Richard C. Thornton

Professor of History and International Affairs
801 22nd Street NW
[email protected]

Areas of Expertise

History of US-Russian and Sino-Russian relations; and U.S. Foreign Policy

Professor Thornton received his B.A. from Colgate (1961) in Russian and Far Eastern Affairs and his Ph.D. in history from the University of Washington, with emphasis on the modern histories of the United States, Russia, China, and Japan. He has taught at GW since 1967. Currently Thornton offers undergraduate and graduate courses on: American foreign policy since World War II, Twentieth-Century China, and Sino-Soviet relations.

His major works include: The Reagan Revolution, I: The Politics of U.S. Foreign Policy (2003); Odd Man Out: Truman, Stalin, Mao and the Origins of the Korean War (2000); The Falklands Sting: Reagan, Thatcher, and Argentina's Bomb (1998); The Carter Years: Toward A New World Order (1991); The Nixon-Kissinger Years: Restructuring American Foreign Policy (2001); and China: A Political History (1982).


Ph.D., University of Washington

Classes Taught

HIST 3332 American Foreign Policy Since WW II
HIST 3333 History of American Foreign Policy
HIST 3614 Writing Modern Chinese History
HIST 3615 History of Chinese Communism