curriculum vitae

Wendy Hsu, Ph.D.
Cultural Researcher and Strategist

City of Los Angeles
Department of Cultural Affairs
201 North Figueroa Street, Suite 1400
Los Angeles 90012

phone: 434.260.1168
twitter: @wendyfhsu


  • Ph.D. in Critical and Comparative Studies in Music, University of Virginia, 2011
    Concentrations: ethnomusicology; digital humanities; Asian and Asian American popular music; ethnographic methodology
    Dissertation: Redefining Asian America: Cultural Politics, Aesthetics, and Social Networks of Independent Rock Musicians [PDF]
  • MA in East Asian Studies
    University of Virginia, 2004
    Thesis: Misreading the Random: A Transnational Reading of Japanese Anime Cowboy Bebop
  • BA in Music
    BA in Religious Studies
    Virginia Commonwealth University, 2001
    University Honors, magnum cum laude

Refereed Articles:

  • Hsu, Wendy F. “Reprogramming Sounds of Learning: Pedagogical Experiments with Critical Making and Community Ethnography”, Provoke! Digital Sound Studies, Duke University Press [forthcoming]
  • Hsu, Wendy F. “A Performative Digital Ethnography: Interface, Database, and Speculation”, The Routledge Companion to Digital Ethnography, ed. Larissa Hjorth, Heather Horst, Anne Galloway & Genevieve Bell, Routledge: New York, 2017
  • Hsu, Wendy F. “Taqwacore: Muslim Punk”, Norient Academic Journal, April 10, 2017 [official link]
  • Hsu, Wendy F. “Lessons on Public Humanities from the Civic Sphere”, Debates in Digital Humanities, ed. by Matthew Gold and Lauren Klein, University of Minnesota Press, 2016 [electronic book]
  • Hsu, Wendy F. and Steven T Kemper. “How We Relisten to a Changing City: Engaging the Senses, Community, and Data through ‘LA Listens'”, Noise and Silence, Issues 2, Urban/Rural, 2016 [official link]
  • Hsu, Wendy F. “Digital Ethnography Toward Augmented Empiricism: A New Methodological Framework,” Journal of Digital Humanities, Volume 3, No. 1, 2014 [official link, PDF]
  • Hsu, Wendy F. “Troubling genre, ethnicity and geopolitics in Taiwanese American independent rock music” Popular Music, Volume 32, Special Issue 01, January, 2013. DOI: 10.1017/S0261143012000578 [official link, PDF]
  • Hsu, Wendy F. “Mapping The Kominas’ Sociomusical Transnation: Punk, Diaspora, and Digital Media,” Asian Journal of Communication, Volume 23, No. 4, 2013, pp. 386-402. DOI: [official link, PDF]
  • Hsu, Wendy. “Between Narrative and Expressive, Fantasy and Melodrama in Bombay Film,” Virginia Review of Asian Studies, vol. 5, 2003. [official link]
  • Hsu, Wendy. “Resisting Multiculturalism: Racial and Gender Politics of Indie Rock in Asian America”, Proceedings of the International Association of the Study of Popular Music – International Meeting, University of Liverpool, UK, July 12-17, 2009 DOI: 10.5429/2225-0301.2009.16 [official link, PDF]
  • Steven Kemper, Wendy Hsu, Carey Sergent, Josef Taylor, Linda Wei. “Movable Party: a bicycle-powered system for interactive musical performance.” In Proceedings of the 2014 International Computer Music Conference and Sound and Music Computing Conference (Athens, Greece: ICMC/SMC, 2014) 527-531. [PDF]

Other Scholarly Publications:

  • Hsu, Wendy F. “A Wider and More Transparent Ethnographic Feedback Circle,” Ethnomusicology Review, Vol. 19, 2014. [official link]
  • [Book chapter] Hsu, Wendy. “Queering and Reading Plato in Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” Queer Pop Culture, ed. Peele, Thomas. Palgrave-Macmillan, May 2007.
  • [Journal article, by invitation] Hsu, Wendy and Carey Sargent. “Rocking Out Between the Global and the Local,” Amalgam, Vol. 2, No. 1, September 2008. [official link]
  • Sargent, Carey, Rachel Thompson, and Wendy Hsu. “Performance Art at the (Virginia) Margins: Anthony Restivo’s Far Off and All Aflame,” TDR (The Drama Review), 56.2 (2012): 178-184. DOI:10.1162/DRAM_a_00173. [official link]
  • Commissioned to contribute: “Yoko Ono,” “Taqwacore,” “Sean Lennon.” In Grove Dictionary of American Music, second edition, ed. Charles Garrett.
  • [Book review] Hsu, Wendy. “Review: Sensational Knowledge: Embodying Culture through Japanese Dance by Tomie Hahn,” Women and Music, Vol. 12, November 2008.
  • [Book review] Hsu, Wendy. “Review: Queering the Popular Pitch edited by Sheila Whiteley and Jennifer Rycenga,” Journal of Popular Music Studies, Vol. 20, No. 3, 2008.
  • [Book review] Hsu, Wendy. “Review: Wired for Sound: Engineering and Technologies in Sonic Cultures”, Journal of Society for Electro-Acoustic Music, Vol. 18, No. 2, Fall 2005.
  • [Concert review] Hsu, Wendy. “Review: Alvin Lucier Festival @ UVa,” Journal of Society for Electro-Acoustic Music, Summer 2007.

Projects & Initiatives:

  • [Researcher, organizer, co-founder] LA Listens, a sound research and engagement project about LA neighborhoods. Supported by MIT Community Innovation Lab. Funded by National Endowment for the Arts and Shuttleworth Foundation.
  • [Founder, instructor] Lab at DCA, a city staff incubator for innovation and digital capacity. Hosted by City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.
  • [Principle investigator] Paperphone, a digital humanist software development project for a scholarly voice and audio processor, funded by Franklin Humanities Institute at Duke University, selected as a part of the Provoke! Digital Sound Studies Collection.
  • [Co-founder, project manager, grantwriter] Movable Parts, community maker project with a mission to use creative technologized practices to engage with local communities in the greater Los Angeles metropolitan area. Supported by Metro Rideshare and Occidental College.
  • [Principle investigator] Sounds of Learning, community-partnered collaboration between Occidental students and Annandale Elementary school students
  • [Co-founder, curator, concert organizer] HzCollective, a Virginia-based experimental, noise & improvised music collective serving to strengthen the bond between the Richmond and Charlottesville creative arts communities.
  • [Co-founder, designer, content contributor] Oxy Music Connection, student-contributed ethnographic project that celebrates the diverse soundscape of Los Angeles.
  • [Co-organizer, workshop leader] Studio Session, workshop series on computational and media production at Occidental College. [blog]

Selected Presentations:

  • “Public Resonance of Listening to the Streets: Ethnography for New Civic Possibilities”, CTM Festival, Berlin, Germany, February 1, 2016 [abstract]
  • “From Roots to Routes: How to Research, Document, and Mediate Music Today”, moderated panel, CTM Festival, Berlin, Germany, February 2, 2016 [abstract]
  • LA Listens:(re-)interpretations of sonic periodicity, rhythm, and neighborhood vibrancy in Los Angeles”, co-authored with Steven Kemper and Jessica Blickley, Sound, Images, and Data conference, NYU, July 24, 2015. [abstract]
  • “Listening Through Sensory and Civic Data to the Streets of Los Angeles: LA Listens“, co-authored with Steven Kemper and Jessica Blickley, Inertia Conference on Sound, Media, and Digital Humanities, UCLA, April 30, 2015. [preconference blog series]
  • “Ethnomusicological Perspectives on Open Access Publication,” organized roundtable presenter, Society of Ethnomusicology, Pittsburgh, PA, November 14, 2014.
  • “Digital Ethnomusicology”, roundtable chair and presenter, Society of Ethnomusicology, Indianapolis, IN, November 14, 2013. [abstract, slides]
  • “The Sound of Racial Melancholia: Listening to and Performing Rock Music in Asian America,” International Association of the Study of Popular Music – Asia Chapter Meeting, National Taiwan Normal University, July 13-15, 2012. [paper]
  • “Transforming Diaspora: The Kominas’ Translocal Socio-musical Geography,” International Association of the Study of Popular Music / The Pop Conference at Experience Music Project, New York University, March 22-25, 2012. [paper excerpt]
  • “Digital Ethnography and Fieldwork”, led a session at THATCamp SoCal, Cal State University in Fullerton, September 15, 2012.
  • “Digital Ethnography: Integrating Digital Methods into Field Research and Ethnographic Representation”, led a session at THATCampVA, Scholars’ Lab, University of Virginia, December 17-19, 2010.
  • “‘Reaching Out to the Wilderness of America’: Performing Punk Minoritarian Politics and Creating a Post-9/11 Taqwacore Diaspora,” Society of Ethnomusicology (SEM), November 11-14, 2010.
  • “Digital Field Research: Mapping the Translocal Taqwacore Social Networks,” International Association of the Study of Popular Music – Asia Chapter Meeting, Chinese University of Hong Kong, June 22-23, 2010.
  • “Identity, Geopolitics, and Networks in Transnational Asian Indie Rock Music,” Association of Crossroads Cultural Studies Conference, Lingnan University, Hong Kong, June 16-21, 2010.
  • “Mapping the Translocal Taqwacore Social Networks via Digital Humanities,” The Pop Conference at Experience Music Project, Seattle, April 15-18, 2010.
  • “Resisting Multiculturalism: Racial and Gender Politics of Indie Rock in Asian America”, International Association of the Study of Popular Music – International Meeting, University of Liverpool, UK, July 12-17, 2009.
  • “Rocking out and Genre Bending: Asian American musicians in Indie Rock”, Society of American Music (SAM), March 18-22, 2009.
  • “Taiwanese America Meets Taiwan through Indie Rock Music Performance”, Society of Ethnomusicology (SEM), October 24-28, 2008.
  • “‘I’m a Star, Get It’: Yoko Ono Subverts Rock Masculinity,” International Association of the Study of Popular Music US-chapter meeting (IASPM-US), April 26-28, 2007.
  • “William Hung: Performing the Asian Model Minority,” Association of Asian American Studies (AAAS), March 24, 2006.
  • “Misreading the Random: Translational Reading of the Japanese Anime Cowboy Bebop”, Performance Studies International (PSi), March 1, 2005.

Selected Invited Lectures:

  • “Sound Ethnography: Soundwalk and the Informal Economy of Nakashi”, invited artist-scholar residency, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan, March 9-13, 2016.
  • “Digital Ethnography Design Workshop”, mini-residency with Digital Ethnography Research Center, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia, October 9, 2014. [slides, blog]
  • “Performing research / researching performance? A multimodal approach to knowledge and creative production”, RMIT University, Design Studio, Melbourne, Australia, October 8, 2014.
  • “Movable Parts: Making Sounds and Making Place through Design”, Art and Electronics for Designers, UCLA Extension, December 4, 2013. [slides, blog]
  • “Digital Ethnography: Computational and Multimodal Approaches to Fieldwork and Ethnographic Representation”, LIB607 Issues in Digital Scholarship [Graduate Seminar], University of Oregon, February 4, 2013. [slides]
  • “Protest Soundscape in Taiwan: the Anti-Nuke Edition”, CHIN295 Representations of the Environment in Chinese Literature and Culture, Occidental College, November 8, 2012. [slides]
  • “Performing Taiwan: From Ethnography to Performance”, Colloquium: Center for Chinese Studies: Institute of East Asian Studies, University of California in Berkeley, October 3, 2011.
  • “Digital Ethnography,” FTV 202 Media Audience & Consumption in Convergence Culture, UCLA, Suzanne Scott, February 7, 2012.
  • “Asian Femininity and Popular Music in America,” MUSI Asian American Music, Tomie Hahn, Harvard University, April 25, 2007.
  • “Between Indie Rock and Asian America,” Evelyn Danzig Haas Visiting Artist, Wheaton College, September 18, 2008.
  • “An Evening of Dialogue on Race,” a panel of faculty speaks on race & ethnicity issues among faculty and graduate students, University of Virginia, March 11, 2009.
  • “Ethnography and the Digital Humanities”, SOC4850 Media, Culture and Society, Carey Sargent, September 16, 2009.
  • “Asian Musicians in Western Classical Concert Music,” MUSI101: Introduction to Musical Literature, Allison Robbins, University of Virginia, December 3, 2007.
  • “Race & Ethnicity in Contemporary US Music-Culture,” SOC225 Contemporary Music and U.S. Society, Carey Sargent, University of Virginia, January 8, 2007.
  • “Introduction to Ethnographic Methods and Performance Theory,” SOC225 Contemporary Music and U.S. Society, Carey Sargent,


Thesis Advisor/Instructor, Art Center College of Design, 2013:

  • Media Design Practices MFA Thesis Seminar

Instructor, Occidental College, 2011-13:

Graduate Instructor, Department of Music, University of Virginia, 2008-2009:

Graduate Instructor, Department of Music, University of Virginia, 2007-2010:

  • MUSI 207/307 Popular Music and Transnationalism
  • MUSI 426/4510 Music in Asian America
  • MUSI 208D Race and Ethnicity in Popular Music
  • MUSI 208 Music in Asian America
  • SOC/MUSI 225 Digital Vernacular Music Culture [co-instructor]
  • SOC 225 Contemporary Music in US Society [co-instructor]

Graduate Teaching Assistant, Department of Music, University of Virginia, 2004-present:

  • MUSI 211 Music in Everyday Life
  • MUSI 207 Roots Music of America
  • MUSI 212 History of Jazz
  • MUSI 101 Introduction to Musical Literature

Graduate Teaching Assistant, Asian & Middle Eastern Languages Department, University of Virginia, Spring 2004: AMEL 302 The Asian/Pacific American Experience in the US.

Undergraduate Teaching Assistant, Virginia Commonwealth University, 2001-2002, RELS/PHIL 412 Zen Buddhism

Awards, Honors, and Affiliations:

  • NEA Design Grant, in partnership with MIT Colab, 2017
  • Flash Grant, Shuttleworth Foundation, 2016
  • Public Fellowship, ACLS (American Council of Learned Societies)/Mellon, 2013-2015
  • Affiliated Scholar, Center for Digital Liberal Arts, Occidental College, 2013-present
  • Mellon Digital Scholarship Postdoctoral Fellowship, Occidental College, 2011-13
  • Graduate School of Arts & Sciences Dissertation Year Fellowship, 2010-11
  • Humanities, Arts, Science, and Technology Advanced Collaboratory (HASTAC) Scholars, 2010-11
  • Graduate Fellowship in Digital Humanities, UVa Scholars Lab, spring 2010
  • Presidential Fellowship (full four-year university graduate fellowship), UVa, 2004-2008
  • Ellen Weedon East Asia Travel Grant, 2008
  • Huskey Graduate student Travel Award, UVa, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009
  • “Improvisational Encounter” (performing-research trip), Vice President of Student Affairs and Assistant Dean of Asian Pacific American Student Affairs, 2007

Selected Performances/Recordings:

  • Invited performance. Dzian!, Inter-Asia Pop Conference (IASPM-Asia meeting), National Taiwan Normal University, July 13, 2012. [video]
  • Invited performance. Dzian!, Into the Mix: Asian Pop Music Conference, Princeton University, March 26, 2011
  • Invited performance. Dzian!, Society of Ethnomusicology, Midwest Chapter, performance & demo-lecture upon invitation, April 9, 2011.
  • Alishan A-Go-Go, EP, self-released, Dzian!.
  • Agents Against Agency, DVD, Pinko Communoids, curated by Matthew Burtner, EcoSono Institute.
  • “Dusk”, Pinko Communoids, Feminist Theory and Music 10 Conference, University of North Carolina in Greensboro, May18-30, 2009.
  • FFMUP (Free_Form_Mash_Up “Between-the-cracks” music series), Grapefruit Experiment, Princeton University, February 23, 2010. [audio | blog]
  • “Improvising Via Social Media”, Pinko Communoids, The Pop Conference at Experience Music Project | Science Fiction Museum, Seattle, April 15-18, 2010. [review by KEXP]
  • DisOrient, Duo concert with Professor Tomie Hahn, Evelyn Danzig Haas Visiting Artist, Wheaton College, MA, September 18, 2008.
  • “Rust”, Technosonics Electronic Music Festival VII, Pinko Communoids, Charlottesville, VA, February 12, 2007. [photo]
  • Womb Bloc Music Festival, Pinko Communoids, Kaohsiung, Taiwan, June 23, 2007.
  • Sonic Circuits International Experimental Music Festival, Pinko Communoids, Washington DC, September 22, 2007. [photo]
  • A Night of New Music, guest appearance as Pinko Communoids at UVa New Music Ensemble concert, Old Cabell Hall, University of Virginia, March 27, 2009.
  • Queering Sound Festival, Grapefruit Experiment, Pyramid Atlantic, June 6, 2009. [audio]


  • Mandarin Chinese, native fluency
  • Japanese, reading proficiency
  • German, reading and writing proficiency