John K. Fairbank Prize Recipients
Established by a gift to the Association from the friends of the prominent historian of China and East Asia at Harvard and President of the Association in 1968, the John K. Fairbank Prize is awarded for the best work on the history of China proper, Vietnam, Chinese Central Asia, Mongolia, Manchuria, Korea, or Japan since the year 1800.
2015 Fairbank Prize
Rian Thum, Loyola Univ. New Orleans
The Sacred Routes of Uyghur History (Harvard Univ. Press)
In this richly textured, rigorously argued, and theoretically provocative work, Rian Thum narrates with profound ethnographic sensitivity the complex histories of community-formation and world-making among the Turkic Muslims of Altishahr—now known as the Uyghur peoples of northwest China. The Sacred Routes of Uyghur History introduces a vital chapter in the histories of Central Asia, Islam, the Qing empire, and the Chinese nation-state, and spurs the historian to reexamine deeply held notions surrounding early modern identity-formation, print culture, nationalism, and the very meaning of writing history.