Asian Languages and Civilizations

2021-22

Arabic

101 First-Year Arabic I

This course starts by thoroughly studying the Arabic alphabet. It introduces the basics of Modern Standard Arabic and a brief exposure to one of the Arabic dialects through the listening, speaking, reading and writing activities. By the end of this course students should be at the Novice-Mid/ Novice-High level and they should be able to:

Accurately recognize the Arabic letters, identify a number of high-frequency, highly contextualized words and phrases including cognates, derive meaning from short, non-complex texts that convey basic information for which there is contextual or extra-linguistic support. Re-reading is often required;

Recognize and begin to understand a number of high-frequency, highly contextualized words and phrases including aural cognates; begin to understand information from sentence-length speech, one utterance at a time, in basic personal and social contexts where there is contextual or extra-linguistic support;

Communicate minimally by using a number of learned words and phrases limited by the particular context in which the language has been learned, initiate social interactions, ask for basic information, and be aware of basic cultural aspects of social interaction in the Arab world, talk about themselves, their education, and family with native speakers of Arabic accustomed to interacting with learners of Arabic as a foreign language;

Write short, simple sentences or a short paragraph about self, daily life, personal experience relying mainly on practiced vocabulary and sentence structures, produces lists, short messages, simple notes, postcards;

Understand aspects of Arab culture including commonly used culturally important expressions and differentiate between formal and colloquial spoken Arabic in limited contexts.

Limited to 18 students. Fall semester. Five College Senior Lecturer Hassan.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Fall 2018, Fall 2019, Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

102 First-Year Arabic II

This is a continuation of First-Year Arabic I. Emphasis is on the integrated development of all language skills – reading, writing, listening and speaking – using a communicative-oriented, functional approach. By the end of this semester, learners should be at the Intermediate Low level according to the ACTFL language proficiency levels. Students will acquire vocabulary, grammatical knowledge, and language skills necessary for everyday interactions as well as skills that will allow them to communicate with a limited working proficiency in a variety of situations, read and write about a variety of factual material and familiar topics in non-technical prose. By the end of this course, students will be able to:

Understand information conveyed in simple, predictable, loosely connected texts. Readers in this level rely heavily on contextual clues. They can most easily understand information if the format of the text is familiar, such as in a weather report or a social announcement. Students will be able to understand texts that convey basic information such as that found in announcements, notices, and online bulletin boards and forums. Reading texts are non-complex and have a predictable pattern of presentation. The discourse is minimally connected and primarily organized in individual sentences and strings of sentences containing predominantly high-frequency vocabulary.

Understand information conveyed in simple, sentence-length speech on familiar or everyday topics. They are generally able to comprehend one utterance at a time while engaged in face-to-face conversations or in routine listening tasks such as understanding highly contextualized messages, straightforward announcements, or simple instructions and directions.

Successfully handle a limited number of uncomplicated communicative tasks by creating with the language in straightforward social situations. Conversation is restricted to some of the concrete exchanges and predictable topics necessary for survival in the target-language culture. These topics relate to basic personal information; for example, self and family, some daily activities and personal preferences, and some immediate needs, such as ordering food and making simple purchases.

Meet some practical writing needs. They can create statements and formulate questions based on familiar material. Most sentences are re-combinations of learned vocabulary and structures. These are short and simple conversational-style sentences with basic word order. They are written in present or past time. Topics are tied to highly predictable content areas and personal information.

Requisite: ARAB 101 or equivalent. Limited to 18 students. Five College Teachers of Arabic.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

201 Second-Year Arabic I

This course expands the scope of the communicative approach, as new grammatical points are introduced (irregular verbs), and develops a greater vocabulary for lengthier conversations. Emphasis is placed on reading and writing short passages and personal notes. This second-year of Arabic completes the introductory grammatical foundation necessary for understanding standard forms of Arabic prose (classical and modern literature, newspapers, film, etc.) and making substantial use of the language.

Requisite: ARAB 102 or equivalent. Limited to 18 students. Fall semester. Five College Lecturer George.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Fall 2018, Fall 2019, Fall 2020, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

202 Second-Year Arabic II

This is a continuation of Second-Year Arabic I. We will complete the study of the Al-Kitaab II book sequence along with additional instructional materials. In this course, we will continue perfecting knowledge of Arabic integrating the four skills: speaking, listening, reading, and writing using a communicative-oriented, proficiency-based approach. By the end of this semester, you should have sufficient comprehension in Arabic to understand most routine social demands and most non-technical real-life conversations as well as some discussions on concrete topics related to particular interests and special fields of competence in a general professional proficiency level. You will have broad enough vocabulary that will enable you to read within a normal range of speed with almost complete comprehension a variety of authentic prose material and be able to write about similar topics. Also by the end of this semester, you should have a wide range of communicative language ability including grammatical knowledge, discourse knowledge and sociolinguistic knowledge of the Arabic language. You should expect text assignments as well as work with DVDs, audio and video materials and websites. Exercises and activities include essay writing, social interactions, role plays and in-class conversations, oral and video presentations that cover the interplay of language and culture, extra-curricular activities and a final project.

Requisite: ARAB 201 or equivalent or consent of the instructor. Limited to 18 students. Omitted 2121-22. Five College Lecturer George.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

301 Third-Year Arabic I

The goal of this course is to help students achieve an Intermediate Mid/ High level of proficiency in Modern Standard Arabic. Students engage with Modern Standard Arabic and one Arabic colloquial variety using the four-skills (reading, writing, speaking, listening) approach. By the end of the course, students will consistently be able to:

Read texts on unfamiliar topics and understand the main ideas without using the dictionary. Text types will address a range of political, social, religious, and literary themes and will represent a range of genres, styles, and periods;

Understand sentence-length speech in basic personal and social contexts dealing with topics of current political, social and cultural interests;

Speak about themselves and others, initiate and sustain conversations on a variety of subjects, describe and narrate in all major time frames;

Engage in written discourse dealing with impersonal and/or abstract topics.

Continue to deepen knowledge of Arab cultures, including their histories, politics, and literatures, learn and use increasingly sophisticated grammatical and rhetorical structures, and add approximately 500 new words and expressions to your active vocabulary.

Requisite: ARAB 202 or equivalent. Limited to 18 students. Fall Semester. Five College Senior Lecturer Hassan.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

302 Third-Year Arabic II

Arabic 302 expands on previously acquired foundations in Third-Year Arabic I in speaking, listening, writing, and reading, with special attention focused on learner production of Modern Standard Arabic and one Arabic dialect. Coursework includes readings and listening materials on a variety of social, historical and cultural topics related to the Arab world, practical and reflective written assignments, and discussions on essential cultural patterns. The work in this course is designed to help students solidify Upper Intermediate High/ Advanced Low proficiency in Arabic. In addition, students will continue to learn and use increasingly sophisticated grammatical and rhetorical structures and practice Advanced-level linguistic tasks, such as presenting cohesive essay-length discourse, defending opinions on abstract topics, and add approximately 500 new words and expressions to active vocabulary. By the end of the course students will be able to:

Understand fully and with ease short texts that convey basic information and deal with personal and social topics to which the reader brings personal interest or knowledge. Students will be able to understand some connected texts featuring description and narration;

Understand, with ease and confidence spoken Arabic-language short discourse stretches and derive substantial meaning from some connected texts;

Demonstrate the ability to narrate and describe in the major time frames of past, present, and future in paragraph-length discourse with some control of aspect and converse with ease and confidence when dealing with routine tasks and a variety of social situations.

Write compositions and simple summaries related to work and/or school experiences. Narrate and describe in different time frames when writing about everyday events and situations of a short essay length.

Increase engagement with different aspects of Arabic cultural life

Requisite: ARAB 301 or equivalent. Spring semester. Limited to 18 students. Five College Lecturer George.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2023, Spring 2024

401 Fourth-Year Arabic: Media Arabic

Media Arabic is an advanced Language fourth-year level course. Students are required to complete a set amount of media-related material during the semester. The course introduces the language of print and the Internet news media to students of Arabic seeking to reach the advanced level, according to the ACTFL standards. It makes it possible for those students to master core vocabulary and structures typical of front-page news stories, recognize various modes of coverage, distinguish fact from opinion, detect bias and critically read news in Arabic. The course enables students to:

Read extended Arabic Media texts with greater accuracy at the advanced level by focusing on meaning, information structure, vocabulary and language form, and markers of cohesive discourse;

Understand the main idea and most supporting details of Arabic media presentations and news and follow stories and descriptions of some length and in various time frames;

Converse comfortably in Arabic in familiar and some unfamiliar situations, and deliver detailed and organized presentations on familiar as well as unfamiliar concrete media topics using various time frames;

Write clear, detailed texts on media related topics, synthesizing and evaluating information and arguments from a number of sources and translating pieces of news from English into Arabic;

Show understanding of cultural differences reflected in the Arabic Media discourse and make appropriate cultural references when interacting in Arabic.

Requisite: ARAB 302 or equivalent. Limited to 18 students. Fall semester. Five College Senior Lecturer Hassan.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

402 Topics in Arabic Language and Culture

This advanced Arabic course covers a number of topics that survey the linguistic, geographical, historical, social, religious, cultural, and artistic aspects of the Arab world. Special emphasis will be on varieties of the Arabic language, Arabic literature, Arabic political discourse, religions in the Middle East, Arabic folkloric traditions, Arabic Media and film, women in the Middle East and Arabic cuisine and music. The course provides students with an opportunity to engage with the diversity of the Arabic cultural traditions in the past and present times through interacting with the Arabic cultural products, perspectives, practices and processes of interaction. The course materials are entirely in Arabic and will be explored through discussions, readings and videos. By the end of the course, students will be able to:

Follow academic, professional and literary texts on a wide range of familiar and unfamiliar subjects;

Follow narrative, informational and descriptive discourses on most topics and can understand standard dialects;

Express themselves freely and spontaneously and deliver presentations with accuracy and clarity on a variety of topics and issues;

Write clear well-structured short essays about a range of subjects, underling the relevant issues and supporting points of view at some length;

Gain intercultural communicative competence with regard to the rich cultural aspects of the Arab world;

Requisite: ARAB 302 or equivalent. Limited to 18 students. Spring semester. Five College Senior Lecturer Hassan.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2024

490 Special Topics

Independent reading course. This is an advanced special topics course that focuses on a certain Arabic topic to help students attain an Advanced High/ Superior level of Arabic language according to the ACTFL standards.

Fall and spring semesters. Five College Teachers of Arabic.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Spring 2012, Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Asian Languages & Civilization

108 China: Continuity and Change

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022

112 Russian Empire in Eurasia

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2018, Spring 2022, Fall 2024

114 Race, Empire, and Transnationalism: Chinese Diasporic Communities in the U.S. and the World

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2015, Spring 2018, Fall 2020, Fall 2022

120 Atomic Bomb Literature

On August 6, 1945, in the waning days of WWII, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the Hiroshima, laying waste to the city and killing some 80,000 people, a death toll that would reach, by some estimates 140,000 from subsequent injuries and radiation poisoning. A second bomb was dropped on Nagasaki a few days later, on August 9, killing between 45 and 75 thousand people from the blast and subsequent injuries and radiation poisoning. This course will investigate the literary responses to these calamities. Such works are referred to collectively as genbaku bungaku, or Atomic Bomb Literature. As the only country in history to have been attacked with nuclear weapons, this is a genre of literature unique to Japan. The course is structured around three units that move from the writings of actual survivors to those who engage with the existential implications of living in a nuclear age inaugurated by the bombs.  In order to help illuminate this body of writing, we will draw on linguistic models, trauma theory, and ideas of public memory.

Omitted 2021-22. Professor Van Compernolle.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2018, Fall 2020

123 Arts of Japan

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2010, Spring 2013, Fall 2017, Fall 2019, Fall 2021

126 Middle Eastern History: 500–1700

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2007, Spring 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2017, Spring 2019, Fall 2020, Fall 2021

142 Visual Culture of the Islamic World

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Fall 2023

143 Arts of China

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2010, Fall 2011, Fall 2013, Spring 2018, Spring 2022

144 Religion in Ancient India

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2013, Spring 2015, Fall 2016, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Spring 2021, Fall 2023

148 The Modern Middle East: 1800-Present

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2013, Fall 2017, Fall 2019, Fall 2021, Fall 2022

152 Introduction to Buddhist Traditions

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

154 Art and Architecture of South Asia

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2019, Fall 2020, Spring 2022

160 Chinese Literary Tradition, Antiquity to 1800

A survey of the literary and intellectual traditions of premodern China, the course guides students to appreciate a broad array of textual records and literary genres from antiquity to late Imperial China. We will read monumental works such as Shang dynasty oracle-bone inscriptions, the Analects, Laozi, Zhuangzi, Tang and Song poetry, the folk opera Mulian Rescues his Mother, and the celebrated vernacular novel The Story of the Stone. The course explores the multiple dimensions of the practice of writing and hence reflects on where wen, or “literature,” stood in the premodern Chinese lifeworld. Moreover, the course draws on contemporary writings and films to examine the offshoot of the Chinese literary tradition that thrives in the popular culture of the English-speaking world.

No prior knowledge of Chinese language or culture is assumed. Requirements include in-class quizzes and writing assignments of various lengths throughout the semester. Two class meetings per week.

Professor Ying. Omitted 21-22.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2024

170 Imagining Modern China

This course surveys the literary and cultural milestones in late 19th-century to 21st-century China. We will explore a wide range of works from mainland China and the Sinophone world, including critically acclaimed films and theatrical productions. The course highlights the capacity of literature as a form of historical engagement and a vehicle for ethical reasoning as modern Chinese intellectuals braved a violent and perplexing age. Furthermore, it unpacks the multivalence of Chinese literary modernity as well as that of the very term “China.” All readings are in English. No prior knowledge of China or the Chinese language is assumed. Requirements include short reflection papers and two medium-length papers. Two class meetings per week.

Fall semester. Professor Ying.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2023, Fall 2024

171 History of Dynastic China

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

172 Modern China: Traumatic Revolutions and Transformative Reforms

Other years: Offered in Spring 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

173 South Asia in the World until 1800 CE

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2012, Fall 2016, Spring 2018, Fall 2023

175 Japan from Shamans to Samurai

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Spring 2015, Fall 2024

207 The Home and the World: Women and Gender in South Asia

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Spring 2013, Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2019

208 Power and Politics in Contemporary China

Other years: Offered in Fall 2013, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2017, Fall 2018, Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

210 The Writer as Migrant: Sinophone Voices

What does it mean to be “Chinese,” when the term stands at once as a marker of nationality, ethnicity, and language? Through the lens of literature and film, this course looks into the rich histories and cultural diversities of Chinese communities beyond the borders of the People’s Republic of China and in different parts of the world. The stories and films the course features are grouped around three geographical foci: Hong Kong and Taiwan, Southeast Asia (in particular, Singapore and Malaysia), and the United States. This course unpacks the complexity of the Chinese experience in a global world order shaped by colonialism, migration, and transnational exchange. At the same time, we delve into the pains and joys, discoveries and dilemmas of the individual artists who negotiate multiple boundaries—geopolitical, ethnic, cultural, linguistic—in search of a “literary citizenship.”

Omitted 2021-22 Professor Ying.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2024

221 The Spirit of Words: Survey of Classical Japanese Literature

The preface to an early-tenth-century Japanese poetry anthology makes extraordinary claims for the power of words: they can move heaven and earth, make the gods feel pity, smooth the relations between men and women, and console the hearts of warriors. To this we might add that words could also express political or religious dissent, the sorrow of exile, and the pain of a broken heart. In surveying the entire sweep of the literature written in classical Japanese, beginning with the oldest extant book in Japan, dating to the early eighth century, we will explore the many and varied uses of words. We will examine the love poetry of the court, war tales touched by many hands, Chinese verse composed by Japanese monks, theatrical forms for audiences large and small, and travel journals that overlay a literary topography on the physical landscape, among others. A postscript to the course will take us to the end of classical Japanese as the language of literature around 1900. No previous knowledge of Japan is required, and all texts are taught in English translation.

Spring semester. Professor Van Compernolle.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2020, Spring 2022

245 The Great Indian Epics 

2024-25: Not offered

247 Japan's Modern Revolutions: 1800–2000s

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2008, Spring 2010, Spring 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2015, Spring 2018, Spring 2020

253 Theravada Buddhism

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2007, Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Spring 2016, Spring 2021

256 Buddhist Ethics

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2023

260 Buddhist Art of Asia

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2017, Fall 2018, Fall 2021, Spring 2023

262 Lu Xun

Here is an invitation to the literary world of Lu Xun, the iconic writer of 20th-century China, a relentless critic and a man of spiritual anguish. Besides delving into Lu Xun’s different periods and genres of writing, we will also read a constellation of writers who have been in dialogue with Lu Xun: his younger brother and the humanist essayist Zhou Zuoren, the gifted female writer Xiao Hong, and the storyteller of China’s southwest hinterland Shen Congwen. In taking a close look at select authors, the course familiarizes students with enduring issues in the study of modern Chinese literature.

All readings are in English. Prior knowledge of modern China is preferred but not required. Requirements include short reflection papers, an oral presentation, a character analysis, a book review, and a final exam. Daily meeting throughout the January term. Remote instruction.

January Term. Professor Ying.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in January 2022, Spring 2022

266 The Middle East: Anthropological Perspectives

Other years: Offered in Spring 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

273 Ramayanas in History, Ramayanas as History

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023

277 Islamic Constitutionalism

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2019, Spring 2020

282 Muslim Reformers of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2018, Spring 2020

283 Orthodoxy, Heresy, and Apostasy in Islam

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2020, Fall 2021

287 Islamic Intellectual Tradition: The Classics

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2008, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2017, Fall 2018

289 The Lives of Muslim Saints

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2020

317 Researching China

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2013, Spring 2017, Spring 2019, Fall 2021, Fall 2023

318 Chinese Childrearing

Other years: Offered in Spring 2013, Fall 2015, Spring 2018, Fall 2020, Spring 2023, Fall 2024

319 The Tea Ceremony and Japanese Culture

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2008, Fall 2009, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Spring 2018, Spring 2020

325 Images and Icons—Exploring Devotional Art

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2020

327 Fascism, War, and Freedom: Spain and Japan On Screen

(Offered as ASLC 327, EUST 327, and FAMS 327) The relationships among media, the state, and civil society are complex.  This course aims to address these relationships by examining cinema—the art form of the twentieth century—in Japan and Spain during different but overlapping eras of tumult: the 1930s to the 1980s. Putting these two national cinemas in a comparative framework will allow us to address issues such as: the interest in film by authoritarian regimes; the way cinema is harnessed to wartime goals by the state; the nature of censorship and self-censorship in war and peace; the potential of image, sound, and narrative to give expression to propaganda and democratic ideals; the cathartic release following the end of an authoritarian regime or occupation. The course, taught in English, does not assume prior knowledge of either country, nor of film studies. All films have English subtitles.

Spring semester. Professors Brenneis and Van Compernolle.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2014

338 Madame Butterfly Lives: Cross-Cultural Exchanges in France and Japan

(Offered as ASLC 338 and FREN 369) In 1867, in the waning days of the Tokugawa shogunate, the Japanese authorities dispatched several geisha to the Paris World Exposition to represent a country few Europeans knew anything about. Since these inauspicious beginnings, the culture of each country has come to have a decisive hold on the imagination of the other across a wide array of fields. By the time Jean-Paul Sartre arrived in Tokyo almost a century later, the cultural ties were so extensive that the French philosopher was greeted by a media frenzy normally reserved for celebrities. Today, Japanese comic books are widely available in French translation, and French cinema shows regularly on Japanese screens. This interdisciplinary course tracks the circulation of texts, ideas, images, and people between France and Japan from the late nineteenth century to the present, allowing us to address issues of national identity, Orientalism, exoticism, gender, media culture, and artistic modernism, among other themes. Course materials will be drawn from literature, visual art, opera, film, dance, fashion, design, philosophy, and history. The class is taught in English and requires no prior knowledge of either country.

Omitted 2021-22. Professor Van Compernolle and Professor Katsaros.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2016, Spring 2020

341 Anthropology and the Middle East

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2009, Spring 2010, Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Fall 2019

350 Cool Buddhist Texts

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2021

355 Early Islam: Construction of an Historical Tradition

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2013, Fall 2014, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, Spring 2022, Spring 2023

357 The Persian Book of Kings

(Offered as ASLC 357, ARHA 357, and HIST 357 [TC, TE, ME, P]) The Shahnameh (Book of Kings), completed by Abu’l Qasim Ferdowsi around 1010, is one of the world's greatest epics, and also one of the most enigmatic. The Shahnameh tells the history of pre-Islamic Iran from the beginnings of civilization until the Arab conquest in the seventh century A.D. Its tales of battles, romance, heroism, and betrayal have been appreciated as literature for centuries. At the same time, it’s been deployed for political and cultural ends. Many of the communities who have most enthusiastically embraced its stories and themes have been of non-Iranian origin. Indeed, Ferdowsi’s patron, Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni, was himself of Turkic background. Since the nineteenth century, it has been touted as the cultural cornerstone of an emphatically non-Muslim modern Iranian national identity, and yet the author and his patron were Muslim. Some have even interpreted the Shahnameh as encouraging conversion to Islam.

This course will explore the Shahnameh as literature, history, and material culture—including illustrated manuscripts, printed books, ceramics, metalwork, and photography—from its original tenth-century context to the contemporary moment. We will focus in particular on a heavily illustrated mid-nineteenth-century copy of the Shahnameh in Amherst College’s Archives and Special Collections, and consider how this work expressed a non-Islamic cultural foundation of modernity. We will follow this story to explore how the Shahnameh figures in debates over the pre-Islamic past today. No previous background is presumed, and all readings will be available in English.

Limited to 12 students. Spring semester. Professors Rice and Ringer.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2022, Spring 2024

359 Inside Iran

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022

360 Buddhist Stories from Modern East Asia

(Offered as ASLC 360 and RELI 360) What does it entail, and feel like, to embrace the modern world from a Buddhist perspective? The course examines key issues that have shaped the development of modern Buddhism across East Asia, while fostering a critical assessment of some fundamental assumptions in the making of the modern age. Threading through the entire course is a provocative dialogue between, on the one hand, modern events and intellectual currents such as scientific rationalism, secularization, imperialism, nationalism, feminism, and environmentalism, and on the other hand, seminal Buddhist teachings that stand profoundly persuasive across time and space. We unpack this dialogue through stories, which are drawn from China, Japan, Taiwan, Tibet, Vietnam, and from Europe and America. The seminar highlights literature as a vehicle for spiritual reflection especially in a global and postsecular world. All readings are in English. No prior knowledge of Buddhism is assumed. Requirements include weekly reflection papers, an oral presentation, and a final paper. Two class meetings per week.

Limited to 15 students. Fall semester. Not open to first-year students. Professor Ying.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2023

361 Lu Xun and Modern China

Here is an invitation to the literary world of Lu Xun, the iconic writer of 20th-century China, a relentless critic and a man of spiritual anguish. Besides delving into Lu Xun’s different periods and genres of writing, we will also read a constellation of writers who have been in dialogue with Lu Xun: his younger brother and the humanist essayist Zhou Zuoren, the gifted female writer Xiao Hong, the storyteller of China’s southwest hinterland Shen Congwen, and the Taiwanese Marxist
writer Guo Songfen. In taking a close look at select authors, the course helps students gain methodological awareness in the study of modern China.

All readings are in English. Prior knowledge of modern China is preferred but not required. Requirements include short reflection papers, oral presentations, a character analysis, a book review, and a final paper that involves independent research. Two class meetings per week.

Omitted 2021-22. Professor Ying.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2015, Spring 2024

368 Frontier Regions in Chinese History

Other years: Offered in Spring 2020, Spring 2023, Fall 2024

370 Japan's Empire in Asia, 1868–1945

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2015, Spring 2019, Fall 2020, Spring 2024

376 Sex, Gender, and the Body in South Asian History

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

383 Approaches to Chinese Painting

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Spring 2018, Spring 2020, Fall 2022

384 The Replicated Image in Japanese Art: Woodblock Prints, Postcards, and Photographs

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2019

385 The Qur'ān and Its Controversies

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2021

389 Ottoman Modern

Other years: Offered in Spring 2021, Spring 2023, Fall 2024

403 Social Policy in China

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2015, Fall 2015

430 Ozu Crossing Borders

(Offered as ASLC-430 and FAMS-430) Ozu Yasujiro (1903-1963) was almost completely unknown outside Japan until the early 1970s but is now considered among the most important artists in cinema history. He spent his entire career in a major Japanese studio, where he developed a signature style that some have called an “anti-cinema.” Ozu’s career began in 1929 with comedies inspired by Hollywood slapstick and ended in the high-growth era with the contemplative films for which he is best known. This course will use this remarkable body of work to tell an Ozu-centered history of the cinema. Weekly screenings of select films spanning the late silent era to his final film in 1962 will acquaint students with Ozu’s oeuvre. A variety of readings will help us position these films within broad aesthetic, cultural, and historical contexts. Students will work in small groups to help trace the lines of influence that reached Ozu in the beginning of his career and the lines that reach outward after his death, crossing borders to the rest of the world. Coursework includes a final project.

Requisite: A prior course in FAMS or consent of the instructor. Limited to 18 students. Omitted 2021-22. Professor Van Compernolle.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2021, Spring 2023

431 Health Policy in China

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in January 2021, January 2022, Spring 2022, Spring 2023

437 A Media History of Anime

(Offered as ASLC 437 and FAMS 437) Japanese animation (popularly known as anime) is ubiquitous in today’s world. This seminar traces the history of animation in Japan, from the earliest known work in 1907, stenciled directly onto a strip of celluloid, to the media convergence of the present. Animation allows us access to a larger history of media in Japan, including cinema, television, and today’s hybrid “contents industry.” Animation is also shaped by these many media forms. Topics include the relationship between animation and the state during wartime, the rise of a commercial industry, the analog revolution of the multi-plane camera, the digital revolution of the computer, and the stream of experimental animation across the twentieth century, among others. Course materials include films, television shows, computer entertainments, technical readings, and theoretical essays. Assignments, centered on a final research paper, are designed to cultivate research skills that can be applied to popular culture texts.

Limited to 25 students. Fall Semester. Professor Van Compernolle.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2019, Fall 2021, Fall 2024

472 The Indian Ocean World

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2021, Fall 2022

477 The History and Memory of the Asia-Pacific War

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2008, Fall 2010, Fall 2014, Fall 2020

490 Special Topics

Independent reading course.

Fall and spring semesters. The Department.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

493 Turkey: From Ataturk to Erdogan

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2012, Spring 2017, Spring 2019, Spring 2021

494 Istanbul

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2015, Spring 2018

498, 499 Senior Departmental Honors

Spring semester. The Department.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Non-Language Departmental Courses

220 Reinventing Tokyo: The Art, Literature, and Politics of Japan's Modern Capital

(Offered as ASLC 220 and ARCH 220) Tokyo is the political, cultural, and economic center of Japan, the largest urban conglomeration on the planet, holding 35 million people, fully one-fifth of Japan’s population. Since its founding 400 years ago, when a small fishing village became Edo, the castle headquarters of the Tokugawa shoguns, the city has been reinvented multiple times—as the birthplace of Japan’s early modern urban bourgeois culture, imperial capital to a nation-state, center of modern consumer culture, postwar democratic exemplar, and postmodern metropolis. The class will focus on the portrayals of Tokyo and its reinventions in art, literature, and politics from the end of the Edo period to the present day. It will examine the changes that took place as the city modernized and Westernized in the Meiji era, became the center of modern urban life in Japan before the Second World War, and rebuilt itself as the center of the country’s economic miracle in the postwar era. As the largest human cultural creation in Japan, one that endured political upheavals, fires, earthquakes, fire-bombings and unbridled development, Tokyo has always been a complex subject. We will use that complexity to engage in interdisciplinary thinking and to consider a culture different than one’s own.

Preference to majors and students with an interest in urban studies. Limited to 25 students. Spring semester. Professors Maxey and Morse.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2009, Fall 2010, Fall 2012, Fall 2014, Fall 2016, Fall 2018, Fall 2019, Spring 2022

233 Words, Self, and Society: Japanese Literature Since 1750

In the past two and a half centuries, Japan has experienced vertiginous transformations, including the rise of a money economy, the encounter with the West, rapid modernization, imperial expansion, war, defeat, democratization, and its postwar re-emergence as a technological and economic superpower. This course will examine how literature has both reflected and responded to these disorienting changes. We will focus on how varied social, historical, and aesthetic contexts contribute to the pendulum swings among artistic positions: the belief that literature has an important role to play in the exploration of the relationship between society and the individual; the fascination with the very materials of artistic creation and the concomitant belief that literature can only ever be about itself; and the urgent yet paradoxical attempt, in the writing of traumas such as the atomic bombings, to capture experiences that may be beyond representation. This course assumes no prior knowledge of Japan or Japanese, and all texts are taught using English translations.

Omitted 2021-22. Professor Van Compernolle.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2008, Spring 2010, Spring 2017, Spring 2021

234 Japan on Screen

(Offered as ASLC 234 and FAMS 320)

This course places equal emphasis on the two key terms of its title, “Japan” and “screen.”  Is the concept of national cinema useful in the age of globalization?  What is the place of cinema in a history of screen culture in Japan?  This course aspires to rethink the idea of Japanese cinema while surveying the history of cinema in Japan, from early efforts to disentangle it from fairground spectacles and the theater at the turn of the last century, through the golden age of studio cinema in the 1950s, to the place of film in the contemporary media ecology. This course will investigate the Japanese film as a narrative art, as a formal construct, and as a participant in larger aesthetic, social, and even political contexts.  This course includes the major genres of Japanese film, influential schools and movements, and major directors.  Additionally, students will learn and get extensive practice using the vocabulary of the discipline of film studies.

Omitted 2021-22. Professor Van Compernolle.

2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2016, Fall 2018, Fall 2020, Fall 2022

Chinese

101 First-Year Chinese I

This course, along with CHIN 102 in the spring semester, is an elementary introduction to Mandarin Chinese offered for students who have no Chinese-speaking backgrounds. The class takes an integrated approach to basic language skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing, and it emphasizes pronunciation and the tones, Chinese character handwriting, and the most basic structure and patterns of Chinese grammar. The course meets five times per week (lectures on MWF and drill sessions on TTh).

Fall semester. Senior Lecturer Teng.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Fall 2018, Fall 2019, Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

102 First-Year Chinese II

A continuation of CHIN 101. By the end of the course, students are expected to have a good command of Mandarin pronunciation, the basic grammar structures, an active vocabulary of 700 Chinese characters, and basic reading and writing skills in the Chinese language. The course meets five times per week (lectures on MWF and drill sessions on TTh). This course prepares students for CHIN 201 (Second-year Chinese I).

Requisite: CHIN 101 or equivalent. Spring semester. Senior Lecturer Teng.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

201 Second-Year Chinese I

This course is designed for students who have completed first-year Chinese classes. The emphasis will be on the basic grammatical structures. The course reinforces the four skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) through vigorous drills and practices. There will be three class meetings and two drill sessions each week.

Requisite: CHIN 102 or equivalent. Fall semester. Senior Lecturer Teng.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Fall 2018, Fall 2019, Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

202 Second-Year Chinese II

This course is a continuation of CHIN 201. By the end of the semester, most of the basic grammatical structures will be addressed. This course continues to help students develop higher proficiency level on the four skills. Class will be conducted mostly in Chinese. There will be three meetings and two drill sessions each week. This course prepares students for CHIN 301.

Requisite: CHIN 201 or equivalent. Spring semester. Senior Lecturer Teng.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

401 Fourth-Year Chinese I

This course, along with Chinese 402 in the spring semester, is the most advanced class in our Chinese language curriculum. Giving consistent emphasis to listening, speaking, writing, and grammar, the course focuses on advanced reading of authentic and idiomatic texts of Mandarin Chinese. With a balanced consideration to various topics, genres, and speech types, literary works will make up the principal part of the fourth-year reading materials. Exposed to a large and sophisticated vocabulary, and with the aid of a dictionary, the students read independently as they become sensitive to the linguistic nuances and cultural references in the texts, and able to appreciate the aesthetic shades of the language. The course meets three times per week (MWF).

Requisite: CHIN 302 or equivalent. Omitted 2021-22. Senior Lecturer Shen.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Fall 2016, Fall 2017, Fall 2018, Fall 2019, Fall 2020, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

402 Fourth-Year Chinese II

This course, as the continuation of Chinese 401 in the fall semester, is the most advanced class in our Chinese language curriculum. Giving consistent emphasis to listening, speaking, writing, and grammar, the course focuses on advanced reading of authentic and idiomatic texts of Mandarin Chinese. With a balanced consideration to various topics, genres, and speech types, literary works will make up the principal part of the fourth-year reading materials. Exposed to a large and sophisticated vocabulary, and with the aid of a dictionary, the students read independently as they become sensitive to the linguistic nuances and cultural references in the texts, and able to appreciate the aesthetic shades of the language. In this semester, we will also spend three weeks doing a selective introduction to classical Chinese as part of our four-year curriculum at Amherst. The course meets three times per week (MWF). 

Requisite: CHIN 401 or equivalent. Omitted 2021-22. Senior Lecturer Shen.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2018, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

490 Special Topics

Independent Reading Course.

Fall and spring semester. Members of the Department.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Japanese

101 Introduction to the Japanese Language

This course is designed for students who have never previously studied Japanese. The course will introduce the overall structure of Japanese, basic vocabulary, the two syllabaries of the phonetic system, and some characters (Kanji). The course will also introduce the notion of “cultural appropriateness for expressions,” and will provide practice and evaluations for all four necessary skills—speaking, listening, reading, and writing. Students will be required to practice with the materials that are on the course website at the college. 

Fall and spring semesters. Senior Lecturer Brown and Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

102 Review and Progress in Japanese

This course is designed for students who have already begun studying Japanese in high school, other schools, or at home before coming to Amherst, but have not finished learning basic Japanese structures or acquired a substantial number of characters (Kanji). This course is also for individuals whose proficiency levels of the four skills (speaking, listening, reading, and writing) are uneven to a noticeable degree. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group. Students will be required to practice with the materials that are on the course website at the college.

Requisite: Some Japanese instruction in high school, home, or college. Fall and spring semesters. Senior Lecturer Brown and Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

103 Building Survival Skills in Japanese

The course will emphasize active learning by each student in the class by means of the materials in the course website and individualized or small group discussions with the instructor. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group. By the end of this course, students are expected to be familiar with most basic Japanese structures, to have acquired a substantial vocabulary, and to have gained sufficient speaking, listening, reading, and writing proficiency levels, which will enable the students to survive using Japanese in Japan. As for literacy, a few hundred new characters (Kanji) will be added by reading and writing longer passages.

Requisite: JAPA 102 or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Senior Lecturers Brown and Kayama and Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

201 Functional Japanese

The course will emphasize active learning from each student in the class by the use of the materials on the course website and individual or small group discussions with the instructor. By the end of this course, students are expected to be able to use multiple Japanese structures with a substantial vocabulary and to have attained post-elementary speaking, listening, reading, and writing proficiency levels. As for literacy, a few hundred new characters (Kanji) will be added by reading and writing longer passages. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group. Students will be required to practice with the materials that are on the course website at the college.

Requisite: JAPA 103 or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Senior Lecturer Miyama and Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

202 Communicating in Sophisticated Japanese

The course will emphasize the development of all four skills (speaking, listening, reading, and writing) at a more complex, multi-paragraph level. For example, students will be trained to speak more spontaneously and with cultural appropriateness in given situations using concrete as well as abstract expressions on a sustained level of conversation. As for literacy, students will be given practice reading and writing using several hundred characters (Kanji). Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed so that instruction accords with the needs of each group. Students will be required to practice with the materials that are on the course website at the college.

Requisite: JAPA 201, or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2024

203 Experience with Authentic Japanese Materials

The course will provide sufficient practice of reading authentic texts and viewing films to prepare for the next level, JAPA 301, in which various genres of reading and films will be introduced. Throughout the course, the development of more fluent speech and stronger literacy will be emphasized by studying more complex and idiomatic expressions. Acquisition of an additional few hundred characters (Kanji) will be part of the course. The class will be conducted mostly in Japanese. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group. Students will be required to practice with the materials that are on the course website at the college.

Requisite: JAPA 202 or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Senior Lecturer Miyama and Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

209H Conquering Kanji I

Japanese uses three different writing systems, one of which is called Kanji, with characters that were borrowed from China. A linguist, R.A. Miller (1986) in his book Nihongo (Japanese), writes: “The Japanese writing system is, without question, the most complicated and involved system of script employed today by any nation on earth; it is also one of the most complex orthographies ever employed by any culture anywhere at any time in human history.” The difficulty lies not merely in the number of characters that students must learn (roughly a couple of thousand), but also in the unpredictable nature of the ways these characters are used in Japanese. It is not possible in regular Japanese language courses to spend very much time on the writing system because the students must learn other aspects of the language in a limited number of class hours. This writing system is, however, not impossible to learn. In this half course, the students will learn the Japanese writing system historically and metacognitively, in group as well as individual sessions, and aim to overcome preconceived notions of difficulty related to the learning of Kanji. Each student in this course is expected to master roughly 500 Kanji that are used in different contexts.

Requisite: JAPA 103 or its equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2024

210H Conquering Kanji II

This half course serves either as a continuation of JAPA 209H or the equivalent of 209H. See JAPA 209H for the course content.

Requisite: JAPA 103 or its equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2024

290, 290H, 390, 390H, 490, 490H Special Topics

Independent reading course.

Half course. Fall and spring semesters.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

301 Introduction to Different Genres of Japanese Writing and Film

This course will introduce different genres of writing: short novels, essays, newspaper and magazine articles, poems, expository prose, scientific writings, and others. Various genres of films will also be introduced. Development of higher speaking and writing proficiency levels will be focused upon as well. The class will be conducted entirely in Japanese. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group. Students will be required to practice with the materials that are on the course website at the college.

Requisite: JAPA 203 or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Senior Lecturer Kayama and Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

302 Moving From "Learning to Read" to "Reading to Learn" in Japanese

This course will be a continuation of JAPA 301. Various genres of writing and film, of longer and increased difficulty levels, will be used to develop a high proficiency level of reading, writing, speaking, and listening throughout the semester. At this level, the students should gradually be moving from “learning to read” to “reading to learn.” This important progression will be guided carefully by the instructor. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group. Students will be required to practice with the materials that are on the course website at the college.

Requisite: JAPA 301 or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Senior Lecturer Kayama and Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

401 Introduction to Thematic Reading and Writing

This course is designed for advanced students of Japanese who are interested in readings and writings on topics that are relevant to their interests. Each student will learn how to search for the relevant material, read it, and summarize it in writing in a technical manner. The course will also focus on the development of a high level of speaking proficiency. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group.

Requisite: JAPA 302 or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Professor Tawa and Senior Lecturer Miyama.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

402 Thematic Reading and Writing

This course is a continuation of JAPA 401. In addition to learning how to search for relevant material, read it with comprehension, and produce a high level of writing, students will learn to conduct a small research project in this semester. The course will also focus on the development of a high level of speaking proficiency through discussions with classmates and the instructor. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group.

Requisite: JAPA 401 or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Professor Tawa and Senior Lecturer Miyama.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

411 Introduction to Great Books and Films in the Original

This course is designed for students who possess a high proficiency level of speaking but need training in cover-to-cover book reading or film comprehension. Class materials will be selected from well-known books and films. Writing assignments will be given to develop critical and creative writing skills in Japanese. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group.

Requisite: JAPA 402 or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

412 Great Books and Films in the Original

This course is a continuation of JAPA 411. The course is designed for students who possess a high proficiency level of speaking but need training in cover-to-cover reading or film comprehension. Class materials will be selected from well-known books and films. Writing assignments will be given to develop critical and creative writing skills in Japanese. Small groups based on the students’ proficiency levels will be formed, so that instruction accords with the needs of each group.

Requisite: JAPA 411 or equivalent. Fall and spring semesters. Professor Tawa.

Other years: Offered in Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2024

Related Courses

- (Course not offered this year.)