Aaron S. Moore is a historian of modern Japan and East Asia in the School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies. In addition to courses on modern Japan and East Asia, he teaches thematic courses on the history of science and technology, war and empire, and the global Cold War for the undergraduate, online MA and immersion graduate programs in History and Asian Studies. He also advises honors, master's, and doctoral students in History and Asian Studies. He is an affiliate of ASU's Korean Studies Program and the Center for Asian Research.
His first book, Constructing East Asia: Technology, Ideology, and Empire in Japan's Wartime Era 1931-1945 (Stanford University Press, 2011), was published in paperback in 2013 and Japanese and simplified Chinese editions are being prepared by Jinbun Shōin (2019) and Beijing Yanziyue Culture and Art Studio (2019) respectively. He is the author of several articles and book chapters on modern Japanese intellectual history and the history of technology in imperial Japan and post-1945 Asia, one of which was awarded a Distinguished Contribution to Electrotechnical History Commendation by the Society for the History of Technology.
His second book is Engineering Asia: Technology, Colonial Development, and the Cold War Order (Bloomsbury Press, 2018), co-edited with Hiromi Mizuno and John DiMoia. This volume traces the transformation of Japan's colonial network of people, technology, capital, and ideas into the post-war system of development in Asia under the U.S. Cold War order. Chapters on Japan and South Korea analyze how these colonial networks and connections enabled both Japan's postwar economic recovery and economic development in other Asian nations, thereby questioning conventional nationalist narratives of independent "economic miracles" in Japan and South Korea. It also details how under the banner of "economic cooperation," Japan and Korea's overseas technical and economic aid projects in Asia facilitated the erasure of past colonial violence and enabled the continued marginalization of communities within Asia's newly independent nations.
His current monograph project, Damming Asia: The Cold War and Japanese Post-Colonial Development in Asia, examines the history of Japan's overseas development system in Asia from its origins in Japan's colonial rule in Asia before 1945 to its rise as the world's leading aid donor by the Cold War's end in 1989. Through an analysis of large-scale dam construction in Burma, Vietnam, South Korea, and Laos conducted by Japanese engineers and consultants after 1945, he traces how earlier colonial power relations were reconfigured into new relations of power linking Japan and post-colonial Asia under the banner of "economic cooperation."
He started working at ASU in 2008 and earned his doctorate from Cornell University. Before that he worked as a lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and as an assistant professor of East Asian history at Ohio University. He conducts research in Korean amd Japanese, and his research has been funded by fellowships and grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Kyujanggak Institute for Korean Studies at Seoul National University, the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, and the Terasaki Center for Japanese Studies at UCLA, among other organizations.
Modern Japan, colonial history, history of science and technology, World War II and Cold War history, Modern Japanese intellectual history, modern Korea.
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