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Research Associate (Fixed Term)

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available until 28 February 2019 in the first instance.

Applicants are invited to apply for a fixed-term full-time post as Research Associate to the ERC-funded project, The Dissolution of the Japanese Empire and the Struggle for Legitimacy in Postwar East Asia, 1945-1965.

Details about the Project: This six-year ERC funded project which began in March 2013 aims to understand how political rule and legal authority were redrafted in postwar East Asia after the Japanese surrender in 1945. The research sheds light on the social and political transformations that continue to have resonance in our world in the form of East Asia's regional alliances and Japan's relations with its closest neighbours ¿ China, North and South Korea, and Taiwan. The renovation of East Asia after the fall of the Japanese empire has mainly been written from a western perspective, owing to the preponderance of postwar American scholarship and its political dominance. Even with the economic rise and growing importance of modern China, the region's understanding of its own past and its internal dynamics remain deeply rooted in the manner in which World War II ended. The legal restructuring of East Asia and Japan's relations with its neighbours played a vital function in redressing former imperial relations in the early Cold War. The legal investigations and trials were the definition of international law, a relatively new concept itself, especially in East Asia. The legacy of these issues weighs heavily even today because it provided a new vocabulary to East Asian polities to consider the manner in which Japanese imperialism would be replaced and adjudicated in the postwar.

The researcher will mainly focus on collecting, organizing and analyzing Chinese, Japanese or Korean related archives dealing with this topic. S/he will also examine relevant published texts and secondary research in related languages and appropriate bibliographical references. S/he will be expected to work toward producing his/her own monograph within their contract time and perhaps an additional peer-reviewed article. The researcher will also be required to assist in the administration of the project (including various symposia), especially organization of an international workshop. Light teaching of up to one class and/or one-on-one supervisions.

Requirements: The applicant should have completed his/her PhD, submitted their thesis and had their viva (if necessary) by the time he or she arrives at Cambridge for the start of the position. A demonstrable commitment to the aims of the project and genuine enthusiasm in such research will also be essential, as will the ability to work effectively as part of a team and on individual initiative. A thorough knowledge of at least one East Asian language is expected. Candidates need not necessarily have knowledge of the Japanese language but their research must be related to the end of the Japanese empire and early Cold War.

Applicants are encouraged to look at the project website ( and contact the project director, Dr Barak Kushner,, ahead of time

To apply online for this vacancy, please click on the 'Apply' button below. This will route you to the University's Web Recruitment System, where you will need to register an account (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

Informal enquiries about the post may be made to Dr Barak Kushner, ( The closing date for applications is 5pm on 15 February 2018. It is anticipated that interviews will take place in Cambridge w/c 18th February 2018. They may be via SKYPE.

Please quote reference GU14466 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

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