Department of English Language and Literature and the College
Mee-Ju Ro’s research focuses on Asian, Asian American, and transpacific literatures. She also works with Korean texts and their English translations. Her research and teaching engage with women’s writing, race and gender studies, translation theory, performance, and frames that disarticulate national paradigms.
Her book project “Entangled Testimonies” reads testimonial women’s writing—both fictional texts and testimonies of “comfort women” coerced into sexual servitude during World War II—narrated by multiple generations of women who wrestle with the dislocation of migration, a history of violence, and multilingual realities. In the project, she argues that we need to rethink modern forms of testimony that stem from Eurocentric models of individualism. During critical moments of historical redress, Ro asks how testimony functioned as a tool of visibility but also complicity. To read and write against the grain of an individuated subject, she considers an entangled subject that privileges relationality. Here, testimony emerges not as the monadic expression of discrete, autonomous subjectivity, but as the entangled and shared expression of a set of social relations.
Ro earned a BA with honors from Queen’s University in Kingston, Canada, an MA from the University of Toronto, and a PhD from Cornell University, all in English language and literature.