Janet Alison Hoskins and Viet Thanh Nguyen

Series Editors The University of California Press

A Luminos Open Access Book Series

In recent years, the issue of how regions are connected and what kinds of cultural exchanges take place on a global scale has become of increasing importance. The term Transpacific, developed to some extent because of controversies over the proposed Trans-Pacific partnership, has come to signify the nexus of these flows of culture, capital, ideas and labor across the Pacific. Drawing from Asian Studies, American Studies and Asian-American Studies, a new generation of scholars is developing new models for considering the geopolitical struggle over the Pacific and its attendant possibilities for inequality and exploitation. The word and concept of the Transpacific can be harnessed for purposes of both domination and resistance. By looking at cultural and political movements and artistic works that have arisen to contest state, corporate and military ambitions, we seek to place them in a context that should be more dynamic than older ideas of the “Asia Pacific” or the “Pacific Rim” of global trade.

The notion of Transpacific Studies has to a certain extent come of age over the past decade. An increasing number of new monographs have begun to situate themselves at the intersection of studies of Asia and American Studies, including new and significant books about people on the various Pacific Islands. Specific authors who we have invited to speak at the Center for Transpacific Studies highlight this fact: Emma Jinhua Teng Eurasian: Mixed Identities in the United States, China, and Hong Kong, 1842-1943 (University of California Press 2013), Heonik Kwon The Other Cold War. (Columbia Studies in International and Global History. New York: Columbia University Press 2010), Yen Le Espiritu Body Counts: The Vietnam War and Militarized Refugees (Berkeley: University of California Press 2014), Brian Bernards Writing the South Seas: Imagining the Nanyang in Chinese and Southeast Asian Colonial Literature (Seattle: University of Washington Press) Grace Cho Haunting the Korean Diaspora: Shame, Secrecy, and the Forgotten War (University of Minnesota Press, 2008), Khatharya Um From the Land of Shadows: War, Revolution and the Making of the Cambodia Diaspora (New York: NYU Press 2015), Kornel Chang Pacific Connections: The Making of US-Canada Borderlands (Berkeley: University of California Press), Adria Imada Aloha America: Hula Circuits through the U.S. Empire (Duke University Press 2012), Janet Hoskins The Divine Eye and the Diaspora: Vietnamese Syncretism Becomes Transpacific Caodaism (University of Hawaii Press 2015), Viet Thanh Nguyen Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War (Cambridge: Harvard University Press 2015) and Lon Kurashige Two Faces of Exclusion: The Untold History of Anti- Asian Racism in the United States (University of North Carolina Press 2016).

Janet Hoskins and Viet Thanh Nguyen published an edited volume in 2014 which outlined this new field as Transpacific Studies: Framing an Emerging Field (University of Hawaii Press). In 2018, one of our first Transpacific Fellows at the University of Southern California, Ana Paulina Lee, published Mandarin Brazil: Race, Representation and Memory (Stanford University Press), exploring the centrality of Chinese exclusion to the Brazilian nation-building project. By looking at how Chinese-ness is represented in popular music, literature and visual culture, she shows how Asian racialization shaped Brazil’s image as a racial democracy. In 2017, Transpacific faculty member Lon Kurashige edited another anthology with University of Hawaii Press titled Pacific America: Histories of Transoceanic Crossings, including chapters by former Transpacific doctoral student at USC Phuong Tran Nguyen and former Transpacific faculty member John E. Wills.

Format & Funding

Transpacific Studies will be an open access book program in partnership with the University of California Press’s Luminos program. As such books will undergo the standard review and board approval process, and receive standard editorial and marketing attention. Books in the series will be made available as free e-books as well as a paperback edition. It is understood that as participants in the Luminos program, authors are expected to forgo royalties on any future sales of the paperback. Proceeds from those sales go to funding the Luminos program.

Subvention required to participate in Luminos will be made available by the Center for Transpacific Studies at the University of Southern California with assistance from the Henry Luce Foundation (Asia Program) on a per title basis. Subvention begins at $7500 for non-UC authors, $5000 for UC authors. (UCLA and UCSD authors require no outside funding due to an Open Access subvention available from their campus libraries). This dollar amount is based on books of no more than 90,000 words and 20 images. Any book longer or more complex than this will require a higher subsidy to be determined by the editor. The total funding immediately available for the subvention on Open Access publishing is $15,000 from Luce and $15,000 from USC. During the initial three-year period (2019-2021) only three to four titles are expected to be published, at which point the Press and series editors are free to discuss the option of extending or revising the terms of the contract.

Series Editors

  • Janet Hoskins is Professor of Anthropology and Religion at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. Her books include The Divine Eye and the Diaspora: Vietnamese Syncretism Becomes Transpacific Caodaism (2015, University of Hawaii Press), The Play of Time: Kodi Perspectives on History, Calendars and Exchange (1996 Benda Prize in Southeast Asian Studies, Association for Asian Studies, University of California Press), and Biographical Objects: How Things Tell the Stories of People’s Lives (Routledge 1998). She is the contributing editor of four books: Transpacific Studies: Framing an Emerging Field (with Viet Thanh Nguyen, University of Hawaii 2014), Headhunting and the Social Imagination in Southeast Asia (1996), A Space Between Oneself and Oneself: Anthropology as a Search for the Subject (1999) and Fragments from Forests and Libraries (2001). She served as President of the Society for the Anthropology of Religion from 2011-13.

  • Viet Thanh Nguyen is a University Professor, Aerol Arnold Chair of English, and Professor of English, American Studies and Ethnicity, and Comparative Literature at the University of Southern California. He is the author of Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America (Oxford University Press, 2002) and the novel The Sympathizer, from Grove/Atlantic (2015). The Sympathizer won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, an Edgar Award for Best First Novel from the Mystery Writers of America, the First Novel Prize from the Center for Fiction, the Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction from the American Library Association. He is also the author of The Refugees (Grove Press 2017), and the co-editor with Janet Hoskins of Transpacific Studies: Framing an Emerging Field (University of Hawaii 2014). His most recent book is the edited volume The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives (Harry N. Abrams 2018). He is also the author of Nothing Ever Dies:  Vietnam and the Memory of War from Harvard University Press (2016), a finalist for the National Book Award in nonfiction and the National Book Critics Circle Award in General Nonfiction.

Editorial Board

  • Brian Bernards is Associate Professor of East Asian Languages and Cultures and Comparative Literature at the University of Southern California. He is the author of Writing the South Seas: Imagining the Nanyang in Chinese and Southeast Asian Postcolonial Literature (University of Washington Press 2015) and the coeditor (with Shu-mei Shih, and Chien-hsin Tsai of Sinophone Studies: A Critical Reader. New York: Columbia University Press (2013). His work explores issues of multiculturalism, creolization, and post-coloniality beyond East-West configurations that have dominated and defined discussions of these issues in comparative cultural studies, at times inadvertently flattening the internal diversity and uneven power dynamics within the various sites that collectively constitute the “East.”

  • Adrian De Leon is an award-winning public historian and writer at the University of Southern California, where he is an Assistant Professor of American Studies & Ethnicity. At USC, he serves on the steering committee of the Center for Transpacific Studies, and holds affiliations in several other initiatives across campus. Through a multi-sited archival and ethnographic analysis of the Philippines and the Filipino diaspora, De Leon studies the relationship between indigeneity, settler colonialism, and resource extraction.

    Bundok: A Hinterland History of Filipino America, his first academic book, appeared  in Fall 2023 with the University of North Carolina Press. Using archival research in the Philippines, Hawai‘i, North America, and Spain, Bundok follows the co-constitution of Philippine indigeneity and Filipino migrant labor through the racial archives of 19th-century plantation capitalism in Luzon’s northern hinterlands.

  • Nancy Lutkehaus is Professor of Anthropology and Political Science at the University of Southern California. She is the author of Margaret Mead: The Making of an American Icon (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press 2008) and Zaria’s Fire: Engendered Moments in Manam Ethnography (Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press, 1995), as well as the contributing editor of Gendered Missions: Men and Women in Missionary Discourse and Practice, co-edited with Mary Huber (Ann Arbor, Michigan: University of Michigan Press 2000) and Gender Rituals: Female Initiation in Melanesia co-edited with N.C. Roscoe (New York and London: Routledge 1995).

Contact Us

Center for Transpacific Studies

University of Southern California

3620 S. Vermont Ave, KAP 352

Los Angeles, Ca 90089-2532