Spring 2012

The Dao of Sex: Sexuality in China, Past and Present

Listed in: Asian Languages and Civilizations, as ASLC-328

Formerly listed as: ASLC-28  |  WAGS-05


Paola Zamperini (Section 01)


(Offered as ASLC 328 [C] and WAGS 205.) This survey course will focus on sexual culture in China, from pre-Qin times to the present. Using various sources such as ancient medical texts, Daoist manuals, court poetry and Confucian classics, paintings and illustrated books, movies and documentaries, as well as modern and pre-modern fiction written both in the classic and vernacular languages, we will explore notions of sex, sexuality, and desire. Through the lens of cultural history and gender studies, we will try to reconstruct the genealogy of the discourses centered around sex that developed in China, at all levels of society, throughout 5,000 years. Among the topics covered will be sexual yoga, prostitution, pornography, and sex-tourism.

Admission with consent of the instructor. Limited to 25 students. Spring semester. Professor Zamperini.

If Overenrolled: Permission of instructor


2022-23: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2007, Spring 2012