Ji-Hyun Ahn , Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Specialty: Media Globalization, Korean TV & Popular Culture, Asian Multiculturalism, and Mixed-race Studies

Ahn , Ji-Hyun

Contact information

Dept: Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences
Room: JOY 214G
Phone: 253-692-5925
Email: jhahn01@u.washington.edu


  • Ph.D., Media Studies, University of Texas, Austin, 2013.
  • M.A., Visual Communication, Yonsei University, 2007.
  • B.A., English Literature, Sogang University, 2005.


Ji-Hyun Ahn was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea until she started her doctoral studies in the US in 2008. She received B.A. degree in English Literature from Sogang University in 2005 (Summa Cum Laude). She received M.A. degree in Visual Communication from the Graduate School of Communication & Arts in Yonsei University in 2007, and Ph.D. in Media Studies in the Department of Radio-Television-Film at The University of Texas at Austin in 2013. She joined the Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences program at the University of Washington Tacoma as an Assistant Professor in September 2013. At UWT, she will be teaching courses on media globalization and inter-Asian media/cultural studies.

Dr. Ahn's primary research topic focuses on racial reconfiguration in East Asia as influenced by the massive flow of global migration today and the spectacularization of racial bodies on the screen in contemporary South Korean television. Considering race as a fundamental principle shaping global social order, her aims is to theoretically understand the complex nature of current racial globalization coupled with the transnational circulation of media and cultural texts in East Asia.


Dr. Ahn specializes in media globalization, Korean television and popular culture, Asian multiculturalism, and critical mixed-race studies. She is particularly interested in examining how media practices have facilitated re-imagination of national identity from a global media perspective. Her ultimate goal is to understand how racial projects in what once were racially homogenous countries in Asia, including South Korea, are differently structured and articulated through the televisual media in comparison to the West. This research topic is particularly significant in that race has been rarely discussed in the globalization process especially in Asia for nationality, rather than race and ethnicity, has been a preferred marker of difference in the Asian context. She believes that her research agenda centered upon media globalization and racial reconfiguration in East Asia can diversify the academic spectrum of IAS by expanding the programs area of expertise to include Asian media within a global context.

She is currently working on a journal article that studies (new) media consumption of the international graduate students and how their national identity is restructured/redefined through watching their home land media contents.


At UWT, she teaches TCOM 230 Media Globalization and Citizenship in Autumn 2013 and will be teaching TCOM 461 Media and Identity in Asia in Winter 2013. Her teaching goals within the courses are to equip the students with an understanding of critical theories on globalization and to examine many global media cases around the world with critical analysis.

Selected Publications

  • Ahn, J.-H. (2013). Global Migration and the Racial Project in Transition: Institutionalizing Racial Difference through Multiculturalism Discourse in South Korea. Journal of Multicultural Discourses, 8(1), 29-47.
  • Ahn, J.-H. (2012). Transforming Korea into Multicultural Society: Reception of Multiculturalism Discourse and its Discursive Disposition in Korea. Asian Ethnicity, 13(1), 95-107.
  • Lee, S. G & J.-H. Ahn (2007). Multiculturalism and Media/Cultural Studies. Korean Journal of Journalism & Communication Studies, 51(5), 58-84.
  • Lee, H.-E., K. H. Yoo & J.-H. Ahn (2007). Strategic Multiculturalism and Racialism in Television Advertising. Korean Journal of Communication & Information, 39, 473-505.


Dr. Ahn is currently a member of academic organizations including, National Communication Association (NCA), Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS), Korean American Communication Association (KACA), and Center for Korean Studies at Jackson School of International Studies (UW-Seattle).

Professional Service

Dr. Ahn has been a reviewer of Ethnic and Racial Studies.

Honors and Awards

  • 2013 Top Paper Award, International and Intercultural Communication Division of the National Communication Association (NCA) 99th Annual Conference
  • 2007, Best Thesis Award for Qualitative Research, Graduate school conference held by Korean Association of Broadcasting & Telecommunication Studies