She was born in Pusan, Korea during the Korean War. Her family eventually moved to the United States and settled in California. She received her B.A. and M.A. in Comparative Literature and an M.F.A.from the University of California, Berkeley. After leaving university, she moved to Paris where she studied filmmaking and critical theory before returning to the Bay Area as a filmmaker and performance artist. Cha's interdisciplinary background is clearly evident in Dictee which experiments with juxtaposition and hypertext of both print and visual media.
Cha was murdered by a stranger in New York City a week after the publication of Dictee.
- Dictee - 1982
- "The Dream of the Audience: Theresa Hak Kyung Cha (1951–1982)" Exhibition Review
- Voices From the Gaps biography
- Theresa Hak Kyung Cha: Bronx Museum of the Arts - Reviews: New York
- Theresa Hak Kyung Cha at SF Cinematheque: To See, Empty
- UC Berkeley Pacific Film Archive