Dr. William Gerald Beasley, C.B.E. (U.K.)

Dr. William Gerald Beasley, C.B.E. (U.K.)
Emeritus Professor of the History of the Far East, University of London

Photo of Dr. William Gerald Beasley, C.B.E.As one of Britain's most distinguished scholars of East Asian history, especially nineteenth-century Japanese history, Dr. Beasley has devoted himself for more than fifty years to an in-depth study of Japan's culture and history, as well as to the nurturing of young scholars to solidify the foundation of Japanese studies in the United Kingdom. His Modern History of Japan (1963), published in numerous countries throughout the world, has become the definitive text for modern Japanese history.
For 35 years Dr. Beasley taught Japanese history to students and postgraduates in the University of London. Throughout his career—but especially since his retirement—he has produced many monographs on nineteenth-century Japanese history. He has made a distinguished contribution to the understanding of the Meiji Restoration and the travels of Meiji statesmen to Europe and America.

Brief Personal History

1945
First visited Japan
1950
Ph.D. in History, University of London
1954
Appointed Professor, University of London ( -1983)
1964-68
British Chairman, Anglo-Japanese Mixed Commission
1967
Fellow, British Academy (Vice-President, 1973-74)
1969
Raleigh Lecturer (British Academy)
1983
Emeritus Professor, University of London
1984
Honorary Member of Japan Academy
1984
Creighton Lecturer (University of London)

Awards Received

1978
Honorary Doctor of Letters, University of Hong Kong
1980
Commander of the Order of the British Empire (C.B.E.)(UK)
1983
Order of the Rising Sun, Third Class (Japan)
1996
Japan Festival Award for furthering the understanding of Japanese culture in Britain

Major Publications
Great Britain and the Opening of Japan 1834-1858 (London: Luzac, 1951; reprinted (with corrections), Folkestone: Japan Library, 1995.)
Select Documents on Japanese Foreign Policy 1853-1868 (London: Oxford University Press, 1955)
The Modern History of Japan (London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1963; a much revised and rewritten version of this book was issued by the same publisher in 1990 under the title The Rise of Modern Japan. There have been translations into German, Italian, Spanish, Chinese, and Korean; a Greek translation is in preparation.)
The Meiji Restoration (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1972. Awarded the Fairbank Prize by the American Historical Association.)
Japanese Imperialism 1894-1945 (Oxford: Clarendon, 1987. Translated into Japanese by Shin'ya Sugiyama and published under the title Nihon Teikoku Shugi 1894-1945—Kyoryûchi seido to Higashi Ajiya, Tokyo: Iwanami, 1990.)
Japan Encounters the Barbarian: Japanese Travellers in America and Europe (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1995)
The Japanese Experience: A Short History of Japan (London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1999; Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1999)

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