The Subject and the Partner in Malaysia: A Discussion with Fiona Lee


For the next five weeks, SSEAC Stories will be hosting a mini-series of podcasts on research partnerships in Southeast Asia. In the context of COVID-19, it has become clear that working in partnership is a critical part of being able to do research in Southeast Asia. Through interviews with University of Sydney academics working across all disciplines and at all stages in their careers, this mini-series will highlight strategies that our members have used to build and sustain partnerships with collaborators in Southeast Asia.

For our fourth episode in this mini-series, Dr Thushara Dibley speaks with Dr Fiona Lee about a unique research project she's been managing on cultural archives in Malaysia, where her research partner is also the subject of her research.

In the podcast, Fiona mentioned that the ad was published in the mid-20th century; however, the correct date is 1934, as can be seen on the Malaysia Design Archive website:

Dr Fiona Lee is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Sydney. She researches and teaches in the fields of postcolonial studies, 20th and 21st-century literature, and cultural studies. Her research explores the history of decolonisation and the Cold War in Southeast Asia, with a particular interest in Malaysia and Singapore, through the prisms of literature and the arts. She earned her PhD in English and a Women’s Studies Certificate at The Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY) in 2014. At CUNY, she taught literature and writing courses, as well as participated in various digital teaching and learning initiatives. From 2014-2016, she held a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Cultural Studies at the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore.

For more information or to browse additional resources, visit the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre’s website:

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