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East Asian Studies Course Descriptions


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[EA141]    Consuming China: From Migrant Workers to Venture Capitalists      China's economic reforms have helped give birth to a nation of new consumers, from migrant workers to affluent capitalists. The creation of a new middle class and its rising expectations, and the advent of the individual as consumer rather than mere worker, have led to new lifestyles, new leisure activities, and a proliferation of commodities and consumption. An examination of the tensions between the traditional values of discipline, collectivity, and hard work and the new flux of consumerism, its fads, and its trends in China today. Part of the two-course Integrated Studies 141 cluster, "China: The Pursuit of Happiness." Prerequisite:  Concurrent enrollment in Anthropology 141.     Four credit hours.  S.  
EA150fs    Foundations in East Asian Studies      An exploration of the foundations of East Asian civilization, with a focus on reading the classical texts of ancient China, Korea, and Japan. Provides an introduction to East Asian studies as an interdisciplinary field of study, as we explore interpretations of these foundational texts from a number of perspectives (philosophical, historical, artistic, political, etc.). Students will also work on improving writing and research skills.     Four credit hours.  H, I.    WEITZ, XU
[EA152]    Introduction to East Asia from the 18th Century to Modern Times      A survey of East Asia from the 18th century to the present in its global, regional, and local contexts, beginning with the empires of Qing China, Tokugawa Japan, and Choson Korea, examining the transformations that led to the rise of the modern nation-states of East Asia. Topics include cross-cultural encounters, the rise of imperialism and colonialism, the transformation of empires into nation-states, and the evolution of gender, ethnic, and status identities.     Four credit hours.  H, I.  
EA173f    Survey of Asian Art      Listed as Art 173.     Four credit hours.  A.    WALT
EA231s    The Chinese Novel: Vignettes of Life in Imperial China      A critical examination of the development of classical Chinese literature of various genres such as poetry, popular songs, philosophical discourse, historical narrative, prose, fiction, tales of the supernatural and the fantastic, romance, and drama. All readings are in English translation.     Four credit hours.  L.    BESIO
[EA232]    Male Friendship in Chinese Literature      A survey of premodern Chinese literature through the prism of male friendship. Friendship, particularly among men, was a theme that resonated powerfully in traditional Chinese literature, perhaps because it was the only one of the five Confucian relationships not innately hierarchical. A variety of literary works are examined, including historical and philosophical prose, poetry, drama, and fiction on friendship and famous friends. Issues explored include the search for a soul mate, the primacy of male friendships over romantic and domestic ties, and changing constructions of masculinity. All works in English translation; knowledge of Chinese not required.     Four credit hours.  L.  
EA240s    Japanese Animation: Sensitivity to Differences      Japanese animations (anim�) are artistic and dramatic expressions of realistic situations, happenings, and apprehensions. This course studies twelve anim� as artistic expressions as well as socio-cultural and moral messages. The period covered spans from the 15th century to the post-human cyber-culture era, drawing a socio-cultural contour of Japanese history. As it discusses the values and relationships among regional tribes, social classes, genders, and human versus post-human beings, it cultivates sensitivity towards Japanese culture at multiple levels. It also hones skills in writing and public speaking. Formerly offered as East Asian Studies 297A.     Four credit hours.  A.    PRINDLE
EA250f    History of Modern China      Listed as History 250.     Four credit hours.  H, I.    XU
[EA251]    Gender Politics in Chinese Drama and Film      A historical survey of Chinese drama and film from the 13th century to the present with a focus on representations of gender and sexuality. Paired readings of major works from various genres that make up the Chinese dramatic tradition with viewing of modern and contemporary films are informed by reading secondary scholarship in order to place these works and their portrayals of gender and sexuality in their historical and cultural contexts. Students will hone analytical skills and improve their ability to communicate insights both orally and in writing.     Four credit hours.  L, I.  
EA252j    Hell on Earth? Chinese Writers on Modern Chinese Society      An examination of how Chinese writers used literature and film to address the political and social crises their country faced during the 20th century. Through close readings of literary and cinematic works, students will reflect critically on the experiences of the Chinese people as they struggled to modernize and reform society. Students will reflect on what these experiences might teach us about our own society as well as contemporary China, and they will develop their ability to express insights both orally and in writing.     Three credit hours.  L, I.    BESIO
EA254s    China in Transition: An Anthropological Account      Listed as Anthropology 264.     Four credit hours.  S, I.    HRISKOS
[EA257]    From Communism to Consumerism      An exploration of the fast-changing cultural scene in reform-era China. A wide range of popular cultural forms and newly-emerging consumption patterns (including films, popular music, avant-garde art, lifestyle magazines, hip-hop, and theme parks) are analyzed and discussed in the context of China's transition from a centrally controlled socialist state to a capitalist market economy and consumer-oriented society. Issues include the relationship between the masses and the state in cultural production and circulation; the political implications of late-socialist/postmodern forms of mass culture, and the social and historical contexts for the shaping of cultural sensibilities and commodities in urban "global" communities.     Four credit hours.  S.  
[EA261]    Japanese Language and Culture (in English)      An introductory course on Japan in which we explore a global perspective of how Japanese people interact and see the world through knowledge of their own culture and language. Examines cultural patterns of Japanese society by looking at various political, social, economic, and gender relations among people in current times. Analyzes the variety of ways in which culture is consumed, reconstructed, reproduced, and manipulated in various local contexts. All readings are in English, but students are expected to memorize Japanese terms that signify Japanese culture and language.     Four credit hours.  S, I.  
EA273s    The Arts of China      Listed as Art 273.     Four credit hours.  A.    WEITZ
EA274f    The Arts of Japan      Listed as Art 274.     Four credit hours.  A.    WEITZ
[EA275]    The Arts of Korea      Listed as Art 275.     Four credit hours.  A.  
[EA276]    Zen and the Arts in Asia      An introduction to Zen philosophy, history, and practice, with an emphasis on the ways in which the religion has transformed the aesthetic outlook and artistic production in China, Japan, and the United States. Through class discussions, group projects, and individual writing assignments, students hone their skills of textual and visual analysis by actively "reading" a variety of art forms through the lens of Zen concepts and practices. Students achieve a basic competency in East Asian historical development and Buddhist religious thought, as well as learning about the aesthetic implications of belief, including an examination of how their own cultures and belief systems color their experiences of the arts.     Four credit hours.  A, I.  
EA298s    Survey of Premodern China      Listed as History 298A.     Four credit hours.  H.    XU
[EA332]    Masterpieces: Modern Japanese Novels      An appreciation and examination of masterpiece novels and short stories written by 10 illustrious Japanese writers, including two Nobel Prize laureates. Cultivation of the students' sensitivities to the feelings and values questioned by Japanese novelists. Examination of the novels as works of literature, aided by published scholarship in the fields of literary philosophical, psychoanalytic, historical, and socio-anthropological studies in Japan and the West. Each student will pry out covert meanings, verbally express those findings to an audience, and write a high-quality research paper.     Three or four credit hours.  L, I.  
EA350s    Women and Gender in East Asia      Listed as History 350.     Four credit hours.  H, I.    XU
[EA353]    Globalization and Human Rights in China      Globalization refers to a variety of political, economic, cultural, and social changes that are transforming our world. Countries are increasingly interconnected by flows of information and technology, capital and labor, ideas and culture. We will use China as a case study to address some major issues concerning globalization: its problems and prospects; terms of trade between and among nations; sweatshop labor; the role of states, markets, and global institutions; human rights and cultural preservation. Prerequisite:  East Asian Studies 152 or Anthropology 112 or Government 131.     Four credit hours.  S.  
EA397f    Confucianism: From China to the World      Listed as History 397C.     Four credit hours.  H.    XU
[EA398]    Demographic Change and Aging in Contemporary East Asia      Examines how the family system, household structure, and power relations have changed in East Asian societies as the region experienced rapid industrialization, urbanization, mobility, and population aging in the recent decades. Using ethnographic studies from Korea, Japan, and China, we explore how changing demographic trends and broader societal transformations reshape the nature of family relationships, community involvement, the Confucius age-reverent tradition, care-giving patterns, and aging experiences in each of these three East Asian countries.     Four credit hours.  
EA483f, 484s    Honors Project      An interdisciplinary analysis of an aspect of East Asian culture employing diverse sources and methods. Independent study, extensive readings, consultations, and a thesis. Successful completion of the honors project and of the major will result in the degree being awarded "With Honors in East Asian Studies." Prerequisite:  Senior standing, a 3.25 major average, and permission of a faculty mentor.     Three or four credit hours.    FACULTY
EA491f, 492s    Independent Study      Individual study of special problems in East Asian civilization, offered in the departments that participate in the program. Prerequisite:  Permission of the instructor.     One to four credit hours.    FACULTY
EA493f    Seminar: Advanced Research in East Asia      An examination of methods for researching East Asia. Introduces students to the major debates that have come to define the field of East Asian studies, from John Fairbank's "response to the West" to Edward Said's "orientalism," and prepares them with the skills necessary to engage Asian sources for independent research in East Asian studies. Students will develop an independent research project on East Asia in any area of the humanities or social sciences, which, with approval from the student's major department, may be developed into a senior honors thesis. Prerequisite:  East Asian Studies 150 or relevant course work in East Asia, and permission of the instructor.     Four credit hours.    WEITZ