East Asian Studies Courses
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Spring, 2014 | East Asian Studies
Selected topics in the arts of South and East Asia from earliest times to the present day. Emphasis on the cultural setting and roles of the arts in Asian societies. Attention to cross-cultural comparisons and to media and technique. Classroom lectures; smaller, bi-weekly discussion sections. NO PREREQUISITE.
In the contemporary media landscape, film, television, games, publishing, and merchandizing are increasingly connected and help distribute cultural products across the globe. Japanese animation is one of the earliest and most successful examples of this powerful strategy. This course examines the global franchising industry of Japanese anime to explore basic questions about media and popular culture: How do we define a medium? How do consumer practices shape media and popular culture? What is the impact of globalization on media, and global media on national culture? Our investigations of Japan "cool" and its avid consumer cultures will cover: animation aesthetics and technology; media convergence; anime fan cultures; science-fiction and remaking the body, history, and identity through global media. No prerequisites. Enrollment limited to fifteen college freshmen. In addition to class meetings, there will be a mandatory weekly scheduled screening Mondays@ 4 pm.
The development of Japanese culture from antiquity to the present: an overview of Japanese cultural history, focusing on the interplay of crucial aspects of contemporary Japanese society and Japanese social psychology.
An introduction to Chinese culture through selected topics that link various periods in China's past with the present. Ongoing concerns will be social stratification, political organization, and the arts, gender relationships and the rationales for individual behavior, and the conceptions through which Chinese have identified their cultural heritage. Our readings will include literary, philosophical, and historical documents as well as cultural histories. Regular short writing assignments: take-hone final. NO PREREQUISITES.
For some, "Japan" evokes Hello Kitty, animated films, cartoons, and sushi. For others, the Nanjing Atrocity, "Comfort Women," the Bataan Death March, and problematic textbooks. For still others, woodblock prints, tea ceremony, and cherry blossoms, or Sony Walkmans and Toyotas. Still others may hold no image at all. Tracing the story of Japan's transformations, from a pre-industrial peasant society managed by samurai-bureaucrats into an expansionist nation-state and then to its current paradoxical guise of a peaceful nation of culture led by conservative nationalists, provides the means for deepening our understandings of historical change in one region and grappling with the methods and aims of the discipline of History. Modern, East Asia. PREREQUISITE: SEE HISTORY HEADNOTE.
This course examines the history of China's foreign policy since the mid-20th century through a case study of China's most important bilateral relation-the US-China relation. The intensity of the Sino-American partnership and rivalries can be discerned in a wide range of national and international events such as the Communist revolution, the Korean War, the Indochina war and de-colonization, the Cold War, China's economic reform and the expansion of global economy, the pro-democracy movement in China and the human rights debate, the global financial crisis, and war on terrorism. It aims to study the following questions: How did China perceive and come to terms with the U.S.'s foreign policy in East Asia in the wake of WWII? What have China and the U.S. done to confront or accommodate each other in global politics during the Cold War? How did basic developments in Sino-US relations affect China's domestic political campaigns and social movements? How has China's foreign policy balanced the often competing goals of state security, economic stability, domestic political order, and international influence? What role did non-state actors (academic institutions, businesses, religious groups, NGO, and international organizations) play in shaping Sino-US relations? What are the impacts of a rising China on geopolitics in Asia-Pacific region and the U.S.'s global leadership in the 21st century? By drawing on scholarship in political and social history and area studies, this course will help students better understand the formation and transformation of Sino-American relations and its impacts on domestic, regional, and global affairs.
This course traces the history of China over the course of the nineteenth century, with an emphasis on social and cultural history. This was one of the most tumultous centuries in Chinese history, during which China faced threats from abroad in the form of Western and Japanese imperialism, and from within, in the form of environmental degradation and rebellions resulting in an unprecedented loss of human life. The nineteenth century has thus often been portrayed as a period of sharp decline for China. At the same time, we will explore the ways in which the origins of the dynamic society and economy found in China today, as well as the worldwide influence of overseas Chinese, can be traced to this century of turnoil. Modern, East Asia. PREREQUISITE: SEE HISTORY HEADNOTE.
This survey explores the emerging modern voice in Japanese literature, with emphasis on prose fiction. After a brief introduction to earlier centuries, we will focus on the short stories and novels of the twentieth century. Among the authors considered will be Natsume Soseki, Nagai Kafu, Tanizaki Jun'ichiro, and Nobel laureates Kawabata Yasunari and Oe Kenzaburo. Discussions will center on issues of modernity, gender, and literary self-representation. Required of all Japanese majors and recommended for all Chinese majors. No knowledge of Japanese language required.
An introduction to the major writers and works of Chinese literature from the turn of the century to the present, including fiction, poetry and film. We will look at these works from China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong in their relevant literary, socio-political and cultural contexts (including Western influences). Required of all Chinese majors, and recommended for Japanese and East Asian Studies majors. All readings in English translation. NO PREREQUISITE.
This course will explore the ways in which Chinese artists of the twentieth century have defined modernity and tradition against the complex background of China's history. Through examining art works in different media along with other documentary materials, we will engage with the theoretical issues in art history, such as modernity, cultural politics, and government control of art.
One of the most powerful ways that a religion can realize its central beliefs and practices is through art and material culture. Rather than focusing on the historical development of Buddhist artwork itself, this course will be organized around conceptual themes concerning the evolution of key philosophies and rituals. By the end of the course, students will have a good understanding of the basic religious ideas and history of Himalayan Buddhism, much as they might gain from a standard introductory course on religion. However, students in this class will also understand the inestimable role of art and material culture in Himalayan Buddhism, as well as the ways in which artworks can express philosophical ideas, epitomize esoteric practices, aid in the transmission/propagation of religion, and in short be one of the most meaningful ways to explore and understand another culture. The course will involve works of art from the past 2000 years of history in regions of South Asia including northern India, Nepal, and Tibet.
This undergraduate course surveys the major writers and works of twentieth-century Korean literature. During the twentieth century Korea went through a radical process of modernization. From its colonization by Japan, to its suffering of a civil war within the cold war order, to its growth into a cultural and economic powerhouse, Korea's historical experience is at once unique and typical of that of a third-world nation. By immersing ourselves in the most distinctive literary voices from Korea, we will examine how the Korean experience of modernization was filtered through its cultutral production. In class discussion, we will pay special attention to the writers' construction of the self and the nation. How do social categories such as ethnicity, class, gender, and race figure in the varying images of the self? And how do these images relate to the literary vision of the nation? Along the way, we will observe the prominent ideas, themes, and genres of Korean literature. This class will combine discussion with lecture with students strongly encouraged to participate. All literary texts are in English translation and no previous knowledge of Korean is required.
Korea developed many of its distinctive religious traditions through interaction with non-indigenous traditions from China (Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism) as well as Western religions such as Catholicism (imported via China) and Protestantism, which came to Korea directly from the West. Korea in turn actively contributed to the formation of pan-Asian religious traditions such as Hwaom (Huayan/ Kegon) Buddhism. In this course we will explore the histories and the development of the doctrines, rituals, and practices of the major Korean religious traditions (including shamanism) both within Korea itself and in the broader East Asian context. Graduate students wishing to enroll in this course should contact the Religious Studies Program.
Women writers can be found throughout most of China's imperial history, and from the 16th century on, there were an extraordinary number of women writing and also publishing their works. Despite this fact, only a very few writings by women were included in the traditional literary canon and until recently, were not considered worthy of scholarly attention. Fortunately, there is now a growing body of critical studies on, and translations of, these women writers. In this course, we will explore the writings of Chinese women from the 1st through to the early 20th centuries, and discuss the changing historical and social contexts within which these women wrote and the obstacles of both genre and gender that had to be overcome in order to ensure that their voices were heard. Much of our discussion will be based on primary sources (in English translation): reading, listening and trying to understand and interpret these women's own words, especially since they have been silenced or ignored for so long, is both the beginning and the basis for learning about their place in, and contribution to, Chinese literary history. Graduate students and graduating EALC majors who want to take this course should enroll in 482, and will be expected to do additional readings and, if possible, make use of primary sources in Chinese when preparing their final paper.
This writing-intensive seminar explores transformations in popular culture and everyday life in Chinese society since 1949 through an analytical focus on political economy and material culture. Drawing upon ethnographic texts, films, and material artifacts, we will investigate how the forces of state control and global capitalism converge to shape consumer desires and everyday habits in contemporary China. Case studies include eating habits, fashion standards, housing trends, entertainment, sports, and counterfeit goods. Prerequisite: previous course in China studies (anthropology, economics, history, literature, philosophy, or political science) required. Enrollment by instructor approval only.
This course examines the place of health, illness, and healing in Asian societies. We will explore how people experience, narrate, and respond to illness and other forms of suffering - including political violence, extreme poverty, and health inequalities. In lectures and discussions we will discuss major changes that medicine and public health are undergoing and how those changes affect the training of practitioners, health care policy, clinical practice and ethics. The course will familiarize students with key concepts and approaches in medical anthropology by considering case studies from a number of social settings including China, India, Indonesia,Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Tibet, Thailand, Vietnam and Asian immigrants in the United States. We will also investigate the sociocultural dimensions of illness and the medicalization of social problems in Asia, examining how gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, disability and other forms of social difference affect medical knowledge and disease outcomes. This course is intended for anthropology majors, students considering careers in medicine and public health, and others interested in learning how anthropology can help us understand human suffering and formulate more effective interventions.
This course aims to examine Western influences in Japan and Japan's reconceptualizing the "West" in various aspects of popular culture, including cuisine, sports, music, language, advertising, entertainment, and domesticity. It is primarily an anthropological survey with historical references on Japan's turn to Western civilization in the modern era. The course explores Japanese perceptions of the "West", and how Japanese consume the "West" by attaching meanings to "Western" symbols and practices, and making them part of Japanese culture and life. Rather than explicating Japan's relationship with the West, the course scrutinizes the "West" constructed within Japanese discourse, as both a racial/ethnic other and a cultural fantasy. Course assignments include a roundtable discussion on specific topics relating to cultural integration and internationalization, and globalization and localization.
The Tale of Genji, often described as the world's first novel, was written over a thousand years ago by the Japanese court lady Murasaki Shikibu. Set amid the intrigues and rivalries of the elegant Heian court, this masterpiece centers on the life and loves of "the shining Genji," an emperor's son whose outward perfection and success conceals dark secrets. This course combines close reading and discussion of the tale, in all its complexity, with a consideration of both of its original historical context and its "afterlife" from medieval times to the present day, including its place in the Japanese poetic tradition and in the visual arts, and its appropriation in later literature from Noh plays to film and comic books. Junior standing or permission of instructor. Prior exposure Japanese literature or history is useful but not required.
In 1960, the major studio Shochiku promoted a new crop of directors as the "Japanese New Wave" in response to declining theater attendance, a booming youth culture, and the international success of the French Nouvelle Vague. This course focuses on the Japanese New Wave's most famous iconoclast, the director Oshima Nagisa. His films engage with Japan's colonial history, its disillusioned and violent youth, and intellectual debates on responsibility and national identity after WWII. His themes are sex, politics, violence, and the state. In order to understand Oshima's directorial style in context, we will also screen films by contemporaries working in action, melodrama, documentary, experimental cinema, and the youth film in Japan. Special emphasis on sexuality, race, urban space, and performance. No knowledge of Japanese necessary. Recommended prerequesite Film 220 and Film 340. Meets requirement for national cinema. REQUIRED SCREENING: Wednesdays @ 7 pm.
The course broadly conceives East Asia as a geographical unit of inquiry and explores food and foodways in context of not only what people eat, but how people conceive food beyond a material object to fulfill their corporeal appetite. Scholars in different disciplines have employed food and foodways as a useful category of analysis and have explored a variety of social and cultural dimensions in which people live and have lived. Modern, East Asia. PREREQUISITE: SEE HISTORY HEADNOTE.
Prerequisite: Chinese 341 or instructor's permission. Graduate students and graduating EALC majors only. Same as L04 382.
An inquiry into issues of history and memory in the conceptualization of personal identity against the larger political and cultural contexts of China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and the Chinese diaspora. Through the reading of literary texts produced from the 1970s to the present by writers of these various regions, we will discuss topics such as: the relation between public/official history and private memory; the uses of nostalgia; modes of identity construction; and the role of gender/sexuality in the act of remembering. This course is intended for graduate students. Prerequisite: permission of instructor.
PREREQUISITE, PERMISSION OF THE INSTRUCTOR AND THE DIRECTOR OF EAST ASIAN STUDIES.
May be repeated once. Prerequisite: Instructor's permission.
This course will normally be taken after successful completion of Chi 428. PREREQUISITE: SENIOR STANDING AND PERMISSION OF DEPARTMENT. May be repeated once.
PREREQUISITE, SENIOR STANDING AND PERMISSION OF DEPARTMENT. This course will normally be taken after the successful completion of Japan 463. May be repeated once.
PREREQUISITE: SENIOR STANDING AND INSTRUCTOR'S PERMISSION; MAY BE REPEATED.
Directed research in Asian Studies. Permission of the DGS required.
The aim of this course is to enable advanced students of Japanese literature to improve their translation skills. Instruction will entail the translation of a series of selected texts. Students will present their weekly translations for classroom discussion and critique. While our focus will be upon the technical and stylistic problems presented by each text, we will explore larger theoretical and methodological issues raised in the secondary literature. The major course requirement is the completion of a substantial translation project of publishable quality--presumably in the area of the student´s specialization. Course grade will be based on class participation, a composite evaluation of the weekly translation assignments, and the final project. This course is intended for graduate students in Japanese literature, but other students with sufficient preparation and interest may be admitted with permission of instructor.
This course introduces students to the variety of scholarly interpretations of modern Chinese history and literature. Weekly class meetings focus on topics such as colonial modernity, reinterpretation of tradition, national identity, war, political censorship, and revolutionary citizenship. Acknowledging and understanding the nuance and difference in views and interpretations in scholarly writings are essential. The course seeks to develop students' research and analytical skills, such as locating secondary sources, reading and interpreting primary sources, incorporating scholarly interpretations, and developing and sustaining a thesis based on primary and secondary sources in student research. This course is designed for graduate students in History, Chinese Literature, Comparative Literature, and East Asian Studies. Students are expected to read Chinese and participate in the discussions in both Chinese and English.
By close reading of the masterpiece of premodern Chinese fiction, the eighteenth-century novel Honglou meng (known in English translation as Story of the Stone) this seminar will explore the maturing vernacular fiction tradition. We will also explore the deep context in which appeared: the political, social, economic, and religious tensions of the era as well as the complex personal factors that may have influenced its creation. Participants will be limited to graduate students from any department or program that has prepared them to contribute to discussions. Readings will include selections from major scholarly trends in Chinese and Western scholarship on the novel. Paratextual materials will play a major role in our investigations. Participants will give regular reports and will be expected to participate actively. Prerequisite: Graduate status and permission of instructor.
A supervised experience in the practical application of East Asian Studies designed to fit a student's individual needs and background. Prerequisite, by designation of the DGS.
Prerequisite: Admission to graduate program. Permission of the DGS.