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Historisches Seminar

Martin Dusinberre

Martin Dusinberre, Prof. Dr.

  • Office KO2 F 167
+41 (0)44 634 38 63

Areas of research

Much of my work grows out of an interest in reconstructing the worldviews of non-elite actors from the nineteenth- and twentieth centuries. With a regional focus on the Asia-Pacific world, I have written extensively on different aspects of Japanese migration history: on what it meant to be mobile in the modern world; on settler colonial history both within the colonies of the Japanese empire and beyond; on labour and environmental histories within the Pacific sugar plantation economy; and on the archival and methodological challenges of recovering such histories.

Published in 2012, my first book worked back from a local dispute in the 1980s to understand how the townspeople of one municipality in western Japan came to believe that building a nuclear power station would be a panacea for socioeconomic problems that dated from the late-nineteenth century. This brought me to the topic of how to write global histories of migration from the perspective of people who remained at home. My second book (2023) then followed the migrants themselves, focusing on a single Japanese steamship during its voyages to Hawai‘i, Southeast Asia and Australia during the Meiji period (1868-1912). This raised the challenge of  archival recovery—and so the book also turned into a discussion of global history methodologies in a digital age. My current work is located at the intersection of global history and Indigenous Studies; I hope to study maritime aspects of Japanese settler colonialism within the framework of British and US imperialism more generally.

Curriculum vitae

since 2021 Co-Director of the Department of History
since 2020 Editorial Board Member of Past & Present
since 2015 Chair for Global History (18th to 20th centuries, with a focus on Asia), University of Zurich, Switzerland
2012–2014  Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Research Fellow, Cluster of Excellence "Asia and Europe in a Global Context", University of Heidelberg, Germany
2008–2014 Lecturer in Modern Japanese History, School of History, Classics and Archaeology, Newcastle University, UK
2008 DPhil History, University of Oxford, UK (St. Antony's College)
2003–2005 MEXT-funded research student, Kyushu University, Japan
2002 MA Japanese Studies, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, UK
1998 MA and BA Modern History, University of Oxford, UK (Trinity College)


Unterseiten von Prof. Dr. Martin Dusinberre