Timothy S. George


Timothy S. George is Professor Emeritus of History at URI, where he taught courses on the history of East and Southeast Asia from 1998 to 2021. He has also taught at Harvard University as a visiting professor. His research specialty is modern Japanese history, particularly environmental history. He has degrees from Stanford University and the University of Hawai‘i, and received his Ph.D. from Harvard. He received Fulbright grants in 1993-1995 and 2012-2013 to study responses to the mercury pollution in Minamata and to the arsenic pollution in Toroku, and during both of those periods he was affiliated at the Institute of Social Science at the University of Tokyo. He has spent 17 years in Japan since 1962.


Postwar Japanese history, environmental history of Japan, local history of Japan, and citizen-corporation-state relations in modern Japan


  • Harvard University, A.M., History, June 1993; Ph.D., History, June 1996
  • University of Hawai‘i, M.A., History, August 1984
  • Stanford University, A.B. With Distinction, History, June 1977

Selected Publications


Japanese Constitutional Revision and Civic Activism. Lexington Books, 2021. Edited with Helen Hardacre, Keigo Komamura, and Franziska Seraphim.

Japan since 1945: From Postwar to Post-Bubble. Bloomsbury, 2013. Edited with Christopher Gerteis.

Minamata: Pollution and the Struggle for Democracy in Postwar Japan. Harvard University Asia Center, 2001.

Japanese History and Culture from Ancient to Modern Times: Seven Basic Bibliographies. Second edition. Markus Wiener, 1995. With John W. Dower.

Articles and Book Chapters

“Toroku: Mountain Dreams, Chemical Nightmares.” Japan at Nature’s Edge: The Environmental Context of a Global Power, ed. Ian Jared Miller, Julia Adeney Thomas, Brett L. Walker. University of Hawai‘i Press, 2013.

Furusato-zukuri: Saving Home Towns by Reinventing Them.” Japan since 1945: From Postwar to Post-Bubble, ed. Christopher Gerteis and Timothy S. George. Bloomsbury, 2013.

“Tanaka Shōzō’s Vision of an Alternative Constitutional Modernity for Japan.” Public Spheres, Private Lives in Modern Japan, 1600-1950: Essays in Honor of Albert M. Craig, ed. Gail Lee Bernstein, Andrew Gordon, Kate Wildman Nakai. Harvard University Asia Center, 2005.


Minamata Kankyō Akademia. Collaborative Human and Organizational Resources in the Minamata Area: A Compendium. Editor of translation. Translated with Koizumi Hatsue. Minamata Kankyō Akademia, 2018.

Mikuriya Takashi and Nakamura Takafusa. Politics and Power in 20th-Century Japan: The Reminiscences of Miyazawa Kiichi. Director and editor of translation; author of translation editor’s introduction. Bloomsbury, 2015.

Saitō Hisashi. Niigata Minamata Disease. Co-editor and co-translator. Niigata: Niigata Nippō, 2009.

Harada Masazumi. Minamata Disease. Editor of translation. Translated with Tsushima Sachie. Kumamoto: Kumamoto Nichinichi Shinbun, 2004.

Download Curriculum Vitae (PDF)