East Asia: China and Japan
An introduction to the classical order in China and Japan followed by a consideration of the impact of Western intervention and internal change from the 18th century to the present. Special emphasis on the interaction between China and Japan in this period.
Japanese Society and Culture
This course is an introduction to contemporary Japanese society. The course examines what everyday life is like in Japan from anthropological and historical perspectives. It explores such major social institutions as families, gender, communities, workplaces, and belief systems. The course focuses as well on the ways in which modernization has affected these institutions and the identities of Japanese people.
Asian Urban Ecology
Asian cities are among the most economically productive in the world, and also number some of the most polluted and environmentally challenged urban centers on the planet. Further complicating this picture is the fact that many Asian cities are also on the cutting edge of policies associated with “ecological modernization,” the effort to balance and manage competing economic and environmental interests and values. This course will examine a range of Asian cities, including, for example, Beijing, Singapore, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Seoul, and a range of issues like resource management, urban sprawl and congestion, environmental protection, green space and urban design, biodiversity and environmental justice with a view to better understanding the evolving interdependence among political, economic, social and natural systems in urban Asia.
Environmental Degradation of the Yellow River, China
The Yellow River, central to the rise of the Chinese civilization, is the most turbid river in the modern world; however, its water was clear 1000 years ago. What has happened to this river? This interdisciplinary introductory-level course focuses on the environmental degradation of the Yellow River beginning 5000 years ago. This course is aimed at both science and non-science students alike. There are no prerequisites. Topics covered will include the climate change in the Yellow River drainage basin, the impacts of deforestation and human reclamation on the Yellow River and its significance to fluvial and sediment discharge, the frequent river course shifts and their relationship to environmental degradation and human activities, the fluvial and sediment budget and sedimentation in the lower reaches and offshore area, and the socio-economic impacts of the historical river course shifts and their significance to regional sustainability development.