Elman and Gross to Transfer to Emeritus Status

June 19, 2017
Benjamin Elman, Photo by Denise Applewhite, Office of Communications; and Jan Gross, Photo by Magda Gross

Nineteen Princeton University faculty members were transferred to emeritus status in recent action by the Board of Trustees. Transfers are effective July 1, 2017.

They include two history professors:

  • Benjamin Elman, the Gordon Wu ’58 Professor of Chinese Studies and professor of East Asian studies and history
  • Jan Gross, the Norman B. Tomlinson ’16 and ’48 Professor in War and Society and professor of history.

Benjamin ElmanBenjamin Elman is a leading scholar on the intellectual history of China. He has written widely on the examination system, scholarship, ethics, science and technology, and governance in China. His publications include: “From Philosophy to Philology”; “Classicism, Politics, and Kinship; A Cultural History of Civil Examinations in Late Imperial China”; “On Their Own Terms: Science in China, 1550-1900”; and “A Cultural History of Modern Science in Late Imperial China.” In 2011, he received the Mellon Foundation Distinguished Achievement Award.

Elman joined the Princeton faculty in 2002 after teaching at the University of California-Los Angeles. He has served as director of graduate studies and department chair, and as the director of the East Asian studies program. He founded the ongoing academic collaboration of Princeton, Fudan University and the University of Tokyo that is dedicated to broadening the comparative history of East Asia in the early modern world.

Elman earned his B.A. from Hamilton College, master’s degree from American University and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania.


Jan Tomasz GrossJan Gross studies modern Europe, focusing on comparative politics, totalitarian and authoritarian regimes, Soviet and East European politics, and the Holocaust.

His first book, “Polish Society under German Occupation,” was published in 1979. “Revolution from Abroad,” analyzes how the Soviet regime was imposed in Poland and the Baltic states between 1939 and 1941. “Neighbors,” was a finalist for the National Book Award and reconstructs the events that took place on July 10, 1941, in the Polish town of Jedwabne, where most of the town’s Jewish residents were killed by Catholic Polish neighbors. The book led to a reevaluation of Jewish-Polish relations during World War II and touched off debate in Poland. His “Fear: Anti-Semitism in Poland after Auschwitz” was published in 2006, followed by “Golden Harvest: Events at the Periphery of the Holocaust” in 2012.

After attending Warsaw University, Gross immigrated to the United States in 1969 and earned a Ph.D. from Yale. He joined the Princeton history department in 2003 after teaching at Yale, Emory University and New York University. A recipient of Guggenheim, Fulbright, Hoover Institution and Rockefeller Foundation fellowships, in 2014 Gross also received Princeton’s Howard T. Behrman Award for Distinguished Achievement in the Humanities.