will be joining Duke Kunshan University and Duke University as an Assistant Professor in September 2021.
Bowdoin College (2019-20)
Christine Marrewa Karwoski (Ph.D., Columbia University, 2019)
Christine Marrewa Karwoski is a cultural and religious historian of South Asia who focuses on the confluence of language, literature, and politics in North India over the longue durée. Her current research focuses on communal identity formation and the literature of the Nath yogis (most well-known for their connection with Hatha yoga) from the 17th through the 20th centuries. She examines the religious fluidity of this community of yogis during the early-modern period and questions how colonialism, modernity, and print affected the manner in which the Nath yogis have come to express themselves in their own literature in the 19th and 20th centuries. At Bowdoin College she teaches Epics Across Oceans, a class on the diversity of Indian epics across South and Southeast Asia, The Tigresses’ Snare, a class on the place of gender in asceticism and yoga in South and Southeast Asia, and Militancy and Monasticism in South and Southeast Asia.
Austin College (2017-19)
Larissa Pitts (Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 2017)
Larissa Pitts is a historian whose research and teaching focuses on modern China. She earned her B.A. in Asian Studies at Mount Holyoke College, and completed her M.A. and Ph.D. in History at the University of California, Berkeley. Her current book project “Seeing the Forest from the Trees: Scientific Forestry and the Rise of Modern Chinese Environmentalism, 1864 – 1937” narrates the rise of state involvement in defining and managing China’s woodlands. She argues that in promoting the conservation and expansion of woodlands, Chinese states fostered the rise of a modern environmental consciousness in line with contemporary developments in world history. This meant that the condition and size of China’s forestland would serve as a barometer for state capacity for both Chinese citizens and international observers alike. Dr. Pitts is also developing a second project on the imagination, management, and commodification of Manchuria’s big cats in the early twentieth century. She will use this as a lens through which to explore the effects of changing market structures on China’s relationship with its wildlife. At Austin College, she is teaching modern East Asian history, introductory Chinese language, and Chinese politics. She is particularly looking forward to introducing her students to the history of China’s environment and its northern borderlands.
In Fall 2019, Dr. Pitts began a tenure-track position at Quinnipiac University.
Kenyon College (2017-18)
Arun Brahmbhatt (Ph.D., University of Toronto, 2017)
Arun Brahmbhatt is a scholar of religion in South Asia whose research is focused on the use of Sanskrit in text, print, liturgy, and ritual in modern Hindu traditions. His dissertation, “Scholastic Publics: Sanskrit Textual Practices in Gujarat, 1800-Present,” examines the negotiation of language, place, and modernity in the formation of religious community in colonial and contemporary western India. Before joining the doctoral program in the Study of Religion and South Asian Studies at the University of Toronto, he received a BA in Comparative Religion and English from Tufts University and an MTS in South Asian Religions from Harvard Divinity School. His research has been supported by fellowships through the Mellon Foundation’s Sawyer Seminar Series, the Fulbright Program, and the American Academy of Religion. During his teaching fellowship year at Kenyon College, he taught courses on Global Hinduism, religion in Southeast Asia, and the life of Hindu Epic literature.
In Fall 2018, Dr. Arun Brahmbhatt began a tenure-track position as assistant professor of religious studies at St. Lawrence University.
Lewis & Clark College (2017-19)
Layoung Shin (Ph.D., Binghamton University, 2015)
Layoung Shin is a sociocultural anthropologist who researches queer youth and fandom culture in South Korea. She completed her PhD at the State University of New York at Binghamton in 2015. Her dissertation, entitled “Fashioning Subjectivity and Community among Young Queer Women in Seoul,” explores how neoliberal social change – both in capitalism and as an ideology – affects sexual norms, subjectivity and communities among working class queer youth in South Korea and reveals new forms of hierarchies and exclusion, including hierarchies within LGBT communities and solidifying pre-existing social inequalities. Further, she has conducted researches on young women’s same-sex sexuality in relation to pop culture, fandom and costume-play. Through ethnographic research on how young women’s sexuality is constructed through media consumption and performing like celebrities, her projects have demonstrated how both media and embodiment are vital for the construction of non-heteronormative desire.
Her research has been supported by the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, the Academy of Korean Studies, and the Center for Korean Studies and the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at Binghamton University, and she has taught a variety of Anthropology and Asian/Korean courses at University of California, San Diego and Binghamton University. At Lewis & Clark College she will teach Cultural Politics of Youth in East Asia, Contemporary Korean Culture, and Queer Theory in East Asia.
Union College (2016-17)
Daniel Johnson (PhD, University of Chicago, 2015)
Daniel Johnson is a media scholar whose teaching and research focus on the intersections between film, television, and games. He earned a BA in Film and Media Studies from the University of Rochester, and completed a combined PhD in East Asian Languages and Civilizations and Cinema and Media Studies at the University of Chicago. He has also attended the Middlebury College summer language school and the Inter-University Center for Japanese Studies in Yokohama. His research has been published in the journals Japanese Studies and Games and Culture, as well as the edited volume Media Convergence in Japan. He is currently completing a book manuscript on Japanese language internet media. Before coming to Union College in the Fall of 2016 he taught at New York University and the University of California, Riverside. At Union he taught courses on Japanese film and media culture.
Wabash College (2016-17)
Sundar Vadlamudi (Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin, 2016)
Sundar Vadlamudi is a historian of South Asia and the Indian Ocean World. His research areas include Islam in South Asia, Indian Ocean Trade, Economic History of South Asia, and Socio-religious Reform Movements in India. His dissertation, “Merchants in Transition: Maritime Trade and Society of Tamil Muslims in the Indian Ocean, c. 1780-1840,” examines the maritime trade of a community of South Indian merchants during the period of transition to colonial rule in India during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Sundar examines the implications of these developments on Tamil Muslim merchants, who had a long history of participation in Indian Ocean trade. Currently, he is working on revising the dissertation into a book manuscript. Sundar received his B.E. (Computer Science) from Thiagarajar College of Engineering (India) and an M.A. (International Policy Studies) from the Monterey Institute of International Studies. He worked for three years as a Researcher on international security issues in South Asia before enrolling in the doctoral program at the University of Texas at Austin. During his fellowship year at Wabash College, Sundar taught “South Asia in World History, 1200 – 2000 CE, a survey course on World History, and a course on the Trade and Travel in the Indian Ocean.
Bucknell University (2015-16)
Ketaki Pant (Ph.D., Duke University, 2015)
Ketaki Pant is a historian and anthropologist whose research focuses on ecumenical Islam in South Asia and its encounters with imperial political economy. Her current book project, based on her dissertation “Homes of Capital: Merchants and Mobility across Indian Ocean Gujarat,” examines merchant homes as semiotically charged sites where imperial political economy came into contact with longer histories of Islamic itinerancy that shaped the Indian Ocean world from the twelfth to the eighteenth centuries. In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Gujarat’s Muslim merchants were active across imperial port-cities from Arabia to Southeast Asia but continued to maintain historic homes in ports of Gujarat. Her book explores the imaginative and cultural practices merchants developed around their historic homes to reconcile the multiple spatial and cultural attachments that were entailed in this dual identity of being both imperial and Muslim. She is also developing a second project on the peripatetic zenanas (harems) of Hyderabad, which traces the histories of Indo-Arabian families active across South Asia and their encounters with the British colonial state. Dr. Pant received a B.A. in History and Africana Studies from Bard College and an M.A. in Social Anthropology from Harvard University. In 2015 she received a Ph.D. in History from Duke University. Her research has been supported by the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, Harvard University’s Asia Center and Women’s Studies at Duke University. At Bucknell, she will be teaching courses on Islam in Asia; sex, gender, and family in colonial Asia; and material culture in Asia.
Luther College (2015-16)
Yang Wang (Ph.D., The Ohio State University, 2015)
Yang Wang is an art historian of Asian art with a focus on modern and contemporary Chinese art. She earned a B.A. in Art History and a B.F.A. in Art from the University of Missouri, and completed her M.A. and Ph.D. in Art History at The Ohio State University. Her dissertation, “Regionalizing National Art in Maoist China: The Chang’an School of Ink Painting, 1942–1976,” examines the role of China’s provincial art centers in the overhaul of the national art program during the early People’s Republic of China. Her research has been supported by Fulbright IIE, The American Oriental Society and P.E.O. International. At Luther College she will teach Introduction to Asian Art, Modern and Contemporary Chinese Art, and Global Contemporary Art. She will also curate an exhibition featuring contemporary Chinese art at the college.
Marietta College (2015-16)
Phillip Guingona (Ph.D., University at Buffalo, 2015)
Phillip Guingona is a historian who researches the many avenues of contact between China and the Philippines. He completed his PhD at the State University of New York at Buffalo in 2015. His dissertation, entitled “Crafted Links and Accidental Connections of Empire: A History of Early Twentieth Century Sino-Philippine Interaction,” explores Filipino communities in China, Chinese communities in the Philippines, educational and business exchanges, and other types of interaction in what was an intimately connected and malleable region. His research was funded by the Lockwood Plesur Dissertation Travel Award, the Nila T. Gnamm Research Fund, and the University at Buffalo Humanities Institute Advanced PhD Fellowship, and he has taught a variety of History and English courses at Chenggong University in China and the University at Buffalo in upstate New York, where he received an Excellence in Teaching Award. Phillip is looking forward to meeting new students, teaching new courses, and working with new colleagues this academic year in beautiful Marietta, Ohio.
Berea College (2014-15)
Lauren McKee (Ph.D., Old Dominion University, 2014)
Hendrix College (2014-15)
Sarah G. Grant (Ph.D., University of California – Riverside, 2014)
Hope College (2014-15)
Kai Tang (Ph.D., Harvard University, expected 2014)
Muhlenberg College (2014-15)
Arnab Banerji (Ph.D., University of Georgia, expected 2014)
Carthage College (2013-14)
Hilary Snow (Ph.D., Stanford University, 2010)
Wittenberg University (2013-14)
Jooyeon Rhee (Ph.D., York University, Toronto, Canada, 2011)
Haverford College (2012-13)
Erin Schoneveld (Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, 2012)
Davidson College (2011-12)
Laura Kaehler Elder (Ph.D., University Center of the City University of New York, 2009)
Gettysburg College (2011-12)
Susan Chen (Ph.D., Emory University, 2009)
University of Wisconsin – Whitewater (2011-12)
Mary Alyson Prude (Ph.D., University of California Santa Barbara, expected 2011)
Washington and Jefferson College (2011-12)
Dewen Zhang (Ph.D., State University of New York at Stony Brook, expected 2011)
Dickinson College (2010-11)
Sheri Lullo (Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh, 2009)
Fairfield University (2010-11)
Ive Aaslid Covaci (Ph.D., Yale University, 2007)
Hobart and William Smith Colleges (2010-11)
Elana Chipman (Ph.D., Cornell University, 2007)
Dr. Elana Chipman (Ph.D., Cornell, 2007) is a socio-cultural anthropologist who has done fieldwork in Southeastern China and in Taiwan and studies local identity and the nation-state, ritual and popular religion, tourism, and political-ecology. Her dissertation work examines the production of locality in Taiwan through ritual and other forms of culture work, such as grass-roots historiography. Her new project looks at the ways that changing global environmental discourses are transforming contemporary ritual practices in Chinese cultures, primarily the burning of offerings. She has held postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard’s Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies and the East Asian Studies Center at Ohio State University. Most recently she was a visiting assistant professor of anthropology at Binghamton University. Dr. Chipman co-taught a general introductory course East Asian studies course and an anthropology course on environment and culture, and taught her own course on the anthropology of tourism in East Asia.
Randolph-Macon College (2010-11)
Charles A. Andrews (Ph.D., Indiana University, 2008)
The Henry Luce Foundation was established in 1936 by the late Henry R. Luce, co-founder and editor-in-chief of Time Inc. Among the Foundation’s many grant-making initiatives are those that support increased understanding between the United States and Asia.