College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Reinier H. Hesselink

  • History

    Faculty - Professor of History


    Ph.D., University of Hawai’i at Manoa, 1992

    Research Interests

    Professor Hesselink travels regularly to Japan, and has wide-ranging research interests concentrating on Japan's relations with the outside world. His book Prisoners from Nambu: Reality and Make-Believe in 17th-Century Japanese Diplomacy (2002) was also published in Japanese and Dutch language editions. In 2016, he published The Dream of Christian Nagasaki: World Trade and the Clash of Cultures, 1560-1640, for which he had received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is now working on a new book project, provisionally entitled The Suicide of Takenaka Uneme. With this project he aims to explain why the samurai class in the beginning of the seventeenth century enforced a ban on Christianity throughout the Japanese islands.

    Teaching Interests

    Dr. Hesselink teaches Liberal Arts Core classes about Japan, and upper level course on Modern and Pre-modern Japanese History, as well as the Introduction to the Study of History, and World History in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries.