Elizabeth Wijaya

Assistant Professor
Room 322E, 2 Sussex Avenue, Toronto, ON M5S 1J5


Department of Visual Studies


Elizabeth Wijaya's research interests include global Chinese cinemas, contemporary East and Southeast Asian cinemas circulating through international film festivals, eco-cinema, cine-ethics, media theory, critical theory, and continental philosophy. She is particularly interested in the material, historical, and symbolic entanglements between East Asia and Southeast Asia. Her current book project, Luminous Flesh: The Visible and Invisible Worlds of Trans-Chinese Cinema is a study of the political and philosophical stakes of the transmission of the past, corporeally and temporally, in post-1980s Chinese cinema in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Malaysia. She is co-editor of the special issue on Derrida's 1999–2001 seminar on the death penalty, "Survival of the Death Sentence," Parallax Vol.22, Issue 2, 2016.

Wijaya teaches courses on East and Southeast Asian cinemas, cinematic and political time, migratory cinema and queer cinema. She is building an archive of Asian short cinema at the University of Toronto and has curated film programmes for the Asian Film Archive in Singapore, Cornell University, the University of Minnesota (Twin Cities) and Ithaca College.

Wijaya was awarded the Arts and Social Sciences Dean's Prize for Distinguished Teaching at Cornell University in 2018. She is the recipient of the Lee Teng Hui Fellowship in World Affairs with East Asia Focus (Cornell), Taiwan Fellowship (Taiwan), Milton L. Barnett Scholarship (Cornell), Tan Ean Kiam Postgraduate Scholarship in the Humanities (Singapore), ASEAN Scholarship (Singapore) and other fellowships. In 2018–2019, she was a President's Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Minnesota (Twin Cities), Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies.

Article in Journals

"To See Die, Again: The Act of Killing and the Act of Filming", in Parallax Vol.22, Issue 2, 2016: 81-95.

David Coughlan, Christoforos Diakoulakis, David Huddart and Elizabeth Wijaya. "Introduction: Survival of the Death Sentence", in "Survival of the Death Sentence", Parallax Vol.22, Issue 2, 2016: 1-4.

“To Learn to Live with Spectral Justice: Derrida – Levinas”, in Derrida Today Vol.5, Issue 2, Nov 2012: 232-248.

Journal Edited

Co-editor with David Coughlan, Christoforos Diakoulakis and David Huddart "Survival of the Death Sentence," Parallax Vol.22, Issue 2, 2016.

Select Filmography

Co-founder and Director of E&W Films, Singapore-based film production company, ewfilms.com.sg.

Co-Director, documentary, Bronx Lives 2017

  • Shelter/Refugio Exhibition, MACLA/Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana, 2 Jun - 13 Aug 13, 2017.

Co-Writer/Director/Producer, Feature Film I Have Loved. 2011

  • Asian Feature Film Competition, 24th Singapore International Film Festival.
  • Main Competition, 10th Asian Film Festival, Reggio Emilia.
  • Asian New Talent Awards, 15th Shanghai International Film Festival.
  • In Competition, Asia Pacific Screen Awards 2012.
  • Feature Film Section, 3rd Cambodia International Film Festival.
  • Asian Contemporary Section, 11th World Film Festival of Bangkok.

Select Curatorial Projects

"Reframe: Migratory Times." Guest curator of 5 film screenings and a roundtable discussion for Asian Film Archive. 26th–28th July, 2019, Oldham Theater, Singapore.


PhD, Cornell University
MA, Cornell University
MA, National University of Singapore
BA, National University of Singapore