Benjamin Chin-Hung Kao

Position title: Ph.D.

Pronouns: he/him/his


Pronoun(s): he/him/his

Advisor: Prof. Jenna Loyd


University of Wisconsin-Madison, MS in Geography

University of St Andrews, MA (Hons) in Social Anthropology and Sustainable Development


Video Games, Critical Human and Cultural Geographies, Modern Japanese History, Science and Technology Studies, Popular Culture Studies, Digital and Environmental Humanities, Human and More-Than-Human Relations, Sonic Imaginaries, Theories of Time-Space, Marginalized Spiritualities, Care Ethics


I am a Ph.D. student in Geography from Brazil and Taiwan who is interested in how popular culture terrains, such as video game worlds, can hone attentiveness to our socio-cultural milieu. My MS Thesis seeks to understand the how ideals of authentic Japanese nationhood are formulated in relation to the Japanese role-playing video game, Persona 4 Golden. Specifically I focus on the processes whereby misogyny and settler colonial imaginations are embedded within said ideals.


For my current research project, I plan on continuing work with/in video game worlds to deepen understandings of the sociocultural histories and contemporary experiences of marginalization in Japan. The overarching aim is to consider how video game worlds can, perhaps uniquely due to its simultaneity, facilitate a dialectic conversation between historicity and futurity in the ‘everyday’.


Kao, Benjamin C.H. and Nicole Cizauskas, 2022. Creativity and Digital Research Methodologies: A Conversation between Institutional and Anthropological Research. Ethnographic Encounters, Vol. 12, No. 1, 6-13.


Spring 2024 – Teaching Assistant, GEOG/INTL ST 311: The Global Game: Soccer, Politics, and Identity

Fall 2023 – Teaching Assistant, GEOG 139: Global Environmental Issues

Fall 2022 – Teaching Assistant, GEOG/INTL ST 311: The Global Game: Soccer, Politics, and Identity


2023-2024 – IAP Graduate and Professional Student Study Abroad Scholarship at University of Wisconsin-Madison, UW Study Abroad: International Academic Programs

2023-2024 – Trewartha Research Grant at University of Wisconsin-Madison, Geography Department

2022-2023 – University Fellowship at University of Wisconsin-Madison, Graduate School

2020-2021 – Laidlaw Undergraduate Research and Leadership Scholarship at Laidlaw Foundation