Kings in All But Name: The Lost History of Ouchi Rule in Japan, 1350–1569
By Thomas Conlan
In the sixteenth century, members of the Ouchi family were kings in all but name in much of Japan. Immensely wealthy, they controlled sea lanes stretching to Korea and China, as well as the Japanese city of Yamaguchi, which functioned as an important regional port with a growing population and a host of temples and shrines. The family was unique in claiming ethnic descent from Korean kings, and-remarkably for this time-such claims were recognized in both Korea and Japan. Their position, coupled with dominance over strategic ports and mines, allowed them to facilitate trade throughout East and Southeast Asia. They also played a key cultural role in disseminating Confucian texts, Buddhist sutras, ink paintings, and pottery, and in creating a distinctive, hybrid culture that fused Japanese, Korean, and Chinese beliefs, objects, and customs. Read more about Kings in All But Name.
Lost Fatherland: Europeans Between Empire and Nation-States, 1867–1939
By Iryna Vushko
How the demise of the Habsburg Empire, postwar sovereignty, and new diplomatic frontiers shaped the nature of citizenship, identity, and belonging across Europe
This book is a collective portrait of twenty-one key statesmen who came of age during the Habsburg Empire. They include the cofounder of Austro-Marxism and the Austrian republic’s first foreign minister, the cofounder of the European Union after the Second World War, the founder of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, and Mussolini’s ambassador to Vienna. Some survived the First World War and the resulting geographical divisions in their homelands, and some went on to serve in politics and governments throughout Europe. Read more about Lost Fatherland.