The History Department has named a University of Chicago professor to fill the gap in modern Chinese History created when John K. Fairbank '29, Higginson Professor of History Emeritus, retired last June.
Philip A. Kuhn '54, known to East Asian historians at Harvard for his book, "Rebellion and Its Enemies," will teach four courses on modern China next year, including Fairbank's old course, History 1830, which has not been taught for two years.
The Corporation is expected soon to give its pro forma approval to appoint Kuhn professor of History.
China scholars here, who have frequently complained of Harvard's inadequate course offerings on China's history from the 18th century to the Rise of the People's Republic, will welcome his arrival, Roy M. Hofheinz, director of the Fairbank Center for East Asian Research, said yesterday.
"Kuhn is a very eminent scholar and I think he'll add great luster to the department," Benjamin I. Schwartz, Williams Professor of History and Political Science, said yesterday.
Kuhn said yesterday it will be difficult to leave Chicago, but added that the quality of the Harvard student body and faculty attracts him.
Kuhn received his masters degree from Georgetown University and received his Ph.D. in 1964 for work at Harvard with Fairbank.
Kuhn said he is glad to see a non-Western history course requirement in the current Core Curriculum proposal.
Harvard's core proposal looks "very familiar" to the core curriculum which has existed at Chicago since 1930, and which has worked well. Kuhn said.