Ikuko Asaka (F'12)
ACLS Faculty Fellow and Postdoctoral Associate
Ikuko Asaka received her Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is a historian of the United States with an emphasis on women, gender, and sexuality, African American and Diaspora history, and American Studies. Trained in both U.S. and Japanese institutions, she has always taken comparative and transnational approaches in her studies. In all of her work, she explores how U.S. nationality and its related hierarchies were shaped by larger global circumstances at historically specific moments. Her book project is on geographies of black freedom in the eighteenth-and-nineteenth century Atlantic world. The work seeks to demonstrate how labor and territorial formations in the British and U.S. empires took shape around the question of the proper location of black freedom and how domesticity and reproduction were central to the imperial and colonial struggles over racial boundaries. Drawing partly from the book manuscript, she has written an article titled “‘Our Brethren in the West Indies’: Self-Emancipated People in Canada and the Antebellum Politics of Diaspora and Empire,” forthcoming in Journal of African American History (Summer 2012).