East Asian Studies Minor
Below is the coursework required to minor in east asian studies. For an overview of this program, see History Degrees.
|MCHIN 1010 Chinese Stage 1: Personal Perspectives and
MCHIN 1020 Chinese Stage 2: Personal Connections
MJPAN 1010 Japanese Stage 1: Personal Perspectives and
MJPAN 1020 Japanese Stage 2: Personal Connections
|HIST 2810 Introduction to East Asian History||4 hours|
This course examines selected Asian cultures from an anthropological perspective, including the effects of stratification and culture change. It provides a general survey of prehistoric cultures as well as some of the issues related to Western expansion in Asia.
(Normally offered alternate years.)
This course surveys the art of “Non-Western” societies from prehistory to the present. Cultures discussed include South and Southeast Asia, China and Japan, Africa, and cultures of the Americas (Pre-Conquest and Native American). The term “Non-Western” traditionally refers to cultures that initially developed outside the realm of Western culture and at some distance from the European artistic tradition. The term is not only excessively broad but also problematic, because it implies an opposition to western art. We will explore these issues. The main objective of the course is to provide students with a global perspective on the richness and diversity of art produced by the cultures studied. It also considers the impact of colonization and globalization on the treatment of artworks from non-western cultures and the development of new art forms.
This course introduces students to major topics in the history of East Asia. Rather than a century-by-century narrative covering prehistory to the present, the course emphasizes the theme of inter-regional relations. Students learn about traditions such as Confucianism and Buddhism that provided a foundation for the development of centralized, Sinicized states in East Asia, as well as the cultural, economic, and political aspects of the tribute system that structured inter-regional relations throughout the pre-modern period. The second half of the semester picks up the theme of inter-regional relations in the modern period by examining the continuing impact of twentieth-century warfare on the Chinese, the Koreans, and the Japanese. Our sources include a combination of secondary scholarship by leading experts on East Asian history as well as primary historical and literary sources. This also counts as an elective for the Modern Language Studies major.
An overview of key themes in early modern and modern Japanese history with an emphasis on the period between the seventeenth and twenty-first centuries. The course concentrates on themes of change and continuity in Japan's political systems, social and economic institutions, and cultural forms. Specific themes include changing notions of samurai identity, the rise of the modern nation-state, imperialism and inter-regional relations, postwar prosperity and Japan's "Lost Decade." Our sources include a combination of secondary scholarship by leading experts on Japanese history as well as primary historical and literary sources. This also counts as an elective for the Modern Language Studies major.
In this course we will survey the historical factors that have shaped China's emergence as one of the dominant players on the global stage in the twenty-first century. We begin by exploring the history of the last imperial dynasty. Emphasis is placed on the historical diversity of Chinese society. After learning about the combination of domestic and external challenges that undermined the last dynasty and led to the overthrow of the imperial system, we look at the impact of the world wars, the civil war between the Nationalists and the Communists, and the establishment of the People's Republic. The course concludes with a section on the transition to "market socialism" and the legacy of the 1989 Tiananmen demonstrations. Our sources include a combination of secondary scholarship by leading experts on Chinese history as well as primary historical and literary sources. This also counts as an elective for the Modern Language Studies major.
See HIST 4840 Meiji - The Making of Modern Japan.
See HIST 4850 Twilight of the Samurai: Early Modern Japan.
See HIST 4860 Japanese Popular Culture, Past and Present.
Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing or instructor permission.
The Meiji period in Japan lasted from 1868 to 1912. Over that period of roughly four decades, Japan embarked on an ambitious program of Western-style modernization that left no aspect of the nation untouched. It was a period of rapid economic growth and industrialization that allowed Japan to challenge the Western powers and create its own empire in East Asia by the early twentieth century, but the accompanying social, political, and economic transformations were as dislocating for many Japanese as they were empowering. In this seminar, we will read widely in the political, social, and cultural history of the Meiji period to develop an understanding of the period's powerful shaping influence on the course Japan took in the twentieth century. In addition to secondary scholarship by leading authorities on the Meiji period, we will read works of literature and view several films that illuminate the complexities and tensions within Meiji society. HIST-4840 meets with HIST 3840. The requirements of the courses are the same EXCEPT that a research paper is required for students in 4840.
The word samurai derives from the verb saburau, meaning "to serve." Whom did Japan's samurai warriors serve, and what made their "services" necessary in the first place? How did samurai become the dominant political figures during Japan's Middle Ages? After the Tokugawa shogunate succeeded in pacifying Japan in the early seventeenth century, how did a social group whose elite status derived from their role as warriors adapt-or fail to adapt-to a long period of peace? These are some of the questions we will seek to answer through our discussion of primary sources and secondary scholarship on Japan's samurai warriors. We will focus on the early modern period, but the seminar provides an overview of the historical development of the samurai dating back to their origins in the tenth century. Once we arrive in the Tokugawa period, we will also take a broader look at a changing Japanese social structure in which commoners-and merchants in particular-began to overtake the samurai. At the end of the semester, we will consider the ideological development of bushid, or the "Way of the Warrior," as an invented tradition that played an important role during Japan's transformation into a modern nation-state. This also counts as an elective for the Modern Language Studies major. HIST 4850 Twilight of the Samurai: Early Modern Japan meets with HIST 3850. The requirements of the courses are the same EXCEPT that a research paper is required for students in 4850.
In this course we will be investigating the cultural history of history of Japan in the early modern and modern periods, with an emphasis on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Specifically, we will focus on “popular culture,” a term whose multiple (and conflicting) connotations we will consider throughout the semester. Our exploration of “popular culture” will extend to aspects of everyday life (or “lifestyles”) as well as works of art, literature, music, and film. Together we will examine a variety of texts, musical genres, comics, and films (both live action and animation), always attempting to interpret them in the context of historical change. This will be a rigorous and intellectually challenging course, but it is also meant to provide an enjoyable overview of Japan’s rich cultural heritage.
HIST 4860 meets with HIST 3860. The content of the courses are the same EXCEPT students enrolled in 3860 write analytical essays and give presentations, while students enrolled in 4860 concentrate on writing a research paper in lieu of the essays and presentations.
Prerequisite(s): Sophomore standing or instructor permission.
Stage 1: Personal Perspectives begins the development of the basic concepts of Mandarin Chinese language and culture, thus providing the necessary knowledge and skills for students to interact in Mandarin Chinese about familiar topics. No P/F.
A continuation of Stage 1: Personal Perspectives, Stage 2: Personal Connections expands on the basic concepts of Mandarin Chinese language and culture, thus providing the necessary knowledge and skills for students to interact in Mandarin Chinese about familiar topics. No P/F.
Prerequisite(s): MCHIN 1010 Chinese Stage 1: Personal Perspectives.
Stage 1: Personal Perspectives begins the development of the basic concepts of Japanese language and culture, thus providing the necessary knowledge and skills for students to interact in Japanese about familiar topics. No P/F.
(Normally offered each fall semester.)
A continuation of Stage 1: Personal Perspectives, Stage 2: Personal Connections expands on the basic concepts of Japanese language and culture, thus providing the necessary knowledge and skills for students to interact in Japanese about familiar topics. No P/F.
Prerequisite(s): MJPAN 1010 Japanese Stage 1: Personal Perspectives.
(Normally offered each spring semester.)
This course is a study of the cultural settings, lives of founders when appropriate, oral or written traditions and literature, worldviews, myths, rituals, ideals of conduct, and development of some of the world's religions. Religions studied will typically include tribal religions, Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Taoism, Confuciansim, Shinto, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism, and Bahai. Readings, videos, and websites will help introduce and illustrate not only the cultural settings in which these religions appear, but also the voices and faces of contemporary religious practitioners.
(Normally offered each fall semester.)
The course explores the modern construction of religion and religions as a legal, international, historical, and cultural category. We will investigate what definitions and assumptions are at work and who religious tradition is invented, maintained, or changed and for what ends. Classifications interrogated include religious, spiritual and secular, academic and folk. Materials and movements examined include intentionally provocative juxtapositions of ancient, new, tribal, world, localized and international. It is common in contemporary discourse to privilege individual freedom to choose or create a religious identity, therefore, this course will pay special attention to the ways in which spirituality obscures the extent to which individualistic ideology legitimates the creation of self-identity through consumer and lifestyle choices.