Welcome to my website! I am a cultural historian of modern Japan and India, based at the University of Edinburgh.

To find out more about my writing and radio journalism, please follow the links above. For my research and teaching, please visit my university webpages. Do also feel free to get in touch, via my Contact page.

At the moment, I’m putting the final touches to The Japanese: A History in Twenty Lives, due for publication in the autumn. I’m also starting work on my next book, about modern Westerners’ search for meaning in Asia and Asian culture, from Samuel Taylor Coleridge through T.S. Eliot to mindfulness practitioners in the present day. With luck, it will be out in 2022. All this amidst the highs and lows of home schooling my children during lockdown – on which subject I recently contributed a short essay to Radio 4’s From Our Home Correspondent.

P.S. If you’re wondering about the main image on my website, these are statues of ‘Jizō’: a Buddhist deity who keeps watch over children and travellers. You can find them all across Japan, merging over time with their surrounds to become features of the natural landscape.

Image credit: Jordy Meow @ Pixabay