School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies

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Image of Hongwei Bao

Hongwei Bao

Assistant Professor in Media Studies, Faculty of Arts



I joined the 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 Theatrical 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,University of London, from 2011 to 2012. I hold a PhD in Gender Studies and Cultural Studies from the University of Sydney, Australia.

I am currently co-director of the Centre for Contemporary East Asian Cultural Studies (CEACS) and a resident senior fellow of the China Policy Institute (CPI) at the University of Nottingham. am a member of the Centre for Critical Theory (CCT) and Institute for Screen Industry Research (ISIR) at Nottingham.

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

I have organised the Nottingham Chinese Independent Film Festival (in collaboration with the Broadway Cinema Nottingham) and various film screening events and research workshops, including:,-identity-and-politics-research-symposium.aspx

I have also organised various events for the University of Nottingham's LGBT History Month:

Expertise Summary

I am interested in mediated cultural politics in a transnational Chinese context, including but not limited to: gay identity and queer politics, social media and community media, and film and filmmaking. I am primarily concerned about how media relate to issues of gender, sexuality and identity, and how they participate in community building, empowerment of minority groups, and grassroots social movements. I also consider how media and contemporary culture respond to a postsocialist world dominated by neoliberal values and ideologies, and how ideological contestations are manifested in mediated forms.

Teaching Summary

I teach on the following undergraduate modules in 2017-18:

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

Media Identities (semester 1, second year module)

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

I also co-teach the following MA module:

Critical and Cultural Theory Today (semester 1, MA in Critical Theory and Cultural Studies)

Research Summary

My research brings queer theory, Marxism and China into critical dialogue with each other. By looking at queer media production, queer filmmaking, and LGBT social organisations in contemporary China,… read more

Selected Publications

Current Research

My research brings queer theory, Marxism and China into critical dialogue with each other. By looking at queer media production, queer filmmaking, and LGBT social organisations in contemporary China, I theorise how sexual identities emerge in a neoliberal and postsocialist context and how a radical queer public culture can be made.

I have co-edited a book on queer media and culture in China:

My monograph, titled Queer Comrades: Gay Identity and Queer Politics in Postsocialist China, has recently been published by the NIAS Press in 2018:

A video interview about the book can be found on Youtbe or the CeMEAS website:

An audio interview about the book can be accessed through the New Book Network:

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;

(3) Traveling Theory: Translating Queer Theory in China, which traces the intellectual history, or a 'genealogy', of how queer theory has been introduced and used in the PRC context.

I am interested in supervising research students working on the following areas and topics:

media and popular culture in Asia;

film, television and creative industries in China;

gender, sexuality and identity in a transnational context;

neoliberalism and postsocialist cultural politics.

The PhD projects that I am currently supervising include:

Feng Xiaogang's New Year Celebration Films (hesuipian);

The Nostalgic Mode of Expression in Chinese Film, Television and Internet Drama Since the 2000s;

Queer film festivals in Shanghai;

The Kong Kong Lesbian and Gay Film Festival in the 'International Film Festival Ciecuit';

Feminst art practices in contenporary China;

I have supervised the following PhD projects to completion:

The 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 (zhiguai).

  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2018. Haunted Gay Identity: Sexuality, Masculinity and Class in Beijing Story. In: HIRD, DEREK and SONG, GENG, eds., The Cosmopolitan Dream: Transnational Chinese Masculinities in a Global Age Hong Kong University Press. 73-86
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2018. Queering the Global South: Mu Cao and His Poetry. In: WEST-PAVLOV, RUSSELL, ed., Cambridge Critical Concepts: The Global South and Literature Cambridge University Press. 185-197
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2018. Fear of A Queer China WAGIC: Women and Gender in China. Available at: <>
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2018. From ‘Celluloid Comrades’ to ‘Digital Video Activism’: Queer Filmmaking in Postsocialist China JOMEC Journal: Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies. 12, 82-100
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2018. The ‘Marriage’ Imagination of the Queer Communities in Asia Available at: <>
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2018. Translation and Travelling Theory: Feminist Theory and Praxis in China (book review) Feminist Encounters: A Journal of Critical Studies in Culture and Politics. 2(1), 09
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2018. Homosexuality, Social Media Activism and the Future of a Queer China Available at: <>
  • 包宏伟, 2018. 《在中国酷儿群体中社会规范协调》. In: HILDA RØMER CHRISTENSEN, BETTINA HAUGE and 王粲璨, eds., 《女性,性别与研究:中国和北欧视角》 上海三联书店. 174-177
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2017. Queer as Catachresis: the Beijing Queer Film Festival in Cultural Translation. In: BERRY, CHRIS and ROBINSON, LUKE, eds., Chinese Film Festivals: Sites of Translation Palgrave. 67-88
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2017. Pluralising Practices in a Neoliberal Knowledge Economy Critical Habitations. Available at: <>
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2017. Genre, Industry, and Politics of Taiwanese Language Cinema Taiwan Insights. Available at: <>
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2017. China’s ‘Media War’ Before and During the 19th Party Congress China Policy Institute Analysis. Available at: <>
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2016. Sex in China (book review) Cultural History. 5(2), 222-224
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2016. ‘Same-Sex Wedding’, Queer Performance and Spatial Tactics in Beijing. In: LIN, XIAODONG, HAYWOOD, CHRIS and MAC AN GHAILL, MAIRTIN, eds., East Asian Men: Masculinity, Sexuality and Desire Palgrave McMillan. 107-121
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2016. Queer Filmmaking in the People's Republic of China Available at: <>
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2015. Digital Video Activism: Narrating History and Memory in Cui Zi’en’s 'Queer China, Comrade China'. In: ELISABETH ENGEBRETSEN, WILLIAM SCHROEDER, HONGWEI BAO and HONGWEI BAO, eds., Queer/Tongzhi China: New Perspectives on Research, Activism and Media Cultures University of Copenhagen NIAS Press. 35-56
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2015. Negotiating Normativities in Chinese Queer Communities: Review of Queer Women in Urban China (book review) Women, Gender & Research. 15(1), 154-156
  • ENGEBRETSEN, ELISABETH, SCHROEDER, WILLLIAM F. and BAO, HONGWEI, eds., 2015. Queer/Tongzhi China: New Perspectives on Research, Activism and Media Cultures University of Copenhagen NIAS Press.
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2014. Gender Awareness, Locality and Queer Activism. In: The 7th Beijing Queer Film Festival Catalogue 126-132
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2013. A Queer Comrade in Sydney: Chineseness, Queer Desire and Homonationalism Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies. 15(1), 127-140
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2013. Die konfuzianische Familie, sozialistische Kollektivität und postsozialistische Queere Politik: Anmerkungen zum Begriff tongzhi. In: GABRIELE JÄHNERT, KARIN ALEKSANDER and MARIANNE KRISZIO, eds., Kollektivität nach der Subjektkritik: Geschlechtertheoretische Positionierungen Transcript Verlag. 259-282
  • BAO, H., 2012. Queering/Querying cosmopolitanism: queer spaces in Shanghai Culture Unbound: Journal of Current Cultural Research. 4, 97-120
  • BAO, H., 2012. On Not to Be Gay: aversion therapy and transformation of the Self in postsocialist China Health, Culture and Society. 3(1), 133-149
  • HONGWEI BAO, 2012. 'Queer Comrades': Socialist Past, Postsocialist Present, and Ideological Battles in Transnational China. In: SUSHILA MESQUITA, MARIA KATHERINA WIEDLACK and KATRIN LASTHOFER, eds., Import-Export-Transport: Queer THeory, Queer Critique and Activism in Motion Zaglosseus. 211-228
  • BAO, H., 2011. People’s Park: the politics of naming and the right to the city. In: SCHERER, B. and BALL, M., eds., Queer Paradigms II: interrogating agendas Peter Lang. 115-132
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2011. Queer Comrades: Transnational Popular Culture, Queer Sociality and Socialist Legacy English Language Notes. 49(1), 131-137
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2011. Queere GenossInnen: Sozialistische Vergangenheit, postsozialistische Gegenwart und ideologische Kämpfe im transnationalen China Kulturrisse: Zeitschrift für Radikaldemokratische Kulturpolitik. 2,
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2011. China’s Governmentalities: Governing Change, Changing Government (book review) Asian Studies Review. 35(1), 119-121
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2011. Kinesisk “Bossekone” Rejser sig i Protest Kinabladet. 26-27
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2010. Enlightenment Space, Affective Space: Travelling Queer Film Festivals in China. In: MIKAKO IWATAKE, ed., Gender, Mobility and Citizenship in Asia University of Helsinki. 174-205
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2010. In Search of Lesbian Existence: Queer Aesthetics in Women 50 Minutes. In: MIKAKO IWATAKE, ed., New Perspectives on Japan and China 27. University of Helsinki. 129-161
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2010. LGBT Issues in China. In: CHUCK STEWARD, ed., The Greenwood Encyclopedia of LGBT Issues Worldwide ABC CLIO. 355-373
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2010. Undercurrents: Queer Culture and Postcolonial Hong Kong (book review) Asian Studies Review. 34(4), 516-618
  • BAO, HONGWEI, 2010. We Who Feel Differently: LGBTQ identity and Politics in China. In: We Who Feel Differently: Carlos Motta Art Exhibition Catalogue Shanghai: Other Gallery. 5-20

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