Bruce G. Cumings ’65
B.A., Denison University
M.A., Indiana University
Ph.D., Columbia University
Citation awarded June, 1996
Bruce Cumings is one of the nation’s most highly respected East Asian scholars. He holds the John Evans Chairs in International History and Politics in the Departments of History and Political Science at Northwestern University and is concurrently the Director the Center for International and Comparative Studies. Before his appointment to his current positions, he was professor of East Asian and International History at the University of Chicago. He has also taught at Swarthmore College.
After completing a Master’s degree at Indiana University in 1967, Bruce joined the Peace Corps, serving in Seoul, Korea. He can read both Korean and Chinese. He earned his Ph.D. in Political Science and East Asian Studies at Columbia University in 1975.
In 1990, Bruce was awarded the prestigious MacArthur Foundation Fellowship for Individual Research and Writing, a $60,000 award to fund his research on the security and political economy in Northeast Asia from 1931 to 1945. He is internationally known in his field and is frequently cited as the authority in various publications.
Bruce received many awards for his scholarly work, including the Quincy Wright Book Award of the International Studies Association for his critically-acclaimed work, Origins of the Korean War, Volume II. Volume I in the set was co-winner of the Harry S. Truman Award in 1982. Besides the MacArthur Fellowship, Bruce has also held the National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship. His work has been supported by large grants from the Henry Luce Foundation and the Mellon Foundation. He is the author and editor of numerous books and scholarly articles on Korea, Japan, China, and U.S. relations with East Asia.
Bruce has a daughter by his first marriage to Bonnie Limpus Cumings ’66 and two sons with Meredith Woo-Cumings, who teaches political economy at Northwestern.