Students from Prof. Marshall's 'Literature of Disability' class visited the Lowell Association for the Blind.
Dr. Sue J. KimProfessor; English Dept. Chair; Co-Director, Center for Asian American Studies
  • College
    College of Fine Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Department
  • Phone
    (978) 934-4408
  • Fax
    (978) 934-3097
  • Office
    O'Leary Library - 457
  • Email

Research Interests

Contemporary literature, literary theory, asian american studies, narrative theory, gender, class

The relationship of narrative forms to race, gender, and Class/capitalism; cognitive cultural studies; studies of affect (particularly anger and empathy) in late capitalism; postmodern literature and what comes "after" postmodernism.


  • Ph D: English, (2003), Cornell University - Ithaca, NY
    Supporting Area: Asian American Studies
  • MA: English, (1999), Cornell University
  • BA: English, (1996), Dartmouth College - Hanover, NH


Sue J. Kim is Professor & Chair of English and Co-Director of the Center for Asian American Studies. She is the author of "On Anger: Race, Cognition, Narrative" (Univ of Texas, 2013) and "Critiquing Postmodernism in Contemporary Discourses of Race" (Palgrave, 2009). She is coeditor (with Meghan M. Hammond) of "Rethinking Empathy Through Literature" (Routledge 2014), and she served as guest editor for “Decolonizing Narrative Theory,” a special issue of the Journal of Narrative Theory (Fall 2012). Her essays have appeared in journals such as Modern Fiction Studies, Narrative, College Literature, and the Journal of Asian American Studies, and in essay collections such as Narrative Theory Unbound: Queer and Feminist Interventions, Postmodern Literature and Race, and The Business of Entertainment. She was UMass Lowell Nancy K. Donahue Endowed Professor in the Arts from 2015-2017.

She is also Project Director of the Southeast Asian Digital Archive at UMass Lowell (, which seeks to create a sustainable, user-friendly repository of cultural heritage materials from Southeast Asian American communities in the Lowell, Mass. region. The SEADA has received support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the UMass Creative Economy Fund, the Lowell Cultural Council (an agent of the Massachusetts Cultural Council which receives funding from the Massachusetts Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts), and the Chancellor's 2020 Challenge Grant.

She currently serves on the Executive Council of the International Society for the Study of Narrative (2015-17) and on the Association for Asian American Studies Board of Directors (2016-2019). She formerly served as co-chair of the Modern Language Association’s Committee on the Literature of People of Color of the U.S. and Canada. She was also co-chair of the East of California section of the Association for Asian American Studies (2012-14), and was coordinator of the 2014 International Conference on Narrative in Cambridge, MA. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Dartmouth College and doctoral degree from Cornell University.

Selected Awards and Honors

  • College of Arts & Sciences Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching (2010) - UAB
  • Arthur Feinstein Memorial Award for Best Senior Thesis (1996) - Dartmouth College Department of English

Selected Publications

  • Uy, P.S., Kim, S.J., Khuon, C. (2016) "College and Career Readiness of Southeast Asian American College Students in New England," Journal of College Student Retention: Research, Theory & Practice pp. 1-23
  • Kim, S.J. (2015) "Empathy and 1970s Novels by Third World Women," Ohio State UP pp. 147-165
  • Hammond, M.M., Kim, S.J. (2014) "Rethinking Empathy Through Literature," Routledge
  • Kim, S.J. (2013) "On Anger: Race, Cognition, Narrative," University of Texas Press
  • Kim, S.J. (2012) "Introduction: Decolonizing Narrative Theory," Journal of Narrative Theory 42:3 pp. 233
  • Kim, S.J. (2012) "Thoughts on "Puzzling Out the Self"," English Language Notes 50:1 pp. 213-216
  • Kim, S.J. (2011) "Anger, Temporality, and the Politics of Reading The Woman Warrior," Analyzing World Fiction: New Horizons in Narrative Theory pp. 93-108
  • Kim, S.J. (2010) "Anger, Cognition, Ideology: What Crash Can Show Us About Emotion," Image and Narrative : Online Magazine of the Visual Narrative 2 pp. 4
  • Kim, S.J. (2009) "Critiquing postmodernism in contemporary discourses of race,"
  • Kim, S.J. (2008) "'The Real White Man Is Waiting for Me': Ideology & Morality in Bessie Head's A Question of Power," College Literature 35:2 pp. 38-69
  • Kim, S.J. (2008) "Digitizing Race: Visual Cultures of the Internet," MELUS 33:4 pp. 211-213
  • Kim, S.J. (2008) "Narrator, Author, Reader: Equivocation in Theresa Hak Kyung Cha's Dictee," Narrative 16:2 pp. 163-177
  • Kim, S.J. (2005) "Apparatus: Theresa Hak Kyung and the Politics of Form," Journal of Asian American Studies 8:2 pp. 143-169
  • Kim, S.J. (2003) "The Dialectics of Sensibility: Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Thomas Pynchon, Bessie Head, and the Institutionalization of Postmodern Literary Criticism," Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences 64:4 pp. 1250-1250

Selected Presentations

  • Rethinking Empathy I and Rethinking Empathy II - International Conference on Narrative, June 2013 - Manchester, UK
  • Anger and Narrative Structure,part of organized & chaired panel Affect, Temporality, and Narrative - International Conference on Narrative, May 2013 - Austin, TX
  • Building and Developing Asian American Studies Program - Association for Asian American Studies Conference, April 2013 - Seattle, WA
  • The Political Practice of Teaching Asian American Literature - Association for Asian American Studies Conference, April 2012 - Washington, D.C.
  • From El Mariachi to Spy Kids? Emotion & Cognition in the Films of Robert Rodriguez - International Conference on Narrative, March 2012 - Las Vegas, NV
  • The Novel After Postmodernism - Marxist Literary Group, January 2012 - Seattle, WA
  • Women of Color and the Dialectics of Narrative Empathy - Rethinking Empathy: Feeling with Others in Contemporary Literature", January 2012 - Seattle, WA
  • Empathy & 1970s Novels by Women of Color - The Association for the Study of the Arts of the Present Conference, October 2011 - Philadephia, PA
  • F**k Me. I Still Cannot Type: The Wire and Class/Race/Gendering - Association for Asian American Studies Conference, May 2011 - New Orleans, LA
  • Popular Culture, Race, & Emergent Approaches to Narrative - International Conference on Narrative, April 2011 - St. Louis, MO
  • Gran Torino and the Racial Politics of Anger, Screens of Asianness in Contemporary American Film - Association for Asian American Studies Conference, April 2010 - Austin, TX
  • The Impasse of Identity: Crash & Cognitive Theory, part of Cognitive Approaches to Literature Discussion Group panel Visual Performance and Cognition - Modern Language Association Annual Convention, December 2009 - Philadephia, PA
  • Three Ways of Looking at Bodies - American Studies Association Annual Meeting, October 2008 - Albuquerque, NM
  • Comparative Anger in Woman Warrior and The Autobiography of Malcolm X - American Literature Association Annual Conference, May 2008 - San Francisco, CA
  • Equivocal Attachments in Asian American Women's Writing, part of organized & chaired panel The Autobiographical Gesture in Ethnic Texts: The Pitfalls of Authenticity - Annual Conference of the International Society for the Study of Narrative Literature, March 2007 - Washington, D.C.
  • The Problem of Korea in Postcolonial and Cold War Paradigms - Modern Language Association Annual Convention, December 2005 - Washington, D.C.
  • The Subject of Minority Writing part of organized & chaired panel Minority Writing & Narrative Theory - Annual Conference of the International Society for the Study of Narrative Literature, April 2005 - Louisville, KY
  • Subject Relations for A Democratic Society - Psychoanalysis and Democracy: Annual Meeting of the Association for the Psychoanalysis of Culture and Society, October 2004 - New York, NY
  • Things of the Soul: Politics, Psychoanalysis, and Bessie Head's A Question of Power - Annual Conference of the International Society for the Study of Narrative Literature, April 2004 - Burlington, VT
  • Troubled Bridges: Asian American Politics and Internationalism in the 1970's - Annual Conference of the Society for the Study of Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States, March 2004 - San Antonio, TX
  • Ghostliness and Ghastliness in Bessie Head's A Question of Power - International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts, March 2004 - Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • After Postcolonialism, Beyond Minority Discourse: Postcolonial, Ethnic, & American Studies, November 1999 - Ithaca, NY
  • The Radical Caucus and the Politics of Change: A Case Study - Association for Asian American Studies Conference, March 1999 - Philadephia, PA
  • To Remove Yellow Stains: Images of the Chinese in Nineteenth-Century Trade Cards - Association for Asian American Studies Conference, April 1997 - Seattle, WA