Cultures of Occupation in Twentieth Century Asia (COTCA)
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Project team

Project director

Dr Jeremy E Taylor is a cultural historian with an interest in 'cultures of occupation' across modern Asia. He is the author of 25 peer-reviewed journal articles and chapters on topics ranging from wartime cartooning to architectural heritage, as well as Rethinking Transnational Chinese Cinemas: The Amoy-dialect Film Industry in Cold War Asia (Routledge 2011). A graduate of the University of Sydney and the Australian National University (where he was a university medallist), Dr Taylor has been based at the University of Nottingham since 2012. At Nottingham, his research has been supported by the ERC, the AHRC and the British Academy. He is leading Stream 1 of the COTCA Project.
Jeremy Taylor


Postdoctoral fellows

Russel Skelchy
Russell P. Skelchy is an interdisciplinary scholar specializing in the popular musics of Indonesia and Malaysia.  He received his PhD in Ethnomusicology (2015) and MA in Southeast Asian Studies (2010) from the University of California, Riverside. His research interests include multiracial studies, sound studies, popular music (sub)cultures, decolonization and gender.  He is a recipient of a Fulbright US Scholar grant (2017-2018), Fulbright Institute for International Education Fellowship (2011-2012) and the University of California Pacific Rim Research Program Fellowship (2011-2012).  Recent publications include an article in the Journal of Popular Music Studies (September 2017) which explored identity and anti-genre aesthetics and musical practices among San Francisco Bay Area Noise and experimental Rock artists; and a chapter in the edited volume, Vamping the Stage: Female Voices of Asian Modernities (University of Hawai’i Press, 2017). He is leading Stream 2 of the COTCA Project.


Dr David Baillargeon completed his PhD in Modern British History from the University of California – Santa Barbara in 2018. His dissertation, entitled " 'A Burmese Wonderland': British World Mining and the Making of Colonial Burma", focuses on the Burma Corporation, a transnational mining corporation whose operations were located in the Northern Shan States of British Burma during the early twentieth century. The dissertation, which utilizes a place-based global historical approach, reveals how transnational and global business networks were critical to the expansion and administration of the British Empire during the late colonial period. His work has been supported by a Mellon Fellowship from the Institute of Historical Research in London, a Dissertation Fellowship from the University of California Center for New Racial Studies, and a Mellon Dissertation Completion Fellowship from the Council for European Studies. He is leading Stream 3 of the COTCA Project.


PhD students

Kimberley Weir obtained an undergrdauate degree in American and English Studies at the University of Nottingham, then completed a Masters in Art Gallery and Museum Studies at the University of Manchester. After graduating, she spent eight years working in the museums and visual arts sectors in the UK and Australia. Her PhD explores how U.S. colonial rule in the Philippines (1902 to 1946) shaped the public monuments erected in the country throughout the twentieth century, and how these have affected the way in which particular Philippine historical events have been memorialised and remembered.
Kimberly Weir


Laura Schroeder
L. Odila Schroeder joined the COTCA project in 2017. She studied Chinese, Political Science and the History of Science at Heidelberg and Cambridge, and holds an MA in Chinese and Transcultural Studies from Heidelberg University. During her studies, she has also worked to promote Chinese language education, monitored socioeconomic conflicts in China for the Heidelberg Institute for International Conflict Research, and studied the reception of European music theory in 20th century China. Her PhD project aims to account for the ways in which everyday sounds and sonic expression have shaped perceptions of the Japanese occupation of North China.


Vivien Chan is a design historian and design practitioner. She studied Illustration & Animation at Kingston University before completing a Masters in History of Design at the Royal College of Art and the Victoria & Albert Museum. During her studies, she worked as a freelance illustrator and filmmaker, as well as producing several online and print publications on design history and its interdisciplinary approaches. More recently, she lectured in Design Studies at Nottingham Trent University, and represents the Design History Society as Ambassador. Her PhD (under the 'Spaces of Occupation' stream) explores Hong Kong’s spaces of leisure and consumption from the 1950s to 1980s, considering their role in the everyday life of the city during British colonial rule.
Vivien Chan


Cultures of Occupation in Twentieth Century Asia (COTCA)

The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

telephone: +44 (0)115 951 5845