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Prof. Roberto CASTILLO 陳古城

Assistant Professor

Contact
Tel: (852) 2616 7487
Fax: (852) 2572 5170
Location: Room 107, Ho Sin Hang Building 何善衡樓107室
Email: rocas@ln.edu.hk
Personal Website: https://www.africansinchina.net
View CV

Areas of interest

Ethnography; Migration and mobility; Transnationality; Cultural representations and cultural politics; Media representation; Cultural research methodologies; Critical theory; Inter-Asia cultural studies; Digital humanities; International relations; Africans in China and Africa China relations.

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Biography

My academic training is in Cultural Studies, International Relations, History and Journalism. I hold a PhD from the Department of Cultural Studies at Lingnan University, Hong Kong. I am currently an Assistant Professor in that department. I have lectured at the African Studies Programme at the University of Hong Kong; the Humanities and Creative Writing Department of HKBU; and the Applied Social Sciences Department of Hong Kong’s PolyU. Previously, I was a postdoctoral fellow at the Centre for Cultural Studies at The Chinese University of Hong Kong. In 2010, I completed a Masters in Cultural Studies at The University of Sydney. I have lived and worked in Beijing and Hong Kong for 12 years. My research/teaching interests are: transnationality; migration and mobility; the critique of nationalism and globalisation; China’s changing ethnoscapes with a focus on foreign presence in the country; Africa-China relations; (cultural) research methodologies; globalisation of social movements; ethnography; the politics of knowledge production; the cultural politics of media representations of race/ethnicity; critical theory; Inter-Asia cultural studies; and Chinese social development. I administer the website: www.africansinchina.net.

Education

PhD in Cultural Studies, Lingnan University Hong Kong

Master of Cultural Studies, University of Sydney

Bachelor of International Relations with Honours, University of the Americas

Selected publications

Books

Castillo, Roberto. (2021). African Transnational Mobility in China: Africans on the Move. Routledge: London.

Tambunam, Gietty. and Castillo, Roberto. Eds. (2022). Projecting the Identity and Voices of Minorities. Springer Singapore. Forthcoming.

Journals

Castillo, Roberto. (2021). ‘The Han savious behind the blackface: racialised and gendered media representations in Africa-China popular geopolitics’. Inter-Asia Cultural Studies Journal 22(3). DOI: 10.1080/14649373.2021.1966905

Amoah, Padmore, Hodzi, Obert, and Castillo, Roberto. Eds. (2020). Africans in China and Chinese in Africa: Identities, Inequalities and Well-being. Special Issues of Asian Ethnicity 21(4).

Amoah, Padmore, Hodzi, Obert, and Castillo, Roberto. (2020). ‘Africans in China and Chinese in Africa: Inequalities, Social Identities, and Wellbeing’. Asian Ethnicity 21(4): 457-463. DOI: 10.1080/14631369.2020.1784706

Castillo, Roberto and Amoah, Padmore. (2020). ‘Africans in post-COVID-19 pandemic China: is there a future for China’s ‘new minority’?’ Asian Ethnicity 21(4): 560-565. DOI: 10.1080/14631369.2020.1773760. 

Castillo, Roberto. (2020). ‘‘Race’ and ‘racism’ in contemporary Africa China relations research: approaches, controversies and reflections’. Inter-Asia Cultural Studies Journal 21(3): 310-336. DOI: 10.1080/14649373.2020.1796343 

Castillo, Roberto. (2018). ‘The World in Guangzhou: Africans and Other Foreigners in South China’s Global Marketplace’ by Gordon Mathews with Linessa Dan Lin and Yang Yang. University of Chicago Press 2017. The China Quarterly, 236, December 2018.

Castillo, Roberto. (2016). ‘“Homing” Guangzhou: emplacement, belonging and precarity amongst Africans in China,’ International Journal of Cultural Studies, 19(3): 287-306.

Castillo, Roberto. (2015). ‘Landscapes of aspiration in Guangzhou’s African music scene: beyond the trading narrative,’ The Journal of Current Chinese Affairs, 44(4).

Castillo, Roberto. (2014). ‘Feeling at home in the “Chocolate City”: an exploration of place-making practices and structures of belonging amongst Africans in Guangzhou,’ Inter-Asia Cultural Studies 15 (2): 235-257.

Other Writing

Castillo, Roberto 2020. ‘How Africans in China challenge stereotypical views on African migration’. Analysis piece for Quartz Media. Available at: https://qz.com/africa/1946255/africans-in-china-challenge-stereotypes-of-african-migration/

Castillo, Roberto. 2020. ‘How discrimination towards Africans and China’s surveillance state will reset a migration trend’. Analysis piece for Quartz Media. Available at: https://qz.com/africa/1844277/racism-to-africans-in-china-and-surveillance-to-slow-migration/

Castillo, Roberto. 2020. ‘African migration to China may never be the same again’. Analysis piece for African Arguments. Available at: https://africanarguments.org/2020/04/23/african-migration-china-never-same-again/

Castillo, Roberto. 2018. ‘Chinese media is obsessed with portraying China as Africa’s saviour’. Analysis piece for Quartz Media. Available at: https://qz.com/1226125/chinas-racist-blackface-and-savior-complex-for-africa-in-chinese-media/

Castillo, Roberto. 2018. ‘What “blackface” tells us about China’s patronising attitude towards Africa’. Analysis piece for The Conversation – Africa. Available at: https://theconversation.com/what-blackface-tells-us-about-chinas-patronising-attitude-towards-africa-92449

Castillo, Roberto. 2016. ‘Of Washing powder, Afrophobia and racism in China’. Analysis piece for The Conversation – Africa. Available at: https://theconversation.com/of-washing-powder-afrophobia-and-racism-in-china-60274

Research Grants

Made-in-China Nollywood: New Geographies of African Diasporic Imagination. Early Career Scheme (ECS) 2018/19. Research Grant Council (RGC). Project Fund: HK$ 504,000.

Made-in-China Nollywood: New Geographies of African Diasporic Imagination. Faculty Research Grant from the Research & Postgraduate Studies Committee of Lingnan University: HK$ 49,350.

Africans in Guangzhou: a cultural analysis of transnationality amongst Africans on the move. Full time doctoral research funded by the UGC: HK$ 720,000.

Invited presentations

‘Africans in China and Chinese in Africa: why is everyone talking about China Africa relations now?’ A public lecture organised by the Chi Sun College of the University of Hong Kong. Kennedy Town, Hong Kong, 3 April 2018.

‘Africans in Southern China: Myths and Realities’. Public Lecture for the launching of the ‘Vibrant Africa Festival’ organised by the Hong Kong Leisure and Cultural Services Department. Tsim Tsa Tsui, Hong Kong, 18 September 2017.

‘Chinese Soft Power and African Cosmopolitan Futures’. A talk given at the ‘Africa-China : Mapping an Emergent Axis’ seminar series organised by the Architecture Department of the University of Hong Kong. Hong Kong, China, 27 April 2017.

‘Routes, Roots, and Rhythms: Research on Ethnicity and Migration in the Southern China Region’. A panel organised by the Centre for Cultural Studies of The Chinese University of Hong Kong. Hong Kong, China, 21 April 2017.

‘Encountering Racism’. A talk given at the Inter-Asia Summer School 2016. Lingnan University, Hong Kong, China, June 2016.

‘One Belt One Road: What’s in if for Africa?’. A talk given at the ‘One Belt One Road: Possible Impacts on the Regional and Global Relations’ seminar organised by the General Education Unit of the University of Hong Kong. Hong Kong, China, 17 March 2016.

‘African musicians in search of the “Chinese Dream”: beyond the narratives of trade and “immigration”’. A talk given at the Asia Art Archive as part of the Mapping Asia Project. Hong Kong, China, July 2014.

Public engagement

[Television] Guest on Al-Jazeera’s ‘The Stream’ T2018, E:79 – ‘What’s it like being Black in China?’. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQkiil3kXt4

[Podcast] Guest. Olander, Eric (Interviewer). ‘Black Panther sparks debate over anti-black racism in China’. Podcast for The China Africa Project. Available at: http://www.chinaafricaproject.com/podcast-black-panther-racism-china/

[Written Collaboration] Castillo, Roberto. (2018) ‘Chinese media is obsessed with portraying China as Africa’s saviour’. Analysis piece for Quartz Media. Available at: https://qz.com/1226125/chinas-racist-blackface-and-savior-complex-for-africa-in-chinese-media/

[Written Collaboration] Castillo, Roberto. (2018) ‘What “blackface” tells us about China’s patronising attitude towards Africa’. Analysis piece for The Conversation – Africa. Available at: https://theconversation.com/what-blackface-tells-us-about-chinas-patronising-attitude-towards-africa-92449

[Written Collaboration] Castillo, Roberto. (2016) ‘Of Washing powder, Afrophobia and racism in China’. Analysis piece for The Conversation – Africa. Available at: https://theconversation.com/of-washing-powder-afrophobia-and-racism-in-china-60274

[Report] Interview. Marsh, Jenni. ‘The African migrants giving up on the Chinese dream.’ CNN, June 2016. Available at: http://edition.cnn.com/2016/06/26/asia/africans-leaving-guangzhou-china/index.html

[Report] Interview. Burks, Emeri. ‘The Chinese Dream. Changing aspirations of Africans in Canton.’ That’s PRD, October 2014. Available at: http://online.thatsmags.com/pdf/40/download

[Report] Interview. Marsh, Jenni. ‘Afro-Chinese marriages boom in Guangzhou: but will it be “till death do us apart”?’ South China Morning Post, 1 June 2014. Available at: http://www.scmp.com/magazines/post-magazine/article/1521076/afro-chinese-marriages-boom-guangzhou-will-it-be-til-death

[Radio] Interview. Shryock, Ricci. ‘Interview with Nigeria’s Dibaocha Sky in Guangzhou,’ Africa Today, Voice of America. Available at: http://www.voafanti.com/gate/gb/m.voanews.com/s/387305.html#http://www.voafanti.com/gate/gb/realaudio.rferl.org/voa/ENGL/2014/03/17/c3f1d93b-1d85-4a69-bfed-b02573b4784e.mp3

[Report] Interviewee. Grangereau, Philippe. ‘En Chine, Noirs Desespoirs,’ Liberation, 27 October 2013. Available at: http://www.liberation.fr/monde/2013/10/27/chinenoirs-desespoirs_942712

[Report] Interview. Piranty, Sam. ‘Economic nomads in a city of flows,’ Think Africa Press, 22 October 2013. Available at: http://thinkafricapress.com/economy/nomads-city-flows-china-africa-guangzhou

[Blog] Informant. Lagarde, Stéphane. ‘Canton L'Africaine: des footballeurs devenus hommes d’affaires,’ 6 October 2013. Radio France International. Available at: http://chine.blogs.rfi.fr/article/2013/10/06/canton-l-africaine-1-des-footballeurs-devenus-hommes-d-affaires

[Radio] Commentator. Lagarde, Stéphane. ‘La Petite Afrique de Canton,’ Radio France International, October 2013. Available at: https://soundcloud.com/st-phane-lagarde/la-petite-afrique-de-canton

[Report] Interview. Tejpe, Rhia. ‘The Africans making it big in China,’ Agence France Press AFP, 19 September 2013. Available at: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2013/09/19/africans-making-it-big-in-china/

Courses

Cross-Cultural Interchange and Urban Life

Thinking Like an Anthropologist

Cultural Policy and Community

Culture and the Modern World