About/Research Interests

My name is Miya Tokumitsu. I am currently a lecturer in art history at the University of Melbourne. I write about things cultural for academic and non-academic audiences. In addition to academic outlets, my work has appeared in New Republic, Jacobin, and Slate. I currently serve as a contributing editor at Jacobin.

I earned my PhD in the History of Art from the University of Pennsylvania in 2012. My primary academic area of interest is early modern art in Northern Europe, particularly sculpture and print media.

My non-academic publications cover everything from the Metropolitan Museum’s Alexander McQueen retrospective to that seemingly innocuous work mantra, “do what you love.”

I have made a few media appearances, listed below:

The Sunday Edition, CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corp.). Interview with host Michael Enright about my Jacobin article, “In the Name of Love” (Jun. 1, 2014).

Business Matters, BBC: On-air guest appearance discussing the day’s news events and “In the Name of Love” with host Jonathan Bithrey and fellow guest Claus Pearce (Feb. 21, 2014).

The Takeaway, NPR: “Who Really Gets to Do What They Love?” Interview with John Hockenberry about my Jacobin article, “In the Name of Love” (Jan. 24, 2014).

Thanks for stopping by.


8 Responses to About/Research Interests

  1. nina gerzon says:

    “In the Name of Love” is such an appreciated writing! Thank you for articulating what I have been afraid and too uneducated to voice, but notice and feel ❤

  2. Nema Toda says:

    You ought to respond to article posted by Katherine Moss on the CHE’s Vitae page. She refers, in a very disparaging–and to my mind–unfair way to your recent post on the “do what you love” mantra. I posted my own views, but you should start a dialogue with the author.

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  4. Phil Hyde says:

    hi Miya, I’m a linguist also stretching my specialty to do something more important, in my case, economic design and news comments on timesizing dot org – I want to feature your article “What The Fight Against Overwork Overlooks” but I need a dateline and I’m having a hard time finding your homebase for my dateline. It would help if you started your “About” page with “My name is Miya Tokumitsu. I live in _____.” eg: NYC, LA, Edo, Oshkosh, wherever. I don’t know why webalizers think they need to hide their location. Full disclosure: I’m from Toronto, currently living in Boston, and midmonth in Gatineau across from Ottawa. Glad you’re questioning prevailing wisdom. My own fave is along the lines of “if you’re so smart, why ARE you rich?!” The superwealthy spend, donate and now even INVEST so little of their trillions (they’re keeping more and more in cash) that they are starving and stifling the real economy outside the financial sector, and destabilizing the financial sector too; in short, the rich CAUSE recession oops sorry badword, “slow recovery”!
    Your article is pushing the word Culture from the realm of art etc. closer to ‘corporate culture’ and economic class=taxbracket etc. I like the words you come up with: humblebrag, trope, valorize…, the alliterations: popular trope of passionate professionals…, the citations: Ashton, Olga, Jazeera, Marissa (check out Juliet Schor, her 1992 “Overworked American”!)…, and the fact that you got a mention of shortening the workweek as a means to reduce unemployment right into your second paragraph (“Go, girl!!”). That takes chutzpa considering what Hollande is doing to France’s 35-hour workweek these days and the zombie-like repeated resurrections of the sneering sophistry known as the Lump of Labor Fallacy. I disagree with your headline point that overwork can be lahdeedah opted out of – cuz the examples of shorter hours are newsworthily rare. The culture of whatever the employer commands oops requests is hardwired in any period when the “playing field” of The Market is unlevel in favor of employers (jobs=scarce) and against employees (jobseekers=aplenty). And once the postwar babyboomers grew up and replaced the jobseeker surplus of the Depression in the 1970s, we were right back to wage&spending-depressing labor surplus without the historic ‘benefit’ of war or plague to restore that magic wage&spending-boosting labor scarcity, employment surplus – at least as seen by employers (everyone else sees a prosperity-yielding balance). Enuf allreddy – I do drone on! Blessings on yer haid. Keep up the good work! -PH3

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  6. Andrea says:

    Are you as an editor really doing what you love? Do you believe DWYL is setting our children up for failure? Realistically not many of us actually do what we love. We do what we have to do to get by. So in fact isn’t saying follow your dreams the same thing?

  7. Gene Biringer says:

    I just read your excellent op-ed piece in The New York Times today. Thank you for such a lucid and eye-opening exploration of the broader ramifications of what has happened at Thinx.

  8. Stephen Japhe says:

    Interestingly, after your article appeared on the NY Times, Mar. 24, another article appeared subsequently about an outdoor products company started 107 years ago in Washington State ( USA ) called REI ( Recreational Equipment. Inc. ) which belies the entire premise of your postulation, that “capitalism and social justice don’t mix”. Perhaps you saw it?

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