Portrait Photograph of David Fields

David Fields

Associate Director, Center for East Asian Studies

Institute for Regional and International Studies l Center for East Asian Studies

Hometown: Leon, WI

David Fields is the Associate Director of the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He is the author of Foreign Friends: Syngman Rhee, American Exceptionalism, and the Division of Korea and the editor of The Diary of Syngman Rhee, 1904–34, 1944, published by the National Museum of Korean Contemporary History. Since 2015 he has been the book review editor of the Journal of American-East Asian Relations. He has been published in the Washington Post, North Korea Review, Journal of American-East Asian Relations, SinoNK.com, Transactions of the Royal Asiatic Society-Korea Branch and in the Working Papers Series of the Cold War International History Project. His research and analysis has been featured on National Public Radio, Wisconsin Public Radio, C-SPAN and CNN.

David prefers in-person talks only.


How Korea was Divided and Why It Matters

Explore how an obscure 1882 American treaty with the Kingdom of Joseon, the explosion of Christianity in Korea in the early 20th century, and four decades of Korean and American activism led to the division of Korea in August 1945—the consequences of which still haunt East Asia and the United States.

Understanding North Korea

Explore how the North Korean regime uses ideology and underdevelopment to maintain itself in power and what implications North Korean stability has for US policy towards the Korean Peninsula.