Tao Goffe


Assistant Professor and Faculty Fellow of Social and Cultural Analysis, New York University

Tao Leigh Goffe is Assistant Professor and Faculty Fellow of Social and Cultural Analysis at New York University. Goffe joined the NYU faculty in 2016, prior to which she held a postdoctoral fellowship at Princeton University and was a lecturer at Hunter College, CUNY.

Born in London and raised between the UK and US, she is an interdisciplinary scholar and cultural critic specializing in the literatures and vernaculars that emerge from histories of imperialism, migration, and globalization. She works at the intersections of Black Atlantic, Asian American, and Caribbean culture. From the Afromodernism of reggae soundsystems to the orientalism of Hollywood’s yellowface cinema, Goffe tackles the scripting of race and sexuality in American media and performance. Her research is preoccupied with how the history of abolition, indenture, and decolonization frame the transpacific and transatlantic entanglements of African and Asian diasporas.

Her book manuscript “Enmeshed Intimacies: Sensing Afro-Asia in the Atlantic” assembles a sensate archive of recipes, playlists, and photo albums to trace the mysterious figure of the “coolie gal.” She is coediting a special issue on Caribbean runways and runaways that maps fashioning, fugitvity, beauty pageantry, and flight in the shaping of modern womanhood. Goffe’s writing is featured in Small Axe salon, Transforming Anthropology, and Anthurium among other journals. She is the recipient of fellowships through which she has undertaken archival research in London, Shanghai, and Kingston.

In addition to her academic work, she is a DJ.