Tadashi Ishikawa

Tadashi Ishikawa, Ph.D.

Tadashi Ishikawa is a social historian of Japan and East Asia in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. His research and teaching interests include modern Japanese gender and sexuality, empire and colonialism, and law and society. Trained as a scholar of Japan in its regional and international contexts, Dr. Ishikawa has worked on gender and law in Japan and East Asia before and after the end of World War II in relation to the circulation of visions and people; tensions between legal knowledge and practices; and the dynamics of power relations.

Dr. Ishikawa is completing a book entitled “Circuits of Gender: Family and Law in Imperial Japan and Colonial Taiwan” (under review). The book studies the Japanese empire––including Japan and colonial Taiwan, a settler island near southeastern China and Japan’s first colony from 1895 to 1945––with a focus on gender in the interplay of family and law. By analyzing press records and judicial archives, this study explores how public debates and law courts made Japan’s imperial space engendered. The book reveals that gender was circular in terms that challenged and reinforced gendered norms and practices in three ways: competing ideals of progress, tension of Taiwanese masculinity, and contested formation of women’s agency.

His second book project is tentatively entitled “Travelers, Refugees, and Guestworkers: Precarious Boundaries and Japan’s Asia in the Cold War.” This study questions the division of theories and practices on the movement of people with regard to victimhood and agency before globalization unfolded in the 1990s. It analyzes official archives, commercial publications, and memoirs in Japan, East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the United States. The book explores manual and erotic labor among East and Southeast Asian lives in Okinawa under American rule and an economically prosperous Japan as well as Japanese men’s sex tourism in their neighbors from the late 1950s through 1980s, arguing that gendered mobility defined Japan’s Cold War at the intersection of the United States and Asia.

His research has been supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Taiwan (R.O.C.), Chiu Foundation, Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation, Matsushita Konosuke Memorial Foundation in Japan, and National Central Library in Taiwan as well as the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Chicago.


  • Ph.D. in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from The University of Chicago (2015)
  • M.A. in East Asian Studies from Washington University in St. Louis (2007)
  • B.A. in Law from Chuo University (Tokyo, Japan) (2001)

Research Interests

Modern Japan and East Asia, Gender and Sexuality, Empire and Colonialism, Family History, and Law and Society

Selected Publications


  • “Human Trafficking and Intra-Imperial Knowledge: Adopted Daughters, Households, and Law in  Imperial Japan and Colonial Taiwan, 1919–1935,” Journal of Women’s History 29, no. 3 (Fall 2017): 37–60.


-       Taiwan Fellowship, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Taipei, Taiwan), Spring 2019

-       Toyota Dissertation Fellowship for Japanese Studies, Center for East Asian Studies, University of Chicago, 2014–2015

-       Doctoral Fellowship, Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange (Virginia, USA), 2013–2014

-       Konosuke Matsushita Memorial Foundation Research Grant (Osaka, Japan), 2012–2013

-       CCS Research Grant for Foreign Scholars in Chinese Studies, Center for Chinese Studies, National Central Library (Taipei, Taiwan), 2011.


-       President’s Discretionary Award for Teaching among Non-Tenure Track Faculty Members, Binghamton University, Fall 2016


No courses found for Fall 2022.

No courses found for Summer 2022.

Course Number Course Title Mode Date and Time Syllabus
11348 ASH4442 Modern Japan Face to Face (P) Tu,Th 03:00 PM - 04:15 PM Unavailable
No Description Available
19430 ASH4932 Special Topics Face to Face (P) Tu,Th 12:00 PM - 01:15 PM Unavailable
No Description Available
20861 HIS5926 Women and Gender Face to Face (P) W 06:00 PM - 08:50 PM Unavailable
No Description Available

Updated: Oct 13, 2021