Associate Professor of Cultural Psychology
Her teaching and research focuses on the psychology of globalization and dilemmas of identity, belonging, and citizenship for those whose lives span national borders and cultural worlds.
She takes a critical ethnographic and community-based approach to learning and is particularly interested in the intersections of social research and creative writing.
She is a participating faculty member in Hampshire's China Exchange Program and the Five College Asian Pacific American Studies Program. She has lived and worked extensively in Hong Kong and China, and previously taught at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.
Chinese food is more American than apple pie, suggests writer Jennifer Lee in The Fortune Cookie Chronicles. In this course, we will take Chinese food as our starting point for exploring food as a system that connects individuals and communities, locally and globally. Students will carry out a multi-sited ethnographic research project that begins with a question about Chinese food, whether about production and consumption, identity and belonging, health and environment, memory and desire, community and activism. Students will "follow the Chinese food" wherever their questions take them-from restaurant to market to factory to farm-and be guided through the process of posing ethnographic questions, conducting fieldwork and interviews, writing fieldnotes and other forms of ethnographic documentation, and engaging throughout in the critical, reflexive act of interpretation and writing. As part of the Luce Initiative on Asian Studies and the Environment, students in this course will receive a small research stipend to use during the semester and may apply for a more substantial summer research grant to further their project locally or take it to China.
In this course, we will explore the relationship between methods of critical social inquiry and creative forms of writing and representation. While discipline has traditionally bound method to form in the social sciences, we ask: what forms are necessary for conveying what kinds of truths? We will consider the possibilities and limits of our research tools-the interview, the archive, ethnography, memory-while working the borders of non/fiction for the kinds of knowledge to which different forms give us access. We will look at examples of hybrid non/fiction forms including ethnographic fiction, documentary theatre, experimental memoir, and the lyric essay along with the genre-bending work of Gloria Anzaldua, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, B.J. Hollars, Shailja Patel, Paisley Rekdal, and Art Spiegelman. We will also hold a weekly hybrid documentary film series. Students will consider questions of craft, as they research, imagine, and workshop pieces of their own writing and explore their choices as researchers and writers in search of form.
This course is designed for students transitioning into Division II to introduce them to the School of Critical Social Inquiry: the kinds of questions we ask, methodologies we use, and writing we produce. Each week CSI faculty will share a recent research project, taking students "behind the scenes" to examine the methodological dilemmas and choices that drove their research and forms of knowledge they produced. Students will learn to read and think critically about the epistemological assumptions behind method, what it means to take an interpretive approach to social research, and the ethics of community-engaged scholarship. We will ask why some methods are privileged as more valid ways of knowing? And when do methodological conventions work for/against other goals such as community empowerment? Each student will develop a research proposal, as they learn how to be more intentional, reflexive, and creative in their own research and writing choices.