Professor Shinobu Majima

Shinobu Majima is Professor of world economic history at Gakushuin University, Tokyo, and has a doctorate in modern history from the University of Oxford. Her broad range of interest has centered around the history of consumption. Since her permanent research base moved to Japan, after having worked at Centre for Research on Socio-cultural Change at Manchester, her interest broadened to include the history of Southeast Asia, particularly Malaysia and Singapore, at a crossroad between the imperial histories of Britain and Japan. She has just completed a collaborative project which explored how Japanese wartime economists tried to comprehend ethno-diverse society and consumption in Singapore, and also recently written up a history of inland trading routes, native markets and consumption, based on funded research expeditions into the rainforest of Malaysian Borneo. During her sabbatical leave at Oxford, she would like to further foster her interdisciplinary approaches into global history, connecting history with consumption studies, anthropology and economics in four strands: (1) fashion and global economy between the 17th and the 21st century; (2) new interdisciplinary teaching methods on global economic history; (3) a comparative history on development and application of family spending surveys in the wartime occupied territories; and (4) global fashion trade and rediscovery of ethnic sartorial tradition in colonial Asia.