Dr Ying Xin Show


Research activity per year

Personal profile

Research interests

Southeast Asian History and Literature (esp. Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia), Inter-Asia Cultural Studies, Chinese and Sinophone literature, Gender Studies, Chinese Diaspora, Migration, Print Culture, Translation, Memory


I am a Lecturer at the School of Culture, History and Language, Deputy Director of ANU Malaysia Institute, College of Asia and the Pacific. I currently hold an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA).

Prior to this, I was a postdoctoral fellow at the International Center for Cultural Studies, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan (2018-2019), visiting researcher at KUNCI Cultural Studies Center, Yogyakarta, Indonesia (2018) and contract lecturer at the Chinese Department of University of Malaya (2017-2018). 

Outside academia, I worked as assistant editor at the online independent news portal Malaysiakini in Kuala Lumpur from 2015 to 2018. I am co-founder and exco member of Rumah Attap Library & Collective (2017-), an independent cultural studies library and community-building space in KL. I am also a translator working in Chinese/Mandarin, English and Malay. 

Researcher's projects

I have broad interests ranging from Asian history and literature to contemporary politics and society. I am particularly interested in exploring the history and culture of migration, decolonisation and the impact of the Cold War on Asian societies through literature and arts. I co-edited a book on modern history of the Malay world (with Ngoi Guat Peng) Revisiting Malaya: Uncovering Historical and Political Thoughts in Nusantara (Gerakbudaya, 2020) and a journal special issue (with Sai Siew Min) on Sino-Southeast Asia, "Reassessing the Chinese diaspora from the South: history, culture and narrative" (Inter-Asia Cultural Studies, 2023). 

My main project deals with the cultural history of Sinophone/Chinese community in the making of Malaya, 1945-1969. It examines print culture and non-elite intellectual and cultural networks, explores issues and debates such as localization, nationalism, modernism, left-wing politics, gender and translation during the Malayan Emergency and in the geopolitical context of the global Cold War. I'm currently working on a monograph and a documentary film for this project. 

Other projects include contemporary migrant workers' literature from Southeast Asia, lives and literature of radical Malayan women, Chinese diaspora history and literature, and memory of the Left in Singapore and Malaysia, among others. 

Apart from my research, I am also the translator of Singaporean writer Alfian Sa'at's short stories collection Malay Sketches into the Chinese language (Taipei: Brilliant Time, 2020 [Traditional Chinese]; Shanghai: 51 Personae, 2022 [Simplified Chinese]). The book won the Singapore newspaper Lianhe Zaobao's 2020 Top Ten Annual Book Award. I also coordinated and copyedited the Chinese translation of Malaysian sociologist Syed Hussein Alatas's classic The Myth of the Lazy Native (Taipei: NYCU Press, 2022). 

Most of my writings are available here


PhD, Nanyang Tehnological University, Singapore

Available student projects

I welcome enquiries from prospective Honours, Masters and PhD students working on modern and contemporary East and Southeast Asian literature, culture, history and society. I am especially interested to learn from history-informed projects that concern decolonisation and the subaltern with a gender focus, and those that explore multilingual non-state archival sources and innovative methodologies. 

Expertise Areas

  • Malaysian Studies
  • Southeast Asia
  • South-East Asian Literature
  • Asian Cultural Studies
  • Asian History
  • Chinese Diaspora
  • Translation
  • Memory Studies
  • Cold War
  • Print culture
  • Gender Studies
  • Migration
  • Literature in Chinese


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