Hyaeweol Choi (pronounced Heh-Wall Che) is a professor of Korean studies, gender history and religious studies. She holds the C. Maxwell and Elizabeth M. Stanley Family and Korea Foundation Chair in Korean Studies at the University of Iowa. She is also the founding director of the Korean Studies Research Network (KoRN) and currently serves as Chair (DEO) of the Department of Gender, Women’s, and Sexuality Studies.
Her research interests are in the areas of gender, empire, modernity, religion, food and body, and transnational history. She has published books and articles on such topics as the genealogy of modern womanhood in Korea, the historical development of the “New Woman” in colonial-era Korea, the evolution of the concept of "domesticity" within the context of encounters between Christian missionaries and women in Asia and the Pacific, and the impact of transnational mobility on gender norms and bodily practices. Her current research project, entitled “Food and the Life Politics of Domesticity in Global Korea,” examines the domestic as the confluence of the local, public, global and environmental structures, aiming to shed new light on everyday gender politics and performance through food ethics and practices in the current age of excess, inequality and ecological crises.
To find moments of peace, happiness and gratitude, she enjoys cooking with her partner and doing yoga and meditation.
Selected Book Publications:
Gender Politics at Home and Abroad: Protestant Modernity in Colonial-Era Korea (Cambridge University Press, 2020)
New Women in Colonial Korea: A Sourcebook (Routledge, 2013)
Gender and Mission Encounters in Korea: New Women, Old Ways (University of California Press, 2009)
Gender in Modern East Asia: An Integrated History, co-authored with Barbara Molony and Janet Theiss (Westview, 2016)
Divine Domesticities: Christian Paradoxes in Asia and the Pacific, co-edited with Margaret Jolly (Canberra: ANU Press, 2014)