School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies

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Image of Hongwei Bao

Hongwei Bao

Associate Professor in Media Studies, Faculty of Arts



I joined the Department of Culture, Media and Visual Studies (formerly Department of Culture, Film and Media), the University of Nottingham, in 2013. Prior to this, I worked as Lecturer in Asian Media at Nottingham Trent University (2012-13), Lecturer in Cultural Studies at the University of Potsdam (2011, part-time), Lecturer in Asian Studies at the University of Sydney (2006-10, part-time) and Lecturer in International and Intercultural Communication at the National Academy of Chinese Theatre Arts, Beijing (2002-06). I was DAAD Fellow at the Free University of Berlin from 2010 to 2011, and British Academy Visiting Fellow at Goldsmiths College,University of London, from 2011 to 2012. I received a PhD in Gender Studies and Cultural Studies from the University of Sydney, Australia, in 2011.

I am currently co-director of the Centre for Contemporary East Asian Cultural Studies (CEACS). I am also a member of the Centre for Critical Theory (CCT), Institute for Screen Industry Research (ISIR) and Asia Research Institute at Nottingham.

I serve on the editorial boards of British Journal of Chinese Studies and Chinese Independent Cinema Observer.

I am on the international advisory boards of ALMS2019, China Academic Network on Gender, China Rainbow Media Awards, Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art, Queer Asia, Refeng Xueshu: A Journal of Contemporary Cultural Studies and Translation for Change.

I hold a PGCHE (Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education) and am Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, UK.

I have organised and curated film programmes for the Nottingham Chinese Independent Film Festival (in collaboration with the Broadway Cinema Nottingham) and various other film screening events and research workshops. I have also organised events for the University of Nottingham's LGBT History Month.

In 2019, I curated a Chinese queer film programme for the Chinese New Year events at the Nottingham Lakeside Arts. I also co-organised the Transnational Radical Film Cultures conference (with Dr Daniel Mutibwa).

Expertise Summary

I am interested in mediated cultural politics in a transnational context, including but not limited to gay identity and queer activism, community culture and citizen media, as well as independent films and film festivals. I am primarily concerned with how media relate to issues of gender, sexuality and identity, and how they participate in community building, empowerment of minority groups, and grassroots mobilisation. I also consider how media and contemporary culture respond to a postsocialist world dominated by neoliberal ideologies, and how socialist and democratic forms of community cultures and social forms are lived and experienced in everyday lives and social movements.

Teaching Summary

In 2020-21, I will teach the following modules:

Communication and Culture (semester 1, first year core module)

Media Identities (semester 1, second year module)

Gender, Sexuality and Media (semester 2, third year and MA module)

I also contribute to the Researching Culture and Media module with a workshop on semiotics.

Research Summary

I work at the intersections of queer studies, China/Asia studies, and cultural studies. My transdisciplinary research primarily focuses on queer culture in contemporary China - from community media… read more

Recent Publications

Current Research

I work at the intersections of queer studies, China/Asia studies, and cultural studies. My transdisciplinary research primarily focuses on queer culture in contemporary China - from community media to cinema, from literature to contemporary art, from theatre to musical cultures, and from cultural history to political theory. Bringing together diverse research methods and innovative approaches in humanities and social sciences, my research hopes to help de-Westernise queer studies and cultural studies, and bring Marxism and queer theory into critical dialogues with each other.

My new book, titled Queer China: Lesbian and Gay Literature and Visual Culture under Postsocialism, has recently been published by Routledge. Some news and event updates as well as teaching and learning resources are available on the Taylor and Francis author website. An interview about the book can be found on Notches. A review of the book can be found on Feminist Encounters.

My first book is titled Queer Comrades: Gay Identity and Queer Politics in Postsocialist China. Interviews about the book can be found on Notches, New Books Network and CEMEAS.

I also co-edited a book on queer media and culture in China: Queer/Tongzhi China: New Perspectives on Research, Activism and Media Cultures.

I am currently working on the following research projects:

(1) The Queer Generation: Queer Filmmaking in the People's Republic of China, which examines major Chinese queer filmmakers and their works;

(2) Queer Community Media in China, which looks at community based media, including zines, websites, webcasts and dating apps in the PRC.


The PhD projects that I am currently supervising include:

Live Streaming Digital Video Platforms in China;

History of China Film Group Corporation:

The Hong Kong Lesbian and Gay Film Festival.

I have supervised the following PhD projects to completion:

Representation of the Cultural Revolution on Contemporary Chinese Screen;

The Exhibition of Contemporary Chinese Art as Cultural Diplomacy;

The Use of the Literary Fantastic in Diasporic Chinese Women's Writing;

The Animal and the Human in Late Imperial Chinese Novels;

Women and Contemporary Chinese Art;

The Nostalgic Mode of Expression on Chinese Screen Media;

Feng Xiaogang's 'New Year Celebration Films'.

School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies

University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

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