Ph.D., English Language and Literature, University of Michigan
B.A., English, UC Berkeley

Office: CMU 225

LeiLani Nishime is a Professor of Communication. Her research areas are multiracial and interracial studies, the intersection of race and gender, Asian American media representations, and Asian American subcultural production. Her book Undercover Asian: Multiracial Asian Americans in Visual Culture (University of Illinois Press) looks at the visual representation of multiracial people in mass media. She has co-edited two books on Asian American popular culture and an edited collection on race and ecology. Her most recent articles analyze race in science fiction and Asian American graphic novels.

Dr. Nishime currently on the board of the Seattle Globalist and she is also one of the organizing members of the Seattle Asian American Film Festival.

Dr. Nishime received her Ph.D. in English Language and Literature from the University of Michigan and her B.A. in English from UC Berkeley. She comes to the UW from Sonoma State University where she was an Associate Professor in American Multicultural Studies.

Selected publications

  • The Naomi Osaka Brand: Mixing Race, Activism, and Visual Communication for Generation Z,” co-authored with Jennifer McClearen, Routledge Handbook of Ethnicity and Race in Communication, Eds. Bernadette Calafell and Shinsuke Eguchi, Routledge, 2023. 
  • Critical Approaches to the Climate Crisis,” Social Media+Society, 9:2 (June 2023).
  • Graphic Novels and the Visual Narrative of Race in American Born Chinese and Shortcomings,” in Teaching Asian North American Literatures, Eds. Jennifer Ho and Jenny Heijun Wills. Modern Languages Association, 2022.
  • Seeing Absence: Asian Americans and Heterogeneous Time,” Quarterly Journal of Speech, 107:4 (2021), pp. 457-464.
  • Mixed Race Asian Americans and Contemporary Media and Popular Culture,” In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Literature. Oxford University Press, 2020.
  • Imag(in)ing the Post-National Television Fan: Counter-flows and Hybrid Ambivalence in Dramaworld,” co-authored with David Oh, International Communication Gazette, 2019, vol 81:2, pp. 121-138.
  • Racial Ecologies, co-edited with Kim Hester Williams, University of Washington Press, 2018.
  • Reviving Bruce: Negotiating Asian Masculinity Through Bruce Lee Paratexts in Giant Robot and Angry Asian Man,” Critical Studies in Media Communication, Spring 2017.
  • Mixed Race Matters: What Emma Stone and Bruno Mars Can Tell about the Future of Asian American Media,” Cinema Journal, Spring 2017.
  • Stunning: Digital Portraits of Mixed Race Families from to Tumblr,” in Lopez, Lori Kido and Vincent Pham, Eds. The Routledge Companion to Asian American Media. Routledge, 2017.
  • Manga or Marvel?: Multiracial Japanese/American Visual Narrative in Indy Comics,” in Hapa Japan, Vol.2, Ed. Duncan Ryuken Williams, Kaya Press, 2017.
  • Whitewashing Yellow Futures in Ex MachinaCloud Atlas, and Advantageous: Gender, Labor, and Technology in Sci-fi Film,” Journal of Asian American Studies, 20:1, (February 2017), pp. 29-49.
  • Extinction, Geneology, and Institutionalization: Challenging Normative Values in Popular Endangered Language Discourse,” with Elizabeth Parks, International and Intercultural Communication, 9:4, (2016), pp. 312-333.
  • Global Asian American Popular Culture, co-editor with Shilpa Davè and Tasha Oren, New York University Press, 2016.
  • Undercover Asian: Multiracial Asian Americans in Visual Culture, University of Illinois Press, 2014.
  • Containment as Neocolonial Visual Rhetoric: Fashion, Yellowface, and Karl Lagerfeld’s ‘Idea of China,’ with Anjali Vats, Quarterly Journal of Speech, 99:4, (2013), pp. 423-447.
  • The Case for Cablinasian: Multiracial Naming from Plessy to Tiger Woods,” Communication Theory, 22:1, (February 2012), pp 92-111.
  • Aliens: Narrating U.S. Global Identity Through Transnational Adoption and Interracial Marriage in Battlestar Galactica,” Critical Studies in Media Communication, 28:5 (December 2011), pp 450-465.
  • “The Matrix Trilogy, Keanu Reeves, and Multiraciality at the End of Time” in Mixed Race in Hollywood, Eds. Camilla Fojas and Mary Beltrán, New York University Press, 2008.
  • East Main Street: Asian American Popular Culture, Co-editor with Shilpa Davé and Tasha Oren, New York University Press, 2005.
  • “White Skin, White Masks: Vietnam War Films and the Racialized Gaze” in American Visual Cultures, Ed. David Holloway, Continuum Press, 2005, pp 257-264.
  • The Mulatto Cyborg,” Cinema Journal, 44:2 (Winter 2005), pp 34-49.
  • Communities on Display: Museums and the Creation of the (Asian) American Citizen,” Amerasia, 30:3 (Winter 2004), pp 40-60.
  • “’I’m Blackanese’: Pushing the Limits of Cross-Racial Identification in Rush Hour,” in Asian North American Subjectivities, Ed. Eleanor Ty and Donald Goellnicht, University of Indiana Press, 2004, 43-60.