Areas of Expertise

Artificial Intelligence (AI) from humanistic perspectives; feminist, trans/gender, queer, and critical race theory; Shakespeare; film and performance studies; digital humanities; disability studies; globalization; cultural diplomacy; Asian-European cultural exchange; early modern (Renaissance) and postmodern cultures; translation theories;  intercultural theatre; Asian-American, East Asian and Sinophone (including Taiwanese) theatre and film


Oxford University Press, 2021

Four themes distinguish post-1950s East Asian cinemas and theaters from works in other parts of the world: Japanese innovations in sound and spectacle; Sinophone uses of Shakespeare for social reparation; the reception of South Korean presentations of gender identities in film and touring productions; and multilingual, disability, and racial discourses in cinema and diasporic theatre in Asian America, Singapore, and the UK.

Special Issue of Borrowers and Lenders: The Journal of Shakespeare and Appropriation 14.2 (2023), edited by Alexa Alice Joubin

Cross-gender roles in Shakespeare have been misunderstood as “cross-dressing.” Cisgender-centric biases told us we have to suspend our disbelief to understand cross-gender acts. The enactment of gender practices is not predicated upon “substitutions” (as in substituting the boy actor for Desdemona). It does not entail diagnostic recognition (as in being reminded of the “real” body beneath the illusion of Desdemona). The special issue — 

  • proposes “trans” as method and as a social practice
  • argues that the enactment of gender practices is not predicated upon “substitutions”
  • demonstrates trans studies’ relevance to Shakespeare studies
  • highlights artists’ and practitioners’ voices and amplifies marginalized narratives

Trans Historical: Gender Plurality before the Modern, ed. Greta LaFleur, Masha Raskolnikov, and Anna Klosowska (Cornell University Press, 2021), 322-349

     This chapter analyzes transgender films about the early modern period through the lenses of affective labor and social reparation. It reclaims as trans the Shakespeare films that have been misinterpreted as homosexual.

     Reparative trans performances—works in which characters see their conditions improve—carry substantial affective rewards by offering optimism and emotional gratification, as exemplified by two recent films about early modern theatre making. The South Korean blockbuster The King and the Clown (dir. Lee Joon-ik, 2005) delineates the love triangle between a fifteenth-century king, a masculine jester, and a trans feminine character. Stage Beauty (dir. Richard Eyre, Lions Gate, 2004) chronicles the private life and stage career of the historical boy actor Edward Kynaston (1640–1712) who plays exclusively female roles before taking on male roles on stage.

Adaptation 14.2 (August 2021): 187–205; DOI: 10.1093/adaptation/apaa031

Many screen and stage adaptations of the classics are informed by a philosophical investment in literature’s reparative merit, a preconceived notion that performing the canon can make one a better person. Inspirational narratives, in particular, have instrumentalized the canon to serve socially reparative purposes. Social recuperation of disabled figures loom large in adaptation, and many reparative adaptations tap into a curative quality of Shakespearean texts. Governing the disability narrative is the trope about Shakespeare’s therapeutic value. There are two strands of recuperative adaptations. The first is informed by the assumption that the dramatic situations exemplify moral universals. The second strand consists of adaptations that problematize heteronormativity and psychological universals in liberal humanist visions of the canon.  This article identifies a common trope in reparative performances of disability in order to highlight some questions the trope raises.

Shakespeare Survey 74 (2021): 15-29  (open access)

Co-authored by Alexa Alice Joubin and Lisa S. Starks, this article examines new theories and praxis of listening for silenced voices and of telling compelling stories that make us human. We draw on Emmanuel Levinas’s philosophy about the Other to design classroom practices for in-person and remote instruction that foster collaborative knowledge building and intersectional pedagogy. The moral agency that comes with the cultivation of ethical treatment of one another can lead to political advocacy. Special attention is given to race, gender, and the exigencies of social justice and remote learning in the era of the global pandemic. The new normal in higher education, which is emerging at the time of writing, exposes inequities that were previously veiled by on-campus life and resources. Even as they are cause for grief and anxiety, the inequities exposed by COVID-19 can spur change for the better.

Borrowers and Lenders: The Journal of Shakespeare and Appropriation 14.2 (2023). Open Access.

This article proposes “trans” as method and as a social practice rather than as an immutable identity category that stands in opposition to more established ones such as cis-gender men or cisgender women. In Shakespeare’s times, the enactment of gender practices is not predicated upon “substitutions” (as in substituting the boy actor for Desdemona, for instance) or entail diagnostic recognition (as in being reminded of the “real” body beneath the illusion of Ophelia or Desdemona). This article outlines key issues with today’s terminology, suggests a more effective and inclusive vocabulary, elucidates trans as method, and demonstrates trans studies’ relevance to Shakespeare studies. 

Routledge New Critical Idiom Series, 2019

A study of ideas related to race throughout history. This book provides readers with an expansive, global understanding of the term from the classical period onwards:

  • Intersections of Race and Gender
  • Race and Social Theory Identity
  • Ethnicity, and Immigration
  • Whiteness and Legislative and Judicial Markings of Difference
  • Race in South Africa, Israel, East Asia, Asian America
  • Blackness in a Global Context
  • Race in the History of Science
  • Critical Race Theory

The American Journal of Chinese Studies 28.2 (October, 2021): 115-130.

How might we de-colonize hegemonic knowledge production about East Asia and its relationship with the West? This interview with Alexa Alice Joubin draws on new perspectives on cultural exchange in her book, Shakespeare and East Asia (Oxford University Press, 2021), which promotes treatment of Asian performing arts as original epistemologies rather than footnotes to the white, Western canon, and theory. We also present her latest thinking on multidisciplinarity. Her work, including Race (Routledge, 2019), has sought to deconstruct what she calls “compulsory realpolitik”—the conviction that the best way to understand non-Western cultures is by interpreting their engagement with pragmatic politics. In tandem with Anglo-Eurocentrism, she argues, compulsory realpolitik leads to the habitual privileging of the nation-state as a unit to organize knowledge.


Oxford University Press, 2021

Co-authored with Martin Orkin. Routledge, 2019

Edited by Alexa Alice Joubin and Victoria Bladen. Palgrave, 2022. Illustrated excerpt with film clips. 

Edited by Alexa Alice Joubin and Elizabeth Rivlin. Palgrave Macmillan, 2014

Co-edited with Tom Bishop, Ton Hoenselaars, and Stephen O’Neill. Routledge, 2022

Co-edited with Aneta Mancewicz. Palgrave Macmillan, 2018

Co-edited with Tom Bishop and Natalia Khomenko. Routledge, 2020

An open-access, multimedia, interactive textbook by Alexa Alice Joubin, George Washington University


Shakespeare Bulletin 40.3 (Fall 2022): pp. 417-437. DOI: 10.1353/shb.2022.0037

The American Journal of Chinese Studies 28.2 (October, 2021): 115-130. Interviewed by David Kenley and William Sewell

Borrowers and Lenders: The Journal of Shakespeare and Appropriation 11.1 (2017)

Shakespeare: Journal of the British Shakespeare Association 9.3 (2013): 273-290.


Trans Historical: Gender Plurality before the Modern, ed. Greta LaFleur, Masha Raskolnikov, and Anna Klosowska (Cornell University Press, 2021), 322-349

Routledge Handbook of Shakespeare and Interface (2023), ed. Clifford Werier and Paul Budra, pp. 332-344 ::::  DOI: 10.4324/9780367821722-30

Reimagining Shakespeare Education: Teaching and Learning through Collaboration, ed. Liam E. Semler, Claire Hansen, and Jacqueline Manuel (Cambridge University Press, 2023), 225-238  :::   DOI 10.1017/9781108778510.023

Global Shakespeare and Social Justice: Towards a Transformative Encounter, ed. Chris Thurman and Sandra Young (Bloomsbury, 2023), pp. 58-77.

The Arden Research Handbook of Shakespeare and Contemporary Performance, ed. Peter Kirwan and Kathryn Prince (Bloomsbury, 2021), pp. 132-150

Coauthored by Alexa Alice Joubin and Elizabeth Rivlin as a chapter in Shakespeare and Cultural Appropriation, ed. Vanessa I. Corredera, L.Monique Pittman, Geoffrey Way (Routledge, 2023), pp. 222-233   ::: DOI: 10.4324/9781003304456-15

A Companion to the Biopic, ed. Deborah Cartmell and Ashley D. Polasek (Wiley-Blackwell, 2020), 269-282.

Performing Shakespearean Appropriations: Essays in Honor of Christy Desmet, ed. Darlena Ciraulo, Matthew Kozusko, Robert Sawyer (Lanham, MD: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2022), 161-176

Transgender Theory and Global Shakespeare

Liberating Shakespeare: Adaptation and Empowerment for Young Adult Audiences, ed. Jennifer Flaherty and Deborah Uman (Bloomsbury, 2023), pp. 187-200

Routledge Handbook of Shakespeare and Global Appropriation, ed. Christy Desmet, Sujata Iyengar, and Miriam Jacobson (Routledge, 2020), pp. 25-36.

The Oxford Handbook of Shakespeare and Performance, ed. James C. Bulman (Oxford University Press, 2017), pp. 423-440. Click here to access the digital text. Click here for a scanned facing-page PDF file and here for the easier-to-read PDF of the print edition. 

Shakespeare in Succession: Translation and Time, ed. Michael Saenger and Sergio Costola (Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2023), 298-307

Digital Shakespeares from the Global South, ed. Amrita Sen (New York: Palgrave, 2022), pp. 93-104. 

Shakespeare’s Global Sonnets: Translation, Adaptation, Performance, ed. Jane Kingsley-Smith and W. Reginald Rampone, Jr. (Palgrave, 2023), pp. 161-179

The Cambridge Guide to the Worlds of Shakespeare Vol. 2: The World’s Shakespeare, 1660-Present, ed. Bruce Smith (Cambridge University Press, 2016), pp. 1094-1101.

Shakespeare on Screen: King Lear, ed. Victoria Bladen, Sarah Hatchuel, and Nathalie Vienne-Guerrin (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019).

Palgrave Encyclopedia of Global Shakespeare, ed. Alexa Alice Joubin, Ema Vyroubalova, and Elizabeth Pentland (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2021)

The Arden Research Handbook of Contemporary Shakespeare Criticism, ed. Evelyn Gajowski (London: Bloomsbury, 2021), pp. 247-261

The Edinburgh Companion to Shakespeare and the Arts, ed. Mark Thornton Burnett, Adrian Streete, and Ramona Wray (Edinburgh University Press, 2012), 68-87. (Excerpt)

Weyward Macbeth: Signs of Race, ed. Scott Newstok and Ayanna Thompson (Palgrave, 2009), 182-190.

Mo Yan in Context: Nobel Laureate and Global Storyteller, ed. Angelica Duran and Yuhan Huang (Purdue University Press, 2014), pp. 153-166.

“Lin Shu.” The Chaucer Encyclopedia 4 vols., Vol. 3, ed. Edited by Richard Newhauser (Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2023), pp. 1085-1086. ISBN: 9781119087991. DOI: 10.1002/9781119086130.ch12

Book Series

Editor, Palgrave Macmillan book series on Global Shakespeares

London and New York: Palgrave Macmillan

L’Institut de Recherche sur la Renaissance, l’âge Classique et les Lumières (IRCL), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Paul-Valéry Montpellier III, France; ed. Nathalie Vienne-Guerrin and Patricia Dorval

Early Modern Center at the University of California, Santa Barbara; ed. Patricia Fumerton and Andrew Griffin

Board member, Brill book series on Hong Kong Studies: Between East and West

Leiden, Netherlands: E.J. Brill; ed. Howard Yuen Fung Choy

Awards and Fellowships

Only research fellowships, grants, and awards are listed below. For teaching awards, please visit this page.

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), collaborator: A Web Edition of King Lear which has been published as a print edition
ACLS and National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship
Folger Library Fellowship
Stiftung Mercator (Germany) Grant for Weltliteratur und Welttheater
Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange grant for monograph publication
George Washington University Faculty Leadership Fellow
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, finalist for the Academy Film Scholar award

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