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Roderick Ike Wilson

Profile picture for Roderick Ike Wilson

Contact Information

316 Gregory Hall
810 S Wright
Urbana, IL 61801
Associate Professor
Interim Head of EALC (Fall 2023)

Research Description

Roderick Wilson is an Associate Professor in the Department of History and the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. His research focuses on the intersection of people and their local habitats in Tokugawa and modern Japan. He is the author of Turbulent Streams: An Environmental History of Japan's Rivers, 1600-1930 (Brill, 2021) and is currently working on a second book about the urban and environmental history of Tokyo. At the University of Illinois, he also teaches a variety of courses on Tokyo, Japan, East Asia, and global environmental history.


Ph.D., History, Stanford University
M.A., Modern Japanese History, University of Oregon
B.A., History, Japanese Language Minor, Portland State University

Courses Taught

CAS 587: Climate | Change (Spring 2024)

History 120: East Asian Civilizations (Spring 2024)
History 200: Introduction to Historical Interpretation—Global Environmental History (Fall 2020)
History 200: Introduction to Historical Interpretation—Science, Technology, and Medicine in East Asia (Spring 2019)
History 227: Modern Japanese History (Spring 2020)
History 427: Twentieth-Century Japan (Fall 2021)
History 570: Global Environmental History (Spring 2015)
History 594: Introduction to Historical Writing (Spring 2022)

EALC 250: Introduction to Japanese Culture (Spring 2022)
EALC 327: Tokyo, Then and Now  (Fall 2023)
EALC 398: Colloquium in EALC—History and Memory of the Asia-Pacific War (Spring 2017)
EALC 500: Proseminar in EALC (Fall 2023)
EALC 550: Historiography of Modern Japan (Fall 2019)


Additional Campus Affiliations

Department of History

Center for East Asian & Pacific Studies (CEAPS), Affiliate

Recent Publications

Wilson, R. I. (Accepted/In press). The Renowned Waters of Edo: The Formation of an Urban Waterscape in Early Modern Japan. In N. Breyfogle, & P. Brown (Eds.), Water and Culture in Eurasian History University of Pittsburgh Press.

Wilson, R. I. (2021). Turbulent Streams: An Environmental History of Japan’s Rivers, 1600–1930. (Brill's Japanese Studies Library; Vol. 68). Brill.

Morrissey, R. M., & Wilson, R. I. (Eds.) (2016). Environmental Humanities from Below. Resilience: A Journal of the Environmental Humanities, 3, 1-434.

Morrissey, R. M., & Wilson, R. I. (2016). Introduction: Grassroots History: Global Environmental Histories from Below. Resilience: A Journal of the Environmental Humanities, 3, 1-13.

Wilson, R. I. (2016). New Routes Through Old Japan. In K. Wigen, S. Fumiko, & C. Karacas (Eds.), Cartographic Japan: A History in Maps (pp. 120-124). University of Chicago Press.

View all publications on Illinois Experts