Ayaka Yoshimizu

Assistant Professor of Teaching

Department of Asian Studies

Email: ayaka.yoshimizu@ubc.ca

Ayaka Yoshimizu is an interdisciplinary scholar trained in cultural studies, media and communication studies, and ethnographic methodologies. Her research is concerned with transnational migration within Asia and across the Pacific Ocean; carceral mobilities, forced migration and human trafficking; politics of memory and memorialization; sensory studies; performance ethnography; embodied, experimental, and decolonial methodologies; and transnational and diasporic spaces and cultures.

Ayaka is the author of Doing Ethnography in the Wake of the Displacement of Transnational Sex Workers in Yokohama: Sensuous Remembering (Routledge, 2022). Her current project looks at memorial sites, objects, and practices that commemorate the deaths of Japanese sex workers involved in transnational and interracial sex trade in the late 19th century through early 20th century in the transpacific world. She is a co-creator of a bilingual and multimodal website Sex and Migration in the Transpacific Underground, which offers an open educational resource that engages transpacific histories of interracial sex, intimate labour, and migration. The website brings together various Japanese-language archival materials with English translation along with teaching modules that can be implemented in courses in Asian Studies, Asian Diaspora Studies, Transnational History, Gender, Studies, Migration Studies and more.

Ayaka is affiliated with the Department of Asian Studies and the UBC-Ritsumeikan Academic Exchange Program. She teaches courses on Japanese literature, films, media, audiovisual translation, transpacific histories and cultures, and Indigeneities in Asia and Asian diaspora. She has been working on multiple pedagogical projects to develop decolonial and anti-racist approaches to teaching, curriculum development, and international education.