East Asian Languages and Cultures | East Asia: An Introduction
E100 | 15549 | Kennedy, S.
There is no more dynamic region on earth than East Asia. China,
Japan, and Korea have undergone phenomenal changes in the past
century. Once known as traditional, crowded, poor, authoritarian,
and rural, such adjectives do not adequately reflect this part of
the world any longer. This class provides a broad introduction to
the region through two strategies. First, we will individually
consider the recent political and economic histories of these
countries. And second, we will consider how several important
issues – from globalization to human rights, from the environment to
the demographic changes – variously affect the countries and peoples
of the region. Readings average 50 pages/week and are drawn from two
textbooks, literature, the popular media, and other primary sources.
Assignments include two practical exercises, a paper, two reading
quizzes, a midterm, and a final exam. The course is designed for
students with little to no background or knowledge of East Asia.
Others are urged to begin with a 200-level course in their area of