Transnational modern design histories in east asia: an introduction

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Over the last two decades there has been a steady increase in the publication of studies on East Asian design and craft, reflecting a current heightened awareness of globalization across the world, and East Asia’s rise into a political, economic and creative power. These factors have complemented long standing interests in Chinoiserie and Japonisme. In parallel, design history studies inside East Asia have been developing and maturing at a fast pace while a small number of design historians in Angloamerica have also been continuously working on East Asia. However, little of the achievement of scholars working on and in their local areas for decades, has been recognised and published in English. In this special issue we would like to present a glimpse of this informative work from four authors who are established or working in this region, and who are active participants in this area of research. Although our starting point has been the questions about ‘global design history’ raised in the three part series ‘re: focus design—Design Histories and Design Studies in East Asia’ published by the Journal of Design History it is interesting to trace how the ideas of global and, more recently, transnational have evolved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)323-334
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Design History
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 4 Nov 2014

Bibliographical note

This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in Journal of Design History following peer review. The version of record Yuko Kikuchi and Dr Yunah Lee, Transnational Modern Design Histories in East Asia: An Introduction J Design Hist (2014) 27 (4): 323-334. is available online at:


  • design history
  • East Asia
  • modernity
  • transnational


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