• Dr. Keyao "Kyle" Pan received his Ph.D. from the Department of History at the University of Chicago in 2021. He specializes in the history of discourse and activism about rights (especially concepts related to human rights) in Japan and Asia. Dr. Pan's primary research to date has focused on how the term jinken (lit. "human rights" in Japanese) has gained and lost critical potential for conceptualizing Japan as a nation within empires over the past century and a half. His forthcoming monograph, tentatively titled Chasing the Beyond: Overcoming Empire(s) with "Human Rights" in Japan, recovers the obscured localized history of jinken to illuminate how the optic of empire can be both constructed and forgotten in the context of Asia, especially in today's new Cold War.

    Dr. Pan is also building a network database of historical justice activism in Japan and Asia using digital tools such as Neo4j and other graph database and visualization tools. He is currently working on a graph database of the lawsuits, lawyers, and activists in the 1990s transnational reparations movement for Japan's colonial and wartime atrocities (

full name

  • Keyao Pan