Specialities: Ethnic Studies; Asian American Literature; Environmental Justice Literature; Climate Justice; and Writing.
Mika Kennedy is from the San Francisco Bay Area. She earned her PhD in English from the University of Michigan and, prior to that, her BA in Literature from UC San Diego. Her teaching centers race, ethnicity, and Indigeneity in American literature and the environmental humanities. She’s taught courses about environmental justice in the literature of cities; Asian American literature and culture; and climate justice. Her research follows a similar framework: Dr. Kennedy’s current book project is about the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans, and the ways this experience intersects not only with fantasies of the Western frontier, but also the fight for Native sovereignty. Her research has been supported by the James A. Winn Fellowship at the University of Michigan Institute for the Humanities, a Rackham Humanities Research Candidacy Fellowship, and the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies, among others.
Dr. Kennedy is also devoted to public-facing work, particularly within the Japanese American and Nikkei communities. For the past several years, she has been the co-curator of a museum exhibit titled Exiled to Motown, which brings to life the history of the Japanese American community in metro Detroit.
The working title of her current book project is Crossed Wires: Japanese American Incarceration and the Environmental Frontier.