East Asian Languages & Cultures | Modern East Asian Civilization
E252 | 1565 | Wilson
In this course we will study the modern history of East Asia, treating the
region as a culture area reflecting classical Confucian civilization and
made up of four major societies: China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam.
Focusing on the two largest, China and Japan, we will examine the process
by which the Opium War in China (1840s) and the opening of Japan by the
U.S. (1850s) led to the transformation of society during the 19th and 20th
centuries. We will see how European and American imperialism generated
nationalist and revolutionary responses in both countries, at differing
timetables and at different speeds. Throughout the course we'll keep an
eye on issues of current interest–Japan's economic miracle under U.S. Cold
War pressure, Communist China as the world's largest nation and
fastest-growing economy, Korea as a divided peninsula with conflicting
showpiece regimes that weaken the prospects for peace in East Asia.
Finally we will look at the economic "meltdown" that has recently afflicted
Three hour exams; no term paper. Reading drawn from three paperback books:
Jonathan Spence, Search for Modern China (1999); John Boyle, Modern Japan:
The American Nexus; Don Oberdorfer, Two Koreas (1997).
This course meets with History H207; credit given for only one of EALC E252
and HIST H207.