University of Richmond professor awarded $40,000 research grant

May 17, 2016

Mimi HanaokaMimi Hanaoka, an assistant professor of religious studies at University of Richmond, has received a $40,000 grant from the Social Science Research Council. She was awarded the Transregional Research Junior Scholar Fellowship for scholars focusing on InterAsian Contexts and Connections.  

Hanaoka’s project, “Views of the Asian Other: Educational Reform and Models of Modernity,” will explore ways in which Muslim reformists in Iran and South Asia approached Japan as a non-Western model of modernity and educational reform during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. 

This research fellowship will enable Hanaoka to travel to Japan for research in the National Diet Library, the National Archives of Japan and other repositories of vital documents. She also will visit archives in London and Oxford.

Using Japanese, Arabic, Persian and English language primary sources, Hanaoka is writing a book that follows the diplomat Eishiro Nuita’s travels from Tokyo to the Middle East in 1923 to lay the groundwork for treaties and pacts between Japan and other countries.

“This project highlights the complex ways in which individuals and organizations in the Middle East, East Asia and South Asia have interacted with and modeled their actions on each other,” said Hanaoka.

Hanaoka has taught at Richmond since 2011. She received her bachelor’s degree at Swarthmore College and completed her master’s and doctorate at Columbia University. She holds a Ph.D. in Islam and Islamic history.

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