Students and Graduates

The CRC’s graduate student community is a pan-Asian group researching issues in Asian culture.

Our research projects cut across disciplines. Currently, we’re analysing (among others) Chinese villages and heritage sites, Indian fashion, Japanese memories, Singaporean multiculturalism, and Taiwanese museums.


Baey Shi Chen

Reimagining the Port City: A Transnational Sensibility as the Key to Establishing Singapore as a Modern Fashion Capital

  My thesis explores how a transnational approach towards design and cultural influence based on Singapore’s historic reputation as a port city can help shape strategies and policies that will position the country as a key fashion capital in the world. My other research interests include literary criticism and popular culture.

Susan Shih Chang

My research revolves around the imaginaries of national discourse in relation to (im)migration. I look at the representation of (im)migration heritage and culture in museums, and the use of museums as a site for nation-building impacted by transnational governance. For my thesis I look specifically at the representation of Southeast Asia in Taiwan’s national museums. I approach my project from the perspectives of cultural anthropology, museum studies and cultural policy studies.

Chua Tiong Seng

A History of Translation Discourse in Singapore 

  My research interests lie at the intersection of Cultural Studies and Translation Studies, in particular the role of literary translation in nation-building, identity formation, and the inter-generational transmission of cultural memories in multi-cultural societies like Singapore.

Gao Xueying

Inside the Wall: The Memory of Lutijian Village

  My research interests cover cultural studies, social memory, anthropology, and translation studies. I’m constantly looking for interdisciplinary approaches to advance the synthetic analysis of documented local history and culture with field observations and ethnographic interpretations of local memories in rural China. A vibrant process of heritage-making is emerging there.

Han Minli

Arts and Cultural Policies, Cultural Institutions, Cross-Cultural Exchange

  My thesis looks at how state push-pull factors influence and affect the evolution and transformation of local art and cultural organizations in Singapore.

Jaime Hsu Fang-Tze

Cold War Acousmêtre: Artists’ Films and the First Island Chain

  I’m a PhD candidate in the Cultural Studies in Asia programme of the National University of Singapore. My dissertation research, Cold War Acousmêtre: Artist Films and the First Island Chain, has been supported by the President’s Graduate Fellowship and the FASS Promising Graduate Scholar Award. With a research interest in the politics of memory and affective forms of state violence, my academic and curatorial work emphasizes on investigating, archiving, and theorizing artistic attempts pertaining to the enunciation of the long-silenced womanhood and queer experiences noted in post-war Asia.

  I’m a current nominee for the Independent Curator International’s 2018 Independent Vision Curatorial Award.


Samra Irfan

Understanding Political Violence and Construction of Collective Memory through Art: A Study of Documentary Films of Kashmir

  I’m a trained sociologist with a wide range of research interests. These include gender, violence and resistance, the visual studies of art forms, and collective memory. My PhD project explores the anthropology and sociology of violence and its relation to memory. It examines how art becomes a political act, and further nuances the relationship that emerges between political violence and collective memory.

  Prior to joining NUS, I have worked as research assistant on several projects in the area of gender studies. I was also engaged as a Research Consultant with National Human Rights Commission, India.

Adhvaidha Kalidasan

Empowerment or Deterioration?: The New Age of Art and Craft Revival Initiatives of Tamil Nadu

  My thesis is critically looking at the strategies undertaken by the government organisations, NGOs, and private businesses (in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu) with regards to their craft revival and artisan empowerment initiatives. I’m particularly concerned with how these strategies affect the art and crafts of their target communities. I’ve an upcoming (December 2018) piece about the subject in SubVersions.

  My research interests include the Indian fashion industry, Tamil cinema, Tamil Nadu’s politics, the global production, distribution, and consumption of consumer goods, as well as caste and gender dynamics in Indian society.

  I produced two short documentaries—Wages of Change, and Why This Cow-Laveri Di?—in 2017. Their trailers are at and

Ritsuko Saito

Responses after Seventy Years of World War II : Contemporary Japanese Memory Practices in Singapore

  My research interests include memory, space, affect, and cultural policy.

  My thesis examines Japanese encounters with war heritage sites in Singapore through tourism, cultural diplomacy, and everyday life.

Bipin Sebestian

   I research icons and the articulation of nationalist imaginary. In particular, my nascent PhD project (title yet to be finalised) examines the icons being circulated by the Hindu right-wing movement in India, and the underlying discourses.

Wang Jiabao

Re-Appropriating “Folk” in Contemporary China

  My research mainly focuses on the delicate connection (as well as collapse) between high culture, mass culture, and folk culture. I am particularly interested in the re-construction of the discourse of “folk” as in folk culture and as in people. My current project looks into the re-appropriation of folk art in heritage sites, folk art museums, as well as contemporary art exhibitions.


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