Marilyn Young

Professor of History; Collegiate Professor

Havard University, PhD 1963

Office Address: 

King Juan Carlos Center, Room 605



Field of Study: 

United States

Research Interests: 

U.S. and the World; U.S. foreign relations; U.S.-East Asian relations; Third World women and gender.


Thanks to a generous anonymous grant, Marilyn B. Young was able to attend Harvard University on full scholarship, provided she learned Chinese and wrote a thesis in the field of US-East Asian relations. This, in due course she did, under the direction of Ernest R. May and John King Fairbank, who nicely book-ended the subject matter. The thesis, and subsequent book, Rhetoric of Empire, put 19th century American policy towards China in an international context, examining the Notes as the emerged out of the crisis of the Boxer Rebellion. Her subsequent scholarship has had a dual track: to understand both American imperialism and those who fought against it, at home and abroad.

Selected Works:


TheVietnamWarBOOK.jpgThe Vietnam Wars, 1945-1990, Harper Collins, 1991.  Recently translated into Greek and Italian.  






TransformingRussiaBOOK.jpgTransforming Russia and China: Revolutionary Struggle in the 20th Century (with William Rosenberg), Oxford University Press, 1980.






RhetoricofEmpireBOOK.jpgRhetoric of Empire: American China Policy, 1895-1901, Harvard University Press, 1969. 






Edited Books:

Bombing Civilians: a 20th century history, with Y. Tanaka (The New Press, 2009). 

Making Sense of the Vietnam War, with Mark Bradley (Oxford University Press, 2008).   Iraq and the Lessons of Vietnam  (with Lloyd Gardner), The New Press, 2007. 

The New American Empire  (with Lloyd Gardner), The New Press, 2005.

The Vietnam War: A History in Documents (with Tom Grunfeld and John Fitzgerald), OUP, 2003.  Companion to the Vietnam War  (with Robert Buzzanco) Blackwell, 2002. 

Human Rights and Revolutions, edited with Lynn Hunt and Jeffrey Wasserstrom (Rowman & Littlefield, 2000).

Reporting Vietnam:American Journalism, 1959-1975, two volumes, Library of American, 1998; Editorial Committee. 

Vietnam and America (with Marvin Gettleman, Jane Franklin and Bruce Franklin), Grove Press, 1985; rev. edition Anchor Books, 1995. 

Promissory Notes: Women and the Transition to Socialism (with Rayna Rapp and Sonia Kruks), Monthly Review Press, 1983. 

American Expansionism: the Critical Issues, Little Brown, 1973, edited collection


“The Korean War:  Ambivalence on the Silver Screen,” in The Korean War at Fifty: International Perspectives, edited by Mark F. Wilkinson (John Adams Center for Military History and Strategic Analysis, 2004). 

“In the Combat Zone,” reprinted in Hollywood and War: The Film Reader , edited by J. David Slocum (NY/London; Routledge, 2006). 

“Two, Three, Many Vietnams,” Cold War Studies , November 2006. 

“The Vietnam Laugh Track,” in David Ryan, ed. Iraq in Vietnam (London: Routledge, 2006) 

“’Shared Victory,’ Korea, the U.S. and France,” in The First Vietnam War: Colonial Conflict and Cold War Crisis, ed. Mark Atwood Lawrence and Frederik Logevall. (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2006). 

“The American Empire at War,” in The Barbarization of Warfare, edited by George Kassimeris (London: Routledge/NY: NYU Press, 2006). 

“Counterinsurgency, Now and Forever,” in Gardner and Young's Iraq and the Lessons of Vietnam  

“Why Vietnam Still Matters,” in The War That Never Ends, edited by John Ernst and David Anderson (University Press of Kentucky), 2007.

Book Prizes:

Berkshire Women's History Prize for The Vietnam Wars, 1945-1990

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Updated on 12/11/2012