HISTORY 204 - East Asia: Early Transformations
Fall 2016, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is (see other Sections below)
Subject: History (HISTORY)
Department: LSA History
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Requirements & Distribution:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:


This course offers an overview of more than three thousand years of East Asian history, from ca. 1600 BCE through ca. 1800 CE. Since every such survey must be selective, this course will emphasize political, social, and cultural transformations. Aided by the course textbook, we will inquire into the nature of political power, the succession of dynasties and military regimes, the growth and spread of religions, and the transformation of family structures, economies, and diplomatic relations. The course will introduce the different, distinct histories of China, Korea, and Japan, but will also chart the interactions between these cultures, following the travels of monks and merchants, diplomats and conquerors, across the islands and continents. The primary-source readings for the lectures, and especially for the discussion sections, will offer an opportunity to see these changing cultures and landscapes through the eyes of contemporaries: early Chinese philosophers, Korean royal officials, Japanese court ladies, even European travelers. The primary-source readings will also give occasion to reflect on the origins and nature of historical knowledge, thereby making this course not only an introduction to East Asian history, but also an introduction to history as an academic discipline.

The course uses a textbook. The primary-source readings are available on CTools.

Course Requirements:

  • Attendance of all lectures and discussion sections (10%)
  • preparation of the reading assignments and the reading questions for both the lectures and the discussion sections (15%)
  • three quizzes in your discussion section (15%)
  • in-class midterm and final examinations (30% each).

Intended Audience:

Prior familiarity with East Asian history is not required.

Class Format:

Lecture, with some discussion of primary sources, on Monday and Wednesday; discussion of primary sources in discussion sections.


HISTORY 204 - East Asia: Early Transformations
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 In Person
MW 4:00PM - 5:30PM
002 (DIS)
 In Person
Tu 9:00AM - 10:00AM
003 (DIS)
 In Person
Tu 10:00AM - 11:00AM
004 (DIS)
 In Person
Tu 12:00PM - 1:00PM

Textbooks/Other Materials

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Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

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CourseProfile (Atlas)

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CourseProfile (Atlas)