Jeremy A. Yellen is a historian of modern Japan who earned a Ph.D. in history from Harvard University in 2012. His research interests center on Japan’s political, diplomatic, and transnational history. Jeremy’s research projects grapple with the politics and transformative nature of modern war, and shed light on broader issues of empire, decolonization, international order, and war termination. His articles have appeared in such journals as Modern Asian Studies, the Journal of Contemporary History, The International History Review, The Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus, The Diplomat, and the Hong Kong Economic Journal. Since August 2014, he has been an assistant professor in the Department of Japanese Studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.
Jeremy’s first book, The Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere: When Total Empire Met Total War examines Japan’s ambitious wartime attempt to create a new order in East Asia. This book argues that, from 1940 to 1945, the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere epitomized two concurrent wars for Asia’s future: the first war was for a new type of empire in Asia, and the second was a political war, waged by nationalist elites in the colonial capitals of Rangoon and Manila. It tells the story of these two Asia-Pacific Wars by narrating two connected stories. First, it explores Japanese visions for empire and international order, and show how they were shaped, reshaped, and refined by the changing geopolitical situation in Asia. Second, this book reveals that Filipino and Burmese elites engaged in state-building efforts within the Co-Prosperity Sphere, and in the process attempted to use the Japanese Empire for anti-colonial ends. This book not only reveals the desires of Japan as an imperial and colonial power; it also depicts the ways in which the subdued colonies of Burma and the Philippines jockeyed for agency and a say in the future of the region.
The Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere will be published by Cornell University Press in April 2019.
Jeremy also maintains a strong interest in transnational history, East and Southeast Asian diplomatic history, history of US-Japan relations and contemporary Japanese politics and foreign policy.