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Mitchell B. Lerner

Mitchell B. Lerner

Mitchell B. Lerner




253 Dulles Hall
230 Annie and John Glenn Ave
Columbus, OH

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Areas of Expertise

  • US History since 1877
  • Diplomatic History
  • East Asian History
  • Human Conflict, Peace, and Diplomacy

Mitchell Lerner is professor of history and director of the East Asian Studies Center at The Ohio State University. His research and teaching focuses on modern American diplomatic and political history during the Cold War, with an emphasis on U.S.-Korean relations.

Lerner's first book, The Pueblo Incident: A Spy Ship and the Failure of American Foreign Policy, was published in 2002 by the University Press of Kansas. The book won the 2002 John Lyman Book Award for best work of U.S. Naval History, and was named by the American Library Association as one of fifty "historically significant works" that would not have been published after the passage of Executive Order 13233. It was also nominated for the Pulitzer and Bancroft Prizes. He also is the editor of three volumes that work at the intersection of American politics and foreign policy.

He has published articles about modern American politics and foreign policy (often with an East Asian focus) in numerous anthologies and journals, including Diplomatic History, Diplomacy & Statecraft, The Journal of Military History, Presidential Studies Quarterly, Journal of East Asian AffairsJournal of Cold War Studies, and the Journal of East Asian Relations. He is currently at work on a policy history of the Johnson administration, as well as a broad study of U.S.-Korean relations during the Cold War.

Lerner was elected to the governing council of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations in 2008, and is on the advisory board of the North Korea International Documentation Project, directed by the Cold War International History Project at the Wilson Center for Scholars. He has also served as a fellow at the University of Virgnia's Miller Center for Public Affairs, and in 2005-2006, he held the Mary Ball Washington Distinguished Fulbright Chair at University College-Dublin. In 2019, he was selected to the Association of Asian Studies' Distinguished Speakers Bureau, and also delivered the National Security Agency's Center for Crytologic History 's annual Henry Schorrek Memorial Lectures.

Lerner has received fellowships and grants from the Korea Foundation, Lyndon Johnson Presidential Library, Dwight Eisenhower Presidential Library, and John F. Kennedy Presidential Library. He has served as editor of Passport: The Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations Review, and is now associate editor of the a Journal of American-East Asian Relations. In 2005, Lerner won the Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching, and in 2019, he won the Ohio Academy of History's Distinguished Teacher Prize. In 2022, he was the Peter Hahn Distinguished Service Award from the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations.

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