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A/Prof. Sue Chen



Associate Professor, Writing and Literature


Faculty of Arts and Education


School of Comm & Creative Arts


Melbourne Burwood Campus


GCHE Exempt, Deakin University, 2014
Doctor of Philosophy, Australian National University, 2009



Shih-Wen Sue Chen received her PhD in Literature, Screen and Theatre Studies from The Australian National University (ANU). Sue was previously a post-doctoral fellow at the Australian Centre on China in the World, ANU, Adjunct Assistant Professor in Tamkang University, Taiwan and has also lectured in National Tsing Hua University (NTHU), Taiwan. She has extensive experience in teaching literary studies and children’s literature to university students from diverse language and cultural backgrounds, having taught at the ANU, University of Canberra, NTHU, Tamkang, and the University of British Columbia (Canada). She is particularly interested in using online technology for teaching and received a grant to create an e-learning website titled “Happily Ever After: Creative Fairy tales and English Learning” which promoted creative thinking, writing and teaching through the exploration of traditional and fractured fairy tales from different countries.

She is the author of Representations of China in British Children’s Fiction, 1851-1911 (Ashgate, 2013). Her work has been published in edited books as well as in Children’s Literature in Education, Papers: Explorations into Children’s Literature, and Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies. Her research interests include Victorian and Edwardian children’s literature, Chinese children’s literature, book history, histories of reading, and publishing history.

Read more on Sue's profile

Research interests

children's literature, childhood studies, Victorian literature, book history, print culture


Member of:

• International Research Society for Children’s Literature
• Australasian Children’s Literature Association for Research (Elected Board Member 2016-2018)
• Chinese Studies Association of Australia

Units taught

ALL 153 - Literature for Children and Young Adults

ALL 154 - Power Politics And Texts For Young People

ALL 350 - Travelling Ideas and Transnational Children's Literature

Knowledge areas

Victorian and Edwardian Children's Literature

Chinese Children's Literature

Young Adult Fiction

Book History


Recent conference presentations

• ‘The Child’s Paper and the Nineteenth Century Transnational Flow of Print Culture’, ‘Shifting Landscapes: Diversity, Text and Young People’: Australasian Children’s Literature Association for Research conference, Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga,13-15 July 2016.

• “The King of Formosa”: Fictionalizing Koxinga in William Dalton’s The War Tiger (1858), Forgotten Books and Cultural Memory Conference, Taipei University of Technology, Taiwan, 27-28 May 2016.

• ‘Visual Representations of Chinese Childhood in the Xiaohai yuebao (1875-1915) and Mengxue bao (1897-1903)’, Conference on Childhood and Visual Texts in/of Asia, Taipei University of Education, Taipei, Taiwan, 14 November 2015.

• ‘Representations of China in Australian and British Children’s Fiction, 1890-1910’, Contested Histories and the Politics of Memory: 3rd Foundation for Australian Studies in China (FASIC) Conference, East China Normal University, Shanghai, China, 22-25 October 2015.

• ‘Chinese Childhood in the Mengxue bao (The Children’s Educator, 1897-1906)’, Creating Childhoods: IRSCL 22nd Biennial Congress, University of Worcester, UK, 9-12 August 2015.

• ‘Chih-Yuan Chen’s Picture Books: Hybridity, Nostalgia and Translation’, Taiwan: The View from the South Conference, Australian Centre on China in the World, Australian National University, 6-9 January 2015.

• ‘“We have many a good cry’: The role of affect in early 20th century missionary recitations’, Emotional control: 2014 Australasian Children’s Literature Association for Research conference, Deakin University, Australia, 30 June – 2 July 2014.

• ‘To favourably impress the Oriental mind with western knowledge’: Xiaohai yuebao (The Child’s Paper), missionaries, and the circulation of ideas, 1875-1915, Reading Communities and the Circulation of Print conference, Australian National University, 22-24 April 2014.

• ‘China through a Child’s Eyes: George Thomas Staunton’s Journal of a Voyage to China (1792-94)’, Romantic China: Cultural Relations between China and the West in the Later Qing Period colloquium, University of Sydney, University of Sydney, Australia, 25-26 Nov 2013.

• ‘“Time for Taiwan”: Tourism, Media, and Soft Power’, Chinese Soft Power and Culture: Between Complicity and Independence workshop, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand, 20 Nov 2013.

• ‘Reading Practices in the 1980s and the “Book Series Fever”’, China’s Transformations in the 1970s and 1980s, International Workshop at the University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany. 26-27 July 2013.

• ‘Journeys in Chinese Cyberspace: Baozuomanhua (Rage Comics), Internet Humour, and Everyday Life’, Chinese Studies Association of Australia - 13th Biennial Conference, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Australia. 9-11 July 2013.

• ‘“Crazy Thirst for Knowledge”: Chinese Readers and the 1980s “Book Series Fever”’, Researching the Reading Experience, Høgskolen i Oslo og Akershus, Oslo, Norway. 11-12 June 2013.

• ‘Exploring Individual Aspirations through Self-Help Books of the 1980s’, I Want to Fly High: Chinese Aspirations in the 1980s Workshop, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia. 18-19 Feb 2013.


• International Research Society for Children’s Literature Research Award (2015)

• Australian National University PhD Graduate School Scholarship (2006-2009)
• University of Canberra Chancellor’s Commendation Award (2003)
• University of British Columbia St. John’s College Sir Quo-Wei Lee Fellowship (2000-2001)
• University of British Columbia Faculty of Graduate Studies International Graduate Tuition Scholarship (2000-2001)
• Rotary Foundation Ambassadorial Scholarship (1999-2000)


• National Library of Australia Fellowship (2017)

• Deakin University Central Research Grant (2016)

• Deakin University Faculty of Arts and Education Fieldwork Grant (2015)

• Deakin University Faculty of Arts and Education Conference Support Grant (2014, 2015)

• Post-doctoral Research Fellowship, Australian National University (2011-2014)

• Australian National University Research School of Asia & the Pacific Travel Grant for Early and Mid-Career Researchers (2013)

• Australian National University Vice-Chancellor’s Travel Grant for Conference Attendance (2008)

• Schmidt and Altholz Travel Award presented by the Research Society for Victorian Periodicals (2008)

• Taiwan Ministry of Education Grant: “Happily Ever After”: Creative Fairytales and English Learning (Principal Investigator) (2004-2005)

• Taiwan Ministry of Education Grant: Improving University-level Reading and Writing Proficiencies in Chinese and English in an Information Age (Co-investigator) (2003-2006)


Filter by


Contemporary Asian Book Publishing

Shih-Wen Chen

(2023), pp. 454-466, The Routledge Companion to Children's Literature and Culture, London, Eng., B1

book chapter

Ageing and Childhood: Dementia in Chinese-Language Picturebooks

Shih-Wen Chen

(2023), Vol. 16, pp. 30-43, International Research in Children's Literature, C1

journal article

Economic Hardship in Taiwanese Picturebooks

S Chen

(2023), Vol. 61, pp. 49-57, Bookbird: Journal of International Children's Literature, Baltimore, Md, C1

journal article

Dreams of Success: Young People, Agency, Values, and Citizenship in Asia

Sue Chen, Sin Lau

(2022), pp. 1-1, Representations of Children and Success in Asia: Dream Chasers, New York, N.Y., B1

book chapter

Disappearing Girls: Gendered Success and the Reproduction of the Singapore Family in Jack Neo's Films

Sue Chen, Sin Lau

(2022), pp. 98-110, Representations of Children and Success in Asia: Dream Chasers, London, Eng., B1

book chapter

Public Health, Polio, and Pandemics: Fear and Anxiety about Health in Children's Literature

K Moruzi, S Chen, P Venzo

(2022), Vol. 53, pp. 97-111, Children's Literature in Education, C1

journal article

Representations of children and success in Asia: Dream chasers

S Chen, S Lau

(2022), A7

edited book

Representations of 'China' in Britain

C Wang, G Wielander, Sue Chen, F Shi, A Witchard, T Thorniley

(2021), pp. 65-83, Cultural China 2020: The Contemporary China Centre Review., London, Eng., B1

book chapter

Good Chinese Girls and the Model Minority: Race, Education, and Community in Girl in Translation and Front Desk

S Chen, S Lau

(2021), Vol. 52, pp. 291-306, Children's Literature in Education, C1

journal article

From nation builders to global connectors: children and China's BRI propaganda

S Chen, S Lau

(2021), Vol. 35, pp. 1-11, Continuum, C1

journal article

The New Chinese Individual: Confronting the Divided Self in Ne Zha: Birth of the Demon Child

S Chen, S Lau

(2021), Vol. 45, pp. 674-689, Asian Studies Review, C1

journal article

Children's literature and transnational knowledge in modern China: education, religion, and childhood

Shih Chen

(2019), Singapore, A1


Children's voices in the Boy's Own Paper and the Girl's Own Paper, 1880-1900

Shih Chen, Kristine Moruzi

(2019), pp. 29-52, Children’s voices from the past: new historical and interdisciplinary perspectives, Cham, Switzerland, B1

book chapter

Translation and word-picture relationships in Chih-Yuan Chen's picturebooks

S Chen

(2019), Vol. 12, pp. 179-194, International Research in Children's Literature, Edinburgh, Scotland, C1

journal article

"We are all useful people": useful children and the notion of Guai in transnational Chinese cinema

S Chen, S Lau, L Chang

(2018), pp. 409-430, The child in world cinema, Lanham, Md., B1

book chapter

'Be careful!': child safety and empowerment in the legend of Korra

S Chen, B Crawford

(2018), pp. 241-259, Children, youth, and American television, New York, N.Y., B1

book chapter

Sight, blindness and identity in Gene Luen Yang's American born Chinese and boxers & saints

S Chen

(2018), pp. 218-230, Teens and the new religious landscape : essays on contemporary young adult fiction, Jefferson, N.C., B1

book chapter

Children's agency and the notion of Guai in Chinese reality television

S Chen, Sin Lau

(2018), pp. 205-230, Representing agency in popular culture : children and youth on page, screen, and in between, Lanham, Ma., B1

book chapter

"Be careful!": Child Safety and Empowerment in The Legend of Korra

B Crawford, S Chen

(2018), pp. 214-259, Children, Youth, and American Television, London, Eng., B1

book chapter

Children, learning and play in the Mengxue bao (the Children's Educator, 1897-1902)

S Sue Chen

(2018), Vol. 11, pp. 1-16, International Research in Children's Literature, C1

journal article

'"Crazy thirst for knowledge": Chinese readers and the 1980s "book series fever"'

S Chen

(2016), pp. 349-365, Plotting the reading experience: theory, practice, politics, Ontario, Canada, B1

book chapter

Post-socialist femininity unleashed/restrained: reconfigurations of gender in Chinese television dramas

S Chen, S Lau

(2016), Vol. 19, M/C journal, Brisbane, Qld., C1

journal article

Give, give; be always giving': Children, Charity and China, 1890-1939

Shih-Wen Chen


journal article

"To write for children, and to write well": protestant mission presses and the development of children's literature in late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century China

S Chen

(2016), Vol. 39, pp. 1-20, Barnboken – journal of children's literature research, Stockholm, Sweden, C1

journal article

Adventure and detection in Charles Gilson's fiction, 1907-1934

S Chen

(2015), Vol. 46, pp. 53-69, Children's literature in education, Berlin, Germany, C1

journal article

Paradoxical performances: cruel constraints and Christian emancipation in 19-20th century missionary representations of Chinese women and girls

S Chen

(2014), pp. 347-366, Divine Domesticities: Christian Paradoxes in Asia and the Pacific, Canberra, A. C. T., B1-1

book chapter

Baozou manhua (rage comics), internet humour and everyday life

S Chen

(2014), Vol. 28, pp. 690-708, Continuum: journal of media and cultural studies, London, Eng., C1

journal article

'To favourably impress the oreintal mind with western knowledge': Xiaohai yuebao (The Child's Paper, 1817-1915) and international print culture

S Chen

(2014), Vol. 29, pp. 59-73, Australian literary studies, Wollongong, N.S.W., C1-1

journal article

Representations of China in British children's fiction, 1851-1911

S Chen

(2013), Farnham, Surrey, A1-1


"In Far Cathay": Representations of China in The Boy's Own Paper, 1879-1914

S Chen

(2013), Vol. 44, pp. 156-173, Children's Literature in Education, Amsterdam, Netherlands, C1-1

journal article

China in a book: Victorian representations of the 'celestial kingdom' in William Dalton's 'The wolf boy of China'

S Chen

(2011), Vol. 21, pp. 1-18, Papers: explorations into children's literature, Melbourne, Vic., C1-1

journal article

Funded Projects at Deakin

Other Public Sector Funding

Children's Literature and Print Culture in Late Qing and Early Republican China, c. 1875-1915

A/Prof Sue Chen

National Library of Australia

  • 2017: $20,400

Industry and Other Funding

"Preparing the Child for Science": Victorian Children's Periodicals and Scientific Literacy.

A/Prof Sue Chen

Research Society for Victorian Periodicals Curran Fellowship

  • 2022: $7,018

Science and Chinese Children's Literature in Modern China

A/Prof Sue Chen

Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange

  • 2024: $15,328
  • 2023: $15,927


Executive Supervisor

Caitlin Kavanagh-Ryan

Thesis entitled: Crip Worldbuilding: Representing Disability in Young Adult Speculative Fiction

Doctor of Philosophy, School of Communication and Creative Arts


Sophie (Zozie) Brown

Thesis entitled: Malfunctioning Bots: Posthuman Identities in Young Adult Literature

Doctor of Philosophy, School of Communication and Creative Arts

Associate Supervisor

Cecilia Yubuko Rogers

Thesis entitled: Dark Topographies: Young Adult Gothic Fiction and the Natural World

Doctor of Philosophy, School of Communication and Creative Arts