Summer 2020 Course Descriptions
Chinese Language and Literature Courses
The course is designed for students who are of non-Chinese origin and were not raised in a Chinese-speaking environment; or who are of Chinese origin but do not speak Chinese and whose parents do not speak Chinese. The course develops beginning learners’ functional language ability—the ability to use Mandarin Chinese in linguistically and culturally appropriate ways at the beginning level. It helps students acquire communicative competence in Chinese while sensitizing them to the links between language and culture. This six-week course is the equivalent of Chinese 1A offered in the regular academic year.
The course is designed for students who are of non-Chinese origin and were not raised in a Chinese-speaking environment, or who are of Chinese origin but do not speak Chinese and whose parents do not speak Chinese. The course continues to focus on training students in the four language skills--speaking, listening, reading, and writing with a gradually increasing emphasison basic cultural readings and developing intercultural competence. This course is the equivalent of Chinese 1B offered in the regular academic year. Prerequisites: Chinese 1A.
This course introduces students to Chinese literature in translation. In addition to literary sources, a wide range of philosophical and historical texts will be covered, as well as aspects of visual and material culture. 7A covers early China through late medieval China, up to and including the Yuan Dynasty (14th century); the course will also focus on the development of sound writing.
The second sequence introduces students to Chinese literature in translation. In addition to literary sources, a wide range of philosophical and historical texts will be covered, as well as aspects of visual and material culture. 7B focuses on late imperial, modern, and contemporary China. The course will focus on the development of sound writing skills.
The course is designed for students who are of non-Chinese origin and were not raised in a Chinese-speaking environment, or who are of Chinese origin but do not speak Chinese and whose parents do not speak Chinese. The course deals with lengthy conversations as well as narrative and descriptive texts in both simplified and traditional characters. It helps students to express themselves in speaking and writing on a range of topics and raises their awareness of the connection between language and culture to foster the development of communicative competence. This course is equivalent to Chinese 10A offered in the regular academic year. Prerequisites: Chinese 1 or Chinese 1B; or consent of instructor.
The course further develops students’ linguistic and cultural competence. In dealing with texts, students are guided to interpret, narrate, describe, and discuss topics ranging from real-life experience and personal memoir to historic events. Intercultural competence is promoted through linguistic and cultural awareness and language use in culturally appropriate contexts. This course is equivalent to Chinese 10B offered in the regular academic year. Prerequisites: Chinese 10A; or consent of instructor.
East Asian Languages and Cultures Courses
From the early 20th century to the contemporary period, the figure of a woman living in a modern and urban context has provided a distinctive problem for popular Chinese literature and film. Despite the changing social conditions of each new political and culture turn of 20th and early 21st century, the dilemma of these "new woman" has persisted in different forms. As the writer Lu Xun once asked, what happens to the woman when she leaves the traditional domestic sphere? Is she condemned to a life of exploitation, or will she be forced to return home? This course proposes that modernity in popular Chinese culture has been tied to the construction of gender, particularly that of the “New Woman.” In turn, we will question in our various readings and viewings what happens when the ideas modernity, history, and technology are anchored to these particular portrayals of gender. Practicing close-reading and critical interpretation, we will read modern literary texts – for example, by Lu Xun, Xiao Hong, Eileen Chang, Sheng Keyi, – and watch films directed by Cai Chusheng, Sang Hu, Xie Jin, Hou Hsiao-Hsien, and Wang Bing – from the late 1920s to the contemporary period. Together, we will analyze how the contradictory figure of the modern woman has changed and evolved through different periods and across different regions of Chinese cultural production. This course introduces a wide-range of Chinese language materials in translation, and no previous knowledge of China is required. This class fulfills the second half of the College of Letters and Science’s Reading and Composition requirement. Over the course of the summer, we will practice translating our process of analyzing literature and film to your own analytical writing and research. We will build on frequent short in-class and at-home writing exercises building up to a final paper. By the end of the course, you should be able to identify various literary, visual, and other formal techniques and analyze their use; draw connections among our readings and viewings; conduct relevant research; create your own original arguments that address the larger questions of the course; and strengthen your writing by incorporating feedback from your classmates and instructors. This will help prepare you not only for writing across the humanities, but also for critically engaging with material you encounter every day.
This course explores representation of romantic love in East Asian cultures in premodern and post-modern contexts. Students develop a better understanding of the similarities and differences in traditional values in three East Asian cultures by comparing how canonical texts of premodern China, Japan and Korea represent romantic relationship. This is followed by the study of several contemporary East Asian films, giving the student the opportunity to explore how traditional values persist, change, or become nexus points of resistance.
Neurodiversity in Literature will investigate how neurotypical and neurodiverse (or neurodivergent) authors depict and discuss neurodiversity. This course will give special emphasis to two Japanese authors: Nobel Prize-winner Oe Kenzaburô, who has treated the subject of a disabled/neurodiverse child extensively in his work, and Higashida Naoki, whose autobiographical work, The Reason Why I Jump, generated considerable international attention (and controversy) following the release of its English translation in 2013.
Course material covers both fiction and non-fiction, and also includes work by Steve Silberman, Temple Grandin, Oliver Sacks, Roy Richard Grinker, Donna Williams, Clara Claiborne Park, Andrew Solomon, and former Talking Heads front-man David Byrne. The course will be reading-intensive. Through the course, students will develop a more nuanced understanding of neurodiverse identity, the personal and societal challenges faced by this community, and how these topics are represented in literature.
Japanese Language and Literature Courses
This course is designed to develop basic speaking skills and to introduce hiragana, katakana, and approximately 300 kanji. Emphasis is on both spoken and written Japanese. This course is the equivalent of Japanese 1A offered in the regular academic year. Prerequisites: None.
Japanese 1B is designed to develop basic skills acquired in Japanese 1A further. Students will learn approximately 150 new kanji. At the end of the course students should be able to express regret, positive and negative requirements, chronological order of events, conditions, giving and receiving of objects and favors, and to ask and give advice. Grades will be determined on the basis of attendance, quiz scores, homework and class participation. This course is the equivalent of Japanese 1B offered in the regular academic year. Prerequisites: Japanese 1A.
This course is an overview of Japanese literature and culture, 7th- through 18th-centuries. 7A begins with Japan's early myth-history and its first poetry anthology, which show the transition from a preliterate, communal society to a courtly culture. Noblewomen's diaries, poetry anthologies, and selections from the Tale of Genji offer a window into that culture. We examine how oral culture and high literary art mix in Kamakura period tales and explore representations of heroism in military chronicles and medieval Noh drama. After considering the linked verse of late medieval times, we read vernacular literature from the urban culture of the Edo period. No previous course work in Japanese literature, history, or language is expected.
An introduction to Japanese literature in translation in a two-semester sequence. 7B provides a survey of important works of 19th- and 20th-century Japanese fiction, poetry, and cultural criticism. The course will explore the manner in which writers responded to the challenges of industrialization, internationalization, and war. Topics include the shifting notions of tradition and modernity, the impact of Westernization on the constructions of the self and gender, writers and the wartime state, literature of the atomic bomb, and postmodern fantasies and aesthetics. All readings are in English translation. Techniques of critical reading and writing will be introduced as an integral part of the course.
In this course, students will learn how to integrate the basic structures and vocabulary which they learned in Japanese 1A/B in order to express a wider range of ideas in a manner appropriate for many social situations. Students are expected to participate fully in classroom activities and discussions. This course is the equivalent of Japanese 10A offered in the regular academic year. Prerequisites: Japanese 1B; or consent of instructor. Prerequisites: Japan 1 or Japan 1B.
The goal of this course is for the students to understand the more advanced language and culture required to communicate effectively in Japanese. Some of the cultural aspects covered are; pop-culture, traditional arts, education, convenient stores, haiku, and history. Through the final project, students will learn how to introduce their own cultures and their influences. In order to achieve these goals, students will learn how to integrate the basic structures and vocabulary they acquired in the previous semesters, as well as study new linguistic expressions. An increasing amount of more advanced reading and writing, including approximately 200 new kanji, will also be required. This course is the equivalent of Japanese 10B offered in the regular academic year. Prerequisites: Japan 10A; or consent of instructor.
Introduction to Japanese culture from its origins to the present: premodern historical, literary, artistic, and religious developments, modern economic growth, and the nature of contemporary society, education, and business. Class conducted in English.
Korean Language and Literature Courses
This six-week course introduces students to beginning level Korean, including the basic structures and hangul (Korean script). Emphasis is on speaking, listening, reading, and writing. This class is for students with minimal or no knowledge of Korean. This course is the equivalent of Korean 1A offered in the regular academic year. Prerequisites: None.