Thum Ping Tjin (“PJ”) is a Visiting Fellow at Green Templeton College, University of Oxford; Senior Research Fellow at Sunway University, Malaysia; Research Fellow at the Jeffrey Cheah Institute on Southeast Asia; and co-ordinator of Project Southeast Asia.
A Rhodes Scholar, Commonwealth Scholar, award-winning student, Olympic athlete, and Channel swimmer, PJ attended Harvard at the age of 16 where he concentrated in East Asian Studies. After two and a half years in the Navy, he won a Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford, where he read for a second Bachelor’s degree in Modern History and Politics. He later returned to Oxford as Commonwealth Scholar and completed a Doctorate in History. He has also been a Visiting Fellow at the International Institute of Asian Studies, Leiden University. His work centres on decolonisation in Southeast Asia, and its continuing impact on Southeast Asian governance and politics.
- Decolonisation and the Cold War in Southeast Asia
- The history of Singapore and Malaysia
- “The New Normal is the Old Normal: Lessons from Singapore’s History of Dissent,” in Donald Low (ed.), Hard Choices: Challenging the Singapore Consensus. Singapore: NUS Press (2014).
- “Flesh and Bone Reunited As One Body: Singapore’s Chinese-Speaking and their Perspectives on Merger”, in Hong, Lysa and Poh, Soo Kai (eds.), The 1963 Operation Coldstore in Singapore: Commemorating 50 Years. Kuala Lumpur: Strategic Institute of Research and Development (2013).
- “Flesh and Bone Reunited As One Body: Singapore’s Chinese-Speaking and their Perspectives on Merger”, Chinese Southern Diaspora Studies Vol 5 (2011 – 12).
- “The Politics of Southeast Asian History,” IIAS Newsletter 62 (Winter 2012).
- “The Limitations of Monolingual History,” in Tarling, Nicholas (ed.), Studying Singapore’s Past: C.M. Turnbull and the History of Modern Singapore. Singapore: NUS Press, 2012: 1 – 18.
- “Constance Mary Turnbull, 1927-2008,” in Tarling, Nicholas (ed.), Studying Singapore’s Past: C.M. Turnbull and the History of Modern Singapore. Singapore: NUS Press, 2012: 98 – 120.
- “‘Living Buddha’: Chinese perspectives on David Marshall and his government, 1955-56”, Indonesia and the Malay World, Vol 38, Issue 113 (July 2011).
- “Chinese newspapers in Singapore, 1945 – 1963: Mediators of elite and popular tastes in culture and politics”, Journal of the Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol 83, Part 1 (June 2010).
Selected papers may be downloaded at Academia.edu.