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Grad Students

Kelly Midori Mccormick

Contact Information

Email    kelly.midorim@gmail.com
Office  Not Available

Field of Study



Modern Japan; History of photography, technology, gender, consumer culture, and design


Kelly McCormick is a Ph.D. Candidate in modern Japanese history whose research focuses on the intersection of visual and material culture through the lens of the Japanese camera. Through analysis of the mass press, materials from corporate and government archives, and in-depth interviews with photographers and designers she is developing a picture of how discourses on gendered applications of photography, the professionalization of women, economic recovery, and national identity were deeply tied to the domestic and international success of the Japanese camera. Her dissertation shows how the symbolic and material meanings fixed into the camera by those who produced and used it are the key to understanding postwar Japanese discourses around the technology of photography and consumer culture and the international meanings of the mass practice of photography. Before coming to UCLA, she completed an M.A. in East Asian Languages and Cultures at Columbia University (2012) and received her B.A. from UC Santa Cruz (2008). Kelly has lived in Kagoshima, Osaka, Hakodate, Yokohama, and Tokyo, Japan.


"Ogawa Kazumasa and the Halftone Photograph: Japanese War Albums at the Turn of the Twentieth Century," Trans-Asia Photography Review, Vol. 8, No. 1, Spring 2017. 

Grants and Awards

 2017- 2018 UCLA Mellon Excellence in Pedagogy and Innovative Classrooms Fellow

2018 Peter E. Palmquist Memorial Fund for Historical Photographic Research Grant

2017 National Science Foundation Travel Grant                           

2017 Society for the History of Technology Travel Grant                                                    

2016 Japan Art History Forum Travel Grant                                                                              

2016-2017 U.S. Fulbright IIE Graduate Student Research Fellow

2016-2017 Japan Foundation Dissertation Research Fellowship (declined for Fulbright)

2016-2017 Social Sciences Research Council Dissertation Research Fellowship (declined for Fulbright)

2016 UC Global Health Institute Center of Expertise on Women’s Health & Empowerment Student Research Grant

2015-2016 UCLA Art History Edward A. Dickson Fellow

2014-2015 Blakemore Freeman Japanese Laguage Fellow

2014 UCLA Terasaki Center Sasakawa Fellowship

2014 UCLA Architecture & Design Media Award for Outstanding Contributions in Published Media in the Field of Urban Humanities

2014 UCLA Terasaki Center Aratani Field Fellowship

2013-2014 UCLA Graduate Student Research Mentorship Fellowship

2013 UCLA Terasaki Center Sasakawa Language Fellowship

2013 UCLA Department of History Turovsky Fellow

2013 UCLA Department of History Travel Grant

Conference Presentations

April 2018, Organization of American Historians Annual Meeting, “Female Professor: Reconsidering the Hazards of the Woman Historian in Academia: A Roundtable”

March 2018, UC Berkeley 2018 Dissertation Workshop on Gender and Sexuality in Japan, “The History of Japanese Photography’s Forgotten Stories of Technology and Gender”

January 2018, The D. Kim Foundation for the History of Science and Technology in East Asia Workshop, “From the Camera at War to Postwar Techno-Anxieties Over the Rise of the Female Photographer”

November 2017, UCLA Terasaki Center Conference for Japan Studies Graduate Student Conference, “’The cameraman in a skirt’: Gender Politics in Postwar Photography”

October 2017, Society for the History of Technology Annual Meeting, “Now, Even Women Can Take Pictures”: Writing a Cultural Biography of the Postwar Japanese Camera”

September 2017 15th International Conference of the European Association for Japanese Studies, Lisbon, Portugal “Rethinking ‘Made in Japan’: Design, Photography, and Nationalism in Postwar Japan”

March 2017 History of Consumer Culture Conference, Tokyo “My Sister is Making the World’s Cameras: Depictions of Female Producers and Users of Cameras in Postwar Japan”

February 2017 College Art Association Annual Conference, New York City “The Japanese Camera on Display: History through the Lens of  Nikon”

October 2016 52nd Congress of Business History Society of Japan, Tokyo “Visualizing the Myths of Corporate Japan: Takeshi Mitarai’s Utopian Ethics at Canon Camera”

June 2016 Trans-Pacific Symposium, "Life in Postwar Japan through the Lens of the Japanese Camera"

March 2014 Getty Research Institute Consortium Workshop "The Material of Memory: Nineteenth Century Photographic Albums & Images of Conflict in Asia"

February 2014 Columbia University Conference on East Asia Ina Nobuo For Historians: Telling History Through Photographs”

February 2013   Columbia University Conference on East Asia  “Nuclear Trauma: The Photographs of Tōmatsu Shōmei and Domon Ken in Hiroshima-Nagasaki Document 1961”

August 2012   Japan Foundation International Center Osaka, Japan “New Photography in Postwar Japan”

February 2012   Columbia University Conference on East Asia “Imaging Hokkaido Through Photographs and Maps”


William Marotti (History, UCLA)
Vanessa Schwartz (History & Art History USC)
Katsuya Hirano (History, UCLA)
Bert Winther-Tamaki (Art History, UCI)
Andrea Goldman (History, UCLA)


Ph.D. History, University of California Los Angeles 2012 -- Current
M.A. History, University of California Los Angeles 2016
M.A. East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia University 2012
B.A. History & Studio Art, University of California Santa Cruz 2008