Lee, Rachel C.


Kaplan 234
Tel: 310.825.7515 / Fax: 310.267.4339 / E-mail



B.A., 1988, Cornell University

Ph.D., 1995, University of California, Los Angeles



Rachel C. Lee, Professor of English and Gender Studies at UCLA, specializes in Asian American literature, performance culture, and studies of gender and sexuality.  She is the author of The Exquisite Corpse of Asian America: Biopolitics, Biosociality, and Posthuman Ecologies (NYU, 2014), The Americas of Asian American Literature: Gendered Fictions of Nation and Transnation (Princeton University Press, 1999), editor of The Routledge Companion to Asian American and Pacific Islander Literature (Taylor Francis, 2014), and co-editor of the volume Asian America.Net: Ethnicity, Nationalism, and Cyberspace (Routledge University Press, 2003).  Lee has held a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, a Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of California, Berkeley, and a UC Humanities Research Institute.  Lee is currently Director, Center for the Study of Women, Universityof California, Los Angeles and heading a multi-year research project, “Life (Un)Ltd,” addressing the question of what impact recent developments in the biosciences, biotechnology, and in clinical practice have had on feminist studies, especially those theorizing the circulation of population data and biomaterials in relation to race and (neo)colonialism.  For more information, please go to


Selected Works

Editor, Special Issue on “Life (Un)Ltd: Feminism, Bioscience, Race.” The Scholar and the Feminist  (Fall 2013).

“Parasexual Generativity and Chimeracological Entanglements in Amitav Ghosh’s The Calcutta Chromosome,” The Scholar and the Feminist (Fall 2013).

“Haptics, Mobile Handhelds, and other ‘Novel’ Devices: The Tactile Unconscious of Reading across Old and New Media.”  CTheory (Jan. 2012).

“‘Where’s My Parade?’ Margaret Cho and the Asian American Body in Space.”  TDR: The Drama Review 48.2 (Summer 2004): 108-132. (PDF)

“Notes from the (non)Field: Theorizing and Teaching ‘Women of Color.’”  Meridians 1.1 (Fall 2000): 85-109.  Rpt. In Women’s Studies on Its Own, ed. Robyn Wiegman, Duke University Press, 2002. 82-105.

“Asian Americans’ Performing Blackface, Blacks’ Performing Yellowface: Costly Performances or Coalitional Enactments.”  Literature on the Move: Comparing Diasporic Ethnicities in Europe and the Americas. Eds. Dominique Marcais, Mark Niemeyer, Bernard Vincent, Cathy Waegner. Heidelberg: Universitaetsverlag C., 2002. 147 – 158.

“Asian American Cultural Production in Asian-Pacific Perspective.”  boundary 2 26.2 (summer 1999): 231-254.


Recent Classes Taught


Los Angeles: Layers and Landscapes

Tactility (senior seminar)

Gross Anatomy: Representing Through Body Parts

War, Patriotism, and Asian American Cultural Acts of Good Citizenship

Specialized Studies in 20th Century American Literature: Theaters of Race

Feminist Theory


The Body Eclectic: Special Topics in Asian American Critical Theory

Racial Feeling, Post-racial Biopolitics
Visceral, Voluble, and Virtual: Femiqueer Corporealities

Feminist Knowledge Production: Biopolitics and the Woman-Sex Question

Interest Areas
• Ecocriticism / Environmental Humanities / Biopolitics
• Asian American Literature & Culture
• Sexuality & Gender Studies