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Department of History

David A. Graff

Richard A. and Greta Bauer Pickett Professor of Military History

David Graff - updatedOffice: 010A Calvin Hall
Email: dgraff@k-state.edu

David A. Graff is a professor in the Department of History and has been the holder of the Richard A. and Greta Bauer Pickett Chair for Exceptional Faculty since 2017. He is the director of Kansas State’s undergraduate program in East Asian Studies and associate director of the graduate program in Security Studies. He received his Ph.D. in East Asian Studies from Princeton University in 1995 and came to Kansas State University in 1998 after holding temporary teaching positions at Southern Methodist University (1994-5) and Bowdoin College (1995-7) and spending a year as a visiting scholar at Harvard University (1997-8). His research focuses on Chinese military history, especially that of the Tang dynasty (618-907). He is currently completing a translation of what remains of Li Jing’s “Art of War,” an early Tang military text, and is also working on a study of internal politics and labor relations in the provincial armies of the late Tang period. He is one of the two editors-in-chief of the Journal of Chinese Military History and has also served as secretary of the Chinese Military History Society (Visit the page) since its founding in 1998. He teaches all periods of Chinese and Japanese history for undergraduates, as well as world history at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. His graduate teaching has focused on East Asian military history and security issues.

Select Publications

“The Reach of the Military: Tang.” Journal of Chinese History 1.2 (July 2017), 243-268.

The Eurasian Way of War: Military Practice in Seventh-Century China and Byzantium. London and New York: Routledge, 2016.

Editor, with Robin Higham, of A Military History of China, 2nd edition (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 2012).

“The Chinese Concept of Righteous War.” In The Prism of Just War: Asian and Western Perspectives on the Legitimate Use of Military Force, edited by Howard M. Hensel (Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate, 2010), 195-216.

“Fang Guan’s Chariots: Scholarship, War, and Character Assassination in the Middle Tang.” Asia Major (Third Series), Vol. XXII, Pt. 1 (2009), 105-130.

“Narrative Maneuvers: The Representation of Battle in Tang Historical Writing.” In Military Culture in Imperial China, edited by Nicola Di Cosmo (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2009), 143-164.

Medieval Chinese Warfare, 300-900. London and New York: Routledge, 2002.

Courses Taught

  • HIST 111, World History to 1450
  • HIST 112, World History Since 1450
  • HIST 300, Introduction to Historical Thinking
  • HIST 330, History of East Asian Civilizations
  • HIST 331, Introduction to Japan
  • HIST 501, Japan’s Samurai Age
  • HIST 504, Intellectual History of Early China
  • HIST 507, China Since 1644
  • HIST 508, Introduction to Modern China and Japan
  • HIST 509, Japan Since 1550
  • HIST 810, Security Studies Methodology
  • HIST 815, Research Design in Security Studies
  • HIST 850, History and Security: East Asia
  • HIST 981, Topics: World History