About the Course

Approaches to Modern City is a course at Georgetown University (HIST-407-01) that examines the history of the city comparatively and thematically. Each student researches one city for the entire semester. The goal of the course is to rewrite the history of modern cities from the ground level and from new sites and perspectives.

Please see the Spring 2020 syllabus here.

About the Professor

Jordan Sand is Professor of Japanese History at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. He teaches modern Japanese history and other topics in East Asian history, as well as urban history and the world history of food. He lives part of the year in Takoma, D.C., and part of the year in Tokyo. In summer 2020, instead of going to Tokyo he is planting a victory garden in Takoma.

About the Researchers

Rig Freyr is a recent graduate of Georgetown, with a double B.A. in Economics and Japanese. He enjoys studying languages and economic history in general, but particularly with regards to Japan. Rig grew up in California, Oregon, and a host of other places both within and outside the U.S., but has settled down in the Washington, D.C. area for the time being.
Tokyo, Japan

Jane Hutton is an undergraduate student of the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. She is studying Culture and Politics with a minor in Spanish. Born in Pasadena, CA, she is interested in international development, human geography, and environmental justice. Whenever she gets the time, she likes to try new recipes, go on a walk, or collage.
Johannesburg, South Africa

Ojus Jain is a rising senior in the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He is studying International History with a regional focus on South Asia, and is pursuing a certificate in Religion, Ethics, and World Affairs. Ojus was born in Norfolk, Nebraska, and now lives in Nebraska’s capital city, Lincoln. He enjoys reading and traveling when he gets the opportunity, and he spent four months traveling in the Himalayas in 2019.
Delhi, India

Dohee Kang is a PhD student in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at Georgetown University. She is interested in the Buddhist-influenced poetry of modern and contemporary Korea. She was born in Busan, Korea, and lived there until she was eleven. She enjoys the underground music scene of Washington, D.C.
Busan, South Korea

J. Alexander Killion is a rising second-year PhD student in the Department of History at Georgetown University and Master’s student in the German and European Studies Program in the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He studied history at Saginaw Valley State University and Western Michigan University, and Public Policy & Management at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. His current research interest is the historical urban administration of Vienna, Austria during the First World War. He also enjoys reading, writing, and painting.
Vienna, Austria

Amanda Lin is a rising third-year undergraduate at Georgetown University majoring in history and government with a minor in French. She is interested in the history of political thought and state-building in early modern Europe. She was born in Toronto, Canada and grew up in Wilmington, North Carolina.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Kelly Liu is a Master’s student in the Asian Studies Program at Georgetown University. Her current research interests include the history of science in modern China and Maoist historiography. She was born in Aarhus, Denmark, and raised in Toronto, Canada. In her free time, she enjoys reading, baking, and experimenting with film photography.
Nanjing, China

Rosalie Lovy is a recent graduate of the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. She majored in Regional and Comparative Studies of Eastern and Western Europe and minored in French. She is very interested in religious institutions and other forms of values-based governance. Rosalie is also a compulsive reader and caffeine addict.
Cairo, Egypt

Nora Ma is a rising senior majoring in government and history at Georgetown University. She is interested in political thought and history through lenses of migration, citizenship, and colonization. She was born in Yilan, Taiwan, grew up in Long Island, and now lives in Brooklyn. She spent her childhood summers between Taipei and Luodong, eating too many beef noodles and being forced to attend Mandarin lessons.
Taipei, Taiwan

Corbin Richardson
Paris, France

Sonia Su holds a Master’s degree in Asian Studies from Georgetown and serves as a research assistant for Publications at the United States Institute of Peace. She is the founder of Kits to Heart, a hybrid social enterprise that gives cancer care kits to patients throughout the United States. She grew up in Clarksville, Maryland and currently lives in Arlington, Virginia.
Kaohsiung, Taiwan

Dai Yah Thompson is a recent graduate of Georgetown University with B.A. in Japanese and a minor in history. Her academic interests include East Asian languages and culture and educational inequality. She grew up splitting her time between Virginia and New Jersey and in her free time she enjoys reading, listening to music, and learning about animals.
Osaka, Japan

Luan Tian is a recent graduate of the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He majored in International Politics and minored in English. He was born in Guangzhou, China and lived in Adelaide and Melbourne, Australia before moving to the United States. He enjoys reading and bartending in his free time, and travels back to Melbourne every year to watch the Boxing Day cricket test match. He currently lives in New York.
Melbourne, Australia

Minh Vu holds a Master’s degree in Asian Studies from Georgetown and is an assistant at the U.S.-ASEAN Business Council. He was an assistant editor for the Georgetown Journal of Asian Affairs, Vol. 5 and co-authored an article on Vietnam’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic for The Diplomat.
Kyoto, Japan

Aaron Wolf is a recent graduate of Georgetown University, having majored in psychology with minors in history and philosophy. He is interested in geopolitical history and the psychological underpinnings of sociopolitical unrest, especially as relates to large-scale, global conflicts. He grew up in New York City and currently lives in Brooklyn.
Tehran, Iran