Erin Huang

Assistant Professor of East Asian Studies and Comparative Literature
Email Address:
Office Location: 
236 Frist Campus Center

Office Hours Spring 2019: Spring Term Leave

Periods: Twentieth century to present

Languages: Chinese, Japanese, French, English

Research Interests: Chinese and international cinemas, film and media studies, socialism and postsocialism, histories and theories of Asian urbanization, global capitalism, gender studies, critical theory

Erin Yu-Tien Huang is Assistant Professor of East Asian Studies and Comparative Literature, and an executive member of Princeton’s Committee for Film Studies. She is the co-founder of Asia Theory Visuality—an intellectual platform that harbors collaborative thinking on experimental and theoretical approaches to Asian Studies. She received her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature with a Graduate Feminist Emphasis in Gender & Sexuality Studies from the University of California, Irvine. She is an interdisciplinary scholar and comparatist working on the intersections of urban studies and Chinese cinema studies. Her work focuses on the cultures of China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Actively deconstructing “Asia” as a geopolitical and economic formation, she is interested in approaches that problematize the disciplinary boundary between East and Southeast Asia(s). Her research interests broadly include film and media studies, Marxism(s), feminist theory, the global imaginaries of socialism and post-socialism, urban theory, and phenomenology.

Her current book project, Urban Horror: Neoliberal Post-Socialism, Chinese Cinemas, and the Limits of Visibility (under contract with Duke University Press), asks what the “post-” in post-socialism means as a temporal and spatial imaginary in and outside the People’s Republic of China, and theorizes neoliberal post-socialism as a deterritorialized global economic system that has no (proper) name. The book studies the parallel emergence of the cinematic aesthetics of urban horror and a new species of illegible spaces in the present– ranging from sprawling factory cities and science and industrial parks, to zones of economic and political exception, and urban ruins – produced during the expansion of neoliberal economic integration among China, its neighboring Sinophone countries, and beyond. The urban forms examined in this project occupy a paradoxical role of being the primary locations that sustain the transnational post-socialist economy and the visual basis for cultural critiques of economic, gender, and ethnic violence that are embedded in the social unconscious of post-socialist China and its economic partners. Her second project, tentatively titled Ocean Media: Islands and Cinema in the Age of Spatial Expansion, considers the relationship between the technologies of geospatial visuality and contemporary spatial technologies of islanding—e.g. mega-port, artificial island, container ship, and more. It is a project that theorizes new forms of worlding, through the deployment of ocean media. 

Professor Huang has taught across multiple disciplines, including East Asian Studies, Comparative Literature, Gender & Sexuality Studies, Film & Media Studies, and Asian American Studies. Before joining the faculty at Princeton University, she was Visiting Assistant Professor of East Asian Studies at New York University.



“Intimate Dystopias: Dreams of the Interior and Architectural Feminism in Li Shaohong’s Urban Cinema.” (forthcoming in positions: asia critique, April 2019)

“Archaeologies of Post-Socialist Temporalities: Documentary Experiments and the Rhetoric of Ruin Gazing.” (forthcoming in Journal of Chinese Cinemas, January 2019).


Book Chapter

“The De-Spectacular and Taiwanese Neo-Noir—Rebels of the Neon God and the Crime Cinema of Triviality,” in East Asian Film Noir, eds. Chi-Yun Shin and Mark Gallagher (London: I.B. Tauris, 2015)



Review of Jean Ma, Sounding the Modern Woman: The Songstress in Chinese Cinema (Duke University Press, 2015). Reviewed in Women’s Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal 46.1 (2017): 1-3.

Review of Michel Hockx, Internet Literature in China (Columbia University Press, 2015). Reviewed in The Journal of Asian Studies 75.2 (2016): 502-504.



“Level A” by Yongmei Huang, Words Without Borders: Special Issue, Olympic Voices from China, April 2008


Courses Taught:

Graduate Courses:

Seeing the Interior: Cinema, Media, Inverse Visuality (EAS/COM 594)


Undergraduate Courses:

Chinese Cinemas (EAS 236/COM 228)

Dangerous Bodies: Cross-Dressing, Asia, Transgression (EAS 314/COM 336/GSS 314)

Asian Urban Horror (Freshman Seminar) (FRS 169)

Spectral Thinking in Modern Chinese Literature and Film (COM 230/EAS 235)

East Asian Humanities: Tradition and Transformation (team-taught) (HUM 234)

Twentieth Century Chinese Literature: Affective Landscapes (EAS 330/COM 335)

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