Courses in Asian Studies (Division 323)

111/History 151. The Civilizations of South and Southeast Asia. (4). (HU).

This is an introduction to the civilization of the Indian sub-continent, from its origins about 3000 B.C. to the present, where it comprises over a fifth of the world's people and its oldest living civilized tradition, its largest political democracy, and a major component of the Third World. The course progresses from origins and the Indus culture through the Aryans, Hinduism, caste, and classical India to the succession of empires from the Mauryas to the Mughals and the British, colonialism, and independence, and partition. We then consider current problems and changes topically: regionalism and language, agriculture and rural development, population, urbanization, industrialization, and "modernization," and the rise of separate nation-states (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka). Lectures and varied readings (via a Course Pack) are designed to stimulate class discussion, and there will be some use of slides and films. Art, literature, and religion will also be discussed. There will be a midterm, and a final exam, in addition to short writing assignments. There are no prerequisites and no previous knowledge is assumed. (Trautman)

121/History 121. Great Traditions of East Asia. (4). (HU).

This course is a broad introductory survey of traditional Chinese and Japanese civilizations from about 2000 B.C. until the advent of modern European imperialism at the beginning of the nineteenth century. The primary purpose of the course is to help non-specialists begin to understand the patterns (but not necessarily the details) of how these two civilizations arose, changed, and interacted, with particular emphasis upon their important institutional and cultural traditions. The approach will be largely historical, but will also sample traditional literature, philosophy, and religious thought of China and Japan. Course readings will include survey histories and a course pack of illustrative material. Grading will be based on a midterm and a final exam, both in essay form. No prior knowledge of East Asia is assumed. (Murphey)

320/Buddhist Studies 320/Phil. 335/Rel. 320. Introduction to Buddhism. Asian Studies 220 or the equivalent. (3). (HU).

See Buddhist Studies 320. (Foulk)

441. Asia Through Fiction. (3). (HU).

This course deals with selected novels and short stories by Asian writers and by Westerners writing about Asia. It attempts to compare different perspectives on the Asian scene and particularly focuses on East/West interactions. Course readings center on India, Southeast Asia, Japan, and China. Four short essays are required which take the place of an examination. The class is usually small enough to function as a group discussion, which considers also the Asian context, but regular attendance is necessary, and careful attention on schedule to the readings. There are several evening opportunities to sample Asian cuisine and films. Writers dealt with include Narayan, Greene, Mishima, Forster, Kipling, Conrad, Tanizaki, Orwell, Markandaya, Buck, Lu Hsun, and others. (Murphey)

444. The Southeast Asian Village. (3). (SS).

This course examines aspects of village form, function, life and problems in Southeast Asia. Using readings, lectures and films it provides a comparative view of the varied rural societies of the region. Sections of the course deal with the physical setting of the village, house types, the village economy, daily and seasonal activities, religion, custom and tradition, and popular culture. Village economic, social and political organization are also covered, as well as tension and change associated with development, urban migration and the decline of the village. The course makes extensive use of case studies and guest lecturers. Course grading is based on a research paper: reading is moderate to heavy, and can be focused on the country and problems of interest to the individual student. The course meets for a three-hour period once a week to provide the most flexible format for films and discussion. (Gosling)


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