Courses

A survey of regional languages and cultures of China. Addresses issues of diversity and standardization in the world's most populous country, particularly the role of language as both a system of spoken and written signs as well as a resource for cultural reproduction and social change. Explores discourse norms, key cultural concepts, and the unique problems posed by cross-cultural translation and interpretation.

An introduction to ancient Chinese science and technology, including engineering, medicine, mathematics, architecture and military technology. The global, social and historical impact of these inventions on Western civilization and the subsequent decline of the Chinese scientific paradigm will be examined.

Work Load: Regular attendance and active participation are required. You will give two 10 minute class project presentations. There will be 2 mid-term examinations, and a final exam/term paper option. Pop quizzes are factored into your participation grade.

The course examines the contemporary global art form known as 'Indian cinemas' from its advent of the moving picture in the late 1800's to the present. In this Asian film course, we explore the various cinemas of India and the Indian diaspora such as Bollywood cinema, art cinema, films by Indian directors inside and outside India, music videos, and documentaries. Factors behind its ascent to the most popular art form as well as a lucrative medium of entertainment and potent vehicle for social change not only in India but also beyond its shores are examined in some depth. We discover how these various Indian cinemas address and depict the social mores, cultural practices and political issues of the South Asian subcontinent. Themes for our discussions include but are not limited to nationalism, sexuality, censorship, activism, tradition, modernity, identity, gender roles, and the pleasures and politics of song, dance and music, as we look at historical, thematic and aesthetic issues of these cinemas and their impact and influence in India as well as globally.

The course is an introductory survey of Asian American fiction (short stories and novels) and films (narratives and documentaries). A central premise of the course is that the histories of racial segregation in the U.S., immigrant exclusion acts, colonial and contemporary wars in Asia, and global migrations are the political and historical contexts of Asian American narratives.

Throughout its long history, Korea has experienced and created various religious traditions and became one of the most religiously diverse societies. Korean culture includes a wide variety of religious elements that have shaped the Koreans' way of thinking and living, in the way rarely seen in the European traditions. The objectives of this course are to understand and appreciate the religious heritage of Korea. Instead of trying to abstractly define religions, this course will serve to identify religious practices in which Koreans are engaged. In the process, students will obtain an understanding of important religious concepts, theories, activities, and lives of the religious leaders from ancient times to the present.

An introduction in English to the great literary works of Japan from the earliest extant writing to works of the present.

An introduction to the basic philosophies and doctrines of Confucianism and Daoism, such as the concept of Dao, non-action, benevolence, and propriety. The course explores both the similarities and the differences between these two traditions. This course is offered as both AAS 240 and RLS 240.

Examines Korea's historical experiences and social transformation from mid-nineteenth century to present through visual materials such as photographs, films, postcards, print materials and paintings as well as historical texts and secondary analysis. Students will acquire in-depth knowledge of Korea's modern experiences as well as its contemporary society and culture. The course aims to cultivate students' visual literacy on modern Korea through interpreting and analyzing historical visual documents and creating their own visual essays. This course is offered as both AAS 247 and HIS 247.

Study of language use and cultural accommodation in selected Asian American communities in relation to the changing roles of Asians in U.S. society from the early democracy to the present. Issues include linguistic and cultural diversity of Asia and Asian Americans; comparison of Asian and European immigration patterns; struggle for equality and acceptance; cultural factors in assimilation; patterns of Asian language use and maintenance in various domains; the role of language in ethnic identity; attitudes toward English and bilingualism; bilingualism as a problem and as a resource. This course is offered as both AAS 250 and LIN 250.

Work Load: Your grade will be based solely on your performance and on in-class participation in the course, quizzes and exams.

Survey of the principal religious and philosophical currents of Hindu civilization in India from the time of the Vedas and Upanishads through the development of the major devotional ways and schools of thought current in India today. These include the polytheism of Hindu mythology, the theism of various forms of devotional practice, and the monotheism and nondualism of Hindu philosophy. This course is offered as both AAS 256 and RLS 256.

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