SOAS University of London

Japan Research Centre

BAJS Workshop: Meiji Japan in Global History


Date: 8 September 2017Time: 10:00 AM

Finishes: 8 September 2017Time: 5:00 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: 116

Type of Event: Workshop


Registration is highly recommend as that the articles will be distributed in advance to enable informed discussion and commentary.

Booking essential. Please register here


The 2017 BAJS Workshop ‘Meiji Japan in Global History’ will feature intensive critical discussion of the six pre-circulated essays on Meiji Japan during which the authors and audience members explore in greater depth topics presented by the collected essays.

The workshop will begin with the idea that Meiji signifies a moment of global connectivity and asks how this twenty-first century starting point stimulates new questions and offers ways to re-conceptualize Japanese engagement with the late nineteenth century/early twentieth century world. Moreover, it asks what obstacles remain—including the nation-state itself and the imperialism in which its formation was embedded—and how they might help us distinguish our views from those our sources provide.

Contributors include scholars from Europe, the United States, and East Asia who are engaged in thinking about Meiji in global perspective. This unique group of junior and senior scholars offer insight into a diverse range of topics detailed below. Participant biographies can be read here.

The workshop is open to the UK and EU scholarly communities, and focuses on developing each article for publication. Articles will be completed in advance of the workshop and distribute to all participants, and registered members of the gallery audience, in order to best facilitate critical, constructive discussions.

Only invited papers will be presented and discussed, but the workshop is open to any interested member of the scholarly community interested in attending the workshop.  


  • Catherine L Phipps (University of Memphis) 
  • Christopher Gerteis (SOAS University of London)


Morning Session: 10:00-13:00,  Room 116, First Floor, Main Building, SOAS

Chair and Comment:
Janet E Hunter, London School of Economic & Political Science

Meiji Japan as a Mission Field for Middle Eastern Muslims
Ulrich Brandenburg, University of Zurich  

Seeking for Medical Education in Meiji Japan: Overseas Japanese Female Students and the American Medical Missions
Hiro Fujimoto, Harvard-Yenching Institute and The University of Tokyo

From Whales to Wars: Tracking a Meiji-era Reporter around the Globe
Catherine Phipps, University of Memphis.

Lunch: 13:00-14:00

Afternoon Session: 14:00-17:00  Room  116, First Floor, Main Building, SOAS

Chair and Comment:
Barak Kushner (Cambridge University)

Excluding the Chinese, Bounding the Nation: The Role of China in Meiji Japan's Quest for Modern Statehood
Eric Han, College of William and Mary

Meiji Restoration Vacation: Historical Tourism in Contemporary Kyoto
Jennifer Prough, Valparaiso University

Smithian Rhetoric, Listian Practice? The Matsukata 'Retrenchment,' 1881-1885
Steven Ericson, Dartmouth College

 Hosted by the SOAS Japan Research Centre and sponsored by The Japan Foundation

Organiser: SOAS Japan Research Centre & British Assocation for Japan Studies

Contact email:

Contact Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4893

Sponsor: The Japan Foundation