The Asian Studies faculty represent diverse disciplines from different colleges across Bowling Green State University.


Hyeyoung Bang is an associate professor in the School of Educational Foundations, Leadership and Policy at BGSU. She teaches educational psychology, human growth and development, and cross-cultural human development and learning.  

Dr. Bang’s current research topics can be categorized into two major themes: 1) Wisdom as a positive human function across cultures and 2) Education and society. For the first theme, she has been working on the relation between wisdom and ego-identity; wisdom as human motivation to live a virtuous life; and the relationship between wisdom and other related topics such as empathy, prosocial behaviors, resilience, and well-being. In regard to the second theme, her research focuses on issues such as teaching and learning and educational adjustment in different social settings. She collaborates locally, nationally, and internationally in her research.

Dr. Bang has served on two large external grants – one from the Templeton Religion Trust, as Co-PI, and the second from the Institute for Museum and Library Services: National Leadership Grant, as the methodologist.


Khani Begum is an associate professor in the English Department at Bowling Green State University. She teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on Postcolonial Literature and Film, Black Films Matter, Palestinian Conflict in Film, and Modern and Contemporary Literatures.  

Many of her courses involve community engagement activities where students work with the Bowling Green initiative, Not In Our Town, and the Way Public Library in Perrysburg to present student projects and films that address global cultures issues, Islamophobia, and race bias.

Dr. Begum has published essays on male modernist writers, namely James Joyce and E.M. Forster; Iranian women's literature; South Asian films in response to 9/11; and connections between Jamaican Jonkunnu slave era festivals and Black Lives Matter protest street dances.

She is currently editing two collections on global responses to 9/11 and the war on terror – one from a media and trauma perspective, and the another from an art and popular culture perspective.


Abhishek Bhati is an assistant professor in political science at BGSU. His research focuses on nonprofit studies, international development, and global politics. He teaches courses on nonprofit organizations, international nongovernmental organizations (INGOs), and public administration.

His work has appeared in several academic journals, and he regularly writes for The Conversation, a nonprofit, independent news organization that publishes articles written by academic experts for the general public. Currently, he is researching the shrinking civil society in developing countries around the world, especially in Southeast Asia.


Hyungsuk Choo is an associate professor in Tourism, Hospitality, and Event Management at Bowling Green State University. Her research interest focuses on exploring the applicability of service marketing principles and social-psychology in the context of agritourism and festivals/events, identifying the sustainability theory and practice from the perspectives of both providers and consumers.


Bradford Clark is a professor in the Department of Theatre and Film, where he is a production designer and teaches courses in scenic design, animation history, and Asian theatre.

He received a B.A. in theatre from the University of California, Santa Cruz and an M.F.A. in theatre from the University of Minnesota, Mankato. He also served as a design studio intern at Moscow's Bolshoi Theatre. Prof. Clark studied the making of traditional shadow puppets and masks in Bali, Indonesia, and puppet making and performance in Japan. 

He has traveled throughout Asia to observe and document puppet and theatre performances, and was part of a research group that documented performances by both traditional and contemporary companies and performers throughout China.  

In addition to directing and designing puppet theatre productions, he has written articles on Asian puppet theatre, including performances at the Putul Yatra: A Celebration of Indian Puppetry. He also recently published a survey of puppet museums in Japan.


Esther Clinton, visiting assistant professor, Department of Popular Culture at Bowling Green State University, received her Ph.D. in Folklore from Indiana University with a focus on narrative and Old English literature. Her research interests include Southeast Asia, the history of ideas, proverbs, narrative, tricksters, ethnomusicology, and heavy metal. Dr. Clinton’s work has appeared in Asian Music, Journal of World Popular Music, Metal Music Studies, Proverbium Journal of the National Medical Association, and in the books Archetypes and Motifs in Folk Literature, The Palgrave Handbook of Leisure Theory, Modern Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal Music and the Communal Experience, and Connecting Metal to Culture.


Christopher Frey is an associate professor in the School of Educational Foundations, Leadership and Policy and an affiliated faculty member with Asian Studies. He teaches master’s courses in the Cross-Cultural and International Education Program and introductory and capstone courses in Asian Studies. He looks forward to working with Asian Studies students on historical, archival, and minority research topics.

Dr. Frey is a graduate of Indiana University, Bloomington, and his research focuses on indigenous and minority education histories in North America and East Asia.


Amy Jeffers has been teaching Introduction to Asian Religions for 3 years as an adjunct professor. Her background in philosophy and world religions, along with a personal interest in Eastern Religions, allows her to bring a unique perspective to the course.

Jeffers has been an instructor of philosophy at Owens Community College for over 20 years. She is also a founding board member of the Brown Bag Food Project – a local non-profit that seeks to address issues of food insecurity in Wood County.


Akiko Kawano Jones, a teaching professor in the Department of World Languages and Cultures, has been teaching at BGSU since 1983. She has taught Japanese Language and Culture, Japanese Business Language, and Japanese Tea Ceremony and Culture. She was the director of the Asian Studies Program from 2005 through June 2019.

She has been involved with study abroad in Japan, offering Summer Study in Japan for the last 20 years and Peace Seminar in Hiroshima since 2006.

Among the honors and awards she has received are the BGSU Faculty Senate Lifetime Achievement Award, BGSU Master Teacher of the Year, and the Outstanding College Foreign Language Instructor Award from the Ohio Foreign Language Association. She also received the 2013 Teacher of the Year Award from the American Association of Teachers of Japanese and Commendation of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Japan.

Jong Kwan Jake Lee

JK Jake Lee is currently the Fulton Associate Professor and the chair of the Department of Computer Science. He has been teaching both undergraduate and graduate level computer science courses for about 13 years at BGSU. 

His research interests include scientific and information visualization, pattern recognition/computer vision, and computer graphics. He is currently working on machine learning-based solar feature detection and visualization of data change projects. Expansion of the Asian Studies program at BGSU is also one of his interests.


Ryoko Okamura is an assistant professor in the Department of World Languages and Cultures and the Asian Studies Program. She is interested in transnational history, including the cultural history of modern Japan and its relations with the U.S. and East Asia. Her research focuses on immigration, women and ethnic minorities. She enjoys teaching Japanese language, culture and history.


Kristen Rudisill is the director of the Asian Studies program at BGSU and will be granted the title of professor in the Department of Popular Culture in Fall 2021. She's been teaching graduate and undergraduate students at BGSU since 2007. Her courses center around global and international popular culture, religion, Bollywood, storytelling, and romance novels.

Dr. Rudisill's research focuses on Indian theater and dance, especially in Tamilnadu, Sri Lanka, and the global Tamil diaspora. She has received two Fulbright grants in the past, and in 2022, assuming travel is allowed, she will conduct fieldwork in Sri Lanka for her new book project, The Rise of Gaana: Dance Competitions, Cinema, and Global Tamil Identity thanks to a fellowship from the American Institute of Sri Lankan Studies. Her first book, Honeymoon Couples and Jurassic Babies: Identity and Play in Chennai’s Post-Independence Sabha Theater, will be published with SUNY Press later this year.  

She is currently working on revising two journal articles and a book chapter, which will be published in the coming year. One is for a special issue of the Indian Theatre Journal on reality television that she is co-editinganother for a special issue of the Inter-Asia Cultural Studies Journal on danceand the third for a book called Performance Studies in and from India from Cambridge University Press.


Rebecca L. Skinner Green is an associate professor in art history and has taught at BGSU since 1996. She teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in Western Art and World Art, as well as courses on African, Oceanic, Mesoamerican, Indian & Southeast Asian, and Chinese & Japanese arts and cultures. She has also led two study-abroad courses to Ghana, West Africa and Bali, Indonesia. In 2021, Skinner Green was awarded the College of Arts & Sciences Diversity Award.

Dr. Skinner Green’s research focuses on traditional and contemporary art and culture in Africa, with specialization on Madagascar, where she studies the elaborate relationships between ancestors, funerary practices, divination, gender roles, and traditional and contemporary art. Her research is also expanding into art and culture in the Caribbean, with primary focus on Trinidad and Tobago. Her work has been sponsored by a Social Science Research Council fellowship, a Foreign Language Area Studies grant, a Fulbright fellowship, two Fulbright-Hays fellowships, and an American Association of University Women fellowship. It has been the subject for articles, books, edited volumes, curated exhibitions, conference papers, and keynote presentations.

She is currently writing two books – one on foundational contemporary artists in Trinidad and Tobago, and another on traditional arts associated with funerary practices in highland Madagascar. She is also working on projects on contemporary Malagasy art, as well as the use of public community art in the fight against HIV/AIDS in the Caribbean.


Jeremy Wallach is a popular culture professor in the BGSU School of Cultural and Critical Studies. A cultural anthropologist specializing in Asian popular music and globalization, he has written or co-written over two dozen research articles; co-edited, with Esther Clinton, a special issue of Asian Music (2013); and authored the monograph Modern Noise, Fluid Genres: Popular Music in Indonesia, 1997-2001 (Univ. of Wisconsin, 2008; Indonesian Ed., Komunitas Bambu, 2017). In 2011, he co-edited, with Harris M. Berger and Paul D. Greene, the collection Metal Rules the Globe: Heavy Metal Music around the World (Duke). His writings have appeared in Ars Lyrica, Asian MusicEthnomusicologyIndonesia, the Journal for Cultural Research, the Journal of Popular Music StudiesPopular Music History, Wacana Seni Journal of Arts Discourse, and numerous edited volumes.  

Dr. Wallach has given research presentations throughout North America and Indonesia, as well as Austria, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Puerto Rico. He was a founding member and former chair of the Society for Ethnomusicology Popular Music Section. Dr. Wallach serves on the editorial board of the Journal of World Popular Music Studies and is a series editor of the Music/Culture Series at Wesleyan University Press.