Associate Professor of Asian and African Languages and Literature
My research revolves around two major themes: Japanese empire studies and popular culture studies. In Becoming Japanese: The Politics of Identity Formation in Colonial Taiwan, I argue that Taiwanese consciousness emerged during the Japanese colonial period as a response to the failure of mainland China as a viable political alternative. The emphasis is on the fractured identity that triangulates between China, Japan and Taiwan. My forthcoming work, Anti-Japanism: The Politics of Sentimentality in Postcolonial East Asia, argues that anti-Japan sentiments in the region today should be grasped in the context of the larger shift from a Japan-centric to a Sinocentric system. Anti-Japan sentiments embody the contradictions and unresolved issues of this transition. My current project, Trans-imperial Characters: Popular Culture and its Discontents, brings the two themes together and argues that characters in popular culture are important sites of desire and fantasy projections, especially during times of imperial transitions. I teach the following courses: Nightmare Japan, Minor Japan, Pop Japan, East Asian Cultural Studies, and Games and Culture.
His research interests include colonial discourse studies, postcolonial theory, Japanese mass culture, and theories of globalization and regionalism. He has published in boundary 2, positions and Public Culture.
Ching, L. "Cheng wei ’ribenren’" (Becoming ’Japanese’). Rye-Field Publishing, 2006.
Ching, L. Becoming “Japanese”: Colonial Taiwan and the Politics of Identity Formation. University of California Press, 2000.
Ching, L. ""Japan in Asia"." Blackwell Companion to Japanese History. Ed. W Tsutsui. Blackwell, 2006.
Ching, L. "Savage Construction and Civility Making: Japanese Colonial Discourse and Taiwanese Aborigines." Japan and Cultural Imperialism. Ed. G Weisenfeld. 2000. 795-818.
Ching, L. ""Shiko fukanosei toshite no Mushajiken” (The Musha Rebellion as Unthinkable)." "Kioku suru taiwan" (Taiwan Remembers: Encountering Empire). Ed. W Mitsa, T Chie, and H Ying-che. Tokyo University Press. 103-129.
Ching, L. "’Give Me Japan and Nothing Else!’: Postcoloniality, Identity, and the Traces Colonialism” in Millennial Japan: Rethinking the Nation in the Age of Recession." Ed. H Harootunian and T Yoda. South Atlantic Quarterly (2000): 763-788.
Leo Ching, . "Regionalizing the Global; Globalizing the Regional: Mass Culture and Asianism in the Age of Late Capital." Public Culture 12.1 (2000): 233-257. (Academic Article)