Vice-Master of St Cross Professor Rana Mitter has been awarded the 2014 Duke of Westminster Medal for Military Literature by the Royal United Services Institute, for his book "China's War with Japan 1937-1945: The Struggle for Survival".
First awarded in 1997, the Medal is given each year to a book that the Awarding Board considers to be “a notable and original contribution to the study of international or national security, or the military professions”.
Professor Mitter, Director of the China Centre and Professor of the History and Politics of Modern China, was chosen from a shortlist that included such eminent authors as Margaret MacMillan (Warden of St Antony's) and Sir Lawrence Freedman, and he joins a list of winners that includes Sir Max Hastings and Antony Beever.
Baroness Neville Jones, Chair of the Judging Panel, called the book an "outstanding work", noting that "Mitter's work is an elegantly written, accessible historic contribution which goes a long way towards redressing the Western perspective of World War II in China".
Simon Winder, Publishing Director of Allen Lane, said: "The implications of Rana Mitter's remarkable book will take a while to sink in - he makes a persuasive case for completely recasting how we see the Second World War. The Duke of Westminster Medal could not be more dramatic a vindication of Mitter's argument".
On receiving his award, Rana said:
I am delighted and honoured to have been awarded the 2014 Duke of Westminster Award for Military Literature by RUSI. It's a particular pleasure to have won the award for a book about one of the most significant, but least understood theatres of modern conflict, China's eight-year war against Japan from 1937 to 1945. I would also like to extend my deep gratitude to colleagues, students, Penguin publishers, and funding bodies, most notably the Leverhulme Trust, without whom this book would not have been possible.
Monday 30 March 2015