"Cuteness does matter. It carries important social and ideological consequences."


Ngai, N. (2022). Sugar and Spice (and Everything Nice?): Japan’s Ambition Behind Lolita’s Kawaii Aesthetics. Media, Culture & Society.

Ngai, N. (2022). The Temptation of Performing Cuteness: Shirley Temple’s Birthday Parties during the Great Depression. Feminist Media Studies.

*Winner of 2022 The Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) Entertainment Studies Interest Group Top Student Paper Award and Anne Cooper-Chen Research Award.

Ngai, N. (2022). Women Under Authoritarianism: Precarious, Glamorous Women Politicians in Hong Kong Political News and Gossip. International Journal of Communication.

Ngai, N. (2022). Homemade Pet Celebrities: The Everyday Experience of Micro-celebrity in Promoting the Self and Others. Celebrity Studies.

*Winner of 2022 Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS) Fan and Audiences Studies Graduate Student Paper Award


Ngai, T.L. (2021). The Mother of a Famous Child: The Media Representation of Shirley Temple’s “Mother” in Hollywood, 1934–1940. In: S. Liddy and A. O’Brien (eds.), Media Work, Mothers and Motherhood, pp.63-76. London: Routledge.

*Winner of 2022 The British Association of Film, Television and Screen Studies (BAFTSS) Best Essay by a Doctoral Student Award

The jury's comment: "A detailed and knowledgable approach to the study of Shirley Temple, this essay makes a valuable contribution to the fields of motherhood and star studies. It is a unique piece of work within the crowded field of star studies in the classical Hollywood period, drawing from both newspapers and fan magazines, as well as biographical materials."


Ngai, T.L. (2020). Cuteness is Everywhere. Cultural Studies. September 2020.

Ngai, T.L. (2020). Why Does Cuteness Matter? A Review of The Power of Cute. Critical Studies in Media Communication 37(3):270-272.