Arai Ōsui and Making of Symbiotic Modernity in Modern Japan
I started a DPhil in History at Oxford in 2017 as a Swire scholar, following an MSc in Modern Japanese Studies at Oxford in 2015-16 as an Oxford Kobe scholar. My research is on the transnational, intellectual, and religious history of modern Japan, which emerged from forgotten northern people. I am particularly looking into their hidden transnational non-state networks and collaboration with Russians, Americans, and more in developing new moral visions of the world beyond mainstream imperial, Western modern civilisation discourse. Through the study of the small, peripheralized microcosm, I hope to challenge some of the large historical narratives that have consciously or unconsciously underpinned our historical understanding of modern Japan and beyond. I served as a convenor of the Oxford International History of East Asia Seminar for four terms from Michaelmas 2018 to 2019.
My doctoral research is generously funded by a Swire Scholarship via St Antony’s College, Oxford. The Takanashi Foundation for Historical Science has generously covered the cost of my DPhil research project too. My archival research in northern Japan was enabled by research travel grants from the following funding bodies: Arnold Bryce and Read Funds, Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation, Sasakawa Fund, and STAR (Student Travel and Research) Grants at St Antony’s College, Oxford (in alphabetical order).