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Inner Asian & Uralic National Resource Center (IAUNRC) Sinor Research Institute for Inner Asian Studies (SRIFIAS) Center for Languages of the Central Asian Region (CeLCAR) Summer Language Workshop (SWSEEL)
Central Eurasian Studies >> Courses >> Course List
Tibet and the West
CEUS-R 371/571
Elliot Sperling

This class carries CASE S&H & CASE GCC designations

This course examines Western perceptions of Tibet during the past 700 years. It presents Tibetan history and culture during this period and compares Tibetan civilization with the popular concepts about Tibet that prevailed in the West during this same period. The modern Western view of Tibet as "Shangrila," reflected in such novels and films as Lost Horizon will be examined, as will Tibetan perceptions of Westerners and Western civilization.

UNDERGRADUATES: Undergraduates are expected to read only Don Lopez, Prisoners of Shangri-la.

GRADUATES: Graduates are expected to read Edward Said, Orientalism; Don Lopez, Prisoners of Shangri-la; and The Dalai Lama, The Universe in a Single Atom.Though not required, graduate students are urged to read the various essays collected in Thierry Dodin and Heinz Räther, Imagining Tibet and encouraged to read Robert Irwin, For Lust of Knowing; and Martin Brauen, Dreamworld Tibet. They are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with those items listed below, particularly those that are marked with an asterisk (*).

Undergraduates are required to take a midterm and a final, both made up of two short answer sections and one essay section. Graduate students are required to take a midterm and a final, both made up only of essay questions. In addition, graduate students are required to write a 10-15 page final paper. Undergraduate grades will be determined as follows: the midterm and final each count for 45%, class participation and attendance for 10%. Graduate grades will be determined as follows: the midterm and final each count for 40%, the final paper for 20%.