You can edit almost every page by Creating an account. Otherwise, see the FAQ.

John K. Whitmore

From EverybodyWiki Bios & Wiki


John Kremers Whitmore (?-2020) was an expert on Southeast Asian history and religion. He was a professor of Southeast Asian studies at the University of Michigan from 1971-2009.[1] [2]


Whitmore received a B.A. at Wesleyan University, Connecticu, and then .a M.A. and in 1968 his Ph.D. in pre-modern South and Southeast Asian History at Cornell University, New York. His MA esis was "From notable to cadre : a model for the political transformation of a rural Vietnamese village" .His doctorate thesis was "The development of le gouvernment in fifteenth century Vietnam".[3] In his early career, he taught at Yale University, the University of Virginia, and the University of California in Los Angeles. In 1974 he participated in the Sumatra Expedition of Indonesian Archeological Institute. At the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at the Department of Asian Studies of the University of Michigan, he taught Southeast Asian history for 38 years. He retired in 2009.[1]


Whitmore's research focused on the political and cultural developments of Vietnam between the eleventh and sixteenth centuries. With his language skills, he was able to study the Chinese script of ancient sources of Vietnam and give insight into the impact Chinese culture had on the development of Vietnamese history and commerce. He was a pioneer in this regard, as pre-colonial Vietnam was very much understudied during the 1960s. Further, the topic of Chinese influence on Vietnam was almost taboo. John K. Whitmore stepped beyond dynastic histories and gave more attention to scholarly, geographic and economic texts that greatly expanded modern knowledge of historical Vietnam. It also contributed to the development of the subject "Vietnamese Studies" as its own area of research. He also broke away from the focus on elite culture during the local turn, when he put attention to the expansion and acculturation process in Thanh Hóa during the March towards the South.[2]

He encouraged his students to learn and use a wide range of languages and to pay attention to local contributions to historical research on Vietnam instead of limiting themselves to colonial representations. This stance led to the achievement that John K. Whitmore was the first American specialist in Vietnamese history to receive an invitation and travel to Vietnam to open scholarly dialogue with (North) Vietnam’s historians in the 1970s.[2]

Selected Bibliography[edit]


edited with James Anderson, China’s Encounters on the South and Southwest Reforging the Fiery Frontier Over Two Millennia. Leiden: Brill, 2014.

edited with Keith W. Taylor. Essays into Vietnamese Pasts. Ithaca: Cornell University Southeast Asia Program, 1995.

with Kenneth R. Hall. Explorations in Early Southeast Asian History: The Origins of Southeast Asian Statecraft. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Center for South and Southeast Asian Studies, 1976. ISBN 9780891480112 Search this book on . According to WorldCat, this book is found in 893 libraries[4]

with Caplan N, Choy MH Children of the boat people: A study of educational success. University of Michigan Press; 1991 ISBN 978-0-472-08162-2 (Cited 514 times, according to Google Scholar [5])

with John K. Whitmore, and Marcella H. Choy The Boat People and Achievement in America University of Michigan Press 1989 (Cited 391 times, according to Google Scholar. [5])

Book Chapters[edit]

“Southeast Asia,” in A Companion to the Global Early Middle Ages. Edited by Erik Hermans. Leeds: Arc Humanities Press, 2020. 65–94. ISBN 978-0-472-75059-7 Search this book on .

“Kingship, Time, and Space: Historiography in Southeast Asia,” The Oxford History of Historical Writing: Volume 2: 400-1400. New York: Oxford University Press, 2018.

“The thirteenth province: Internal administration and external expansion in fifteenth century Đại Việt “ Asian Expansions. The historical experiences of polity expansion in Asia, edited by Geoff Wade. New York: Routledge, 2017. 120-143.

“Building Đại Việt : Temples and Texts under Lý Nhân-tông (r. 1072—1127)” Buddhist Dynamics in Premodern and Early Modern Southeast Asia, Edited by D. Christian Lammerts. Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies Publishing, 2015. 283-306.


with James A. Anderson, “The Dong World: A Proposal for Analyzing the Highlands Between the Yangzi Valley and the Southeast Asian Lowlands,” Asian Highlands Perspectives 44 (2017), 8-71.

“Literati Culture and Integration in Dai Viet, c. 1430-c. 1840,” Modern Asian Studies, 31:3 (1997), 665–687.

“Social Organization and Confucian Thought in Vietnam.” Journal of Southeast Asian Studies, 15:2 (1984), 296–306.

His most cited article was:

  • Caplan N, Choy MH, Whitmore JK. Indochinese refugee families and academic achievement. Scientific American. 1992 Feb 1;266(2):36-45. (Cited532 times, according to Google Scholar. [5])


  1. 1.0 1.1
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Lieberman, Vic. "John K. Whitmore: In Memoriam". Southeast Asian Studies University of Michigan. Retrieved 29 January 2021.
  3. Whitmore, John K (1968). The development of le gouvernment in fifteenth century Vietnam. Ithaca, NY. Search this book on
  4. WorldCat item record [1]
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 [2] Google Scholar Author page, Accessed Oct. 2021

This article "John K. Whitmore" is from Wikipedia. The list of its authors can be seen in its historical and/or the page Edithistory:John K. Whitmore. Articles copied from Draft Namespace on Wikipedia could be seen on the Draft Namespace of Wikipedia and not main one.