Barak Kushner (バラク・クシュナー) (顧若鵬)

University of Cambridge, ケンブリッジ大学, 劍橋大學

Selected Works

Book
This book examines how factions of Nationalists and Communists within China structured the war crimes trials in ways meant to strengthen their competing claims to political rule. On the international stage, both China and Japan propagandized the tribunals, promoting or blocking them for their own advantage.
This is a book from a major Japanese newspaper looking out over the last eighty years of Japanese history and analyzing the role media plays in the formation of history. The work includes extensive company archival material and key interviews with journalists involved in critical moments of 20th century Japanese history from 1926-1989.
The first book in English to unravel the history of ramen, Japan's famous noodle soup.
The only English- language book that delves into the intricacies of WWII Japanese propaganda
Book Chapter
This research considers some of the ways in which sweets increasingly came to be incorporated into the everyday lives of Japanese people, as an indicator of rising levels of "modernity."
Overview of Japan's efforts to market and promote the 1940 Olympic games in Tokyo that never took place
An analysis of Japanese wartime kamishibai and the market for children's propaganda
Academic Journal Article
"Ghosts of the Japanese Imperial Army: The ‘White Group’ (Baituan) and Early Post-war Sino-Japanese Relations,” Past and Present, volume 218, suppl 8 (Transnationalism and Contemporary Global History), (2013), p. 117-150.
Article on John Provoo, Japan and the Cold War in the US
How history influences politics and culture in Taiwan, Japan and China
See my co-authored, award-winning article on Japanese wartime radio propaganda.
Article about Japanese media "hero" and crime
Catalogue
See my essay on Alan Marcuson's fantastic collection of imperial Japanese textiles.
Online Article
Brief Article
Download the article from the Cambridge University Research Magazine

Events

Presentations and talks delivered:


“Looking at expectations of Japan from abroad,”「海外から見た日本への期待」, keynote speech at the International Symposium, Toward 2020, What Message Can Japan Send the World?「2020年へ、日本は世界に何を発信できるか」, sponsored by the Nihon Keizai Newspaper and the Toshiba Foundation, October 3, Tokyo, Japan (in Japanese).

“Chinese Post-WWII War Crimes Trials: Breaking the Cycle of Violence,” keynote speech at the Remember Violence and Violent Memory Conference, University of Cambridge History Department, May 30, 2014.

“The Chinese Nationalist and Chinese Communist Trials of Japanese War Crimes in a Comparative Historical Perspective,” Center for Cold War International History Studies, East China Normal University, Shanghai, May 23, 2014.

“Noodles, Nationalism and Economic Neuroses - ramen as the symbol of Japanese history,” Focus Asia: Food in Asia Conference, Lund University, Sweden, April 15, 2014.

“The Justice of Empire: Investigating Japanese Efforts to Define Defeat in the Postwar,” at the Shifting Terrains of Struggle in Japan and Japanese Studies Conference, University of North Carolina (Triangle Center for Japanese Studies), USA, April 12, 2014.

“Men to Devils and Devils to Men - Japanese War Crimes and Cold War Sino-Japanese Relations (1945-1965),” The Institute on World War II and the Human Experience, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida, USA, April 8, 2014.

“War Crimes, the Japanese Defeat and East Asia in the Early Cold War,” William and Mary College, program in Washington DC, USA, April 4, 2014.

“Chinese and Japanese Competitive Justice for War Crimes in Early Cold War East Asia,” The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, March 3, 2014.

“Chinese War Crimes Trials of Japanese, 1945-1956,” at The Historical Origins of International Criminal Law Conference, Seminar 1, co-organized by the Centre for International Law Research and Policy, hosted at City University of Hong Kong, March 2, 2014.

“Sure it’s delicious, but why is it popular? Historically decoding regional branding, food tourism and the rise of ramen, Japan’s epic noodle soup,” Devouring Japan Conference, University of Texas, Austin, February 21, 2014.

“Learning to Slurp: History, Noodles and Popular Culture in Japan,” Montgomery Dickson Center for Japanese Language & Culture, University of Alaska, Anchorage, February 15, 2014.

“Who gets to judge and who judges? Japanese war crimes and Chinese justice, 1945-65,” World History Seminar, Faculty of History, University of Cambridge, January 23, 2014.

“Colonial Guilt: Taiwanese War Criminals and the Conflict with International Law,” at the International Conference on Taiwanese War Criminals in International War Crime Trials, National Chung Cheng University (國立中正大學), Jiayi, Taiwan, December 20, 2013.

“Slurp! A culinary and social history of ramen,” Japan Foundation, London, December 5, 2013.

“National Indigestion: Ramen (Japanese Noodle Soup) and the Search for East Asian Gastronomic Identity,” Birkbeck Food Group, Birkbeck University of London, November 28, 2013.

“Love Statues, Shell Fish and Communist Treachery: Japan’s early postwar responses to the War Crimes Issue,” Japan Society, London, November 18, 2013.

“Imperial Dissolution and Colonial Crimes: Taiwan and the Postwar Dilemma of Japanese War Crimes,” St. Antony’s College, University of Oxford, November 15, 2013.

“The Dissolution of the Japanese Empire and the Struggle for Legitimacy in Postwar East Asia, 1945–1965,” at the New Perspectives on the Chinese 1950s Workshop, University of York, UK, July 20, 2013.

“Slurp! Revealing the History of Ramen,” Guild of Food Writers, London, July 18, 2012, London, UK.

“Thoughts on Japanese War Crimes Trials, Traitors, and Sino-Japanese Relations,” lecture in the Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Information Studies at the University of Tokyo, Japan, May 21, 2013.

“Pawns of Empire ‘Revisited’: Postwar Taiwan, Japan and the Dilemma of War Crimes,” 2013 ILA-ASIL Asia-Pacific Research Forum, International Law and Dispute Resolution: 
Challenges in the Asia Pacific, May 16, 2013, Taipei, Taiwan.

“Ramen – the Noodle Soup that Changed Japan and the World,” University of Heidelberg, Germany (Cluster of Excellence: Asia and Europe in a Global Context), April 24, 2013.

“Imperial Fragility and the Pursuit of Justice in Postwar East Asia - War Crimes and Chinese International Law,” Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Cambridge, February 11, 2013.

“Searching for Shame in immediate postwar East Asia: the pursuit of justice and the dilemma of benevolence,” Shame and Shaming in Twentieth Century History Conference, Center for the History of Emotions, Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin, December 6, 2012.

“Comparing Chinese War Crimes Trials of Japanese Soldiers: the KMT Versus the CCP,” National Taiwan Chengchi University, (Taipei, Taiwan), November 26, 2012.

“Unlikely Heroes: the Defeated Japanese Imperial Military and the KMT’s Survival, 1946-49,” Tunghai University (Taizhong, Taiwan), November 20, 2012.

“Getting to Trial: KMT (Kuomintang) War Crimes Tribunals and the Japanese Response, 1946-1950,” Europe Japan Research Centre, Oxford Brookes University, October 16, 2012.

“Slurp! A Social and Culinary History of RAMEN – Japan’s Favourite Noodle Soup,” book launch lecture at Daiwa Anglo-Japan Foundation, London, October 5, 2012.

“Taiwanese War Criminals: Imperial Legacy and Colonial Guilt,”(台湾人と国際法:本来の戦争犯罪は誰か), (talk delivered in English and Chinese), Shōkei University, Kumamoto, Japan; conference on Taiwanese War Criminals, September 6, 2012.

“Identity, Food and Consumerism: Charting the Movement of Ramen as a Chinese Dish to a Japanese National Icon,” History of Design Seminar, Royal College of Art, London, March 1, 2012.

“Ghosts of Imperial Japan: Chinese Nationalists, Imperial Japanese and the Curious Plot to Defend Post-war Taiwan,” Institute of Historical Research, University of London, February 2, 2012.

“Nothing to laugh at: Chinese humor and the image of Japan,” University of Sydney (Australia), co-hosted by the Australasia Humour Studies Network, December 13, 2011.

“Chinese Checkers or Japanese Imperial Chess? Postwar Japanese War Criminals and Chinese Justice,” invited keynote speech at the Japanese History Workshop Australia, Murdoch University (Perth, Australia), December 2, 2011.

“Learning to Slurp: History, Noodles and Popular Culture in Japan,” Third Thursday Lecture at the Sainsbury Institute for Japanese Arts and Cultures, Norwich, October 20, 2011.

“Love Statues: De-Construction of Japanese Imperial Monuments to War,” Imperial Sites of Memory Conference, University of St Andrews, September 2, 2011.

“What happened to Japanese soldiers in postwar China and
 what did the Chinese do to them?” The Cambridge and Oxford Society of Tokyo, Japan, July 22, 2011.

“Sino-Japan Relations from the Immediate Postwar to the Cold War: Examining War Crimes through China”s “Magnanimous Policy” and the “White Group,” (終戦直後から冷戦までの日中関係:「以徳報怨」と「白団」のエピソードから戦犯問題を考察する), International Foreign Policy Studies Group, Nishogakusha University, July 21, 2011. (Delivered in Japanese)

“Postwar Sino-Japan Relations: Through the Looking Glass at Historical Studies on War Crimes and Treason Trials, (零度のエクリテュール, 戦後日中関係における: 漢奸裁判をめぐる歴史学), Aichi University, Toyohashi, Japan. July 17, 2011. (Delivered in Japanese)

“Empire”s Little Helpers: Juvenile Crime and the State in East Asia, 1900-2000,” Keynote speech at the conference, Juvenile Delinquency in the 19th and 20th Centuries: East-West Comparisons, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany, March 13, 2011.

“Slurping the way to delicious: 19th and early 20th century Japanese food culture and the history of ramen,” Royal Asiatic Society, London, March 10, 2011.

"A Brief Comparison of KMT and CCP War Crimes Trials of Japanese and Postwar Political Goals in East Asia,” (日本の戦犯裁判: 日中関係の歴史を観察する), Saitama University, Japan, January 6, 2011. (Delivered in Japanese)


“The “White Group”: The Role of Japanese Imperial Soldiers in China”s Civil War and the Struggle for International Legitimacy,” Department of History, Penn State University, October 25, 2010.

“The Devil Inside: the image of Japan in 20th century Chinese humor,” Department of Comparative Literature, Penn State University, October 25, 2010.

“Enemies of a Kind: Chiang Kai Shek and Okamura Yasuji's military efforts in Taiwan to retake the mainland,” SOAS conference on Taiwan history 1949-1975, September 25, 2010.

“When Empire Fails: Postwar Japanese Imperial Military Efforts in Taiwan, Re-assessing the Postwar,” National Chengchi University, Taipei, Taiwan, September 6, 2010.

“The history of sugar consumption in Japan,” at The Historical Consumer: Consumption and Everyday Life in Japan, 1850-2000 conference at the London School of Economics, July 29, 2010.

“An Unsatisfying Peace: Postwar Sino-Japan Relations and War Crimes Trials,” as part of the conference, The “Long Arc” of Sino-Japanese Relations: Chinese Perspectives on War, Cooperation, and Conflict Across Three Eras, June 17, 2010, Oxford University.

Invited panelist to the Asahi Shimbun sponsored symposium on the role of media in Japanese history (朝日新聞シンポジウム昭和報道:検証), June 4, 2010, Tokyo, Japan. (Delivered in Japanese)

“Defining the Enemy: Early Cold War Sino-Japan Relations and the Paradox of International Law, Rowan University, New Jersey (USA), April 13, 2010.

“Japanese Love Statues and Chinese Prisons: Early Cold War Sino-Japanese Relations and WWII War Crimes,” Sigur Center for Asian Studies, George Washington University, Washington DC (USA), April 8, 2010.

“China's Past, China's Future”, keynote presentation at the Oundle School, Oundle, UK, March 12, 2010.

"DEALING WITH THE 'DEVIL' - Analyzing Postwar Chinese Trials of Japanese War Criminals," Truman Institute for the Advancement of Peace, Hebrew University (Jerusalem, Israel), January 4, 2010.

“日本戰犯的審判:中日關係歷史之觀察,”(Riben Zhanfan de shenpan: ZhongRi guanxi lishi zhi guancha) (Japanese War Crimes: Observations on Sino-Japanese Historical Relations “ the case of Taiwan) at the conference hosted at Taiwan National University, 交界與游移-近現代東亞的文化傳譯與知識生產 (The Shifting Sands of Common Boundaries “ Interpretation and Production of Knowledge in Modern East Asia) September 10, 2009, Taipei, Taiwan. (Delivered in Chinese)

“Legalizing Guilt: Law and Early Cold War Sino-Japanese Relations,” in panel New Thoughts on Old Paradigms: Re-assessing the Early Cold War in East Asia, at International Convention of Asian Scholars, Daejeon, South Korea, August 7, 2009.

“The WWII Japanese and Chinese struggle for hearts and minds,” Waseda University, June 15, 2009.

“The historical baggage of Japanese war criminals in China: explaining the immediate postwar in East Asia,” lecture at Occidental College, Los Angeles (USA), April 1, 2009.

“Victim”s Justice: Early Cold War East Asia and the Pursuit of a New Order,” on the panel The Impact of China: Experience on the Construction of Modern Japanese Identity, Association for Asian Studies annual conference, Chicago, March 27, 2009.

"Devils to men and men to devils - unravelling postwar Chinese war crimes trials of Japanese POWs," Centre for East Asian Studies, University of Bristol, February 9, 2009.

“Nationalism and Popular Food Culture in Modern Japan,” SOAS Food Studies Centre, London, November 28, 2008.

“日本战犯的审判: 中日关系历史之观察,” (Japan War Crimes Trials: Observations on postwar Sino-Japan Relations) talk delivered in Chinese, History Department, Nanjing University, China, September 25, 2008.

“Eating Your Way to Democracy: Japan's Postwar Politics of Food,” Soga Japan Center Speaker Series at Western Michigan University, April 15, 2008.

"Going for the Gold: Health and Sports in Japan's Quest for Modernity," delivered at Olympian Desires: Building Bodies and Nations in East Asia; A Symposium at the University of Kansas, April 10, 2008.

“Nationalism and food in East Asia; hygiene, dining and imperial pageantry,” in the World History Seminar at St. Catharine”s College, University of Cambridge, March 6, 2008.

"拉麵與民族主義:飲食的殖民地化," (Noodles and Nationalism: the Colonization of Cuisine), talk delivered in Chinese, December 7, 2007, History Department, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan.

"The Colonization of Cuisine and the Translation of Empire," at the "Translation: East Asia and the West International Conference for Junior Scholars," December 4, 2007, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan.

"The Meiji restoration was a menu revolution - diplomacy and dining in early modern Japan," at the Japan Research Centre, SOAS, London, November 21, 2007.

“Adjudicating Imperialism in Postwar East Asia: War Crimes Trials and the Cold War in Japan,” at the East Asia in International Relations: Power, Institutions, and Identity: Asian Seminar Series at Oxford University, October 24, 2007.

“Noodling around Asia: the politics of eating in Taisho era Japan,” Modern Japan History Workshop, Waseda University, Tokyo, September 7, 2007.

“The Cold War in East Asia-Memory and Loathing,” at Crossing Boundaries in Cold War Studies Conference, University of Cambridge, May 4, 2007.

“A short history of Japanese cuisine and the meaning of banquets in diplomacy,” invited dinner lecture for the Shibusawa/​Suntory Workshop in Cambridge on the Two Bilateral Relations with the Superpower, University of Cambridge, March 26, 2007.

“Japan's postwar circus and breadlines - national diet and demobilization,” at the Oxford Princeton Workshop, Making Order in the Post-war World: A Comparative Study of Europe and East Asia in the 1940s and 1950s, History Faculty, Oxford University, March 23, 2007.

“What do manga tell us about Japanese history and why should we care? Manga to rekishi, nani zoya?” Annual Cambridge lecture (in English and Japanese) at Chaucer College Canterbury, UK, February 2, 2007.


Torture and Intelligence – How the US forgot what it learned from the Chinese Communists
Thursday, March 2, 2006 lecture in the Department of History at Indiana State University.

Return invitation to speak on Sino-Japanese relations and history at the Anchorage World Affairs Council, Alaska, March 31, 2006.

Presenting on Japanese wartime children's kamishibai as part of the panel on "The ‘Art’ of War: Media Representations, Propaganda, and Public Opinion in the Sino-Japanese Conflict, 1931–1945," Association for Asian Studies Annual Meeting, April 8, 2006 in San Francisco.