History | H675 2874 Collq/E. Asian History 10:10-12:05 M BH235 Wasserstrom
H675 | 2874 | Wasserstrom


Topic: East Asian Socialism and Post-Socialism in Comparative
Perspective
Above section meets with Hist H699

This experimental course will explore the nature of socialist and
post-socialist cultural, social and political life in China and to a
somewhat lesser extent the countries that used to be part of the Soviet
Empire. Readings will include not only works by historians that deal with
the period lasting form the 1940s up to the present, but also studies by
political scientists, sociologists, and anthropologists. We will also read
and discuss the writings of various dissidents and critical intellectuals
from the two regions, and we will analyze together the meaning of visual
texts such as political posters and films. Half of the class sessions will
be combined ones, in which students from Maria Bucur's
socialism/post-socialism class that focuses more heavily on Eastern Europe
will also take part. Students cannot therefore take both her course and
this one. Students taking the course as H675 will be expected to do a
final project that highlights issues associated with China, those taking
it as H699 will do a more comparative final project. Other assignments
will include short reaction pieces on visual texts and readings.
Particular attention throughout will be placed on 1999 as a special year
in which to assess state socialism's complex legacies, since it marks the
tenth anniversary of both the Beijing Massacre and the fall of the Berlin
Wall.