Asian and Middle Eastern Cultures

321 Milbank Hall
212-854-5417
amec.barnard.edu
Department Assistant: Mary Missirian

Mission

The Department’s primary aim is to introduce major Asian and Middle Eastern civilizations and their works and values as a means of expanding knowledge of the varieties and unities of human experience.  Students who major in the Department take a specific number of courses from the Barnard and Columbia curriculum, obtain two to three years of language proficiency in the language relevant to the world area under study, and hence become regional experts with specific disciplinary skills.  The Department offers three tracks:  the East Asian Track covers China, Japan, and Korea; the South Asian track covers India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh; and the Middle Eastern Track covers the Middle East, including Israel, the Gulf States, Armenia, Iran, Iraq, and Turkey, and North Africa.  The Department’s general courses are designed for all students, whatever their major interests, who wish to include knowledge of Asian and Middle Eastern life in their education. Study abroad is encouraged.

Student Learning Outcomes

Faculty in the Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Cultures hold the following learning outcomes for majors who take advantage of the opportunities offered through the program.  Students will be able to attain the following outcomes:

  • Speak, write, and read at an intermediate to advanced level in a language of the Middle East, South Asia, or East Asia;
  • Demonstrate a basic understanding of the history and culture of their chosen area of the world;
  • Exhibit in-depth knowledge of a particular aspect of it, such as the artistic, literary, religious, philosophical, sociological, anthropological, political, or economic elements;
  • Demonstrate familiarity with leading theory on the study of non-Western cultures; and
  • Produce a clearly and critically written senior thesis that draws upon the various aspects of their training – for instance, linguistic, historical, cultural, and political – in investigating a topic in detail and making a contribution to knowledge.

The satisfactory completion of one of the following courses offered in the departments of East Asian Languages and Cultures and Middle East Languages and Cultures satisfies the college requirements in the respective languages:

Akkadian GU4113 Intermediate Akkadian; Arabic UN1215 Intermediate Arabic; Armenian UN1313 Intermediate Armenian; Bengali UN1202 Intermediate Bengali; Chinese CC1202 or F 1202 Intermediate Chinese (second stage); Hebrew UN1513 Intermediate Modern Hebrew; Hindi-Urdu UN1613 Intermediate Hindi-Urdu; Japanese CC1202 or F 1202 Intermediate Japanese (second stage); Iranian UN1713 Intermediate Modern Persian; Korean UN1202 Intermediate Korean; Sanskrit GU4813 Intermediate Sanskrit; Tamil UN1202 Intermediate Tamil; Telegu UN1202 Intermediate Telegu; Tibetan GU4413 Intermediate Tibetan; or Turkish GU1913 Intermediate Turkish.

Students who wish to enter Chinese, Japanese, or Korean language courses above the introductory level must pass a language placement test before registering. Placement exams are given during the week before classes begin-contact the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures (407 Kent) for exact dates. For placement above the introductory level in Arabic, Armenian, Bengali, Hindi-Urdu, Panjabi, Persian, Sanskrit, Tamil, Tibetan, or Turkish, contact the Department of Middle East and Asian Languages and Cultures (401 Knox). All students wishing to enter the Hebrew language program or wishing exemption from the Hebrew language requirement must take a placement test. Contact the Department of Middle East and Asian Languages and Cultures (401 Knox) for details.

Barnard Faculty:

Chair: Rachel Fell McDermott (Professor)
Professor: David Moerman
Assistant Professors: Guo Jue, Nicholas Bartlett
Term Assistant Professors: Hossein Kamaly

Other officers of the University offering courses listed below:

John Mitchell Mason Professor Emeritus and Special Service Professor: William Theodore de Bary
Shincho Professor Emeritus: Donald Keene


Professors: Muhsin Al-Musawi, Paul J. Anderer, Gil Anidjar, Charles Armstrong (History), Partha Chatterjee, Myron Cohen (Anthropology), Hamid Dabashi, Vidya Dehejia (Art History), Mamadou Diouf, Bernard Faure, Mason Gentzler (Senior Scholars Program), Carol N. Gluck (History), Wael Hallaq, Robert E. Harrist Jr. (Art History), John S. Hawley (Religion), Robert Hymes, Sudipta Kaviraj, Rashid Khalidi, Dorothy Ko (History), Feng Li, Lydia Liu, Mahmood Mamdani, Joseph Massad, Matthew McKelway (Art History), Brinkley M. Messick, Timothy Mitchell, Sheldon Pollock, Anupama Rao (History), Jonathan M. Reynolds (Barnard Art History), Morris Rossabi,  George Saliba, Conrad Schirokauer (Senior Scholars Program), Wei Shang, Haruo Shirane (Chair), Michael Stanislawski (History), Tomi Suzuki, Robert A.F. Thurman (Religion), Gauri Vishwanathan (English and Comparative Literature), Pei-yi Wu (Senior Scholars Program), Marc Van De Mieroop (History), Madeleine Zelin


Associate Professors: Lisbeth Kim Brandt, Allison Busch, Michael Como (Religion), Aaron Andrew Fox (Music), Theodore Hughes, Kai Kresse, Eugenia Lean, David Lurie, Adam McKeown (History), Gregory Pflugfelder, Gray Tuttle


Assistant Professors: Manan Ahmad (History), Najam Haider (Religion), Hikari Hori, Harrison Huang, Mana Kia, Jungwon Kim, Katarina Ivanyi (Religion), Debashree Mukherjee, Ying Qian, Zhaohua Yang (Religion)

Requirements for the Major

A student who plans to major in Asian and Middle Eastern Cultures is advised to consult a member of the Department in the spring term of her first year in order to be sure to plan for an appropriate sequence of language study.

Important note: Students majoring in any of the East Asian tracks (China, Japan, Korea) may only study abroad in the Spring of their junior year if they take Research in East Asian Studies UN3999 in the Spring of their sophomore year.

To major in Asian and Middle Eastern Cultures, a student will choose to follow one of two tracks, East Asian or Middle East and South Asian.

The East Asian Track

Major Requirements

The major requires a minimum of 11 courses, including the two senior thesis seminars (if student has already satisfied the language requirement in advance) or more (if she starts the language requirement from the beginning).

The requirements include:

LANGUAGE

3 years of Chinese, Japanese, or Korean, or the proficiency equivalent (to be demonstrated by a placement examination).

Third-year Chinese, Japanese, Korean, or Tibetan (completion of the UN3005-UN3006 level in Chinese, Japanese, or Korean; TIBT UN3611-UN3612 level in Tibetan), or the proficiency equivalent (to be demonstrated by placement examination).  Students of Chinese may also complete UN3003-UN3004 to meet the third year requirement.

Students who test out of three years or more of a language must take an additional year of that language or another East Asian language in order to satisfy the Barnard language requirement.

*Note that in all East Asian language courses, the minimum grade required to advance from one level to the next is a B-.
 

CORE COURSES

Asian Humanities UN1400 Colloquium on Major Texts

Two of the following survey courses:
Asian Civ. UN1359 Introduction to the Civilizations of China
Asian Civ. UN1361 Introduction to the Civilizations of Japan
Asian Civ. UN1363 Introduction to the Civilizations of Korea
Asian Civ. UN1365 Introduction to Tibetan Civilization

All majors are required to take EAAS UN3990, “Approaches to East Asian Studies,” which is offered every spring.

DISCIPLINARY COURSES

Three courses in either history, literature, philosophy, religion, art history, anthropology, political science, economics, or some other thematic cluster approved by the adviser. For further information, consult the online catalog or a departmental adviser.

ELECTIVE COURSES

Two courses related to East Asia, to be chosen in consultation with the adviser.

SENIOR THESIS

Each student is expected to prepare, for her senior thesis, a research paper or an annotated English translation of an East Asian text. There will be two tracks for the senior thesis process.  (1) Those who wish to write their senior theses under the aegis of EALAC at Columbia must apply to the Senior Thesis Program at the end of their junior year.   The deadline will be May 1st at 5:00 p.m. [see EALAC’s website for application form], and the application must be delivered in hard copy to the EALAC Academic Coordinator in 407 Kent.  Students must have at least a 3.6 GPA in courses taken in the major at the time of the application.  Decisions will be made by June 1, when grades for the second semester have been received.  All students accepted into the Program are required to enroll in the Senior Thesis Research Workshop (EAAS UN3999) for the fall of their senior year. Students who perform satisfactorily in this workshop, successfully complete a thesis proposal, and find a faculty advisor, will then write the Senior Thesis itself in the spring semester under the direction of the adviser and a graduate student tutor (EAAS UN3901).  Successful completion of the thesis by the April 1 deadline in the spring semester will be necessary but not sufficient for a student to receive Departmental Honors. (Because honors can be awarded to a maximum of 10% of the majors, not all thesis writers will receive honors.)  (2) Students who do not have a 3.6 average in the major OR who wish to write their senior theses at Barnard will do so under the direction of an East Asia faculty member at Barnard.  Such students should enroll in two semesters of independent study (Asian Studies BC 3999) with their faculty adviser.

The Middle East or South Asian Track

A minimum of 13 courses is required, including:

  • Asian Humanities AHUM UN3399 Colloquium on Major Texts: Middle East and South Asia
  • Middle East & South Asia MDES UN3000 Theory and Culture

Two of the following courses:

  • Asian Civilizations-Middle East UN2001 Introduction to Major Topics in Asian Civilizations: The Middle East  and India
  • Asian Civilizations-Middle East UN2003 Introduction to Islamic Civilization
  • Asian Civilizations-Middle East UN2008 Contemporary Islamic Civilizations
  • Asian Civilizations-Middle East UN2357 Introduction to Indian Civilizations
  • Asian Civilizations UN2365 Introduction to the Civilization of Tibet

Four to six courses of an appropriate language (Akkadian, Arabic, Armenian, Bengali, Hebrew, Hindi-Urdu, Panjabi, Persian, Sanskrit, Tamil, Telegu, Tibetan, or Turkish), selected in consultation with the adviser.

A minimum of five courses chosen as a concentration. The concentration may be in the languages and cultures of ancient Semitic, Arabic, Armenian, Hebrew, Indic, Iranian, Persian, or Turkish.

A senior thesis, to be written under the supervision of a faculty member chosen in consultation with the adviser. Students whose sole major is Asian and Middle Eastern Cultures should take two semesters of ASST BC3999 Independent Study with their adviser for the purposes of producing the thesis. Students who are double-majoring in a second department that requires a group seminar should enroll in that seminar and work with the AMEC advisor on the side.

The courses listed under Middle East and South Asia below represent a selection among those required in one or another of the concentrations. Students should consult the Middle East and Asian Languages and Cultures department office in 401 Knox Hall for a complete list of course offerings. Graduate courses at the G4000-level may be taken with permission of the instructor. See GSAS catalog for course listings.

No minor is offered in Asian and Middle Eastern Cultures.

Theory, Method, and Writing

MDES UN3000 Theory and Culture. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement, Discussion Section Required

Required of all majors. Introduces theories of culture particularly related to the Middle East, South Asia. and Africa. Theoretical debates on the nature and function of culture as a symbolic reading of human collectivities. Examines critical cultural studies of the Middle East, South Asia, and Africa. Enables students to articulate their emerging knowledge of Middle East, South Asian, and African cultures in a theoretically informed language. 

Fall 2017: MDES UN3000
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
MDES 3000 001/25857 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
Room TBA
Gil Hochberg 4 80/80

EAAS W3901 Senior Thesis. 3 points.

Prerequisites: Senior majors only.

Senior Seminar required of all majors in East Asian Studies.

EAAS UN3999 Research in East Asian Studies. 1 point.

Introduces students to research and writing techniques and requires the preparation of a senior thesis proposal. Required for majors and concentrators in the East Asian studies major in the spring term of the junior year.

Fall 2017: EAAS UN3999
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
EAAS 3999 001/15171  
1 9/15

EAAS W4101 Literary and Cultural Theory East and West. 3 points.

Designed to familiarize students with major paradigms of contemporary literary and cultural theory to generate critical contexts for analyzing East Asian literature and culture in a comparative framework. Takes up a wide but interrelated range of issues, including feminist criticism, film theory, postcolonialism, social theory, post modernism, and issues of national and ethnic identity.

EAAS GU4102 Critical Approaches to East Asia in the Social Sciences. 4 points.

This seminar is designed to equip students with essential tools to further their scholarly research into the cultures of East Asia, with a focus primarily on China, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.  These tools are those native to the Social Sciences, with our primary materials drawn from the disciplines of Cultural (and Historical) Anthropology and Sociology.  This seminar will familiar students with significant sociological and anthropological works by scholars past and present -- works with which any student serious about continuing social scientific research in East Asia should be familiar.  Beyond this, the seminar aims to equip students with the methodological tools to conduct solid social scientific scholarship and the understanding of sociological and anthropological theory whereby to assess critically the relative efficacy, and potential pitfalls, of various approaches to research.

Fall 2017: EAAS GU4102
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
EAAS 4102 001/01120 T 10:00am - 11:50am
Room TBA
Nicholas Bartlett 4 4

EAAS W4890 Historiography of East Asia. 3 points.

Prerequisites: Two-hour seminar plus additional one-hour workshop in bibliography and research methods. Designed primarily for majors in East Asian Studies in their junior year. Permission of instructor required for others.

Major issues in the practice of history illustrated by critical reading of important historical work on East Asia.

AHUM V3400 Colloquium on Major Texts: East Asia. 4 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL)., BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Literature (LIT)., CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

This course explores the core classical literature in Chinese, Japanese and Korean Humanities. The main objective of the course is to discover the meanings that these literature offer, not just for the original audience or for the respective cultures, but for us. As such, it is not a survey or a lecture-based course. Rather than being taught what meanings are to be derived from the texts, we explore meanings together, informed by in-depth reading and thorough ongoing discussion.

EAAS W4406x Social Theory for the Study of East Asia 4 pts. TBA

This course introduces students to major thinkers and intellectual viewpoints relevant for study of East Asian societies. Key topics include the nature of power, processes of social change, the role of religion, the discourses of tradition and modernity, and the ethical dimensions of scholarship.

East Asian, General and Comparative

EAAS V3370 Social Change in East Asia. 3 points.

Nowhere in the world has the pace of social change been so rapid and its impacts so sweeping as in East Asia. This course provides sociological insights that will help us better understand the causes, processes, and consequences of social change in East Asia from a comparative perspective.

HSEA W3718 Nation, Race, and Empire in East Asia. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA W3891 The Asia-Pacific Wars, 1931-1975. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA UN3898 The Mongols in History. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Study of the role of the Mongols in Eurasian history, focusing on the era of the Great Mongol Empire. The roles of Chinggis and Khubilai Khan and the modern fate of the Mongols to be considered.

Spring 2017: HSEA UN3898
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HSEA 3898 001/76323 T 10:10am - 12:00pm
603 Hamilton Hall
Morris Rossabi 3 21/25

HSEA W3997 World War Two in History and Memory. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

RELI W4011 The Lotus Sutra in East Asian Buddhism. 4 points.

Prerequisites: open to students who have taken one previous course in either Buddhism, Chinese religions, or a history course on China or East Asian.

The course examines some central Mahayana Buddhist beliefs and practices through an in-depth study of the Lotus sutra. Schools (Tiantai/Tendai, Nichiren) and cultic practices such as sutra-chanting, meditation, confessional rites, and Guanyin worship based on the scripture. East Asian art and literature inspired by it.

EAAS W4106 Global Genres and East Asian Cinema. 3 points.

Discussion Section Required
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This course explores East Asian Cinema from the perspective of film genre. In particular, the course examines East Asian genre films as active interaction with the circulation of global film genres as well as mass mediated engagement with specific economic, social, and political histories of East Asia. We will study contemporary theories of film genre, examine how the case of East Asian genre films complicate existing theories, while paying due attention to the parallel transnational traffics--between East Asian Cinema and global film genre, and across East Asian Cinema in their history of cultural and economic flow as well as political confrontation. We will integrate our investigations of genre-specific questions (industry, style, reception, spectatorship, affect) with those of gender, ethnicity, power as well as nation and transnational/transregional identity.

EAAS W4230 The Rise of Modern Chinese Thought. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Critical introduction to the intellectual trajectory of modern China with emphasis on imperial legacy, nation building, social change, internationalism, public discourse, knowledge production and world revolution.  Readings include seminal primary as well as secondary texts in English translations. 

EAAS W4408 Social Movements in Contemporary East Asia. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: Sophomore standing.

Examines basic theories and concepts of social movement literature and how it is utlized for the study of social movements in contemporary East Asia from a comparative perspective. By navigating through major studies of social movements in China, Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan, the course focuses on the varying contexts and dynamics through which social movements emerge, develop, and leave traces. This course will help us better understand how social, political and cultural history unfolds through the intricate interaction between the status quo and the incessant challenges against it.

HSEA W4902 World War Two. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA W4918 Smuggling, Drugs, and States. 4 points.

EAAS W4015x Buddhism and Islam: Tibet and China 4 pts. TBA.

News stories about Buddhist / Muslim encounters in many parts of present-day Asia often focus on dramatic conflicts, such as the destruction of the ancient Buddha statues of Bamiyan in Afghanistan by Taliban leaders, or the role of Burmese Buddhists in violent assaults on Muslim communities in Burma. Yet in fact, the history of Buddhist and Muslim interactions in Asia is far more complex than a single tale of the "conflict of civilizations" might suggest. An ethnically diverse assortment of Buddhist and Muslim populations have mingled, competed, intermarried, and traded with each other in many parts of Asia for over a millennium, influencing each other's medicine, science, philosophy, languages, music, cuisine, and of course, power arrangements. Mongols, Persians, Arabs, Uighyurs, Tibetans, Chinese, Kashmiris - these are just some of the major historical actors on a transregional and multi-ethnic Inner and East Asian stage, where rich trade routes, competing empires, and the high culture of multiple civilizations came together, with results that persist into our own day.

East Asian, China

EAAS V3310 Rebellion and Revolution in Modern China. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

EAAS W3315 Literature and Film in Modern China. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA V3430 A Cultural History of "Revolution" in 20th Century China. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA V3650 China's Sprouts of Capitalism. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: ASCE V2359.

HSEA W3850 Contemporary Chinese Culture and Society. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

A sociological survey of contemporary China. Examines major institutions (economy, politics, media) and the sources and consequences of their transformation. Studies main forms of sicoal inequality and social conflicts. Explores popular culture, civic associations, the environmental crisis, and the prospects for democratic political change.

HSEA BC3861 Chinese Cultural History 1500-1800. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: An introductory Asian history course preferred but not required.

Introduction to visual and material cultures of China, including architecture, food, fashion, printing, painting, and the theatre. Using these as building blocks, new terms of analyzing Chinese history are explored, posing such key questions as the meaning of being Chinese and the meaning of being modern.

HSEA W3880 History of Modern China I. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

China’s transformation under its last imperial rulers, with special emphasis on economic, legal, political, and cultural change.

HSEA W3881 History of Modern China II -- China in the Twentieth Century. 3 points.

The social, political and cultural history of twentieth-century China with a focus on issues of nationalism, revolution, "modernity" and gender.

EAAS W3927 China in the Modern World. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

The rise of China has impacted world politics and economy in significant ways. How did it happen? This course introduces a unique angle of self-understanding as suggested by Chinese writers, intellectuals, and artists who participated in the making of modern China and have provided illuminating and critical analysis of their culture, history and the world. Topics of discussion include historical rupture, loss and melancholy, exile, freedom, migration, social bonding and identity, capitalism, nationalism and the world revolution.

EAAS W4009 Introduction to Classical Chinese Poetry. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

EAAS W4024 Environment and Globalization: Chinese and Indian Experience. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This seminar is a systematic analysis of the causes and consequences of environmental change in two national societies (China and India).  Grounded in theories of global social change, social movements, comparative sociology, and environmental sociology, the course analyzes environmental change a the intersection of political institutions, economic development, globalization, and the practice and agency of citizens and civic associations.

EAAS W4031 Introduction to the History of Chinese Literature. 3 points.

An introduction to the major narrative genres, forms, and works from 900 C.E. to the end of the nineteenth century.  Readings in English.

EAAS W4223 China and the World since 1350. 4 points.

This seminar examines the history of China's relations with the outside world from the mid-fourteenth through mid-twentieth centuries, covering the period from the founding of the Ming dynasty to the twentieth century. We will begin with a discussion of the historiographical debate concerning China's so-called "tribute system" and "Sinocentric world order." Inquiries will be made into ways in which China interacted with, and was viewed by, outside societies and civilizations. Our analytical approach will be wide-ranging, and we will consider a variety of source materials, research methods, and narrative structures in our examination of China's relations with the outside world. Some background knowledge of Chinese history will be helpful. No knowledge of the Chinese language is required.

EAAS W4224 History of Chinese Cinemas. 4 points.

This survey class introduces Chinese cinemas produced in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Thematic, stylistic and industrial developments will be explored alongside continuing trends toward local and regional diversity in the context of globalization. To address the issue of nation/nationalism and the evolving rapport between the local and transnational, in conjunction with the changing dynamic between the film industries and filmmakers, emphasis is given to specific film genres (e.g. wenyi melodrama and martial arts), major film movements (from the leftist filmmaking in 1930s Shanghai to the new cinemas in three Chinas of the 1980s), and influential film auteurs, such as Xie Jin, King Hu, Zhang Yimou, Jia Zhangke, Tsui Hark, Wong Kar-wai, Hou Hsiao-hsien, Tsai Ming-liang, and Ang Lee. Other topics include, for instance, how cinema approaches history, ramifications of realism, representation of gender, ethnicity and sexuality, the reintegration of Greater China’s screen industries since the 1990s, and the recent industrial capitalization on neo-localism in Taiwan.

HSEA W4839 Family in Chinese History. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Field(s): EA

HSEA W4867 Civil Society, Public Sphere, and Popular Protest in Contemporary China. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Systematics and critical assessment of the developments and challenges of civil society in reform era China by focusing on civic associations, public sphere, and popular protest.

HSEA W4869 History of Ancient China to the End of Han. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

In this upper level course, we will detail the development of early Chinese civilization and discuss a series of cultural and institutional inventions. The course will also provide a systematic introduction to the most fascinating archaelogical discoveries in the past century.

HSEA W4871 Seminar on the City in Modern China. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA GU4881 History of Modern China II. 3 points.

The social and cultural history of Chinese religion from the earliest dynasties to the present day, examined through reading of primary Chinese religious documents (in translation) as well as the work of historians and anthropologists. Topics include: Ancestor worship and its changing place in Chinese religion;  the rise of clergies and salvationist religion; state power, clerical power, and lay power; Neo-Confucianism as secular religion; and the modern "popular religious" synthesis.

HSEA W4884 Merchants, Markets, Modernity - China. 4 points.

From Marx's Asiatic Mode of Production to contemporary notions of Confucian capitalism, theories abound to explain China's divergence from Western patterns of political and economic development. This course critiques these theories and looks at the Chinese economy starting with its own internal logic to explore the social, cultural, institutional and political forces that underlay Chinese economic practice, the role of markets, merchants, labor, and the state in the making of modern China. No prerequisite.

HSEA W4886 Gender, Passions and Social Order In China Since 1500. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This course explores the themes of love, virtue, and sexuality and their roles in the construction of orthodox morality, gender relations, medical and judicial knowledge, and political order in late imperial, modern and contemporary China. Fiction, drama, and cultural theory are among the sources used to examine such topics as the Cult of Desire, love and Ming loyalism, the Chastity Cult, New Womanhood and Nationalism, and Maoist Revolutionary ardor.

HSEA W4891 Law in Chinese History. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

EAAS W4202x (Section 001) The Dead and Their Lives After in Ancient China: Conceptions and Practices 4 pts. J. Guo.

What did the dead become? Ancestors, spirits, or ghosts? Are these postmortem categories and roles ontologically distinct and mutually exclusive? How did the dead become ancestors, spirits, or ghosts? Where did the dead go and what kind of "lives after" did they have? With these questions in mind, this course explores the realm of the dead in ancient China (ca. 5000 B.C.E.-600 C.E.) instantiated by the living in rituals, objects, and writings. Focusing on contemporaneous materials obtained through archaeology, facilitated with transmitted history and literature when available, students will read about and learn to analyze a variety of conceptions of the dead and corresponding afterlife options recorded in diverse kinds of sources including material culture, architecture, artifacts, pictorial representations, and texts from ancient China.

HSEA W4223x (Section 001) War and Society in Modern China 4 pts. M. Hasegawa.

As we examine the history of China in the modern period, we notice the indelible and profound mark that wars, armed uprisings, and violence have left on collective consciousness and social and state structures. On a social level, the impact of large-scale violence often transcended territorial boundaries both locally and nationally. Historical sources also show that countless families and communities were left disintegrated as a consequence of intra- and inter-regional military conflict. This course will examine a wide array of war experiences in China in the modern period, roughly defined as the period from the sixteenth to twentieth centuries. We will ask how the history of war might shed light on the lives of ordinary people in China. Particular attention will be paid to war experiences behind the front lines and the nature of the relation between war and society during and in the wake of battle. The general course format consists of class discussion on, and close analysis of, the assigned readings, which will include monographs by contemporary scholars as well as primary materials in translation. Some background knowledge of Chinese history will be helpful. No knowledge of the Chinese language is required.

EAAS W3931x (Section 001) Environment and Society in Chinese History 4 pts. B. Lander.

This course explores the changing environment of China from various angles, including economy, climate, demography, agriculture and politics. We will consider the entire sweep of Chinese history, beginning with the origins of agriculture, but will focus on the last 500 years or so. Although the focus will shift between the histories of specific regions and on processes that affected the entire subcontinent, the goal is to understand how the natural ecosystems of the region were transformed into the highly anthropogenic modern landscape.

East Asian, Japan

EAAS W3334 Introduction to Modern Japanese Literature. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

EAAS V3350 Japanese Fiction and Film. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This course is about literary and visual story-telling in Japan, with close attention to significant styles and themes. The chronology covers writing from the late 19th century and cinema from the silent era, through to stories and film-making from the last decade of the 20th century. This period of roughly one hundred years is marked by convulsive social transformations, cultural shifts in every field of cultural endeavor, as well as by fire, earthquake, and the horror of war. The work we will encounter differently faces, evades, or attempts to survive such realities, providing multiple angles of imaginative vision on Japan and the modern world.

EAAS V3352 Major Works of Japanese Cinema. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Corequisites: Weekly Film screening required.

EAAS V3360 Ozu, Mizoguchi, Kurosawa. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

EAAS W3405 Gender, Genre, and Modern Japanese Literature. 4 points.

This course engages in close readings of major works of Japanese literature from the 18th-century to the present with particular attention to the issues of gender and genre as major categories of socio-cultural and textual organization, construction, and analysis. The course considers literary representations of such cultural figures as male and female ghosts, wives and courtesans, youth and schoolgirls, the new woman and the modern girl, among others. Readings highlight the role of literary genres, examining the ways in which the literary texts engage with changing socio-historical conditions and experiences of modernity, especially with regard to gender and social relations. Genres include puppet plays, ghost stories, Bildungsroman, domestic fiction, feminist treatises, diaries, autobiographical fiction, and the fantastic. Related critical issues are women’s writings; body and sexuality; media and the development of urban mass culture; translations and adaptations; history and memory; globalization and the question of the tradition. All readings are in English.

EAAS V3613 Buildings and Cities in Japanese History. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

EAAS V3615 Japanese Literature and Film. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

The course focuses on the theme “Cuties, Fighters and Geeks” in the history of Japanese cinema and examines the representational politics of gender and sexuality (cuties and fighters), and fan pathology/audience reception (geeks). Selected films include animation, chambara/samurai, monster, and documentary. All the films are shown with English subtitles. Reading assignments include film reviews and writings drawn from perspectives of auteurism, national cinema, cultural studies, feminist critique and globalization. Engaging in close viewing/reading of both cinematic and written texts and existing research on them, we will attend to the discursive constellations of gender, ethnicity, nationalism, cultural imperialism, and the process of othering.

EAAS V3660 Kurosawa Seminar. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA W3869 Modern Japan, 1800 to the Present. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA W3870 Japan in the 19th Century. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA W3873 The Culture of Early Modern Japan. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This course examines the social, economic, political and cultural foundations of modern China as established during the last imperial regime. Special attention is given to issues of frontier expansion, state and nation building, economic and social transformation, the evolution of a multi-ethnic polity, and China's interactions with the West and Japan. In the process we will explore the new politics that evolved out of the fall of the Ming and the rise of an alien Manchu Qing regime, social and economic change in the lived experience of rural and urban men and women and their effects on the rise of new organizational, occupational and status opportunities. The history of the Qing dynasty traces the formation of the state we now know as China and the challenges and opportunities that faced all who lived within its borders as they engaged with the world in new ways and began to reshape both their discursive and institutional identities. Throughout this course we will be alert to the ways in which the struggles to create a new China during the last dynasty inform our understanding of the China we know today.

HSEA W3876 Ideas and Society in Modern Japan, 1600-2004. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

EAAS W3928 Japanese Literature: Beginning to 1900. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

An examination of the major genres -- poetry, prose fiction, historical narrative, drama, and philosophical writing -- of Japanese literature from the ancient period up to 1900 as they relate to larger historical changes and social, political and religious cross-currents.

EAAS W4022 Japanaese Buddhist Visual Culture. 3 points.

This course explors the principal modes, media, and contexts of visual culture in Japanese Buddhist history.  Through the analysis of selected case studies, the course examines of the modalities of perception, materiality, and reception that distinguish the form and function of visual media in Japanese Buddhist contexts.  Students are expected to have completed preliminary coursework in relevant areas of East Asian history, religion, or art history.

EAAS W4109 Japanese Religious Landscapes: Practices and Representations. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: One course on Japanese or East Asian cultures or Art History or permission of instructor.

Examination of the concept of landscape in Japanese religious culture, focusing on the ways in which physical and imaginary landscapes were represented, in theory and practice, in literature, art, and ritual. Topics to be explored include cosmology, pilgrimage, and syncretism, and the relationship such world views have on politics, gender, and social institutions.

EAAS W4115 Japanese Literature: Beginning to 1900. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

EAAS GU4118 Topics in Japanese Cinema. 3 points.

This course introduces important Japanese films across the genres of dramatic feature, documentary and animation. The films are organized according to the following three topics: global genres, war and documentary, the animation theories of ‘cinematism/animetism’. The reading assignments cover issues ranging from technological and structural changes in film history, to critical theories of gender and sexuality as well as  globalization/national cinema, and to analyses of medium specificity. The course closely examines filmic languages of works by auteur directors such as Akira Kurosawa, Hiroshi Teshigahara and Hayao Miyazaki.


No prerequisite necessary, though familiarity with Japanese history is helpful.  Film screenings Tuesdays 8:10-10 P.M.

EAAS W4120 A Cultural History of Japanese Cartography. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: Permission of instructor.

Examines Japanese history through the media of cartographic self-representation and analyzes the ways of seeing and ways of thinking that the map allows. Chronological and thematic survey of the historical contexts and historical objects of Japanese cartography: agricultural estates, religious sites, roadways, cities, provinces, countries, and worlds.

EAAS W4357 Contemporary Japanese Cinema. 4 points.

Corequisites: Film screening is mandatory.

The course examines the notions of humanity, post-humanity and machines, as represented in Japanese cinema from the 1980s to the present. Some anime, documentary and live action films will be discussed. Reading assignments include the writings of auteurism, national cinema, globalization and cultural theories. Mandatory weekly screening.

HSEA W4820 Japan Before Tokugawa. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSEA W4845 Modern Japan in History and Memory. 3 points.

Open without prerequisite to graduate, undergraduate, and SIPA students.Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

The history of modern Japan as interpreted in twentieth-century Japanese history, writing, and public memory. Emphasis on the ways in which different versions of the past have been affected by changes in the present, from the 1880s through the 1990s.

HSEA W4870 Japan Before 1600. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Through deep consideration of human experience in the Japanese archipelago from the 14th millennium B.C.E. through the 16th century C.E., this course introduces fundamental problems of the cultural, political, social, and economic history of the premodern world. Each class meeting centers on primary source materials, but readings from various English-language secondary sources are also assigned. The course is loosely organized around particular places or spaces of premodern Japan, but these topoi are considered in terms of interconnections with mainland East Asia, especially China and Korea, and also in a broader comparative framework. This is an introductory, discussion-based class intended for undergraduates. No prior knowledge of Japanese history is required, and all course readings are in English. This is a Global Core approved course.

HSEA W4894 Who is the Samurai?. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Primary and secondary texts representing the samurai in various periods of Japanese history.  How did members of the warrior class, both men and women, live?  What did they do?  How did they think of themselves?  How have others conceived of them?

East Asian, Korea

EAAS V3214 Major Topics on Modern Korea. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This course explores the vicissitudes of Korea since its encounter with the world in the late 19th century to the new challeneges in recent years. By exploring the events, thoughts, and the new developments and challeneges in the economic, political, socio-cultural spheres, the course aims to provide better undesrtanding of Korea's struggle to find its place in an increasingly globalizing world.

EAAS UN3215 Korean Literature and Film. 0 points.

Corequisites: weekly film screening required.

Traces the history of Korean cinema and literature from 1945 to the present. Particular attention is given to the relationship between visual and literary representations of national division, war, gender, rapid industrialization, authoritarianism, and contemporary consumer culture.

EAAS V3220 Korean Film and the Making of Cold War Culture. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This course traces the early history of South Korean film, focusing on the ways in which issues central to the formation of global Cold War culture in the 1950s and 1960s cut across four genres: comedy, combat/military film, melodrama, and the spy thriller. We pay particular attention to the comedic representation of family and the developmental state, the negotiation of race and sexuality in combat/military films, the role of sentimental masculinity in the melodramatic imagination, and the relation between modern discourses of attention and vigilance in the spy thriller. Linking Korean cinema to the transnational context of the Pax Americana, we will also examine cross-cultural representations of Cold War culture in Korean and Hollywood filmic productions. In addition to the secondary sources on Korean/U.S. Cold War culture and Korean literary works, our reading of selected theoretical texts will serve as a point of departure for analyzing such issues as the relation between film as visual medium and the global "red scare"; motion picture and mobilization/militarization; and gender/ways of seeing. Mandatory weekly film screening.

HSEA W3862 The History of Korea to 1900. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Issues pertaining to Korean history from its beginnings to the early modern era. Issues will be examined in the Korean context and also from a comparative East Asian perspective.

HSEA W3863 The History of Modern Korea. 3 points.

Prerequisites: Recommended: HSEA W3862.

Korean history from the mid 19th century to the present, with particular focus on politics, society, and culture in the 20th century. Major Cultures Requirement: East Asian Civilization List B. Group(s): C

EAAS W4510 Contention and Democracy in South Korea. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

An examination of the interaction between popular contention and formal politics, long characteristic of the dynamic, if unstable nature of South Korean political processes. By examining major paradigms and testing them against historical realities, students acquire a better understanding of the interplay between contention and democracy in general and South Korean politics in particular.

EAAS W4520 Modern Korean Literature in Translation. 3 points.

HSEA W4862 Writing, the State and Communities in Choson Korea, 1392-1910. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This seminar examines the process through which the political ideology of the Choson state was constructed, and how it evolved on the one hand, and the way in which this was related to the development of genres of writing in public space. By analyzing and contextualizing such writings as edicts, memorials, circular letters, exhortations, joint memorials, petitions, and travel diaries, this seminar hopes to trace the political and cultural meaning of the expanding discursive and communicative public space of the Choson.

HSEA W4888 Woman and Gender in Korean History. 4 points.

While the rise of women's history and feminist theory in the 1960s and 1970s fostered more general reevaluations of social and cultural history in the West, such progressions have been far more modest in Korean history. To introduce one of the larger challenges in current Korean historiography, this course explores the experiences, consciousness and representations of women Korea at home and abroad from premodern times to the present. Historical studies of women and gender in Korea will be analyzed in conjunction with theories of Western women's history to encourage new methods of rethinking "patriarchy" within the Korean context. By tracing the lives of women from various socio-cultural aspects and examining the multiple interactions between the state, local community, family and individual, women's places in the family and in society, their relationships with one another and men, and the evolution of ideas about gender and sexuality throughout Korea's complicated past will be reexamined through concrete topics with historical specificity and as many primary sources as possible. With understanding dynamics of women's lives in Korean society, this class will build an important bridge to understand the construction of New Women in early twentieth-century Korea, when women from all walks of life had to accommodate their "old-style" predecessors and transform themselves to new women, as well as the lives of contemporary Korean women. This will be very much a reading-and-discussion course. Lectures will review the readings in historical perspective and supplement them. The period to be studied ranges from the pre-modern time up to the turn of twentieth century, with special attention to the early modern period.

East Asian, Tibet

EAAS GU4102 Critical Approaches to East Asia in the Social Sciences. 4 points.

This seminar is designed to equip students with essential tools to further their scholarly research into the cultures of East Asia, with a focus primarily on China, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.  These tools are those native to the Social Sciences, with our primary materials drawn from the disciplines of Cultural (and Historical) Anthropology and Sociology.  This seminar will familiar students with significant sociological and anthropological works by scholars past and present -- works with which any student serious about continuing social scientific research in East Asia should be familiar.  Beyond this, the seminar aims to equip students with the methodological tools to conduct solid social scientific scholarship and the understanding of sociological and anthropological theory whereby to assess critically the relative efficacy, and potential pitfalls, of various approaches to research.

Fall 2017: EAAS GU4102
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
EAAS 4102 001/01120 T 10:00am - 11:50am
Room TBA
Nicholas Bartlett 4 4

EAAS W4545 Culture and Art in Contemporary Tibet. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

In this course, we study films, poems, stories, paintings, pop songs and other forms of cultural product that have been made by Tibetans in the last 3 or 4 decades, together with some made by others in their name or in their areas. We discuss questions of identity, survival, history and the politics of representation. We’ll look at questions about cultures and continuity; about whether and how we as outsiders can come to understand or interpret the culture of a country whose language and history we may barely know; about the interplay of texts, politics, and power; and about ways of reading and interpreting artworks and the meanings that they generate in politically charged societies and communities.

TIBT W4550 Understanding Modern Tibet. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

EAAS W4557 Film and TV in Tibet and Inner Asia. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

In this seminar we look at films and television dramas made in Tibet, Xinjiang and Mongolia from the 1920s onwards, mainly by Chinese filmmakers, but also by Russians, Tibetans and Mongolians. These suggest local perspectives on the history of these areas during their ongoing integration into the PRC since the 1950s. Through the films, the seminar explores the different ways notions of the state, nationality, “being good” and the political are expressed at different times in these areas. No prerequisites or previous knowledge required.

EAAS W4560 Women Visionaries in Tibet and East Asia. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This course explores the lives, roles and creativity of Tibetan, Chinese and Korean women visionaries--meditators, shemans, oracles, nuns and yoginis--from traditions including buddhism and indigenous religions, and links between visionary practice and these women's work as teachers, artists, healers and patrons.  Mateirals include first-person accounts, biography, poetry, and secondary sources

HSEA GU4700 Rise of Modern Tibet: History and Society, 1600-1913. 4 points.

Rise of Modern Tibet

HSEA W4710 Exploring Tibet: 17th-20th Century Travel Accounts. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Studies history of descriptions of Tibet with a focus on new explorations. The course starts with a look back to the legacy of Catholic religious and British trade missions to Tibet, as well as Tibetan missions that expanded the frontiers of Tibet. But the main focus is on 19th and 20th century topics including adventure and scientific missions in the service of imperial expansion, Tibetan pilgrimage and claims for territory, the "Great Game" for dominance of Central Asia, the role of photojournalism & the photographic representation of Tibet and the globalization of markets and culture.

HSEA W4725 Tibetan Material History. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: one page applications stating a student's interest and background (if any).

A seminar exploring the nature and implications of Tibetan visual and cultural material in historical context, with biweekly visits to NYC area museum collections. Topics include object biographies, Buddhist art & ritual objects, Tibetan arms & armor, clothing & jewelry, rugs & furniture. As we explore the incredibly rich Tibetan material resources of New York City's museums, students will have the opportunity to encounter first hand objects from Tibet's past. While the class as a whole will survey a wide variety of materials‑‑from swords & armor to Buddhist images & ritual implements, from rugs & clothes to jewelry & charms—students will select one or two objects as the subject of their object biographies. There will also be opportunities to explore the process and motivations for building collections and displaying Tibetan material culture.

HSEA W4866 Competing Nationalisms in East Asia: Representing Chinese and Tibetan Relations in History. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

After an introduction to nationalism in general and in Asia, this seminar will examine the issue of nationalist influences on the writing of Asian history through the lens of Chinese and Tibetan historiography. By critically examining the historical arguments for and against the inclusion of Tibet as part of the modern Chinese nation-state, students will have an opportunity to compare two important cultural traditions presented as competing national entities and apply this to their own topics (on China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, or Tibet) for the final research paper.

South Asian

MDES W3620 Language, History, Catastrophe: Tamil Worlds. 3 points.

Though Tamil has been sung, spoken, and written since at least the first centuries of the Common Era the Tamil People are only about one hundred years old. We will interrogate this seeming paradox by exploring 1) Tamils deep literary tradition and history; 2) the politicization of a language and the creation of the Tamil People as a modern political community; and 3) how language and history themselves were deployed in the catastrophic clash of modern peoples the Tamils and the Sinhalese in contemporary Sri Lanka.

MDES W3630 Survey of Indian Literatures in Translation. 3 points.

ASRL V3772 Perspectives on Evil and Suffering in World Religions. 3 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL).

Exploration of the problems of evil and suffering in Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, and Confucianism, with attention to such questions as what is "evil", why it exisits, how suffering fits into the religious world view, and how religious people cope with threats to their analytic capacities, powers of endurance, and moral insight. Draws on classical texts, myths, and modern fieldwork.

ASRL V3974 Hindu Goddesses. 4 points.

Prerequisites: One course in Indian culture or religion or permission of the instructor.

Study of a variety of Hundu goddesses, focusing on representative figures from all parts of India and on their iconography, associated powers, and regional rituals.  Materials are drawn from textual, historical, and field studies, and discussion includes several of the methodological controversies involving interpretation of goddess worship in India.

ASST W4001 Bengal: Culture and Identity. 3 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Historical Studies (HIS).
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: ASCE V2357--Introduction to Indian Civilizations or the equivalent, is recommended as background. Instructor's permission required.

Introduces the history, culture, and literature of Bengal from the 12th century to the present, in West Bengal and Bangladesh, with a view to identifying components of what has been claimed as a specific "Bengali cultural identity." We will survey figures, ideological trends, and social structures; read Bengali primary texts in translation; and sample new monographs on the region.

ASRL W4600 Judaism and Christianity in South Asia. 3 points.

Prerequisites: An academic background in Judaism, or Christianity, or Hinduism/Indian history is highly recommended.

Introduces indigenous traditions of Judaism and Christianity in the subcontinent, focusing on history, diversity, interactions with Hindus and Muslims, and contemporary controversies. South Asian Jews and Christians in the diaspora, especially New York, also highlighted.

MDES W4640 Art and Aesthetics in Colonial India. 3 points.

Southeast Asian

HSEA W3882 Introduction to Modern Southeast Asian History. 3 points.

Middle Eastern

MDES W2030 Major Debates in the Study of Africa. 4 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL)., CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement, Recitation Section Required

This course will focus on key debates that have shaped the study of Africa in the post-colonial African academy. We will cover seven key debates: (1) Historiography; (2) Slavery and slave trades; (3) State Formation; (4) Colonialism; (5) Underdevelopment; (6) Nationalism and the anti-colonial struggle; (7) Political Identity and political violence in the post-colony. Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement.

MDES UN3000 Theory and Culture. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement, Discussion Section Required

Required of all majors. Introduces theories of culture particularly related to the Middle East, South Asia. and Africa. Theoretical debates on the nature and function of culture as a symbolic reading of human collectivities. Examines critical cultural studies of the Middle East, South Asia, and Africa. Enables students to articulate their emerging knowledge of Middle East, South Asian, and African cultures in a theoretically informed language. 

Fall 2017: MDES UN3000
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
MDES 3000 001/25857 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
Room TBA
Gil Hochberg 4 80/80

CLME W3042 Palestinian and Israeli Politics and Society. 3 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL).
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

CLME W3254 Contemporary Israeli Fiction. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

MDES W3620 Language, History, Catastrophe: Tamil Worlds. 3 points.

Though Tamil has been sung, spoken, and written since at least the first centuries of the Common Era the Tamil People are only about one hundred years old. We will interrogate this seeming paradox by exploring 1) Tamils deep literary tradition and history; 2) the politicization of a language and the creation of the Tamil People as a modern political community; and 3) how language and history themselves were deployed in the catastrophic clash of modern peoples the Tamils and the Sinhalese in contemporary Sri Lanka.

MDES W3445 Societies & Cultures Across the Indian Ocean. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

The course is designed to introduce the Indian Ocean as a region linking the Middle East, East Africa, South and Southeast Asia. With a focus on both continuities and rupture from the medieval to the modern period, we study select cultures and societies brought into contact through interregional migration and travel over a broad arc of history. Different types of people - nobles, merchants, soldiers, statesmen, sailors, scholars, slaves - experienced mobility in different ways. How did different groups of people represent such mobilities? What kinds of cooperation, accommodation or conflict did different Indian Ocean encounters engender? Using an array of different primary sources, we look at particular case studies and their broader social and cultural contexts.

MDES W3540 Introduction To Modern Hebrew Culture. 3 points.

Introduction to modern, secular Hebrew culture of the last two hundred years,  to distinguish it from the continuity of traditional Jewish culture, delineate some of its salient features and hint at its scope and depth.

MDES W3541 Zionism: A Cultural Perspective. 3 points.

The course, based on Zionist texts of various kinds, will offer a view of Zionism as a cultural revolution aimed at redefining Judaism and the Jewish Identity.

ASST BC3610 Persian Literature Through English Translation. 3 points.

Students are introduced to the multiplicity of geographical and historical centers of literary activity: courts in tenth-century Central Asia and seventeenth century India; The songs of whirling dervishes who followed the teachings of Rumi in Turkey to Sufi hospices in fourteenth century Kashmir; Itinerant storytellers in Afghanistan, the Caucasus, and Bosnia. The interrelationships between literature, patronage, religion, and language policy are discussed, and the evolving connection between Iran and the Persian language is emphasized. The voice of women in Persian literature is given particular attention: including 17th century women of the Mughal court in India and Parvin EÊ¿teṣāmÄ« and Forugh Farrokhzad in 20th century Iran. More recent women poets and fiction-writers will be introduced. No familiarity with Persian language or the history of its development is assumed.  

HIST W3716 History of Islamic Societies. 0 points.

Focus on religions, conversion, ethnic relations, development of social institutions, and the relationship between government and religion. Field(d): ME

MDES W3750 Social and Intellectual History of Iran: Early Islam To the Safavids. 3 points.

Introduces a wide range of social and intellectual issues and developments in Iranian history from the early Islamic period to the establishment of the Safavids.  The inseparable social and intellectual dimensions of the unique cultural experience.

HSME W3854 East Mediterranean in the Late Bronze Age. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

CPLS UN3900 Introduction to Comparative Literature and Society. 3 points.

Introduction to concepts and methods of comparative literature in cross-disciplinary and global context. Topics may include: oral, print, and visual culture; epic, novel, and nation; literature of travel, exile, and diaspora; sex and gender transformation; the human/inhuman; writing trauma; urban imaginaries; world literature; medical humanities. Open only to students intending to declare a major in Comparative Literature and Society or Medicine, Literature, and Society in Spring 2017.

Spring 2017: CPLS UN3900
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CPLS 3900 001/29781 M 2:10pm - 4:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Madeleine Dobie, Caio Ferreira 3 29/30

CLME W3922 Text and Territory. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

The concept of "nation" and ongoing "national" struggles still remain potent, despite or perhaps because of unbound globalization. We will consider "nation" in relation to "state" and "diaspora," weighing its implications for literary nation-formation with readings in Armenian Diaspora literature. Theoretical readings from Renan, Bhabha, Anderson, Chatterjee, among others. Primary texts from Shahnour, Vorpuni, V. Oshagan and Beledian in translation.

MDES W3923 Central Questions in Islamic Law. 3 points.

Through detailed discussions of certain landmarks in Islamic legal history (e.g., origins; early formation; sources of law; intellectual make-up; the workings of court; legal change; women in the law; legal effects of colonialism; modernity and legal reform, etc.), the course aims at providing an introductory but integrated view of Islamic law, a definition, so to speak, of what it was/is. Please note, thsi course must be taken for a letter grade.

MDES W3925 Introduction to Western Armenian Literature. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

CLME W3927 Witness: The Ethics and Aesthetics of Representation. 3 points.

This is an interdisciplinary course considering the ethical and aesthetic dimensions of texts witnessing to contemporary experiences of suffering. Coursework is thoroughly comparative and includes readings and viewings of literary and visual representations, including philosophy, fiction, non-fiction, poetry, painting, photography and film. Students are expected to engage with some of the following questions: Who is a/the witness? What are, if any, the ethical imperatives of representing suffering? What may be the aesthetic and/or ethical limits of such representation?

ASCM W4400 God in Muslim Thought. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

CLME W4520 New Israeli Writing. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

HSME W4704 Sunnis, Shias, & Others in Islam. 4 points.

An historical exploration of the formations of religiously-defined identities, e.g. Sunni, Shīʻī, Sufi, Salafi, etc: Are these sects, denominations, schools of thought, or lifestyles? The emergence of Muslim Schools of law is linked with social and political developments. Examples are drawn from the Middle East, South Asia and elsewhere.

MDES W4950 Late Ottomam State and Society. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Asian Civilizations

ASCM V2001 Introduction to Major Topics in the Civilizations of the Middle East and India. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

A general introduction to major cultures in the Middle East and South Asia. The range of cultural issues, institutional forces, textual sources, and figures of authority who have historically defined and symbolically distinguished Asian and Middle Eastern cultures, from their earliest origins to our own time. A representative sample of sacred and secular sources is closely examined in order to guide the students toward a comprehensive conception of what constitutes these distinct cultures and how they have been redefined in the process of their contemporary adaptations. Required of all majors.

ASCE V2002 Introduction to Major Topics in Asian Civilizations: East Asia. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

An interdisciplinary and topical approach to the major issues and phases of East Asian civilizations and their role in the contemporary world.

ASCM UN2003 Introduction to Islamic Civilization. 4 points.

Lecture and recitation. Islamic civilization and its characteristic intellectual, political, social, and cultural traditions up through 1800.

Fall 2017: ASCM UN2003
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ASCM 2003 001/73490 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
Room TBA
Mana Kia 4 80/90

ASCM UN2357 Introduction to Indian Civilization. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Introduction to Indian civilization with attention to both its unity and its diversity across the Indian subcontinent. Consideration of its origins, formative development, fundamental social institutions, religious thought and practice (Vedic, Buddhist, Jain, Hindu, Muslim, and Sikh), literary and artistic achievements, and modern challenges.

Fall 2017: ASCM UN2357
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ASCM 2357 001/02812 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
Room TBA
Rachel McDermott 3 70/70

ASCE V2359 Introduction to East Asian Civilizations: China. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement, Discussion Section Required

The evolution of Chinese civilization from ancient times to the twentieth century, with emphasis on characteristic institutions and traditions.

ASCE V2361 Introduction to East Asian Civilization: Japan. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement, Discussion Section Required

A survey of important events and individuals, prominent literary and artistic works, and recurring themes in the history of Japan, from prehistory to the 20th century.

ASCE V2363 Introduction to East Asian Civilizations: Korea. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement, Discussion Section Required

The evolution of Korean society and culture, with special attention to Korean values as reflected in thought, literature, and the arts.

ASCE V2365 Introduction to East Asian Civilizations: Tibet. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

This course seeks to introduce the sweep of Tibetan civilization and its history from its earliest recorded origins to the present. The course examines what civilizational forces shaped Tibet, especially the contributions of Indian Buddhism, sciences and literature, but also Chinese statecraft and sciences. Alongside the chronological history of Tibet, we will explore aspects of social life and culture.

Asian Art Humanities

AHUM V3340 Art In China, Japan, and Korea. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement, Discussion Section Required
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Introduces distinctive aesthetic traditions of China, Japan, and Korea--their similarities and differences--through an examination of the visual significance of selected works of painting, sculpture, architecture, and other arts in relation to the history, culture, and religions of East Asia.

AHUM UN3342 Masterpieces of Indian Art and Architecture. 3 points.

Introduction to 2000 years of art on the Indian subcontinent. The course covers the early art of Buddhism, rock-cut architecture of the Buddhists and Hindus, the development of the Hindu temple, Mughal and Rajput painting and architecture, art of the colonial period, and the emergence of the Modern.

AHUM V3343 Masterpieces of Islamic Art and Architecture. 3 points.

Asian Humanities

AHUM UN1399 Major Texts: Middle East/India. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

AHUM UN1399 and UN1400 form a sequence, but either may be taken separately. UN1399 may also be taken as part of a sequence with AHUM UN3830.  Readings in translation and discussion of texts of Middle Eastern and Indian origin. Readings include the Qur'an, Islamic philosophy, Sufi poetry, the Upanishads, Buddhist sutras, the Bhagavad Gita, Indian epics and drama, and Gandhi's Autobiography.

Spring 2017: AHUM UN1399
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AHUM 1399 001/03602 M 2:10pm - 4:00pm
306 Milbank Hall
Rachel McDermott 4 27/16
AHUM 1399 002/06289 Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
214 Milbank Hall
Hossein Kamaly 4 16/16
AHUM 1399 003/25267 W 2:10pm - 4:00pm
425 Pupin Laboratories
Sheldon Pollock 4 17/20

AHUM V3400 Colloquium on Major Texts: East Asia. 4 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL)., BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Literature (LIT)., CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

This course explores the core classical literature in Chinese, Japanese and Korean Humanities. The main objective of the course is to discover the meanings that these literature offer, not just for the original audience or for the respective cultures, but for us. As such, it is not a survey or a lecture-based course. Rather than being taught what meanings are to be derived from the texts, we explore meanings together, informed by in-depth reading and thorough ongoing discussion.

AHUM UN3830 Colloquium On Modern East Asian Texts. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Prerequisites: AHUM V3400 is recommended as background.

Introduction to and exploration of modern East Asian literature through close reading and discussion of selected masterpieces from the 1890s through the 1990s by Chinese, Japanese, and Korean writers such as Mori Ogai, Wu Jianren, Natsume Soseki, Lu Xun, Tanizaki Jun’ichiro, Shen Congwen, Ding Ling, Eileen Chang, Yi Sang, Oe Kenzaburo, O Chong-hui, and others. Emphasis will be on cultural and intellectual issues and on how literary forms manifested, constructed, or responded to rapidly shifting experiences of modernity in East Asia.

Fall 2017: AHUM UN3830
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AHUM 3830 001/72674 Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
Room TBA
Charles Woolley 4 20/20

AHUM W4027 Colloquium On Major Works of Chinese Philosophy, Religion, and Literature. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: AHUM V3400, ASCE V2359, or ASCE V2002.

Extends the work begun in AHUM V3400 by focusing on reading and discussion of major works of Chinese philosophy, religion, and literature, including important texts of Confucian, Daoist, Mohist, Legalist, Huang-Lao, and neo-Daoist traditions and recently discovered texts. Forms a sequence with AHUM W4028, but may also be taken separately. 

AHUM W4028 Colloquium on Major Works of Chinese Philosophy, Religion, and Literature. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: AHUM V3400, ASCE V2359, or ASCE V2002.

Extends the work begun in AHUM V3400 by focusing on reading and discussion of major works of Chinese philosophy, religion, and literature, including important texts of Confucian, Daoist, Mohist, Legalist, Huang-Lao, and neo-Daoist traditions and recently discovered tests. Forms a sequence with AHUM W4027, but may also be taken separately.

AHUM W4029 Colloquium on Major Works of Japanese Philosophy, Religion, and Literature. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: AHUM 3400, ASCE V2361, or ASCE V2002.

Reading and discussion of major works of Chinese philosophy, religion, and literature, including important texts of the Buddhist and Neo-Confucian traditions. Sequence with AHUM W4030, but either may be taken separately if the student has adequate preparation.

AHUM W4030 Colloquium on Major Works of Japanese Philosophy. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: AHUM V3400, ASCE V2361, or ASCE V2002.

Reading and discussion of major works of Japanese philosophy, religion, and literature from the 14th through 18th centuries.

Asian Music Humanities

AHMM UN3320 Introduction To the Musics of East Asia and Southeast Asia. 3 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL)., BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: The Visual and Performing Arts (ART)., CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

A topical approach to the concepts and practices of music in relation to other arts in the development of Asian civilizations.

Spring 2017: AHMM UN3320
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AHMM 3320 001/76626 M W 6:10pm - 7:25pm
622 Dodge Building
Kevin Fellezs 3 16/25
AHMM 3320 002/13338 M W 6:10pm - 7:25pm
620 Dodge Building
Emily Clark 3 24/25
AHMM 3320 003/97251 M W 6:10pm - 7:25pm
814 Dodge Building
Shannon Garland 3 24/25

AHMM UN3321 Introduction To the Musics of India and West Asia. 3 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL)., BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: The Visual and Performing Arts (ART)., CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

A topical approach to the concepts and practices of music in relation to other arts in the development of Asian civilizations.

Fall 2017: AHMM UN3321
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AHMM 3321 001/21487 M W 6:10pm - 7:25pm
Room TBA
Alessandra Ciucci 3 25/25
AHMM 3321 002/70858 M W 6:10pm - 7:25pm
Room TBA
Eben Graves 3 25/25
AHMM 3321 003/17449 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
Room TBA
3 9/25

EAAS W3960 Music & Ritual in East Asian Tradition. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

African History

Cross-Listed Courses

Anthropology

ANTH V3008 Maximum Cinemas: Indian and Nigerian Film Cultures. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Hindi cinema represents one of the oldest and most dynamic forms of popular cinema whose popularity has spread far beyond India itself into countries from Senegal to Korea. Nigerian cinema, or Nollywood, represents one of the newest. In little more than a decade, it has spread all over Africa and, increasingly, into the Caribbean and Black diaspora.

ANTH V3465 Women and Gender Politics in the Muslim World. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Practices like veiling that are central to Western images of women and Islam are also contested issues throughout the Muslim world. Examines debates about Islam and gender and explores the interplay of cultural, political, and economic factors in shaping women's lives in the Muslim world, from the Middle East to Southeast Asia.

ANTH UN3912 Ethnographic China. 4 points.

Contemporary China through the writings of anthropologists who have done fieldwork there during the past decade.

Spring 2017: ANTH UN3912
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ANTH 3912 001/16672 Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
963 Ext Schermerhorn Hall
Myron Cohen 4 5/25

ANTH UN3921 Anticolonialism. 4 points.

Enrollment limited to 20.

Through a careful exploration of the argument and style of five vivid anticolonial texts, Mahatma Gandhi's Hind Swaraj, C.L.R. James' The Black Jacobins, Aimé Césaire's Discourse on Colonialism, Albert Memmi's Colonizer and Colonized, and Frantz Fanon's The Wretched of the Earth, this course aims to inquire into the construction of the image of colonialism and its projected aftermaths established in anti-colonial discourse.

Spring 2017: ANTH UN3921
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ANTH 3921 001/19084 M 10:10am - 12:00pm
963 Ext Schermerhorn Hall
David Scott 4 18/15

ANTH UN3933 Arabia Imagined. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

This course explores Arabia as a global phenomenon. It is organized around primary texts read in English translation. The site of the revelation of the Quran and the location of the sacred precincts of Islam, Arabia is the destination of pilgrimage and the direction of prayer for Muslims worldwide. It also is the locus of cultural expression ranging from the literature of the 1001 Nights to the broadcasts of Al Jazeera. We begin with themes of contemporary youth culture and political movements associated with the Arab Spring. Seminar paper.

Fall 2017: ANTH UN3933
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ANTH 3933 001/75423 M 2:10pm - 4:00pm
963 Ext Schermerhorn Hall
Brinkley Messick 4 20/40

Art History

AHIS V3201 Arts of China. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

An introduction to the arts of China, from the Neolithic period to the present, stressing materials and processes of bronze casting, the development of representational art, principles of text illustration, calligraphy, landscape painting, imperial patronage, and the role of the visual arts in elite culture.

AHIS W4110 Japanese Architecture from the mid-19th C. to the Present. 3 points.

This course will examine Japanese architecture and urban planning from the mid-19th century to the present. We will address topics such as the establishment of an architectural profession along western lines in the late 19th century, the emergence of a modernist movement in the 1920's, the use of biological metaphors and the romanticization of technology in the theories and designs of the Metabolist Group, and the shifting significance of pre-modern Japanese architectural practices for modern architects.  There will be an emphasis on the complex relationship between architectural practice and broader political and social change in Japan.

AHIS W4703 Modern Japanese Architecture. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

AHIS BC3687 Modern Japanese Art. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

This class will explore Japanese painting, prints, photography and performance art from the mid-19th century to the present. We will consider artists' responses to rapid modernization, debates over cultural identity, and the ever-changing role of "tradition" in modern art practice. We will also discuss the impact of natural disaster and war on the arts, and the role of art in mediating social conflict. There are no prerequisites, but the survey of Japanese art history and classes in modern Japanese studies would provide useful background.

AHIS BC3950 Photography and Video in Asia. 4 points.

Undergraduate seminar course. Course limited to 15 Students with instructor's permission. Application process required. Applications are due in the Barnard Art History office April 9, 2015.

East Asia is now perhaps the world’s most dynamic region, and its dramatic social and economic transformation has been mirrored in the work of a host of startlingly original and innovative visual artists. The class will explore the ideas and visual idioms that inform the leading contemporary photo artists in China, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. We will begin with a historical survey of the development of photography in East Asia since the mid-19th century, but we will concentrate on the period from 1960 to the present.  Figures whose work will be explored include such Japanese artists and photographers as Eikoh Hosoe, Daido Moriyama, Tomatsu Shomei, Miyako Ishiuchi, Nobuyoshi Araki, Yasumasa Morimura, Moriko Mori, Naoya Hatakeyema, and Tomoko Sawada. From China, we will examine the work of artists like Zhang Huan, Hong Hao, Yang Fudong, Lin Tianmiao, and Xing Danwen, while Korean artists to be covered include Atta Kim andYeondoo Jung. Since many of these artists work regularly in video as well as photography, there will be regular video screenings throughout the semester.

Fall 2017: AHIS BC3950
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AHIS 3950 001/04024 Th 12:10pm - 2:00pm
Room TBA
Christopher Phillips 4 28

History - East Asian

HSEA W3862 The History of Korea to 1900. 3 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Issues pertaining to Korean history from its beginnings to the early modern era. Issues will be examined in the Korean context and also from a comparative East Asian perspective.

HSEA W3880 History of Modern China I. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

China’s transformation under its last imperial rulers, with special emphasis on economic, legal, political, and cultural change.

HSEA UN3898 The Mongols in History. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Study of the role of the Mongols in Eurasian history, focusing on the era of the Great Mongol Empire. The roles of Chinggis and Khubilai Khan and the modern fate of the Mongols to be considered.

Spring 2017: HSEA UN3898
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HSEA 3898 001/76323 T 10:10am - 12:00pm
603 Hamilton Hall
Morris Rossabi 3 21/25

HSEA W4884 Merchants, Markets, Modernity - China. 4 points.

From Marx's Asiatic Mode of Production to contemporary notions of Confucian capitalism, theories abound to explain China's divergence from Western patterns of political and economic development. This course critiques these theories and looks at the Chinese economy starting with its own internal logic to explore the social, cultural, institutional and political forces that underlay Chinese economic practice, the role of markets, merchants, labor, and the state in the making of modern China. No prerequisite.

History

HIST W3719 History of the Modern Middle East. 3 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Historical Studies (HIS)., BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL)., CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Graduate students must register for HIST G6999 version of this course.

This course will cover the history of the Middle East from the 18th century until the present, examining the region ranging from Morocco to Iran and including the Ottoman Empire. It will focus on transformations in the states of the region, external intervention, and the emergence of modern nation-states, as well as aspects of social, economic, cultural and intellectual history of the region. Field(s): ME

HIST BC3861 Body Histories: The Case of Footbinding. 4 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Historical Studies (HIS).

Prerequisites: Permission of the instructor. Enrollment limited to 15. Preregistration required.

The deceptively small subject of footbinding provides a window into the larger family dynamics and sexual politics in Chinese history and society. Explores the multiple representations of footbinding in European travelogues, ethnographic interviews, Chinese erotic novels and prints, and the polemics of modern and feminist critiques.

HIST W4235 Central Asia: Imperial Legacies, New Images. 4 points.

This course is designed to give an overview of the politics and history of the five Central Asian states, including Kazakstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan starting from Russian imperial expansion to the present. We will examine the imperial tsarist and Soviet legacies that have profoundly reshaped the regional societies’ and governments’ practices and policies of Islam, gender, nation-state building, democratization, and economic development. Field(s): ME/EA

HIST W4865 Vietnam War: History, Media, Memory. 4 points.

Priority given to majors and concentrators, seniors, and juniors.Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

The wars in Vietnam and Indochina as seen in historical scholarship, contemporary media, popular culture and personal recollection. The seminar will consider American, Vietnamese, and international perspectives on the war, paying particular attention to Vietnam as the "first television war" and the importance of media images in shaping popular opinion about the conflict. Group(s): B, C, D

Middle East

Music

MUSI UN2030 Jewish Music of New York. 3 points.

Prerequisites: Music Humanities (Columbia University) or An Introduction to Music (Barnard).

With the arrival of the first Jewish immigrants in New York in the mid-1600s until today, Jewish music in the City has oscillated between preserving traditions and introducing innovative ideas. This course explores the variety of ways people have used music to describe, inscribe, symbolize, and editorialize their Jewish experience. Along these lines, it draws upon genres of art music, popular music, and non-Western traditions, as well as practices that synthesize various styles and genres, from hazzanut to hiphop. Diverse musical experiences will serve as a window to address wider questions of identity, memory, and dislocation. We will also experience the Jewish soundscape of New York’s dynamic and eclectic music culture by visiting various venues and meeting key players in today’s music scene, and thus engage in the ongoing dialogues that define Jewishness in New York. A basic familiarity with Judaism and Jewish culture is helpful for this course, but it is by no means required. You do not need to know Jewish history to take this class, nor do you need to be able to read music. Translations from Hebrew and Yiddish will be provided, and musical analysis will be well explained.

Fall 2017: MUSI UN2030
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
MUSI 2030 001/61470 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
Room TBA
3 9/40

MUSI V3030 Asian American Music Studies. 3 points.

Prerequisites: one course in music or the instructor's permission.

This course will examine the diverse ways in which Asian Americans have understood and shaped their musical practices. We will explore the ways in which Asians have been represented via sound, text, and image, and will consider Asian Americans' participation in composed music traditions, jazz, traditional/folk music, diasporic music, improvised music, and popular musics. The course will reflect on readings from musicology, ethnomusicology, and music theory as well as fields outside of music in order to consider gender/sexuality, polyculturalism, and political activism.

Religion

RELI V2005 Buddhism: Indo-Tibetan. 3 points.

Recitation Section Required

Historical introduction to Buddhist thought, scriptures, practices, and institutions. Attention given to Theravada, Mahayana, and Tantric Buddhism in India, as well as selected non-Indian forms.

RELI V2008 Buddhism: East Asian. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Lecture and discussion. An introductory survey that studies East Asian Buddhism as an integral , living religious tradition. Emphasis on the reading of original treatises and historiographies in translation, while historical events are discussed in terms of their relevance to contemporary problems confronted by Buddhism. 

RELI V2205 Hinduism. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement, Discussion Section Required

The origin and development of central themes of traditional Hinduism. Emphasis on basic religious literature and relation to Indian culture. Readings include original sources in translation.

RELI UN2305 Islam. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

An introduction to the Islamic religion in its premodern and modern manifestations.  The first half of the course concentrates on “classical” Islam, beginning with the life of the Prophet, and extending to ritual, jurisprudence, theology, and mysticism.  The second half examines how Muslims have articulated Islam in light of colonization and the rise of a secular modernity.  The course ends with a discussion of American and European Muslim attempts at carving out distinct spheres of identity in the larger global Muslim community.  

Fall 2017: RELI UN2305
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
RELI 2305 001/04539 M W 1:10pm - 2:25pm
Room TBA
Najam Haider 4 53/60

RELI V2405 Chinese Religious Traditions. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Development of the Three Teachings of Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism: folk eclecticism; the contemporary situation in Chinese cultural areas. Readings drawn from primary texts, poetry, and popular prose.

RELI V2415 Japanese Religious Traditions. 3 points.

Study of the development of the Japanese religious tradition in the premodern period. Attention given to the thought and practices of Shinto, Buddhism, and Confucianism; the interaction among these religions in Japanse history; the first encounter with Christianity.

RELI V2505 Intro to Judaism. 3 points.

A historical overview of Jewish belief and practice as these have crystallized and changed over the centuries. Special attention to ritual and worship, the forms of religious literature, central concepts, religious leadership and institutions, Israel among the nations.

RELI V3017 Buddhism and Violence. 4 points.

Studies, from a number of methodological approaches and angles, the Buddhist views on violence and non-violence, and the historical record.

RELI V3307 Muslims in Diaspora. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Consideration of controversies surrounding mosque-building, headscarves, honor killing, and other publicized issues that expose tensions surrounding citizenship and belonging for Muslims in North America and Europe. Exploration of film and other media representations of Muslims in the West. There will be additional meeting times for film screenings

RELI V3308 Origins of Judaism. 3 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Historical Studies (HIS).
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Introduction to the Hellenistic period of Jewish history, with emphasis on sectarian movements and the emergence of rabbinic Judaism and Christianity as the two dominant religions of the West.

RELI UN3311 Islam in the Post-Colonial World. 3 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Social Analysis (SOC I)., BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Social Analysis (SOC II).

This course focuses on the multiple manifestations of the Islamic vision in the modern world. It begins with a survey of core Muslim beliefs before shifting to an examination of the impact of colonization and secular modernity on contemporary formulations of Islam.

Spring 2017: RELI UN3311
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
RELI 3311 001/02984 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
202 Milbank Hall
Hussein Rashid 3 29/40

RELI V3314 Qu'ran in Comparative Perspective. 3 points.

This course develops an understanding of the Qu'ran's form, style, and content through a close reading of comparable religious texts. Major topics include the Qu'ranic theory of prophecy, its treatment of the biblical tradition (both the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament), and its perspective on the pre-Islamic pagan religion.

RELI V3410 Daoism. 3 points.

Philosophical ideas found in the Daode jing, Zhuang zi, hagiographies and myths of gods, goddesses and immortals, psycho-physical practices, celestial bureaucracy, and ritual of individual and communal salvation. Issues involved in the study of Daoism, such as the problematic distinction between "elite" and "folk" traditions, and the interactions between Daoism and Buddhism.

RELI V3501 Introduction To the Hebrew Bible. 3 points.

An introduction, by critical methods, to the religious history of ancient Israel against the background of the ancient Near East.

RELI V3508 Origins of Judaism. 3 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Historical Studies (HIS).
Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

Introduction to the Hellenistic period of Jewish history, with emphasis on sectarian movements and the emergence of rabbinic Judaism and Christianity as the two dominant religions of the West.

RELI V3514 Jewish Perspective on Non-Jews from Antiquity to the Present. 3 points.

Survey of Jewish perspectives on non-Jews from antiquity to the present, with an eye towards contextualzing these perspectives within Judaism and the situation of the Jewish people throughout the ages.  Emphasis will be placed on critical skills for analyzing any group's approach towards others.

RELI V3525 Introduction to Rabbinic Literature. 3 points.

Examines the differences between Halakha (the legal portion of the Talmud) and Aggadah (the more legal portion) with respect to both content and form. Special emphasis on selections from the Talmud and Midrash that reflect the intrinsic nature of these two basic genres of rabbinic literature.

RELI W4006 Japanese Religion through Manga and Film. 4 points.

This course will examine how the depiction of certain Japanese religious ideas through such medias has both breathed new life into and at the same time considerably modified tradition religious beliefs.  A study of Japanese religion through manga and film,supplemented by readings in the history of Japanese culture.

RELI W4011 The Lotus Sutra in East Asian Buddhism. 4 points.

Prerequisites: open to students who have taken one previous course in either Buddhism, Chinese religions, or a history course on China or East Asian.

The course examines some central Mahayana Buddhist beliefs and practices through an in-depth study of the Lotus sutra. Schools (Tiantai/Tendai, Nichiren) and cultic practices such as sutra-chanting, meditation, confessional rites, and Guanyin worship based on the scripture. East Asian art and literature inspired by it.

RELI W4013 Buddhism and Neuroscience. 4 points.

With the Dalai Lama's  marked interest in recent advances in neuroscience, the question of the compatibility between Buddhist psychology and neuroscience has been raised in a number of conferences and studies. This course will examine the state of the question, look at claims made on both sides, and discuss whether or not there is a convergence between Buddhist discourse about the mind and scientific discourse about the brain.

RELI W4018 Interpreting Buddhist Yoga: Hermeneutics East West Quantum. 4 points.

Not offered during 2017-18 academic year.

A seminar exploring the meanings of Buddhist Tantra and being, time, space, gender, technology, and mysticism through traditional religious, modern, post-modern, digital, quantum, and Buddhist "hermeneutics," the science and art of interpretation. We will read ancient and modern classics on hermeneutics, by Schleiermacher, Gadamer, Heidegger, Barthes, and Ricouer; Indian and Tibetan works on their systems of interpretation, at least as sophisticated as anything from Europe; and contemporary works on how digital technology brings us into a world of new meaning for everything, including Buddhist yoga.

RELI W4020 Liberation and Embodiment in Indo-Tibetan Yoga Traditions. 4 points.

Prerequisites: at least one course in Asian Religions, such as RELI V2005, RELI V2008, RELI V2205, RELI V2415, RELI V2405, or equivalent; and the instructor's permission.

With extensive readings on the concepts and practice of the Indic category of "yoga practice", this seminar is an inquiry into the conceptualization of the "body" and its "liberation" in South and Himalayan Asia. Special attention will be given to development of contemplative yogic traditions within what come to be known as Tantric lineages of Buddhist and Hindu traditions.

RELI W4035 Buddhist Contemplative Sciences. 4 points.

This course will explore key Buddhist contemplative sciences, including: stabilizing meditation; analytic insight meditation; the four immeasurables; form and formless trances; mind training; and the subtle body-mind states activated and transformed through advanced Tantric yoga techniques. These will be explored both within their traditional interdisciplinary frameworks, as well as in dialog with related contemporary arts and sciences.

RELI W4040 Women and Buddhism in China. 4 points.

Nuns and laywomen in Chinese Buddhism, Buddhist attitudes toward women, ideals of female sanctity; gender and sexuality, women leaders in contemporary Chinese Buddhism.

RELI W4203 Krishna. 4 points.

Study of a single deity in the Hindu pantheon as illuminated in art, music, dance, drama, theological treatises, patterns of ritual, and texts both classic and modern. Special attention to Krishna's consort Radha, to Krishna's reception in the West, and to his portrayal on Indian television.

RELI W4215 Hinduism Here. 4 points.

Historical, theological, social and ritual dimensions of "lived Hinduism" in the greater New York area. Sites selected for in-depth study include worshipping communities, retreat centers, and national organizations with significant local influence. Significant fieldwork component

RELI W4313 Revival and Revolution in the Muslim World. 4 points.

This class focuses on the history and development of revolutionary movement in the Muslim world.  It begins by forwarding the life of the Prophet as a template (and inspiration) for subsequent movements and proceeds to examine a range of revolutions through the modern period.

RELI W4325 Sufism. 4 points.

Prerequisites: Permission of instructor.

This is a seminar for advanced undergraduate and graduate students who wish to gain an understanding of the richness of Sufism (Islamic mysticism). We will examine the historical origins, development and institutionalization of Sufism, including long-standing debates over its place within the wider Islamic tradition. By way of a close reading of a wide range of primary and secondary sources, we will examine Sufi attitudes toward the body, Sufi understandings of lineage, power and religious authority, as well as the continued importance of Sufism in the modern world

RELI W4330 Seminar on Classical Sufi Texts. 4 points.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

Close study of pivotal texts from the classical periods of Islamic mysticism, including works by Hallaj, Attar, Rumi, In Arabi, and others (all texts in English translation).

RELI W4335 Shi'ism. 4 points.

This course offer a survy of Shi'ism with a particular focus on the "Twelvers" or "Imamis." It begins by examining the interplay between theology and the core historical narratives of Shi'i identity and culminates with an assessment of the jarring impact of modernity on religious institutions/beliefs.

RELI W4401 Mountains and Sacred Space in Japan. 4 points.

Explores the role that mountains have played in Japanese cosmology, particularly in religion and folklore. We will examine various aspects of mountain veneration such as mountains as portals to the world of the dead, as the embodiment of the universe, as ascetic training ground, as mandalized space, as restricted ground, and as space transformed by history.

RELI W4402 Shinto in Japanese History. 4 points.

This course examines the development of Shinto in Japanese history and the historiography of Shinto.We will cover themes such as myth, syncretism, sacred sites, iconography, nativism, and religion and the state.

RELI W4403 Bodies and Spirits in East Asia. 4 points.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

This seminar will focus on the role of early conceptions of both the body and demonology in the development of Chinese and Japanese religious traditions. By focusing on the development of ritual responses within these traditions to disease and spirits, the course will highlight the degree to which contemporaneous understandings of the body informed religious discourse across East Asia.

RELI W4405 Ghosts and Kami. 4 points.

Ghosts have long functioned in East Asian cultures as crucial nodal points in political and religious discourses concerning ancestors, kinship, ritual and land. By reading a small cluster of Western theoretical works on ghosts together with recent discussions of the role of ghosts in China, Japan, Vietnam and Korea, this seminar will explore the ways that ghosts continue to haunt and inhabit a variety of conceptual and religious landscapes across East Asia.

RELI W4412 Material Culture and the Supernatural in East Asia. 4 points.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

Although Protestant notions of textuality and the disjunction of matter and spirit have exerted an enduring influence over much of the study of religion, this seminar will explore the role of material objects in both representing and creating the categories and paradigms through which religion has been understood and performed in pre-modern East Asia. By focusing upon the material context for religious performance-by asking, in other words, how religious traditions are constituted through and by material objects-the course will seek to shed light on a cluster of issues concerning the relationship between art, ritual performance, and transmission.

RELI W4508 Jewish Philosophy and Kabbalah. 4 points.

The purpose of this seminar is to study the interactions between two major intellectual trends in Jewish History, the philosophical and the mystical ones. From the medieval period to the twenty-first century, we will discuss their interactions, polemics and influences. We will compare Philosophy and Kabbalah in light of their understanding of divine representation and in light of their respective Theology and conception of God.

RELI W4511 Jewish Ethics. 4 points.

This course is divided into two parts-- theoretical and practical. In the first part we will examine major philosophical issues concerning the nature and basis of Jewish ethics; in the second, we will examine a selected group of practical ethical issues.   All assignments will be in English, and any Hebrew phrases used in course discussion will be translated.

RELI W4537 Talmudic Narrative. 4 points.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission. Background in Talmud and Hebrew is encouraged.

This course examines the rich world of Talmudic narrative and the way it mediates between conflicting perspectives on a range of topics: life and death; love and sexuality; beauty and superficiality; politics and legal theory; religion and society; community and non-conformity; decision-making and the nature of certainty. While we examine each text closely, we will consider different scholars’ answers – and our own answers – to the questions, how are we to view Talmudic narrative generally, both as literature and as cultural artifact?

RELI W4620 Religious Worlds of New York. 4 points.

This seminar teaches ethnographic approaches to studying religious life with a special focus on urban religion and religions of New York. Students develop in-depth analyses of religious communities using these methods. Course readings address both ethnographic methods and related ethical and epistemological issues, as well as substantive topical issues of central importance to the study of urban religion, including transnationalism and immigration, religious group life and its relation to local community life, and issues of ethnicity, race and cosmopolitanism in pluralistic communities.

RELI W4801 World Religions: Idea and Enactment. 4 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Reason and Value (REA)., BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL).

Prerequisites: Permission of the instructor; some prior work in religion.

Historical and contemporary investigation of the concept of "world religions"- its origin, production, and entailments. Topics include the Chicago World's Parliament of Religions (1893); the choice and numbering of the "great religions;" several major comparativists; and the life of "world religions" in museums, textbooks, encyclopedia, and departmental curricula today.

RELI W4803 Religion Vs. The Academy. 4 points.

Prerequisites: Sophomore Standing. At least one course in Religion.

Today we hear heated debates about the proper aims of education in relation to those of religion. The impact of the David Project's "Columbia Unbecoming" on the Department of MESAAS and the university as a whole (2008) is a case in point. More recently (2014), in response to threatened legal action from the Hindu right, Penguin Press of India has withdrawn Wendy Doniger's book "The Hindus" from circulation, generating an international controversy. This course focuses on case studies from India and the United States-sometimes parallel, sometimes divergent, sometimes overlapping. Wendy Doniger and Gurinder Singh Mann will be guests.