Panel III:  International Law

Yale University

Ben Kiernan is Whitney Griswold Professor of History at Yale University.  He is Professor of International and Area Studies and Director of Yale’s Genocide Studies Program (  He obtained his Ph.D. from Monash University, Australia, in 1983. 

Dr. Kiernan is the author of Blood and Soil: A World History of Genocide and Extermination from Sparta to Darfur (2007), which won the 2008 gold medal for the best book in history awarded by the U.S. Independent Publishers Association, and first place in the June 2009 Sachbuchpreis Die Sachbücher des Monats (Nonfiction Book of the Month Prize), sponsored by Süddeutsche Zeitung and NDR Kultur, for its German edition Erde und Blut: Völkermord und Vernichtung von der Antike bis heute.   He also wrote Genocide and Resistance in Southeast Asia: Documentation, Denial and Justice in Cambodia and East Timor (2007), How Pol Pot Came to Power: Colonialism, Nationalism, and Communism in Cambodia, 1930-1975 (1985, 2004), Cambodia: The Eastern Zone Massacres (1986), The Pol Pot Regime: Race, Power and Genocide in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, 1975-1979 (1996, 2002, 2008), and Le Génocide au Cambodge, 1975-1979: Race, idéologie, et pouvoir (1998). He is the co-author of Khmers Rouges ! Matériaux pour l'histoire du communisme au Cambodge (1981), Peasants and Politics in Kampuchea, 1942-1981 (1982), and Cambodge: Histoire et enjeux (1986), and has published numerous articles on Southeast Asia and the history of genocide. He is a member of the editorial boards of Critical Asian Studies, Human Rights Review, and Zeitschrift für Genozidforschung. 

Dr. Kiernan was founding Director of the Cambodian Genocide Program (1994-99) and Convenor of the Yale East Timor Project (2000-02).  His edited collection Conflict and Change in Cambodia won the Critical Asian Studies Prize for 2002, and was republished as a book in 2006. He is also the editor of Genocide and Democracy in Cambodia: The Khmer Rouge, the United Nations, and the International Community (1993), and Burchett: Reporting the Other Side of the World, 1939-1983 (1986), and co-editor of Revolution and Its Aftermath in Kampuchea (1983), Pol Pot Plans the Future: Confidential Leadership Documents from Democratic Kampuchea, 1976-1977 (1988), and The Specter of Genocide: Mass Murder in Historical Perspective (2003).