Graduate Student Directory

Drew Kenneth Richardson
  • Title
    • PhD Candidate
  • Division Humanities Division
  • Department
    • History Department
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Office Location
    • Humanities Building 1, 535
  • Office Hours In Person: Mondays, 10am-Noon / Zoom Office Hours Available Upon Request
  • Mail Stop History Department

Research Interests

I'm broadly interested in the intersections of the supernatural and media in modern Japan. I am interested in things like the relationship of feng shui, rumour, and radio projects in Okinawa, the occult history of the Japanese post office, and the relationship of Japanese native ethnography, yokai, and early Japanese encyclopediae.

I am also a Co-Director of Curricular Development for the Okinawa Memories Initiative ( Our online class on Okinawan/Ryukyuan history launches in Fall 2020. If you want to a fresh perspective on East Asian history, please check it out!

Research Keywords: East Asia; Modern Japanese history; Media studies; Monsters, Yokai, and the Supernatural; Folklore; Minzokugaku;

I am a visiting research fellow at Kokugakuin University for the 2020-2021 academic year. To meet with me, please schedule a zoom appointment by e-mail (

Biography, Education and Training


2016-22    PhD In East Asian History

                University of California Santa Cruz

                Dissertation: Mediating Monsters: Placing Yokai in Modern Japan, a Media History

2018         MA in History

                University of California Santa Cruz

                Thesis: Subversive in Nature?; or, When Found, Make Note Of: Minakata Kumagusu's Database Collaborations in Notes & Queries

 Japanese Language Training and Education Abroad

2020-2021 Visiting Research Fellow

                 Kokugakuin University

2019-2020 Inter-University Center for Japanese Language Studies

                10-Month Program


Honors, Awards and Grants

2020-2021       Kokugakuin University Visiting Fellows Program

2019                Toshiba International Foundation Summer Fellowship

2019-20           Nippon Foundation Fellows Scholarship

2019               The Humanities Institute Summer Research Fellowship  

2018                Social Science Research Council Dissertation Development Program

2017                The Middle Ages in the Wider World Research Grant

2016                Regents' Fellowship

2015                Kadokawa Culture Promotion Foundation: Media-Content Research Project "Mediated World," University of Tokyo