Reading: General Introduction
Dated "Discussion Topics" pages are the way that class sessions will be previewed. I'll be using these links to remind you of assignments, though these will always also be specified in the "Schedule" page (for readings) and the "Written Assignments" page (for, well, written assignments). I'll also briefly (or sometimes not so briefly) outline what I have in mind for the class of this date, both in terms of topics I hope we'll cover, and -- more important -- topics I'd like you to think about before class and be ready to discuss. Since this will be our first class, the reading assignment - above - is advisory: the week's work will go better if you read through the Introduction before class, but if you are not able to, you will find it among Wednesday's assignments as well.
For our first class, I'll be saying a few things about the course contents, requirements, and so forth, and then we'll consider briefly some large-scale issues that it's good to have in mind as you study early China -- questions such as, "What is history -- how is it different from life as we live it, and what do we expect to learn when we study it?" "What qualifies as 'early' China, and what sorts of things can we -- and can't we -- know about it?" For a more typical "Topics" page, link to Wednesday's class page, or Friday's.