Comparative Literature

2023 Ruth Simmons Prize Recognizes Katherine Xiong, Comp Lit ’23, with Honorable Mention

The Ruth Simmons Prize is awarded annually for an outstanding honors thesis on questions having to do with women or gender. In the spring, the Pembroke Center invites faculty in all fields to nominate honors theses for the prize. A committee of faculty who teach and write in the area of gender studies will make the selection.

Katherine XiongBrown University’s Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women recently announced the winner for their Ruth Simmons Prize in Gender and Women's Studies and  Comp Lit graduating senior, Katherine Xiong, has been recognized with honorable mention for their thesis, Post-apocalyptic Body World(ing): Transpacific Racial Capitalism, Coloniality, and Queer/Asian/Female Speculative Futures.  Katherine’s states, “my thesis examines the uncertain ‘humanity’ of Asian female characters in Larissa Lai’s The Tiger Flu (2019) and Chi Ta-wei’s The Membranes (1995), queer post-apocalyptic speculative novels from the Sino diaspora and Taiwan, respectively. Drawing from Asian American critical posthumanism and discussions of (dis)ability in racial and colonial capitalist contexts, I analyze how these characters become racialized feminine labor commodities, both metaphor and metonymy for the systems in which they exist.”

Katherine will receive their BA this month for concentrations in Comparative Literature and Economics, and has received honors for the above-named Comp Lit thesis.  During this academic year, Katherine also served on the Comp Lit Department Undergraduate Group as a DUG leader, helping organize a robust series of events and social gatherings throughout the year.  Congratulations to Katherine and good luck after commencement!