Marc Frey, born in Heidelberg, Germany, in 1963. Ph.D. from Universität zu Köln. Assistant Professor at the Institute of Anglo-American History at the Universität zu Köln.
Fellow (1 September 2003 – 30 June 2004)
DECOLONIZATION AND TRANSFORMATION: THE UNITED STATES IN SOUTHEAST ASIA, 1930-1961
During my fellowship in the academic year 2003/04, I completed research and writing on a study on “Decolonization and Transformation: The United States and the Dissolution of the European Empires in Southeast Asia, 1930-1961”. The study analyses the creation, consolidation and erosion of the informal American empire in Southeast Asia in the late 1940s and during the 1950s. The discussion includes a comparative study of the decolonization of the British, French and Dutch empires in Southeast Asia, the regional approaches in U.S. foreign policies, and bilateral relations with Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia, Malaya, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Major themes are American policies towards the colonial and postcolonial world; state building; strategic issues and alliance policies; counter-insurgency and the evolution of the doctrine of ‘limited wars’; subversion and covert operations; development policies, transfers of norms and values, and information and propaganda campaigns. On a theoretical and methodological level, the study clarifies problems of hegemony and empire in international relations history and introduces concepts of ‘governmentality’ and biopolitics to the field. It explains that the Cold War did not produce a bipolar system, on the contrary. The behaviour of autonomous local actors ensured that the post-war international system, with regard to the Third World, is polycentric characterised not only by inter-bloc competition but by serious tensions within the two ideological blocs.