I am an Assistant Professor of American Studies & Ethnicity at the University of Southern California. I studied at the University of Toronto, where I earned a BA in English (2014) and a PhD in History (2019). At the heart of my research program lies an intellectual and political commitment to indigeneity, migrant labor, and ethnic belonging in the Filipinx diaspora. I have also published on food labor, urban histories, and ethnic entrepreneurship.
I am at work on two scholarly monographs. The first, Forging Filipinos: A Native Genealogy of an American Diaspora, shows how the Spanish and European 19th century mobilization of a native labor force in Luzon’s native lowlands and highlands people fomented the formation of Filipino ethnic identity in the early 20th century American empire. The second, Pinoy John Waynes: A Political History of Filipino Masculinities on the American Frontier, centers rural vagrancy and settler colonialism in the creation of ethnic community cultures among the Manongs in the American West.
My first poetry collection, Rouge, was published by Mawenzi House in 2018. It was featured in venues such as CBC Metro Morning and The Scarborough Mirror. With fellow Scarborough-based writers Téa Mutonji (Shut Up, You’re Pretty, April 2019) and Natasha Ramoutar (Bittersweet, 2020), I am at work on FEEL WAYS (2020), a pioneering anthology of emerging Scarborough writers. My second collection in-development, barangay, explores Filipino kinship (called a barangay, which is also an outrigger boat native to the archipelago) through the coasts and slopes of Scarborough's southern coast, and beyond into the Pacific.
At the Department of American Studies & Ethnicity (ASE), I will be teaching Asian American Studies at the undergraduate level, and Transpacific Studies in the doctoral program.
The MFA Voice™
“The MFA Voice™, then, is perhaps a coping mechanism against the professionalization of creative writing, a craft that needs degrees of vulnerability.”
The Town Crier Magazine, 2019.
“My parents and I flew across the Pacific to the rolling concrete hills and hushed streams of Scarborough.”
The In-Between Water (with Oubah Osman)
The Puritan, 2019.
“on oceanic sky, boats constellate/into desperate corporeal archipelagoes…”