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Jina B. Kim

Assistant Professor of English Language & Literature and of the Study of Women & Gender

Jina B. Kim


Wright Hall 231


Jina B. Kim is a scholar, writer, and educator of feminist disability studies, queer-of-color critique, and contemporary multi-ethnic U.S. literature. Broadly, her teaching and research aims to connect the intellectual and movement lineages of disability politics and feminist-/queer-of-color critique, extending the work of building solidarity across difference modeled by texts such as This Bridge Called My Back.  

She is the author of Dreaming of Infrastructure: Crip-of-Color Writing after the U.S. Welfare State (Duke University Press, forthcoming). This book demonstrates why we need radical disability politics and aesthetics for navigating contemporary crises of care. It develops an explicitly intersectional disability framework, or “crip-of-color critique,” in order to interrupt dominant narratives about who deserves support. 

Turning to the literary afterlives of major US welfare reform in 1996, Dreaming of Infrastructure considers feminist- and queer-of-color literature that grapples with the disabling effects of state austerity measures. By bringing a disability lens to works by contemporary American authors (including Audre Lorde, Jesmyn Ward, Karen Tei Yamashita, Octavia Butler, Samuel Delany, Aurora Levins Morales, and Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha) it calls forward the critiques and possibilities in their literary representations of infrastructure—systems of education, sanitation, transportation, and health/care. Overall, this book examines and honors the imaginative work that disabled, feminist, and queer-of-color writers do to envision alternate infrastructural arrangements in a world and nation that has refused to support us.

An award-winning scholar, Jina’s talks and publications address topics such as self-care, care and racial capitalism, queer disability kinship networks, anti-work disability politics, disability justice politics and writing, and contemporary feminist-of-color literature and culture. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in SignsSocial TextGLQAmerican QuarterlyMELUS (Multi-Ethnic Literatures of the United States), South Atlantic Quarterly, Disability Studies Quarterly, Lateral, and The Asian American Literary Review.  

In 2021, Jina was supported by a Career Enhancement Fellowship from the Institute of Citizens and Scholars (formerly Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation) and a Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America Visiting Faculty Fellowship at Brown University. In 2012, she received the Irving K. Zola Award for Emerging Scholars from the Society of Disability Studies. 

Office Hours

Spring 2024

Wednesday 12:15-1 p.m.
Thursday 4:15-5:15 p.m.
and by appointment

Selected Works in Smith ScholarWorks

Photo by Mateo Medina