Faculty and Staff

General contact


Assistant Professor of English
Arnab Chakladar Profile
Associate Professor of English
Director of Asian Studies
Off Campus: Winter 2020

PhD, University of Southern California. Founder of anothersubcontinent.com, an online journal and forum on south asian culture.

Arthur McKeown
Arthur McKeown Profile
Director of the Buddhist Studies Program in India and Associate Professor of Asian Studies

Emeriti Faculty

Roger Jackson
Roger Jackson Profile
John W. Nason Professor of Asian Studies and Religion, Emeritus

Wesleyan, B.A.; University of Wisconsin (Madison), M.A., Ph.D.; the religions of South Asia, Indian Buddhist philosophy, Tibetan ritual and meditative practices, Asian religious poetry, mysticism. Co-author, The Wheel of Time: Kalachakra in Context (1985); author, Is Enlightenment Possible? (1993), Tantric Treasures (2004); co-editor, Tibetan Literature: Studies in Genre (1996), Buddhist Theology (2000), editor, The Crystal Mirror of Philosophical Systems (2009).

Katie Sparling
Kathryn Sparling Profile
Tanaka Memorial Professor of International Understanding and Japanese, Emerita

Stanford, B.A.; Ochanomizu University, M.A.; Harvard, Ph.D.; Japanese language and literature, especially modern fiction, with particular emphasis on Natsume Soseki, Mishima Yuko, Shimao Toshio, and fiction by contemporary Japanese women. Translator, The Sting of Death and Other Stories by Shimao Toshio (1985); co-author, Women in Japanese Society: An Annotated Bibliography (1992).

Nancy Wilkie
Nancy Wilkie Profile
William H. Laird Professor of Classics, Anthropology, and the Liberal Arts, Emerita

Stanford, B.A.; University of Minnesota, M.A., Ph.D.; prehistoric archaeology of South Asia.

Dale Haworth
Dale Haworth Profile
Professor of Art History, Emeritus
Jim Fisher
Jim Fisher Profile
John W. Nason Professor of Asian Studies and Anthropology, Emeritus

Princeton, B.A.; University of Chicago, M.A., Ph.D.; South and Central Asian social anthropology, Sherpas and social change, life histories, Nepali pronouns of power and solidarity. Editor, Himalayan Anthropology: the Indo-Tibetan Interface (1978); author, Trans-Himalayan Traders (1986), Sherpas (1990), Living Martyrs (1997).

Bardwell Smith
Bardwell Smith Profile
John W. Nason Professor of Religion and Asian Studies, Emeritus


Meggan Clapp
Meggan Clapp Profile
Administrative Assistant in English
Brendan LaRocque
Brendan LaRocque
Co-Lead for India: Globalization and Local Responses
Gao Hong
Gao Hong Profile
Director of the Carleton Chinese Music Ensemble
Director of the Chinese Music Ensemble and Senior Lecturer in Chinese Musical Instruments

Gao Hong (Performance Activities Coordinator) began her career as a professional musician at age 12. She graduated with honors from the Central Conservatory of Music, China's premier music school, where she studied with pipa master Lin Shicheng. She has received numerous awards and honors, including First Prize in the Hebei Professional Young Music Performers Competition in China and an Asian Pacific Award, and fellowships from the Minnesota State Arts Board, Meet the Composers Inc. in New York and the Jerome Foundation. In 2005 Gao Hong became the first traditional musician to be awarded the prestigious Bush Artist Fellowship, and in 2008 she became the only musician in any genre to win three McKnight Artist Fellowships for Performing Musicians. As a composer, she has received commissions from the American Composers Forum, Walker Art Center, the Jerome Foundation, Zeitgeist, Ragamala Music and Dance Theater, Theater Mu, IFTPA, and Twin Cities Public Television. She has performed throughout Europe, Australia, Japan, Hong Kong, China, and the United States and has participated in such events as the Lincoln Center Festival, the San Francisco Jazz Festival, and the International Festival. She has performed countless United States and world premieres of pipa concerti with organizations such as the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Heidelberg Philharmonic, and the Women's Philharmonic (San Francisco). She also is a Guest Professor at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. Gao Hong's personal website can be found at http://www.chinesepipa.com.

Other Faculty Involved in Asian Studies

Kristin Bloomer Profile
Associate Professor of Religion
Off Campus: Winter 2019 through Fall 2019

Kristin Bloomer (Wesleyan University, B.A; University of Montana, M.F.A; Cambridge University, B.A, M.A; University of Chicago, Ph.D) teaches courses in global Christianities and religions of South Asia, with specializations in spirit possession and women's and gender studies. Her research pertains to Christianity, Hinduism, and spirit possession in postcolonial south India; her more general interests lie in exploring historically specific articulations of subjectivity, with particular attention to religiosity, gender, and embodiment. She is currently working on a book manuscript entitled "Possessed by Mary: Hinduism, Catholicism and Spirit Possession in Contemporary Tamil Nadu, South India," an ethnography of Marian spirit possession in India's most southeastern state. Theoretically, her work addresses questions of religion and postcoloniality, ritual and performativity, feminist approaches to ethnography, and relationships between religion, gender, and the body. Her methods aim to explore and interrogate ideas of agency and of subjectivity that pertain not only to the postcolonial "Other," but also to the anthropologist-scholar.

Bloomer's academic publications include: "Comparative Theology, Comparative Religions, and Hindu-Christian Studies: Ethnography as Method," in The Journal of Hindu-Christian Studies, 2008; "Notes From the Field: Retrieving the Dead," The Martin Marty Center for Religion and Culture Web Forum, University of Chicago, February 2005, "http://marty-center.uchicago.edu/webforum/022005/index.shtml"; and several book reviews.

Before entering academia, she worked for several years as a print journalist and earned an M.F.A. in non-fiction writing. 

Michael J. Flynn
Mike Flynn Profile
LTC Faculty Fellow
William H. Laird Professor of Linguistics and the Liberal Arts
Off Campus: Spring 2019

Michael Flynn received his Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of Massachusetts in 1981. Before arriving at Carleton, he taught at a number of American colleges and universities, and Nankai University in Tianjin, The People’s Republic of China, and held a Fulbright Fellowship to the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, The Netherlands. He founded Carleton's Program in Linguistics in 1986. He teaches courses in phonetics and phonology, the structure of Japanese, the evolution of speech, neurolinguistics, the application of linguistic theory to literary study, as well as the introductory survey course. His current research interests focus on articulatory and acoustic phonetics, and Japanese.

Professor Flynn led the inaugural Linguistics and Culture in Kyoto, Japan off-campus studies seminar in spring 2012.  He will be the faculty director once again in spring 2014.  More detailed information about the Linguistics and Culture seminar can be found here.  Also, visit the blog about the 2012 seminar.

Professor Flynn has been a Visiting Professor of Linguistics at Waseda University and Keio University (both in Tokyo), as well as a visiting professor in the Associated Kyoto Program at Doshisha University, Kyoto. He is currently a member of the Faculty Personnel Committee at Carleton. He recently stepped down as Carleton’s Faculty Athletics Director. His writings on Division III athletics can be found here.

Homepage: http://apps.carleton.edu/curricular/ling/people/faculty/michealflynnhomepage/

Kent Freeze
Kent Freeze Profile
Assistant Professor of Political Science
Shaohua Guo
Shaohua Guo Profile
Assistant Professor of Chinese
Miaki Habuka
Miaki Habuka Profile
Instructor in Japanese
Mark Hansell
Mark Hansell Profile
Burton and Lily Levin Professor of Chinese
Off Campus: Spring 2020

McGill University B.A.; University of California, Berkeley M.A. Ph.D.; Chinese language and linguistics, especially language contact, lexical borrowing; writing systems; Southeast Asian historical linguistics.

Mariko Kaga
Mariko Kaga Profile
Class of 1952 Professor of Asian Languages

Kobe Kaisei Women's College, B.A.; University of Illinois (Champaign-Urbana), M.A., Ph.D.; Japanese language and language pedagogy, especially proficiency measures. Author, "Dictation as a Measure of Japanese Proficiency" in Language Testing, vol. 8, #2 (1991).

Adeeb Khalid
Adeeb Khalid Profile
Jane and Raphael Bernstein Professor of Asian Studies and History

University of Punjab, B.A.; McGill University, B.A.; University of Wisconsin (Madison), M.A., Ph.D.; Islam in Central Asian history. Author, "Muslim Printers in Tsarist Central Asia" in Central Asian Survey (1992); "Printing, Publishing, and Reform in Tsarist Central Asia" in International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies (1994); The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform: Jadidism in Tsarist Central Asia (1998).

Assistant Professor of History
Amna Khalid Profile
Associate Professor of History
Director of Women's and Gender Studies

Assistant Professor of History

Tun Myint
Tun Myint Profile
Associate Professor of Political Science
Off Campus: Winter 2019
Melinda Russell
Melinda Russell Profile
Professor of Music and M.A. and A.D. Hulings Professor of American Studies

Melinda Russell received the B.A. from Simon's Rock Early College, the M.A. in Ethnomusicology from the University of Minnesota, and the Ph.D. from the University of Illinois.  Dr. Russell has a diverse background in ethnomusicology, focusing on a variety of musical traditions in North America, Africa, and the Caribbean. She has published articles on reggae and musical taste, on the Macarena craze of the 1990s, on choral music in an Illinois city, on the folksong repertoire of Americans, on the Star-Spangled Banner in contemporary America, and on including applied  music components in lecture courses.  She coedited the books Community of Music and In the Course of Performance: Studies in the World of Musical Improvisation.  Her current research concerns the folk music revival in Minneapolis during the late 1950s/early 1960s.  Dr. Russell was formerly the Book Review Editor for the journal Ethnomusicology, and served as President of the Midwest Chapter of the Society for Ethnomusicology.

Katie Ryor - Chair
Kathleen Ryor Profile
Tanaka Memorial Professor of International Understanding and Art History

University of Virginia, B.A.; Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, M.A., Ph.D.; Chinese painting and calligraphy, Chinese gardens, relationship of the military to the arts of China. Author,"Nature Contained: Penjing and Flower Arrangements as Surrogate Gardens in Ming China" in Orientations (2002), "Regulating the Qi and the Xin: Xu Wei and His Military Patrons" in Archives of Asian Art (2003-2004), and "Fleshly Desires and Bodily Deprivations: The Somatic Dimensions of Xu Wei's Flower Painting" in Body and Face in Chinese Visual Culture (forthcoming 2004).

Asuko Sango
Asuka Sango Profile
Associate Professor of Religion
Chair of Religion

Wittenberg University, BA; University of Illinois, MA; Princeton University, PhD; teaches courses in the religions of East Asia. Her special interests include Buddhist rituals, religion and society in Japan, food and religion, and Buddhist activism in contemporary societies. Her dissertation examines Buddhist debates in premodern Japan and analyzes how such ritual performance offered a unique site for producing political power and doctrinal knowledge.

Meera Sehgal Profile
Associate Professor of Women's and Gender Studies and Sociology

PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison; specializes in social movements, gender and South Asia. Her research, based on extensive ethnographic fieldwork, focuses on the mobilization and participation of women in a religious right wing movement in India. Originally from India, she emphasizes a transnational feminist perspective in her teachings and travels regularly to India for research and familial purposes. She teaches courses on South Asia, social movements, qualitative methods, post-colonial feminist theory, feminist approaches to research and women's health in the U.S.

Shana Sippy
Shana Sippy Profile
Research Associate in Religion

Visiting Instructor in Religion

Noboru Tomonari
Noboru Tomonari Profile
Associate Professor of Japanese
Chair of Asian Languages & Literature

Sophia University, B.A.; Tsukuba University, M.Ed.; Monash University, M.A.; University of Chicago, Ph.D. Japanese language, literature, cinema, and intellectual history with particular emphasis on autobiographies, diaries, the literature of ethnic minorities, and documentaries.

Lei Yang
Lei Yang Profile
Assistant Professor of Chinese
Seungjoo Yoon
Seungjoo Yoon Profile
Associate Professor of History
Chair of History

Seoul National University, B.A.; Harvard University, A.M., Ph.D.; Modern China and East Asian history, bureaucratic behavior, political ideas, social history, and foreign relations of China, Japan, and Korea. Author, "The Green Gang Nexus in Shanghai General Labor Union, 1924-192," in Papers of Chinese History, vol. 2 (1993); "Literati-Journalists of the Chinese Progress (Shiwu bao) in Discord, 1896-1898," in Rethinking the 1898 Reform Period: Political and Cultural Change in Late Qing China, (2002).