Asia

275F Spring 2016 Japan and the World, 1850-1950

This course is an introductory survey of the historiography of modern Japan. Its major theme is the transformation of Japanese life in the modern era. Reading a book (or a book +) per week, we will cover major, essential questions of the century from the opening of Japan’s ports to the aftermath of defeat in the Pacific War.

275F Spring 2016 The Song Dynasty

This seminar will examine recent secondary scholarship (in English) on the Song Dynasty (960-1279). The Cambridge History of China, volume 5, part 2, which came out last spring, includes ten topical chapters that will provide a good starting point for the course. (This volume is, by the way, available for free download to all UC-affiliated individuals.) Students should expect to prepare short weekly written assignments, occasional presentations, and one longer historiographic essay.

103F.005 Fall 2015 Science, Society, and Empire in Late Imperial China

How can astronomy and astrology both provide practical knowledge about the heavens? How do anatomy and pulse reading both provide useful bases for the diagnosis of bodily ills? In this course we consider these questions by examining the relationship in late imperial China between cosmologies, or the organization of knowledge about natural and social order, and technologies, or methods for managing society, economy, and the natural world.

103F.003 Fall 2015 The Post-Ottoman World

The Ottoman Empire was established in the fourteenth century and included most of the eastern Mediterranean region, with territories beyond the Danube to the Nile and the Euphrates, until it ceased to exist in 1923. In its wake were established over twenty new successor states, making up predominantly what we now call the Balkans and the Middle East. But what of the Ottoman legacy in the Middle East and Balkans?

103F.002 Fall 2015 The Vietnam War Through Film, Fiction and Memoir

This seminar looks at how the Vietnam War has been represented on screen, in novels and in first-person non-fictional narratives. Early sessions will introduce three dominant interpretive approaches to the history of the Vietnam War: the left-leaning Orthodox School, the right-leaning Revisionist School and the relatively new Vietnam-Centric School. Weekly readings and film screenings will be interpreted in relation to these three distinct scholarly approaches to the War.

103F.006 Fall 2015 The Emergence of Modern Jerusalem, 1850-1950

To date, the vast majority of research on late Ottoman and Mandatory Palestine tends to focus on the city of Jerusalem. This holy city, which has great religious and symbolic importance to all three monotheistic religions, was the focus of international attention in the 19th century.

280F Fall 2015 Caste, Culture, Religion: The Anthro-History of South Asia

How did Western scholars/missionaries/anthropologists/colonial officials understand the strange world of India they found themselves in from the 17th to the 20th centuries?  What was encountered as a “religion” was unrecognizable to them by the terms of a Western understanding: it was not congregational, confessional or pastoral; it did and did not require belief in a deity; it was and was not scriptural and there was no one revealed book; it did not have prophets and the pl

275F Fall 2015 Japan

We shall read and discuss genuinely excellent English-language monographs on Japanese history from the classical period through the early modern (or Edo) period. The canon, as it were. The top hits, old and new, that deserve (and reward) careful attention. Selections will be influenced by the research interests of the group and comparative material (outside the Japan field) will be introduced as appropriate. All welcome (auditors, visitors, old and new friends), as long as you read the work resourcefully and are ready for searching conversation. Selective attendance by auditors is fine.

280F Fall 2015 Advanced Studies in Asian History

The purpose of this course is to introduce graduate students to some of the most influential works, figures and debates within the field of Southeast Asian History.  Most weekly readings are taken from classic texts that have shaped the study of the field (for good or for ill) in important ways.  Early readings will address important efforts to think about Southeast Asian history as a coherent academic field.

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