International Network to Expand Regional and Collaborative Teaching (INTERACT) Postdoctoral Fellow 2011-2012 at the Weatherhead East Asian Institute.
Reto Hofmann specializes in modern Japanese political and cultural history, with wider interests in 20th-century Asia and Europe, especially fascism and dictatorship, empire and imperialism, and political thought.
During his Fellowship, he will be working on a book manuscript titled “The Fascist Reflection: Japan and Italy, 1919-1950.” A study of Japanese political culture during the interwar period, it focuses on the discourse on fascism, tracing how public intellectuals, politicians, and literati debated Fascist Italy–its ideology, leader, and visions of the world order. Confident that Japan’s political and cultural traditions sufficed to bring about what in the 1930s came to be called New Order, they refrained from adopting the language and practice of European fascisms, even as they remained conscious of the commonality of outlook they shared with fascist Italy and Nazi Germany.
In 2011-2012 he will teach two undergraduate courses, “Cultures of Empire” and “The ‘West’ in Global Thought.”
He majored in modern European history at the University of Western Australia (BA, 2000) before coming to Columbia University for graduate studies in Japanese history (MA, 2004; PhD, 2010).