Jungwon joined the University of Northern Colorado faculty as an Assistant Professor of Spanish in 2008. His interest in the comparative study of Latin America and Korea led him to explore the Hispanic world. After completing both a B.A. and an M.A. in Hispanic Languages and Literatures at Seoul National University, he came to the United States to pursue his Ph.D. at the University of Pittsburgh.
As a graduate student, Jungwon traveled to Argentina, Ecuador, Costa Rica, and Mexico. Finally the social conflicts and cultural dynamics of the U.S.-Mexico border led him to focus on border culture and narratives within a globalized context. He carried out field research in the Tijuana-San Diego zone in 2006-2007 under the auspices of El Colegio de la Frontera Norte.
His dissertation, “Imaginar sin frontera: visiones errantes de nación y cosmopolitismo desde la periferia,” revisits the U.S.-Mexico borderlands to examine their neoliberal transformation, a transformation that has been intensified by globalization. Breaking with the predominant postmodern interpretation, his project explores the heterogeneous realities and peripheral experiences in relation to the crisis of two major concepts regarding the idea of community: “cosmopolitanism” and “nation.” Within this framework, it analyzes novels and films that deal with migratory labor and border crossing, popular border saints, the narco-world and “bare life,” femicide in Ciudad Juárez, and maquiladora workers.
His research and teaching interests include Border Studies, Chicano/a Literature, Mexican Literature, popular culture and film, and critical theories as well as Trans-pacific/Global South projects.
- "Comunidad sin comunidad: migración, nostalgia y deseo comunitario en Luis Humberto Crosthwaite." Chasqui. ISSN 0145-8973, 40.1, 2011. (forthcoming)
- “Sujeto popular entre el bien y el mal: imágenes dialécticas de Jesús Malverde.” CiberLetras. Journal of Literary Criticism and Culture. ISSN 1523-1720, Vol. 17, July 2007.
- “Fantasmas y memorias en la travesía cosmopolita: el cuerpo de los indocumentados centroamericanos en De Nadie.” Osamayor, 18, Pittsburgh, 2007. Pgs. 83-91.
- “El anacronismo del don y su ética. Diarios de Campana de José Martí.” La Jornada Literaria, IX, 1. Rutgers University, 2006. Pgs. 127-39.
- "Alejandro Lugo's Fragmented Lives, Assembled Parts: Culture, Capitalism and Conquest at the U.S.-Mexico Border and Kathleen Staudt's Violence and Activism at the Border: Gender, Fear, and Everyday Life in Ciudad Juárez." Revista Iberoamericana. No. 227, 2009.
- “Chicana Intervention in the the Juárez Murders: Alicia Gáspar de Alba’s Desert Blood and Stella Pope Duarte’s If I Die in Juárez.” Confluencia: revista hispánica de cultura y literatura. Volume 24:1, Spring 2009.
- “Introduction to the Latin American Postcolonial Study: Enrique Dussel’s 1492, El encubrimiento del otro.” Webzine TransLatin: SNU Institute of Latin American Studies, No. 4, November 2008. (In Korean)
- Contemporary Chicano Literature (Spring 2010)
- Intermediate Spanish I (Spring 2010)
- Masterpieces in Chicano/a Literature (Spring 2010)