Tri Phuong

Tri  Phuong
Assistant Professor
Pacific and Asian Studies
Office: CLE 206

PhD, Yale University; MPP, Harvard Kennedy School;BA,Harvard University


I am a sociocultural anthropologist specializing in digital media, youth culture, and social movement in contemporary Vietnam. I study the local and global intersections of new media technologies and cultural expressions through the semiotics of play to illuminate the ways people experience, evaluate, and contest shifting terrains of authoritarianism and censorship to achieve aspirations in the digital era. My research connects anthropologies of the state, media, and youth in the context of late-socialism and globalization. My focus on cultural translations, vernacular tactics, and mockery of authority figures offers a precise case-study for comparing popular cultures and their catalytic influences on youth fandom and social movements – specifically in Southeast Asia and through Inter-Asian and diasporic connections.

Prior to joining the University of Victoria, I have worked as a community organizer, development consultant, and journalist in previous lives.

Area of Expert:

 Contemporary Vietnam/Southeast Asia
 Popular Cultures
 New Media
 Social Movements
 Play


2021     The Underground Seen: Moving Images, Heterotopias, and the Postsocialist Bearing Witness. Cultural Studies (Volume 35; Issue 1)

2017     Saint, Celebrity, and the Self(ie): Body Politics in Late Socialist Vietnam. Positions Asia Critique (Volume 25; Issue 4)


PAAS 100 - Introduction to Pacific and Asian Studies

PAAS 346 - Digital Asia

PAAS 409 - Globalization, Cosmopolitanism, and Asia-Pacific Cultures

PAAS 495 - Advanced Topics in PAAS