Charles King

Charles King
658 ICC


Department of Government Chair

Charles King is Professor of International Affairs and Government at Georgetown University, where he previously served as chairman of the faculty of the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service.

King’s research has focused on nationalism, ethnic politics, transitions from authoritarianism, urban history, and the relationship between history and the social sciences. He is the author or editor of seven books, including Midnight at the Pera Palace: The Birth of Modern Istanbul (W. W. Norton, 2014); Odessa: Genius and Death in a City of Dreams (W. W. Norton, 2011), which received the National Jewish Book Award, and The Ghost of Freedom: A History of the Caucasus (Oxford University Press, 2008), which was named “History Book of the Year” by the Moscow Times. His work has been translated into more than ten languages.

King’s research has been supported by the Social Science Research Council, the International Research and Exchanges Board, and the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies. In 2012-13 he was a Fellow of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. He has also held visiting appointments at the University of Michigan and Bosphorus University in Istanbul, where he was a Fulbright Scholar. He is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

A frequent speaker and commentator on global affairs, King has published essays in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and other major newspapers; in magazines such as Foreign Affairs and Foreign Policy; and in web-based media such as The Daily Beast and the Christian Science Monitor. His broadcast appearances have included National Public Radio, CNN, the BBC, and MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show.” He is a three-time recipient of professor-of-the-year honors from Georgetown students and has received both the School of Foreign Service Dean’s Medal and McGuire Medal, the highest awards for service to the school and its students.

A native of the Ozark hill country, King holds degrees in history and politics from the University of Arkansas and Oxford University, where he was a Marshall Scholar.

Areas of Expertise: Ethnic conflict, nationalism, Russia, Eastern Europe, Caucasus, Turkey.

  • DPhil (1995) Oxford University, Politics
  • MPhil (1992) Oxford University, Russian and East European Studies
  • BA (1990) University of Arkansas, History, Philosophy



Charles King. Midnight at the Pera Palace: The Birth of Modern Istanbul. New York: W. W. Norton, 2014.

Charles King. Odessa: Genius and Death in a City of Dreams. New York: W. W. Norton, 2011.

Charles King. Extreme Politics: Nationalism, Violence, and the End of Eastern Europe. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.

Charles King. The Ghost of Freedom: A History of the Caucasus. New York: Oxford University Press, 2008.

Charles King. The Black Sea: A History. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004.

Charles King. The Moldovans: Romania, Russia, and the Politics of Culture. Stanford: Hoover Institution Press, 2000.

Articles in journals

Charles King.Scots to Chechens: How ’Ethnic’ Is Ethnic Conflict?.” Harvard International Review (2007).

Charles King.Imagining Circassia: David Urquhart and the Making of North Caucasus Nationalism.” Russian Review 66 (2007): 238-255.

Charles King.Reforming the Conference Presentation, or What We Can Learn from Hollywood.” PS: Political Science and Politics (2006).

Charles King.A Rose Among Thorns: Georgia Makes Good.” Foreign Affairs (2004): 1-6.

Charles King.The Four Rules of Business Success Around the Black Sea.” Journal of Southeast Europe and Black Sea Studies 4.3 (2004): 491-499.

Charles King.The Micropolitics of Social Violence.” World Politics 56.April (2004): 431-455.

Charles King.Black Sea Blues.” The National Interest 78.5 (2004): 144-147.

Charles King.Marking Time in the Middle Ground: Contested Identies and Moldovan Foreign Policy.” Journal of Communist Studies and Transition Politics 19.3 (2003): 60-82.

Articles in Books

Charles King.Black Sea.” The Oxford Encyclopedia of Maritime History. Ed. John B. Hattendorf. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007.

Charles King.Power, Social Violence, and Civil Wars.” Leashing the Dogs of War: Conflict Management in a Divided World. Ed. Chester Crocker, Fen Osler Hampson, and Pamela Aall. Washington: U.S. Institute of Peace Press, 2007: 115-130

Charles King.Minorities, Violence, and Statehood on the European Periphery.” European Integration and the Nationalities Question. Ed. John McGarry and Michael Keating. London: Routledge, 2006: 124-138

Charles King.Migration and Ethnic Politics in Eastern Europe and Eurasia.” Ethnic Politics and Postcommunism: Theory and Practice. Ed. Zoltan Barany and Robert Moser. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2005: 166-190

Charles King.The Uses of Deadlock: Intractability in Eurasia.” Grasping the Nettle: Analyzing Cases of Intractable Conflict. Ed. Chester A. Crocker, Fen Osler Hampson, and Pamela Aall. Washington, DC: U. S. Institute of Peace Press, 2005.

Charles King.Is the Black Sea a Region?.” The Black Sea Region: Cooperation and Security Building. Ed. Oleksandr Pavliuk and Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze. Armonk, NY: M. E. Sharpe, 2004: 13-26


Charles King.  “Crimea, the Tinderbox,” New York Times 1 Mar. 2014.

Charles King.  “Scotland Independence Movement Sends Dangerous Message,” Christian Science Monitor 16 Oct. 2012.

Charles King.  “The Phantom Menace,” New York Times 15 Aug. 2011. Co-author with Daniel L. Byman.

Charles King.  “Terrorism Meets Xenophobia in Russia,” Los Angeles Times 6 Feb. 2011. Co-author with Rajan Menon.

Charles King. “Lost in the Bargain,” International Herald Tribune 28 Sep. 2010.

Charles King.  “Prisoners of the Caucasus,” International Herald Tribune 23 Jun. 2010. Co-author with Rajan Menon.

Charles King.  “NATO’s First Line of Defense? It Shouldn’t Be Here.” The Washington Post 30 Nov. 2008.

Charles King. “Russo-Georgian Conflict is Not All Russia’s Fault.” Christian Science Monitor 11 Aug. 2008.

Charles King.Bring the Phantom Republics in from the Col.” International Herald Tribune 15 Sep. 2006: .

Charles King.Finally, A Unified Recommendation Form.” Chronicle of Higher Education Review 23 Jan. 2004: .

Edited Books

Charles King, ed. Nations Abroad: Diaspora Politics and International Relations in the Former Soviet Union. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1998.

Book Reviews

Charles King.Past Incorrigible.” Times Literary Supplement (2007).

Charles King.Putin’s List.” Times Literary Supplement (2007).

Charles King.Nearly Nations.” Times Literary Supplement (2006).

Charles King.States of Amnesia.” Times Literary Supplement (2005).

Charles King.Miss Roxani Wins.” Times Literary Supplement (2004).

Charles King.Laws and Wards of War.” Times Literary Supplement (2004).

Charles King.Review of Pal Kolsto, ed., National Integration and Violent Conflict in Post-Soviet Societies.” Slavic Review 63.2 (2004): 393-394.

Charles King.Old Bones.” Times Literary Supplement (2003).


Charles King, “Putin’s Putsch,” (September 22, 2004).

Charles King, “Tbilisi Blues,” (August 25, 2004).