John K. Fairbank Prize Recipients
Established by a gift to the Association from the friends of the prominent historian of China and East Asia at Harvard and President of the Association in 1968, the John K. Fairbank Prize is awarded for the best work on the history of China proper, Vietnam, Chinese Central Asia, Mongolia, Manchuria, Korea, or Japan since the year 1800.
2014 Fairbank Prize
Charles K. Armstrong, Columbia Univ.
Tyranny of the Weak: North Korea and the World, 1950–1992 (Cornell Univ. Press)
In this fresh and compelling narrative Charles Armstrong methodically probes the apparently perennial question about North Korea: why won’t it fail? Tyranny of the Weak situates the formation and endurance of the North Korean state in the global context of the Cold War and engagement with South Korea. Drawing on both well-known and new archival materials from multiple sides of the divide, it offers a rigorously argued and deeply grounded account that deals deftly with the abundance as well as absence of sources.