Matthew Wright

Faculty Information

History, Soccer, Squash

Contact Information



BA, St. Olaf College
MA, University of Washington, Seattle

Other Information


Matthew is a historian specializing in East Asia. He was born in Spokane, Washington and has lived around the Pacific Northwest and in Minnesota, Tokyo, Shanghai, Washington, D.C., Seoul and Los Angeles.

A lifelong love of history has taken him from a childhood fascination with the Second World War and Ancient Rome to more recent studies of modern transnational history. He did his undergraduate degree at St. Olaf College, received a master’s degree from the University of Washington and most recently was a Ph.D. student in the Asian Languages and Cultures department at UCLA. In East Asia, he studied at Waseda University in Tokyo, taught at East China Normal University in Shanghai, and worked as a researcher at the Research Institute of Comparative History and Culture at Hanyang University in Seoul.

He has most recently studied the aftermath of Japanese colonialism and the emerging Cold War in Korea and maintains an active interest in the global Cold War, especially anti-communism as an international movement.

During his time in Washington, D.C., he worked at the Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA and participated in various groups and discussions on foreign policy and international affairs, particularly relating to East Asia.

He lives in an apartment in Founder’s Hall with his wife Jamie and young son Elbie, and serves as an assistant coach for the boys’ thirds soccer and junior varsity squash teams. He enjoys making full English breakfasts, writing mediocre poetry about highways, playing garage rock on the guitar, watching Stanley Kubrick films, listening to Serge Gainsbourg, and stumbling awkwardly through games of tennis, squash, and golf.