Asian Studies, History

Advisor and Coordinator of Asian Studies majors

Areas of Expertise

The political economy and social history of modern Japan, modern Southeast Asia, regionalism in Asia, conflict and reconciliation, and law and social change. Professor Kingston's op-eds and book reviews appear in the International Herald Tribune, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Japan Times and Bangkok Post. The BBC, CNN, Bloomberg, CBS, ABC, Time, Newsweek, AFP, AP, NHK, Asahi Shimbun, Voice of America and other media organizations interview him frequently.

Teaching Interests

Professor Kingston teaches courses on modern Japanese history; contemporary Japan; Japan's relations with Asia; conflict and reconciliation, world history and modern Southeast Asia. He is director of Asian Studies at TUJ.


Professor Kingston's research interests focus on contemporary Japan; civil society; law and social change; migration; trafficking, minorities and East Timor. He has recently published two books that examine sweeping social change in contemporary Japan. He reassesses the so-called Lost Decade of the 1990s, focusing on the transition to the rule of law, judicial reforms, freedom of information and transparency, the role of the media and the growth of civil society organizations. He is currently researching the public discourse, anxieties and agendas involving the demographic time bomb and what this means in terms of families, working women, the elderly and foreign workers. He has recently published articles on the political economy of public works in Japan, compensation for colonial lepers, Uighurs in China, terrorists in Kyrgyzstan, and justice and reconciliation in East Timor.

Representative Publications

  • Kingston, J. Balancing justice and reconciliation in East Timor. Critical Asian Studies, vol. 38, no. 3 (Sept. 2006), 271-302.
  • Kingston, J. 2006. Kokka saisei [in Japanese]. Hayakawa Shobo.
  • Kingston, J. 2006. Regaining dignity: Justice and reconciliation in East Timor. Brown Journal of World Affairs. Volume 13, issue 1, Fall/Winter 2006 (227-240).
  • Kingston, J. 2005. Compensating colonial lepers, slave laborers and hibakusha: Troubling legacies and evolving standards of postcolonial justice in Japan. Japan Focus, November 2005.
  • Kingston, J. 2004. Japan's quiet transformation: Social change and civil society in the 21st century. RoutledgeCourzon.
  • Kingston, J. 2001. Japan in transformation 1952-2000. Longman.


Ph.D. in history, Columbia University, 1987
M.A. in international affairs, Columbia University, School of International Affairs, 1981
B.S. in foreign service, Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service, 1979

Professional Associations

The editorial advisory boards of Japan Focus and Critical Asian Studies


Office Hours

Available here.

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