College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Joo Ok Kim

International & Interdisciplinary Studies - American Studies
Assistant Professor
Ph.D., Literature, University of California-San Diego
Primary office:
Bailey Hall
Room 213K
University of Kansas
1440 Jayhawk Blvd.
Lawrence, Kansas 66045


Joo Ok Kim is assistant professor of American Studies and Latina/o Studies at the University of Kansas. She is associate faculty at KU’s Center for East Asian Studies, Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies and the Latinx Studies Initiative, and currently serves as CLAS Leadership for Equity Fellow (2017-18). Professor Kim earned her Ph.D. in Literature and Cultural Studies at the University of California, San Diego, her M.A. in English at the University of Illinois, Chicago, and her B.A. in English at KU. From 2013-15, Professor Kim was UC President's Postdoctoral Fellow in Asian American Studies at the University of California, Irvine. Her interdisciplinary research and teaching interests focus on race and the Korean War, Latina/o studies, Asian American studies, transpacific and transnational studies, and literary and cultural studies. Her book project, Warring Genealogies: Race, Kinship, and the Korean War, examines the racial legacies of the Korean War through Chicano cultural production and U.S. archives of white supremacy. Her work can be found in the Journal of Asian American Studies, Verge: Studies in Global Asias (forthcoming), and south: a scholarly journal (forthcoming). Professor Kim’s research has been funded by the Ford Foundation, the University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program, and the American Philosophical Society.


Ph.D., Literature, University of California-San Diego

M.A., English, University of Illinois-Chicago

B.A., English, University of Kansas


My research examines the racial legacies of the Korean War through literature and culture.

Research Interests

  • Korean War
  • Latina/o Studies
  • Asian American Studies
  • Transpacific and Transnational Studies
  • Empire
  • Gender and Sexuality
  • Literary and Cultural Studies
  • Popular Culture
  • Prison Studies

Selected Publications

Kim, Joo Ok. "“‘Training Guatemalan Campesinos to Work Like Korean Peasants’: Taxonomies and Temporalities of East Asian Labor Management in Latin America”." Verge: Studies in Global Asias (Pennsylvania State University: University of Minnesota) 3.2 Forthcoming.

Kim, Joo Ok. "“Declining Misery: Rural Florida’s Hmong and Korean Farmers”." south: a scholarly journal (UNC Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press) 49.1 (Fall 2016): 25-37.

Kim, Joo Ok. "Sleuth Cities: East L.A., Seoul, and Military Mysteries in Martin Limón’s Slicky Boys and The Wandering Ghost." Journal of Asian American Studies 17.2 (2014): 199-228.

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