Areas of Expertise

Shakespeare; film and performance studies; critical race theory; feminist and transgender studies; digital humanities; globalization; cultural diplomacy; Asian-European cultural exchange; critical theory; early modern and postmodern literary and performance cultures; translation theories; intercultural theatre; Asian-American, Sinophone, and Chinese theatre and film

Featured

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.

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

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. Elucidation of our Levinas-inspired theories of the Other is followed by a discussion of 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.

The Arden Research Handbook of Shakespeare and Contemporary Performance (2021)

 As a transhistorical and intermedial practice, global Shakespeares have been deployed to revitalize performance genres, resist colonial appendage, exemplify social reparation. This chapter investigates methodologies for transhistorical inquiry into culturally fluid, contemporary adaptations of early modern texts in relation to digital cultures. In juxtaposing the ways in which localities create site-specific meanings, and the ways in which cultural meanings are dispersed and reframed through ever-evolving forms of digital engagement, this chapter outlines the future challenges and opportunities for contemporary global performances.

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.

Books

Oxford University Press, 2021

Co-authored with Martin Orkin. Routledge, 2019

Co-edited with Elizabeth Rivlin. Palgrave Macmillan, 2014

Co-edited with Aneta Mancewicz. Palgrave Macmillan, 2018

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

Columbia University Press, 2009
Modern Language Association’s Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for Comparative Literary Studies

Articles

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.

Chapters

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

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

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

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.

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.

Awards and Fellowships

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), collaborator: A Web Edition of King Lear
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

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