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History | Faculty News

Dr. Barbara Traver’s Article Published in French Colonial History (16) Journal

“The Benefits of Their Liberty”: Race and the Eurafricans of Gorée in Eighteenth-Century French Guiana was published in the French Colonial History Journal, Vol. 16, 2016.  Dr. Traver is a 2011 PhD recipient and teaches at Washington State University Vancouver in Vancouver, Washington and at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon.  Her research interests focus on French Guiana and the French Atlantic colonial world in the late eighteenth century.

The abstract of the article can be viewed here.

Dr. Noriko Kawamura to give talk on her 2000 book in Chicago, Mar 7

“Turbulence in the Pacific: Japanese-U.S. Relations during World War I,” is Noriko Kawamura’s book that was published in 2000.  She will give a talk on March 7, 2017 at the Pritzker Military Museum and Library in Chicago, IL. Colonel Jennifer N. Pritzker and the United States World War One Centennial Commission sponsor the event, and Chicago Public Television will broadcast it later. It will become available through via streaming video and as an audio podcast through iTunes and Stitcher. See the announcement below.


W. Puck Brecher’s new book published by Harvard University Press

Associate Professor W. Puck Brecher of the Department of History had his latest book published:  “Honored and Dishonored Guests – Westerners in Wartime Japan” by Harvard University Press.

Brecher credits Nicholas, Patrick and Michael Frank who entrusted him with the family’s collection of journals, letters, memoirs, interviews, and photos from the war yeas and earlier.  Many others with personal ties to wartime Japan were also kind enough to furnish Brecher with their own unpublished or otherwise proprietary materials.

See the publisher’s web site here, for more information


Lawrence Hatter’s latest book published



The University of Virginia Press has published Dr. Lawrence Hatter’s book Citizens of Convenience: The Imperial Origins of American Nationhood on the U.S.-Canadian Border. Dr. Hatter’s book received the 2016 Walker Cowen Memorial Prize for ‘an outstanding work of scholarship in eighteenth-century studies.’

See more here.

Lawrence Hatter’s Standing Rock Sioux protest oped published

Lawrence HatterLawrence Hatter: “Stop dismissing Standing Rock Sioux as dupes” was published in Grand Forks Herald December 30.   Hatter states: “Sinister forces are at work in North Dakota. At least that was the claim of the state’s former lieutenant governor, whose paranoid fears were right out of the eighteenth century.  Taking a leaf from a political playbook as old as the American Republic, then-Lt. Gov. Drew Wrigley dismissed the Standing Rock Sioux opposition to the planned oil pipeline in that state as the work of ominous powers. ‘The Native Americans are being used, absolutely being used,’ Wrigley told reporters December 8, ‘by these outside agitators.'”  Read more in the online Grand Forks Herald.

Dr. Ashley Wright’s article published

Ashley Wright“Maintaining the Bar: Regulating European Barmaids in Colonial Calcutta and Rangoon” has been published in The Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History.

In 1902 the government of India banned the employment of European women as barmaids in Calcutta and Rangoon. This article examines this intervention, proceeding from the premise that a close look at this ban, and the women whose lives were affected by it, illuminates the entangled and at times contradictory ideas about gender, sexuality, mobility, labour and racial boundaries that characterised British imperial policy in India and Burma at the beginning of the twentieth century. This article argues that European barmaids, while seemingly marginal, in fact occupied a unique and important position within the British Empire, being at the heart of the recreational worlds of Calcutta and Rangoon.   Read more here.

Dr. Noriko Kawamura at the German Institute for Japanese Studies (DIJ)

Noriko KawamuraDr. Kawamura, of the Department of History, WSU, will give an invited talk at the last session of the DIJ History and Humanities Study Group in 2016: Thursday, December 8 in Tokyo, Japan.

Emperor Hirohito from the Pacific War to the Cold War.

Emperor Showa, better known in the English-speaking world as Emperor Hirohito, has been one of the most controversial figures in the history of the Pacific War. He was both sovereign of the state and commander in chief of the Japanese imperial forces; but above all, he was the manifestation of divinity and a symbol of the national and cultural identity of Japan. Yet under the Allied occupation the emperor was spared from the Tokyo war crimes trial and continued to reign in postwar Japan until his death in 1989 as “the symbol of the state and of the unity of the people” under the new democratic constitution written by the U.S. occupiers.

This talk will examine the extraordinary transformation of Emperor Hirohito from a divine monarch during the Pacific War to a humanized symbolic monarch supposedly with no political power during the occupation years (1945-1952). The talk will focus on the paradoxical role Emperor Hirohito played at home and abroad as tension between the United States and the Soviet Union escalated into the Cold War in East Asia.

Kawamura suggests that underneath the stereotypical portrayal of Emperor Hirohito as a passive but shrewd survivor/collaborator of the U.S. occupiers, he acted as a major player in U.S.-Japanese diplomatic negotiations behind closed doors and participated in the shaping of Japan’s domestic and national security policies. The talk will explore possible reasons behind the emperor’s actions.

Pearl Harbor legacy examined

sun-raymondAssociate Professor Raymond Sun writes Pearl Harbor article that was published in the Spokesman Review Dr. Sun states: “The passage of the World War II generation is certainly cause for reflection – sorrow mixed with appreciation for its remarkable accomplishments. At the same time, the loss of our living connection to the attack on Pearl Harbor provides an opportunity to revisit the lessons and legacies we draw from this defining event in United States, and indeed world, history. By doing so, we might become more aware of the selective remembrance and forgetfulness that have characterized our common memory of Pearl Harbor, and fashion a more complex, but also more honest and helpful, historical legacy to root and guide us in facing our challenging 21st Century world.”


Dr. Jennifer Thigpen researches America’s foreign mission movement

Jennifer ThigpenNew research by Jennifer Thigpen, associate professor of history and an expert on America’s foreign mission movement, demonstrates that, as American Protestant missionaries and their wives labored to bring Christianity to the region’s native inhabitants in the early nineteenth century, they also carefully built networks across a complex set of competing local, national and international interests.  “Going Out to the World: The American Foreign Mission Movement in the Global West” is the tentative title of her new book-length project.  Read more about Dr. Thigpen’s research.

Washington State University