Building U.S.-Indonesia Mutual Understanding Since 1994

Theodore Friend

Theodore Friend, a teacher, historian and novelist with twenty-one years’ experience as president of two leading private organizations, is now a Senior Fellow of the Foreign Policy Research Institute, Philadelphia. In 2003, Harvard University Press published his latest book, Indonesian Destinies. For the educated lay reader, he tells the story of the Indonesian nation state, from revolution against the Dutch through solving of the terrorist bombing in Bali. In doing so, he conveys the anthropological and religious variety of Indonesia, and differences among its several layers of Islam. In 2004, he served as C.V. Starr Distinguished Visiting Professor of Southeast Asia Studies at Johns Hopkins University, School of Advanced International Studies, Washington, DC.

President, Eisenhower Exchange Fellowships, 1984-96
President, Swarthmore College, 1973-82

Other Historical Publications:
Dr. Friend’s first book, Between Two Empires: The Ordeal of the Philippines, 1929-1946, was published by Yale University Press in 1965, and won the Bancroft Prize in American History, Foreign Policy, and Diplomacy (1966). In 1988, Princeton University Press published his major comparative history: The Blue-Eyed Enemy: Japan Against the West in Java and Luzon, 1942-1945. Of it, a leading reviewer said: “one of the most distinguished and literate Southeast Asian historians…seeks to understand three Asian and two Western cultures and is informed by psychological, philosophical and historical literature in half a dozen languages….[An] elegantly presented feast.”

Other Awards and Honors:
Fulbright Scholar (Philippines 1957-59); Rockefeller Foundation Fellow in International Relations (1961-62); NDEA Post-Doctoral Fellow for study of Indonesian language (1966-67); Guggenheim Foundation Fellow (1967-68) in Indonesia, Philippines and Japan; Honorary Doctor of Laws degree, Williams College (1978); Fellow, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (1983-84); Fellow, Rockefeller Center for Artists and Scholars, Bellagio (1988); Dwight D. Eisenhower Medal for Leadership and Service (1997).

Current Activities Related to International Affairs:
Senior Fellow, FPRI; Board of Advisors, United States-Indonesia Society; Executive Committee, American-Indonesian Interreligious Initiative; Board of Directors, Metanexus Institute on Religion and Science; President Emeritus and Trustee, Eisenhower Fellowships; Chairman Emeritus and Member, Executive Committee, Philadelphia Committee on Foreign Relations; Member, Council on Foreign Relations (New York City).

Other Interests:
Religious studies; fiction (Family Laundry: NY, Beaufort Books, 1986); hiking; squash racquets (nationally ranked senior player, 1983 – present day)