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Teaching Staff

Dr. Emily ZONG

Assistant Professor

Office: RRS 611

Tel: 3411 2276

Email: emilyzong@hkbu.edu.hk

Emily Zong received her PhD in Literary Studies at The University of Queensland, Australia. She has previously taught gender studies and Australian literature at The University of Queensland. Her research interests include Asian Australian and Asian American diaspora studies, ecocriticism and the environmental humanities, gender and sexuality, and migrant and refugee writing. She has published widely on Asian diaspora literature, migrant women’s subjecthood and agency, refugee cultural memory, multiculturalism, and cosmopolitanism, and most recently, ethnic speculative fiction and the environment. Her postdoctoral and current project interrogates how literary imaginations of the more-than-human (land, plant, animal, and waste) help rewrite oppressive notions of race, nation, and temporality in the context of climate change and the Anthropocene. She is working on a book project that explores the cultural imaginations of place and species in Asian Australian literature.


Emily’s work appear in Critique, ARIEL, ISLE, LIT, Journal of Postcolonial Writing, Journal of Intercultural Studies, JASAL, The Cambridge History of the Australian Novel, among other venues.


Teaching areas: Asian diaspora literature and culture; environmental humanities; climate change and Anthropocene studies; posthumanism; critical race studies; gender studies; postcolonial theory

1.    Cosmopolitanism in Asian Diaspora Literature:


Emily’s work on Asian diasporic literary criticism cluster around two dominant themes: the formation of diasporic identity in national and transnational contexts, and the politics of representation in diasporic women’s writing. She is especially interested in developing a cosmopolitan literacy that examines Asian diasporic subjecthood and agency within cultural pluralist frameworks. This approach is exemplified in her JIS article that rereads the model minority narrative in relation to new forms of cultural racism and cosmo-multicultural capital in Australia, and in her Critique article that calls for a shift of political engagement with refugee cultural memory from a “politics of recognition” to an “ethics of witnessing.”


2.    Race and Ecology in the Anthropocene


The other thread of her work focuses on the intersection between race and ecology in Asian diasporic literature. This work is at the forefront of an emerging scholarship that recognises the importance of race and ethnicity in environmental literature. Her contribution to this conversation is particularly informed by the ways that posthuman and speculative cultural forms inspire new ways of theorising ethnic and migrant Asian subjectivity. For example, in an ISLE article, she explores how multispecies collaboration shapes a political future of posthuman queerness in Asian Australian speculative fiction.

Journal Articles:

1.      Zong, Emily Yu. “Anachronism in the Anthropocene: Plural Temporalities and the Art of Noticing in Ruth Ozeki’s A Tale for the Time Being.” Forthcoming in LIT: Literature Interpretation Theory, vol. 32, no. 4, 2021, pp. 305-21

2.      Zong, Emily Yu. “Dragon Lovers and Plant Politics: Queering the Nonhuman in Hoa Pham’s Wave and Ellen Van Neerven’s ‘Water’.” ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment, vol. 28, no. 3, 2021, pp. 1048-65.

3.      Zong, Emily Yu. “Towards an Ethics of Witnessing: Refugee Memory and Community in Gish Jen’s World and Town.” 2021. Critique: Studies in Contemporary Fiction, published in advance at https://doi.org/10.1080/00111619.2021.1891020)

4.      Zong, Emily Yu. “The Voice of Diversity: Picture Brides and Masked Individuality in Julie Otsuka’s The Buddha in the Attic.” 2021. Journal of Postcolonial Writing, published in advance at https://doi.org/10.1080/17449855.2021.1964096

5.      Zong, Emily Yu. “Post-apocalyptic Specters and Critical Planetarity in Merlinda Bobis’s Locust Girl.ARIEL: A Review of International English Literature, vol. 51, no. 4, 2020, pp. 99-123.

6.      Zong, Emily Yu. “Disturbance of the White Man: Oriental Quests and Alternative Heroines in Merlinda Bobis’s Fish-Hair WomanJASAL: Journal of the Association for the Study of Australian Literature, vol. 16, no. 2, 2017, pp. 1-17.

7.      Zong, Emily Yu. “‘I Protest, Therefore I Am’: Cosmo-multiculturalism, Suburban Dreams, and Difference as Abjection in Hsu-Ming Teo’s Behind the Moon.Journal of Intercultural Studies, vol. 37, no. 3, 2016, pp. 234-49.

8.      Zong, Emily Yu. “Transnational Allegory, Domestic Cosmopolitanism: Towards a Cosmofeminine Space in Shirley Lim’s Joss and Gold.New Scholar, vol. 4, no. 1, 2016, pp. 51-64.


Book Chapters:

9.      Zong, Emily Yu. “The Making of the Asian Australian Novel.” Forthcoming in The Cambridge History of the Australian Novel, edited by David Carter. Cambridge University Press, 2022.

10.  Zong, Emily Yu. “Rethinking Hybridity – Amputated Selves in Asian Diasporic Identity Formation.” Worldmaking: Literature, Language, Culture, edited by Tom Clark, Emily Finlay, and Philippa Kelly. John Benjamins, 2017, pp. 189-200.


Review Articles:

11.  Zong, Emily Yu. “Emily Yu Zong Reviews Everything Changes: Australian Writers and China.” Mascara Literary Review, vol. 23. 26 Apr. 2020.

12.  Zong, Emily Yu, and Anoushka Dowling. “Coronavirus Racism Tests the Limits of Multicultural Australia.” Griffith University MATE Program Forum, 6 July 2020.

13.  Zong, Emily Yu. “Chinese SF Beyond Politics – An Interview with Hao Jingfang.” Mascara Literary Review, vol.  22. Jun 2018.

14.  Zong, Emily Yu. “‘I Have to Recuperate Love, and Grow it Back’—An Interview with Merlinda Bobis.” Mascara Literary Review, vol. 18. 1 Oct. 2015.

15.  Zong, Emily Yu. “A Plague of Love – A Review of Merlinda Bobis’s Locust Girl.” Australian Women’s Book Review, vol. 26, no. 1-2, 2014, pp. 26-29.

16.  Zong, Emily Yu. “Recording and Remaking the Story of Mother—A Review of Lily Chan’s Toyo.” Australian Women’s Book Review, vol. 25, no. 1, 2013, pp. 23-25.

1.    China Postdoctoral Science Foundation Project (International Recruitment Scheme, no. YJ20180128), “Posthuman Perspectives in Asian Diasporic Literature” (2018-2020)


2.    HKBU Arts Faculty Start-Up Grant