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Asian Diasporas | Contemporary Asian Societies | Economics & Business | Language Arts | Philosophy & Religion | Science | Visual Arts | World History

 

High School Lesson Plan Database can be Adapted to Community College Level

 

Asian Diasporas

Asian American Filmography
By Sue Gronewold of the Department of History at Kean University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Many instructors who teach about East Asia also contemplate teaching courses on Asians in the diaspora, and/or deal with this subject in some fashion in the classroom.  This filmography is designed to provide instructors of students from the senior high school to adult level with a fully annotated list of reliable, accessible, and easily attainable film and video resources on the topic of Asian Americans.  The films included in this select list are wide-ranging in subject matter and style, from history documentary to feature film. To make these materials as useful as possible, they are arranged in multiple categories, from ethnicity and genre to over a dozen subject topics. Links are provided to background information, reviews, related articles, and teaching units.

Bruce Lee in Hong Kong and Harlem
By Paize Keulemans of the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures at Yale University
2004-2005 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit explores the seemingly universal appeal of this early martial arts film star by looking at the different tensions that exist between his reception and production on local, national, and global levels. What made this star so popular and how is it possible that he was received so enthusiastically in places as diverse as Hong Kong, Bombay, and Harlem? This question will be addressed by watching one particular famous example from Bruce LEE’s oeuvre, Jing Wu Men (Fist of Fury) and reading a variety of articles that approach the Bruce Lee phenomenon from nationalist, transnational, racial, and gendered angles.

Constructing Identity in Narratives of Asian America
By Lili Selden of the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures at University of Notre Dame
By Patricia Welch of Department of Comparative Literatures and Languages, Hofstra University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit provides an introduction to how identity is negotiated in Asian American narratives. Included are a selection of texts that portray and comment on the “Othering” of Asians, offering constructions of identity that may mirror, undermine, or otherwise transcend racial and cultural stereotypes. By focusing on the ways in which dominant North American discourses present Asians as minorities and permanent Others, the unit highlights the various patterns of discrimination faced by Asians well into the twentieth century.

Friendship with Cambodia Lesson Plans
By Bhavia C. Wagner, educator and author of Soul Survivors Stories of Women and Children in Cambodia
Published and developed with the Friendship with Cambodia Group
Nine lessons relate to the subjects of Cambodian history, art and culture, genocide, human rights, landmines, sweatshops, refugees in America, war and peace, and powerful women. Each lesson plan relates to chapters in Soul Survivors Stories of Women and Children in Cambodia by Bhavia C. Wagner. The lessons are taught through the life stories of Cambodian people. Lists of related books, videos and websites are included. These lessons may be used in sequence or individually. The first lesson is a good overview of the country and is a useful introduction to any of the other lessons.

Koreans in Japan (Zainichi Koreans)
By Kazuko Suzuki of the Department of Sociology at Texas A&M University
2004-2005 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Today the notion that Japan is “homogeneous” prevails both inside and outside of Japan. This unit looks at ethnic Koreans residing in Japan and challenges the assumption that Japan is “homogeneous,” while also raising questions about what it means to be “Japanese.” Koreans constitute the largest “foreign” community permanently residing in Japan. Despite their similarities in physical appearance and considerable acculturation to mainstream Japanese society, Koreans in Japan have been discriminated against by both the Japanese state and Japanese society. This unit provides historical background on Korean migration to Japan and the subsequent discrimination against them.

Politics of the Asian Diaspora in New York City and Beyond
By Amy Freedman of the Department of Government at Franklin and Marshall College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit uses New York City’s Chinatown as a site for the study of the immigrant experience in the United States. Beginning with the arrival of the first wave of Chinese immigrants in the 1840s and ending in the present-day, the unit introduces students to the complex politics that shape immigrant life in one of the nation’s most vibrant ethnic neighborhoods. Through the study of this neighborhood, its politics, and its history, students will gain a better understanding of political and institutional dynamics at work not only in New York, but also in cities and communities around the country.

Race and Ethnicity in Asian America
By Bakirathi Mani of the Department of English at Swarthmore College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
How do Asian Americans in the United States define their ethnic and national identity? In what ways are Asian Americans represented as both “insiders” and “outsiders” in the United States? This unit provides a general introduction to Asian immigration to the United States, with a specific focus on issues of racial, national, and cultural identity.

Teaching Daughter from Danang
By Bakirathi Mani  of the Department of English at Swarthmore College
By Sue Gronewolde of the Department of History at Kean University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This moving documentary follows the life of Heidi Bub, a Vietnamese-American woman in search of her birth mother.  Adopted by a single mother in Pulaski, Tennessee (birthplace of the Ku Klux Klan), Heidi’s removal from Vietnam to the United States was conducted through Operation Babylift during the last years of the Vietnam War.  Now an adult, Heidi returns to Vietnam to meet her birth mother, but discovers much more than the family she left behind. The film can be used to address topics such as; histories of Asian American racial formation, gender and sexuality, and the changing face (and space) of Asian America, as well as many others!

 

Contemporary Asian Societies

Asian Cities 
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
“Exploring Asia: Asian Cities — Growth and Change” is a collaborative project between the Newspapers In Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with high school readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on the changing face of cities in Asia.

Combing the Past: Gender, Sexuality and Intergenerational Connections among Women in Zhang Mei’s “A Record”
By Sally McWilliams of the Department of English at Montclair University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
The purpose of this unit on ZHANG Mei’s short story “A Record” is to explore the relationship between contemporary urban Chinese women and their predecessors by focusing on issues of representation, gender, sexuality, and female autonomy. The unit presents materials and study questions about the construction of Chinese women’s subjectivity, the significance of women’s history, and the transnational circulation of representations of Chinese women. While offering background information on the practice of marriage resistance by women in China, this unit also helps us understand the complexities of gender and sexual politics. Such an analysis looks closely at the impact of gender and sexuality on contemporary women’s lives, intergenerational connections among women, and the production of knowledge, which forms the basis of women’s literary and cultural histories.

Competing Views of Nationalism and Identity in Contemporary China
By Xiaodan Zhang of the Department of Social Sciences at York College, CUNY
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Since the launch of economic reforms in the 1980s, China’s global position has changed significantly, triggering a surge in Chinese nationalism.  In the Western media and some scholarly discussions, this new wave of nationalism is often viewed as an attempt by the Chinese state to regain legitimacy by shifting the focus away from failing communist beliefs. This teaching unit takes a broader look at the phenomenon by examining different types of nationalism in contemporary China.  It aims to help students understand how these nationalisms formed for different political purposes and how the conflicts among them reveal the true nature of nationalist currents and reflect political tensions between the Chinese state, elites, and ordinary citizens.

Continuity and Change in Asia 
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
This study guide works in conjunction with the eight-article series, Continuity and Change in Asia. The series and the guide address three broad themes in a study of power and politics in twentieth- and twenty-first century Asia: Legacies of Imperialism and Colonialism; Women’s Rise to Power, and Emerging Voices. Each theme richly demonstrates continuity and change within Asia, emphasizing the need for a deep historical and cultural approach to an understanding of current events.

East Asian Martial Arts: Historical Development, Modernization, and Globalization
By TJ Hinrichs of the Department of History at Cornell University
2003-2004 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
American students’ most common areas of contact with East Asian cultures are through martial arts, film, and food. This unit takes advantage of students’ prior interest in martial arts to teach them about East Asian history and contemporary processes of globalization. Through exploration of the historical development and spread of these practices, it seeks to develop students’ reflexivity regarding the relationships between the products (including practices and ideas) of East Asian culture that they consume, the historical processes through which these were produced, and the global processes through which they were further transformed, transmitted, and integrated into local American lives.

Exploring Asia: Human Rights
By Tese Wintz Neighbor and Jacob Bolotin of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
“Exploring Asia: Human Rights” is a collaborative project between The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education (NIE) program and the University of Washington Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with young readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on a human-rights issue in a country or region of Asia. The teaching guide provides a lesson plan for each article that includes activities to do with students before, during and after reading the featured article. Together, the articles and accompanying lessons allow students to explore human rights in several Asian countries, asking them to look at the issues from multiple perspectives and investigate organizations that protect and promote human rights

Global Asia: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
“Global Asia: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” is a collaborative project between the Newspapers in Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a four-article series, a teaching guide and a workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with high school readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on the changing face of empires, colonialism and modern conditions of countries in Asia.

Global Health: Asia in the 21st Century  
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies
For five weeks, students will learn about different health issues affecting various countries in Asia. Each week, students will identify one or more health issues and its effect on Asia or on a population in Asia. They will read concurrent Seattle Times articles as well as additional readings supplied in these lessons. They will discuss the ramifications of these problems and form opinions about how individual countries can begin dealing with the health issues facing them today.

History and Politics of the Muslims in Thailand
By Thanet Aphornsuvan of Thammasat University
Published and developed with the Southeast Asia Outreach Program at Cornell University
This unit covers the rich history of the Islamic peoples who have inhabited Thailand for ages. The unit also offers a close look at the politics of these peoples, offering comparisons and contrasts of other people groups in the area.

Koreans in Japan (Zainichi Koreans)
By Kazuko Suzuki of the Department of Sociology at Texas A&M University
2004-2005 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Today the notion that Japan is “homogeneous” prevails both inside and outside of Japan. This unit looks at ethnic Koreans residing in Japan and challenges the assumption that Japan is “homogeneous,” while also raising questions about what it means to be “Japanese.” Koreans constitute the largest “foreign” community permanently residing in Japan. Despite their similarities in physical appearance and considerable acculturation to mainstream Japanese society, Koreans in Japan have been discriminated against by both the Japanese state and Japanese society. This unit provides historical background on Korean migration to Japan and the subsequent discrimination against them.

Law and Society in East Asia: Selected Teaching Resources
Published and developed by Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
The following primary legal sources, organized around the theme of “law and society,” offer insight into how the power of the state or dynasty interacted with people’s everyday lives. The list includes legal cases that have been translated into English, along with films that illustrate legal procedure, from China, Japan, and Korea, starting in the thirteenth century to the present day.  Used in the classroom these legal cases not only serve as examples of legal concepts, state doctrine, or social values, but they also serve as snapshots into social history, bringing the extraordinary and ordinary of everyday society to life for students.  Reading these translated legal cases, students can gain first-hand insight into how legal practitioners envisioned social order, while also witnessing what happened when those ideas conflicted with social realities.

Multi-Ethnic Japan: Nation-Building and National Identity
By Aya Ezawa of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Swarthmore College
2002-2003 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Japan is often described as an ethnically, racially, and culturally homogeneous nation. The readings presented here challenge this notion by examining the origins and multi-ethnic character of the modern Japanese nation-state. The readings explore how “minority” groups are defined in different historical periods and how the state has tried to assimilate them through the reform of language and customs. Furthermore, the unit examines how marginal groups define themselves and come to terms with what are often dual or competing national and ethnic identities.

Nationalisms, Ethnicity, and Identity in Contemporary China
By Lisa Fischler of the Department of Political Science at Moravian College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit explores the struggles through which political and social actors define and create a nation or nations by using historical and cultural ideas, beliefs, and practices for political purposes. Understanding the political and cultural processes that shape the modern nation-state in East Asia offers insight into how nation-states function in our contemporary global system. Furthermore, nationalisms, ethnicity, and national identity influence both the domestic and international political experiences of the East Asian geopolitical region.

Not Color Blind: Race, Ethnicity, and Nationality in East Asia
By Lisa Fischler, Moravian CollegeBy Aya Ezawa, Swarthmore College
By TJ Hinrichs, Southern Connecticut State University
By Bakirathi Mani, Swarthmore College
By Grace Mitchell, College of Staten Island, CUNY
By Kazuko Suzuki, Texas A&M University
By Xiaodan Zhang, Columbia University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This collection of teaching units treats ethnicity, race, and national identity as social constructs, such as aspects of group identity, which shift over time and are shaped by economics, politics, and society. These units explore the meanings of identity in different historical, political, and social contexts in East Asia and Asian Diasporas. Together these materials can be used to structure a semester long syllabus or can be used as individual teaching units.

Okinawa: Beyond the Ethnic Other
By Aya Ezawa of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Swarthmore College
2002-2003 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Discussions of ethnic minorities often focus on a search for roots and tradition, and the assertion of ethnic and cultural difference vis-à-vis the majority. The collection of student readings presented here questions such dichotomies by focusing on the identity struggles of Okinawans. They show how and why it has been difficult for Okinawans to assert themselves in opposition to the Japanese nation. During World War II, Okinawa was the site of a major battle between Japanese and American troops, and Okinawans were also subjected to atrocities by the Japanese army. This history of conflict and oppression lingers to this day, making the question of Okinawa’s place within the Japanese nation-state a complex one. Okinawans are at the same time “Okinawans” and Japanese citizens. This unit may be helpful in moving class discussion beyond assertions of ethnic origins and culture and may also help students begin to question the “majority”/“minority” dichotomy that shapes so much of our thinking in the U.S. today.

Patterns of Islamization in Indonesia 
By R. Michael Feener and Anna M. Gade of the Department of Southeast Asia Studies at Cornell University
Published and developed with the Southeast Asia Outreach Program at Cornell University
This project introduces patterns in the religious and cultural dimensions of the Islamic experience in Indonesia, a non-Arab Muslim society. Its goal is to foster an appreciation of the distinctiveness of Islam in Southeast Asia, as well as the significance of Southeast Asian Islam in the larger Muslim world. The unit is divided into three sections, which are loosely chronological and also thematically interrelated. These sections deploy illustrative examples of key concepts, such as that of ‘Islamization.’ Specific examples are drawn primarily from the fields of religious performance, narrative expression, or practices of piety. Each section includes study questions, a list of suggestions for further reading, and a supplementary reading from a primary source in translation. The entire curriculum unit is accompanied by a set of twenty slides, which bear direct connection to the main text, and slide images are referenced throughout the unit.

Political Change in the 21st Century 
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
Exploring Asia: Political Change in the 21st Century is a collaborative project between the Newspapers In Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide, and a preseries workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with young readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on major political changes in Asia. The five-part series begins with an overview of political change in Asia followed by articles featuring Burma, China, India and Central Asia. This teaching guide provides a lesson plan for each article and activities to do with students before, during and after reading the featured weekly article. Together the articles and accompanying lessons take students on an exploration of politics in several Asian countries, asking students to look at the issues from multiple perspectives and to explore how North America is becoming more and more connected to Asia. The points of view represented in the articles and the guide materials are a sampling of perspectives on these issues.

Prostitution in East Asia
By Grace Mitchell of the Department of Sociology at the College of Staten Island, CUNY
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit, featuring a student reading and film, provides students with a greater understanding of prostitution in a globalized and militarized context and its impact on both society and individuals in East Asia. These materials are useful in fomenting discussion of the word “prostitution” and its different connotations in East Asia and the West and its impact on East Asia.  The unit can be used in classes on social problems and/or sociology of children as well as in any courses that explore the themes of prostitution, gender, and sexuality.

Race, Ethnicity, and National Identity: America, Korea, and Biracial Koreans
By Grace Mitchell of the Department of Sociology at the College of Staten Island, CUNY
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Since the American military occupation of the southern part of the Korean peninsula (1945-1948), and particularly since the Korean War (1950-1953), the figure of the “yanggongju” (“western princess”/ “yankee whore”) may be seen as central to a Korean national identity that is ambivalent about its relation to the U.S. The yanggongju, as the woman who sexually services American GIs stationed in Korea, is a reminder of Korea’s subordinated status to the U.S. military, and both pro-U.S. and anti-U.S. nationalist battles are waged on the yanggongju body. The yanggongju is a racialized figure for both the foreigners that partake of her services and for the local citizens for whom she bears the stigmas of foreign ‘contamination.’ The biracial children of such unions between Korean women and American servicemen are also highly stigmatized.

Social Science Meets Literature: Using Sawako Ariyoshi’s The Twilight Years in Sociology and Psychology Courses
By Barbara Seater of the Department of Humanities, Social Sciences and Education at Raritan Valley Community College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Today’s Japanese families face a growing problem: as the number of elderly in Japan increases, more families must care for elders who can’t care for themselves. The goal of this unit is to use a translated novel to better understand the relationships between gender, family roles, and an aging population. The unit examines the complexity of women’s roles, changing family structures, and the impact of a growing elderly population on family life in Japan. The unit also explores ideas about death and dying, funeral arrangements, and coping with a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease.

Teaching Tales from Djkarta
By Mary E. Donnelly of the Department of Southeast Asian Studies at Cornell University
Published and developed with the Department of Southeast Asian Studies at Cornell University
This unit gives student an in-depth look and analysis of the words of Pramoeyda Ananta Toer and allows students to explore the cultural, social, and linguistic history of Indonesia.

Three Gorges Dam Debate 
By Lisa Fischler of the Department of Political Science at Moravian College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This activity can be used for undergraduate students in Chinese political science or contemporary society classes. It focuses on a specific case study that concretely demonstrates the complexities of the environmental issues in China and gets students actively involved in decision-making in a politicized context. It works best to use this activity after students have studied China’s twentieth-century political history, the political institutions of contemporary China, and the political actors shaping China’s current transition. However, it could also be used in other contexts.

Using Takeshi Kitano’s Kikujiro in the Undergraduate Classroom 
By Rachael Hutchinson of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at the University of Delaware
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Takeshi Kitano’s 2000 film Kikujiro is an excellent film for use in a wide range of courses on Japan. It provokes interesting discussions about Japanese culture, society, identity, and film criticism, whether among first-year undergraduates or more advanced undergraduate or M.A. students.

Women and Politics in Japan
By Aya Ezawa of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Swarthmore College
2002-2003 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
The unit on “Women and Politics in Japan” aims to show the empirical and theoretical relevance of the study of Japanese society to courses in the social sciences. In focusing on the political activities and careers of women and housewives in Japan, the unit explores a topic central to the study of democracy, women’s rights, and gender inequality in contemporary societies. More importantly, the readings in this unit discuss the role of the housewife as a public and potentially political role and thus offer an opportunity to explore alternative conceptualizations of women’s citizenship, the public/private divide, the scope of formal and informal politics, and the role of the housewife. In integrating theoretical concerns with empirical case studies, the unit intends to go beyond comparisons that emphasize cultural difference, and instead illuminate the theoretical challenges posed by international comparison.

 

Economics & Business

Economies and Culture in Late Imperial China 
By Jeff Hornibrook of Department of History at the State University of New York, Plattsburgh
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit is designed to examine the role of the economy in China’s social systems. It also serves as a guide to understanding the family and its role in a developing economy during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The student readings point to the role of the family and lineage in owning and operating corporate properties that provided wealth to the members. With the introduction of modern economic and industrial systems under Western imperialism, Chinese elites needed capital to invest in projects for collective wealth and national strength. Rather than simply turning to Western business practices, Chinese integrated their family and lineage systems into the modernizing market.

Recent Developments in China’s Economy
By Li Qi of Department of Economics at Agnes Scott College
2004-2005 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit introduces students to recent developments in China’s economy focusing on the later period (the 1990s on) of China’s reforms towards a market-oriented economy. It describes major achievements in China’s economic development and discusses some of the new economic and social problems associated with the rapid growth that China faces now.

State, Market, and Economy in Postwar Japan
By Daniel Buck of Department of Geography/Institute for Chinese Studies at the University of Oxford
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit is designed, through student readings, lectures, and in-class discussion, to teach about Japan’s postwar development and introduce the competing free-market (or neo-classical) and developmental state paradigms. (For complete definitions of these paradigms see 1. and 2. in the “Terms & Concepts” section of the Instructor’s Introduction.) These competing paradigms are most typically employed to explain postwar economic development in Japan, and subsequently deployed as the lessons to be learned from Japan’s experience. At stake is whether Japan’s success is primarily attributable to the allocative efficiencies of free markets or to the state’s strategic, systematic, and comprehensive intervention in those markets. The unit also moves beyond these paradigms by examining the Japanese developmental state in its historical context (with a focus on class formation), and the role of entrepreneurship in fashioning markets where none existed before. The readings combine a comprehensive survey of the institutions and processes of postwar Japan, with a fun and detailed look at the way the television industry reworked Japan and Japanese society as it embodied and enabled economic success.

The Political Economy of Development in East Asia and Latin America
By Takashi Kanatsu of the Department of Political Science at Hofstra University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit uses an inter-regional comparison of East Asian and Latin American economies to illuminate the nexus of politics, economics, and social change as they developed in select countries from both areas. Focusing on Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan from East Asia and Mexico, Brazil, and Argentina from Latin America, the unit illustrates the ways in which different development strategies yielded widely divergent results. Where East Asian economies have often been called “miraculous” or characterized as ferocious “tigers” or “dragons,” Latin American economies have typically been cast in somewhat less flattering terms, producing academic theorizations on “dependency” and “bureaucratic authoritarianism” which aim to understand the origins of the region’s relative lag. Mindful of both similarity and variation, the unit helps students explore the causes and consequences of different approaches to economic development in both regions.

 

Language Arts

Asian Cities
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
“Exploring Asia: Asian Cities — Growth and Change” is a collaborative project between the Newspapers In Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with high school readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on the changing face of cities in Asia.

Body and Beyond: Epistemology and the Body in Japanese Philosophy
By Erin McCarthy of the Department of Philosophy of St. Lawrence University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit aims to show the relevance and significance of the body as a site for knowledge for courses in the humanities and social sciences. Through a close reading of Japanese philosophical texts, the unit explores the ways in which the body can be read as a site for knowledge in Japanese philosophy. In focusing on the notion of mind-body in Japanese philosophy, the unit provides an opportunity to discuss self, identity, subjectivity, non-dualism, and knowledge. The readings also provide constructive, rather than simply descriptive, comparative models for pursuing East-West comparisons with undergraduate students. The unit includes a “conceptual workshop” activity that could be applied to a number of disciplines to help students decode complex philosophical texts for a more nuanced understanding of rigorous philosophical concepts.

Buddhism in the Classic Chinese Novel Journey to the West: Teaching Two Episodes
By Roberta E. Adams of Department of English at Fitchburg State College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Many approaches can be taken to teaching excerpts from Journey to the West, a novel that incorporates the three major philosophies of China: Confucianism, Daoism and Buddhism. This unit centers on Buddhist elements of the text, with the goal of providing instructors with materials for discussing in depth two specific passages from Chapter 14 which highlight Buddhist ideas.

Combing the Past: Gender, Sexuality and Intergenerational Connections among Women in Zhang Mei’s “A Record”
By Sally McWilliams of the Department of English at Montclair University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
The purpose of this unit on ZHANG Mei’s short story “A Record” is to explore the relationship between contemporary urban Chinese women and their predecessors by focusing on issues of representation, gender, sexuality, and female autonomy. The unit presents materials and study questions about the construction of Chinese women’s subjectivity, the significance of women’s history, and the transnational circulation of representations of Chinese women. While offering background information on the practice of marriage resistance by women in China, this unit also helps us understand the complexities of gender and sexual politics. Such an analysis looks closely at the impact of gender and sexuality on contemporary women’s lives, intergenerational connections among women, and the production of knowledge, which forms the basis of women’s literary and cultural histories.

Continuity and Change in Asia
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
This study guide works in conjunction with the eight-article series, Continuity and Change in Asia. The series and the guide address three broad themes in a study of power and politics in twentieth- and twenty-first century Asia: Legacies of Imperialism and Colonialism; Women’s Rise to Power, and Emerging Voices. Each theme richly demonstrates continuity and change within Asia, emphasizing the need for a deep historical and cultural approach to an understanding of current events.

Existentialism and East and West: Conceptual Workshop
By Erin McCarthy of the Department of Philosophy at St. Lawrence University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This workshop comes from a course on Existentialism. Students had read and by this point were familiar with Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Sartre as well as Kobo Abe.

Exploring Asia: Human Rights
By Tese Wintz Neighbor and Jacob Bolotin of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
“Exploring Asia: Human Rights” is a collaborative project between The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education (NIE) program and the University of Washington Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with young readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on a human-rights issue in a country or region of Asia. The teaching guide provides a lesson plan for each article that includes activities to do with students before, during and after reading the featured article. Together, the articles and accompanying lessons allow students to explore human rights in several Asian countries, asking them to look at the issues from multiple perspectives and investigate organizations that protect and promote human rights

Friendship with Cambodia Lesson Plans
By Bhavia C. Wagner, educator and author of Soul Survivors Stories of Women and Children in Cambodia
Published and developed with the Friendship with Cambodia Group
Nine lessons relate to the subjects of Cambodian history, art and culture, genocide, human rights, landmines, sweatshops, refugees in America, war and peace, and powerful women. Each lesson plan relates to chapters in Soul Survivors Stories of Women and Children in Cambodia by Bhavia C. Wagner. The lessons are taught through the life stories of Cambodian people. Lists of related books, videos and websites are included. These lessons may be used in sequence or individually. The first lesson is a good overview of the country and is a useful introduction to any of the other lessons.

Global Asia: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
“Global Asia: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” is a collaborative project between the Newspapers in Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a four-article series, a teaching guide and a workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with high school readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on the changing face of empires, colonialism and modern conditions of countries in Asia.

Global Health: Asia in the 21st Century
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies
For five weeks, students will learn about different health issues affecting various countries in Asia. Each week, students will identify one or more health issues and its effect on Asia or on a population in Asia. They will read concurrent Seattle Times articles as well as additional readings supplied in these lessons. They will discuss the ramifications of these problems and form opinions about how individual countries can begin dealing with the health issues facing them today.

Islam in Asia: People, Practices, Traditions
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
Exploring Asia is a collaborative project between the Newspapers In Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies’ Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five article series, a teaching guide and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with young readers in mind, articles in this year’s Exploring Asia online newspaper series titled “Islam in Asia: People, Practices, Traditions” focus on social, political, educational, devotional and cultural practices in Islamic societies in Asia, where a majority of the world’s Muslims live. The five-part series includes articles on Indonesia, Pakistan, Kyrgyzstan and China, as well as an overview of Islam in Asia. This teaching guide provides a lesson plan for each article and activities to do with students before, during and after reading the featured weekly article. Together, the articles and accompanying lessons take students on an exploration of Islam in several Asian countries, asking students to look at the issues from multiple perspectives and to promote understanding. The points of view represented in the articles and the guide materials are a sampling of perspectives among many viewpoints on these issues.

Japanese Aesthetics and The Tale of Genji
By Liya Li of the Department of English SUNY/Rockland Community College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Using an excerpt from the chapter “The Sacred Tree,” this unit offers a guide to a close examination of Japanese aesthetics in The Tale of Genji(ca.1010). This two-session lesson plan can be used in World Literature courses or any course that teaches components of Zen Buddhism or Japanese aesthetics (e.g. Introduction to Buddhism, the History of Buddhism, Philosophy, Japanese History, Asian Literature, or World Religion).

Literary Con/Texts 
By Paola Zamperini of the Department of Asian Languages and Civilizations at Amherst College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This exercise is a very simple, clear, effective tool to begin an undergraduate Chinese/Asian literature course in translation. It introduces students to the main issues of the course, from literary history to gender and cultural and social history, by focusing on a specific genre, namely poetry. Students are asked to read and discuss a selection of poems and guess the gender and nationality of their authors, as well as the period in which the poems were written. The exercise forces students to face stereotypes and assumptions they might hold about gender and/or Asian literature and culture and encourages them to think about translation and its dangers. Furthermore, it serves as an excellent introduction to the format of in-class discussion about primary sources from the very beginning. It also helps students to get to know each other, facilitating the creation of an open and stimulating atmosphere in the classroom.

Lu Xun’s “My Old Home” and Beijing Bicycle
By Roberta E. Adams of Department of English at Fitchburg State College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This teaching unit, developed for a World Literature II course, addresses the contrast between early modern and contemporary China. Lu Xun’s “My Old Home” raises questions of memory and social hierarchy and portrays the struggles individuals face based upon their social status. The film Beijing Bicycle, a good contrast to the writings of Lu Xun, raises questions about life in urban China today and one individual’s attempts to “get ahead.” This contrast allows students to explore the drastic social, political, and economic evolution China experienced over the course of the twentieth century.

Political Change in the 21st Century
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
Exploring Asia: Political Change in the 21st Century is a collaborative project between the Newspapers In Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide, and a preseries workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with young readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on major political changes in Asia. The five-part series begins with an overview of political change in Asia followed by articles featuring Burma, China, India and Central Asia. This teaching guide provides a lesson plan for each article and activities to do with students before, during and after reading the featured weekly article. Together the articles and accompanying lessons take students on an exploration of politics in several Asian countries, asking students to look at the issues from multiple perspectives and to explore how North America is becoming more and more connected to Asia. The points of view represented in the articles and the guide materials are a sampling of perspectives on these issues.

Teaching Tales from Djkarta
By Mary E. Donnelly of the Department of Southeast Asian Studies at Cornell University
Published and developed with the Department of Southeast Asian Studies at Cornell University
This unit gives student an in-depth look and analysis of the words of Pramoeyda Ananta Toer and allows students to explore the cultural, social, and linguistic history of Indonesia

The Samurai in Japan and the World, C. 1900
Mark Jones of the Department of History at Central Connecticut State University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit addresses the role of the samurai in 20th century Japan by examining excerpts from Nitobe Inazô’s 1899 book Bushidô: The Soul of Japan, which asserts that “the way of the samurai warrior” was “the soul of Japan ” and the Japanese people. The reading also allows students to explore an important yet under-examined part of Japan’s reaction to Western imperialism: namely, how the championing of what was described as “native culture” as a modern source of strength was a way to negotiate (if not resist) the process of Westernization.

Translation and Interpretation: Critical Exercise 
By Bradley Park of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at St. Mary’s College of Maryland
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This exercise is designed to increase students’ understanding of the relationship between translation and interpretation by critically analyzing and evaluating translations without necessarily possessing the requisite language skills. Students will also gain an appreciation for the difficulties inherent in translation and a sense of the differences separating source language and target language texts. Translations of Laozi’s Dao De Jing are used for the exercise below, but it could also be successfully repeated with other philosophical texts, poetry, or other works with a wide range of translations.

 

 

Philosophy & Religion

Body and Beyond: Epistemology and the Body in Japanese Philosophy
By Erin McCarthy of the Department of Philosophy of St. Lawrence University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit aims to show the relevance and significance of the body as a site for knowledge for courses in the humanities and social sciences. Through a close reading of Japanese philosophical texts, the unit explores the ways in which the body can be read as a site for knowledge in Japanese philosophy. In focusing on the notion of mind-body in Japanese philosophy, the unit provides an opportunity to discuss self, identity, subjectivity, non-dualism, and knowledge. The readings also provide constructive, rather than simply descriptive, comparative models for pursuing East-West comparisons with undergraduate students. The unit includes a “conceptual workshop” activity that could be applied to a number of disciplines to help students decode complex philosophical texts for a more nuanced understanding of rigorous philosophical concepts.

Buddhism and Japanese Aesthetics
By Bradley Park of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at St. Mary’s College of Maryland
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit provides a general introduction to three aesthetic concepts—mono no aware, wabi-sabi, and yūgen— that are basic to the Japanese arts and “ways” (). Secondly, it traces some of the Buddhist (and Shintō) influences on the development of the Japanese aesthetic sensibility.In addition to introducing students to the concepts of mono no aware, wabi-sabi, and yūgen, the unit provides students with an opportunity to study the appearance of these concepts in Japanese art and life through an examination of images and texts. Furthermore, students are introduced to the relationship between these concepts and Buddhism, and hence the larger significance of these ideas.

Buddhism in the Classic Chinese Novel Journey to the West: Teaching Two Episodes
By Roberta E. Adams of Department of English at Fitchburg State College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Many approaches can be taken to teaching excerpts from Journey to the West, a novel that incorporates the three major philosophies of China: Confucianism, Daoism and Buddhism. This unit centers on Buddhist elements of the text, with the goal of providing instructors with materials for discussing in depth two specific passages from Chapter 14 which highlight Buddhist ideas.

China’s Cultural Revolution
By Amy Freedman of the Department of Government at Franklin and Marshall College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit uses memoirs of China’s Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) to broaden students’ understanding of political activism and the motivations behind political campaigns. By studying the Cultural Revolution in the context of the sociology of mass mobilization, students will gain an awareness of the power behind politics and ideology. Through personal accounts and scholarly writings this unit shows how leaders use ideas, ideology, and “information” (i.e. propaganda) to mobilize people for their own aims. It also illustrates how these forces can work in the everyday lives of normal people. In addition to gaining a deeper understanding of Chinese politics under Mao, students will hopefully understand the substantial power of ideology and a charismatic leader in motivating people towards destructive ends. They should also be able to think more rigorously about where and how values and social relations are shaped and molded — values and culture are not static and can be substantially influenced by politics.

Chuang-Tzu’s Dream Conceptual Workshop
By Erin McCarthy of the Department of Philosophy at St. Lawrence University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This exercise was used in an Asian Philosophy class to transition from a study of Confucian philosophy to Taoist philosophy. The workshop could be used at the beginning of a first class on Taoism, serving as an introduction to some of the main ideas featured in the coming classes. The workshop replaces an introductory lecture — by moving through the reading using the workshop and the subsequent instructor-guided class discussion of the results, the students engage with the text right away.

Dialogue and Transformation: Buddhism in Asian Philosophy
By Michael Barnhart of the Department of History, Philosophy and Political Science at Kingsborough Community College, CUNY
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
A one-to-three week unit that covers the transformative influence Buddhism exerted over Asian philosophical thinking. Each of the three sections constitutes a full week of material; “they may be used separately or in combination.The materials attempt to bring a comparative perspective to the understanding of Asian philosophy by following the one major philosophical tradition that is truly pan-Asian. The unit does not assume that Buddhism is “one thing,” but leaves the instructor free to draw parallels and connections between what were clearly different Buddhisms.The overall theme of the entire unit is the development of selected philosophical concepts and issues in the Buddhist tradition and their contribution to Asian thought. These issues were selected not only because of their centrality within Buddhism but also their relevance to contemporary philosophical issues that students may encounter in their courses and intellectual development.

Existentialism and East and West: Conceptual Workshop
By Erin McCarthy of the Department of Philosophy at St. Lawrence University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This workshop comes from a course on Existentialism. Students had read and by this point were familiar with Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Sartre as well as Kobo Abe.

Foundations and Transformations of Buddhism: An Overview
By John M. Koller, Professor of Asian and Comparative Philosophy of the Department of Cognitive Science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
These materials are designed to serve as background materials on what Buddhism is, how it developed and spread, and how Buddhist traditions differ. The reading has been adapted from Chapter 11 of Asian Philosophies, Fourth Edition, by John M. Koller ( Upper Saddle River , N.J. : Prentice Hall, 2002.) Instructors and students can use these materials as background reading for courses on Buddhism, Asian Religions, Asian History, Asian Civilization, and Asian Literature featuring Buddhist themes, among others.

Friendship with Cambodia Lesson Plans
By Bhavia C. Wagner, educator and author of Soul Survivors Stories of Women and Children in Cambodia
Published and developed with the Friendship with Cambodia Group
Nine lessons relate to the subjects of Cambodian history, art and culture, genocide, human rights, landmines, sweatshops, refugees in America, war and peace, and powerful women. Each lesson plan relates to chapters in Soul Survivors Stories of Women and Children in Cambodia by Bhavia C. Wagner. The lessons are taught through the life stories of Cambodian people. Lists of related books, videos and websites are included. These lessons may be used in sequence or individually. The first lesson is a good overview of the country and is a useful introduction to any of the other lessons.

History and Politics of the Muslims in Thailand
By Thanet Aphornsuvan of Thammasat University
Published and developed with the Southeast Asia Outreach Program at Cornell University
This unit covers the rich history of the Islamic peoples who have inhabited Thailand for ages. The unit also offers a close look at the politics of these peoples, offering comparisons and contrasts of other people groups in the area.

Islam in Asia: People, Practices, Traditions 
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
Exploring Asia is a collaborative project between the Newspapers In Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies’ Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with young readers in mind, articles in this year’s Exploring Asia online newspaper series titled “Islam in Asia: People, Practices, Traditions” focus on social, political, educational, devotional and cultural practices in Islamic societies in Asia, where a majority of the world’s Muslims live. The five-part series includes articles on Indonesia, Pakistan, Kyrgyzstan and China, as well as an overview of Islam in Asia. This teaching guide provides a lesson plan for each article and activities to do with students before, during and after reading the featured weekly article. Together, the articles and accompanying lessons take students on an exploration of Islam in several Asian countries, asking students to look at the issues from multiple perspectives and to promote understanding. The points of view represented in the articles and the guide materials are a sampling of perspectives among many viewpoints on these issues.

Japanese Aesthetics and The Tale of Genji
By Liya Li of the Department of English SUNY/Rockland Community College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Using an excerpt from the chapter “The Sacred Tree,” this unit offers a guide to a close examination of Japanese aesthetics in The Tale of Genji(ca.1010). This two-session lesson plan can be used in World Literature courses or any course that teaches components of Zen Buddhism or Japanese aesthetics (e.g. Introduction to Buddhism, the History of Buddhism, Philosophy, Japanese History, Asian Literature, or World Religion).

Language, Reality, and Politics in Early China
By Maurizio Marinelli of the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Bristol, U.K.
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit provides a study of language and political power in early China. Through the examination of the Confucian theory on the “rectification of names” (zhengming) and its interpretations, the unit offers students an opportunity to explore the relationship between discursive acts and expressions of political power.The unit can be used in courses on Chinese history and culture to examine Chinese political discourse. It can also be used to offer a comparative perspective to a global history or “great books” class that explores the semiotic and ideological processes acting on and through language. The unit is particularly compatible with courses that explore how discursive regimes restrict the freedom of individuals, entangling them in a web of disciplinary power relations. For example, in fascist Italy, the Soviet Union under Stalin, and Nazi Germany, language control and standardization were considered essential to the regimes’ ideological projects and totalitarian aspirations.

Ox-Herding: Stages of Zen Practice
By John M. Koller of the Department of Cognitive Science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
The ten ox-herding pictures and commentaries presented here depict the stages of practice leading to the enlightenment at which Zen (Chan) Buddhism aims. They dramatize the fact that enlightenment reveals the true self, showing it to be the ordinary self doing ordinary things in the most extraordinary way. The story of the ox and oxherd, separate at first, but united in the realization of the inner unity of all existence, is an old Taoist story, updated and modified by a twelfth century Chinese Buddhist master to explain the path to enlightenment. The ox symbolizes the ultimate, undivided reality, the Buddha-nature, which is the ground of all existence. The oxherd symbolizes the self, who initially identifies with the individuated ego, separate from the ox, but who, with progressive enlightenment, comes to realize the fundamental identity with the ultimate reality which transcends all distinctions. When this happens, the oxherd realizes the ultimacy of all existence; everything is the Buddha-nature. He now understands the preciousness and profundity of the most ordinary things of life, illuminating ordinary living with his enlightenment.

Patterns of Islamization in Indonesia 
By R. Michael Feener and Anna M. Gade of the Department of Southeast Asia Studies at Cornell University
Published and developed with the Southeast Asia Outreach Program at Cornell University
This project introduces patterns in the religious and cultural dimensions of the Islamic experience in Indonesia, a non-Arab Muslim society. Its goal is to foster an appreciation of the distinctiveness of Islam in Southeast Asia, as well as the significance of Southeast Asian Islam in the larger Muslim world. The unit is divided into three sections, which are loosely chronological and also thematically interrelated. These sections deploy illustrative examples of key concepts, such as that of ‘Islamization.’ Specific examples are drawn primarily from the fields of religious performance, narrative expression, or practices of piety. Each section includes study questions, a list of suggestions for further reading, and a supplementary reading from a primary source in translation. The entire curriculum unit is accompanied by a set of twenty slides, which bear direct connection to the main text, and slide images are referenced throughout the unit.

Sacred Kingship and Sacrifice in Ancient India and China
By Thomas Wilson and Lisa Trivedi of the Department of History at Hamilton College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit aims to establish a pedagogical framework for a comparative study of ancient India and ancient China on the basis of reading primary sources across cultural traditions. This comparison aims not at finding universals, but examining practices (such as ritual sacrifice) and ideas (such as origin myths) in light of questions that arise outside of any one tradition in order to understand both what is common and what is distinctive. Ancient India and China share conceptions of the cosmos in which humans work in concert with the gods to maintain the proper order of the world. They also share a similar sense of socio-political order grounded in religious practices that served to legitimate the rule of those who possess ritual knowledge (such as kings in ancient China) or those who could employ those who possess it (such as princes in ancient India). There are important differences, such as the very early emergence of sacred kingship in China, where the sovereign, as a living descendant of gods, possessed privileged access to them, whereas in India, the kshatrya princes were reliant upon an alliance with brahmans, who possessed the ritual knowledge to conduct sacrifices (such as the horse sacrifice) that legitimated princely rule.

Translation and Interpretation: Critical Exercise 
By Bradley Park of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at St. Mary’s College of Maryland
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This exercise is designed to increase students’ understanding of the relationship between translation and interpretation by critically analyzing and evaluating translations without necessarily possessing the requisite language skills. Students will also gain an appreciation for the difficulties inherent in translation and a sense of the differences separating source language and target language texts. Translations of Laozi’s Dao De Jing are used for the exercise below, but it could also be successfully repeated with other philosophical texts, poetry, or other works with a wide range of translations.

Nationalisms in East Asia
By Fa-ti Fan of the Department of History at Binghamton University/SUNY and Laura Neitzel of the Department of History at Brookdale Community College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit examines varieties of nationalism that have emerged in East Asia since the late nineteenth century. It examines the ways in which historical actors defined, articulated and projected nationhood while negotiating cultural categories, such as Eastern/Western, traditional/modern and national/international. Particular attention is given to the interrelationship among imperialism, nationalism, and trans-nationality. Topics include nationalism and Western imperialism, nationalism and Asian imperialism, and ethnic nationalisms within nation-states.

Poster Politics: The Art of Revolution 
By Benita Stambler of Empire State College at the State University of New York
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This one-lesson unit examines Mao Zedong as a revolutionary leader through Chinese propaganda posters from the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, 1966-1976. Both beautiful and powerful, these posters offer students a window on the cult of personality surrounding Mao and its place in the broader context of the Cultural Revolution. The lesson contains student readings and activities as well as introductory materials for the instructor and teaching strategies. It can be used either online or in the classroom.

 

Science

 

Global Health: Asia in the 21st Century
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies
For five weeks, students will learn about different health issues affecting various countries in Asia. Each week, students will identify one or more health issues and its effect on Asia or on a population in Asia. They will read concurrent Seattle Times articles as well as additional readings supplied in these lessons. They will discuss the ramifications of these problems and form opinions about how individual countries can begin dealing with the health issues facing them today.

Three Gorges Dam Debate 
By Lisa Fischler of the Department of Political Science at Moravian College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This activity can be used for undergraduate students in Chinese political science or contemporary society classes. It focuses on a specific case study that concretely demonstrates the complexities of the environmental issues in China and gets students actively involved in decision-making in a politicized context. It works best to use this activity after students have studied China’s twentieth-century political history, the political institutions of contemporary China, and the political actors shaping China’s current transition. However, it could also be used in other contexts.

 

Visual Arts

Aristocrat and Peasant in Heian Japan 
By Mark Jones of the Department of History at Central Connecticut State University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Engaging students with pre-modern East Asian history is a challenge. If, as the saying goes, the past is a foreign country, then the distant past of a non-Western area of the world is doubly (or triply) foreign. To overcome this problem, literature and film can be used to give the past a human voice and face. This unit on Heian-era Japan provides a model for doing so in an East Asian or World History course. It can be used to help students understand and learn ways of approaching pre-modern Japanese history and its social structure and politics.

Buddhism and Japanese Aesthetics
By Bradley Park of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at St. Mary’s College of Maryland
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit provides a general introduction to three aesthetic concepts—mono no aware, wabi-sabi, and yūgen— that are basic to the Japanese arts and “ways” (). Secondly, it traces some of the Buddhist (and Shintō) influences on the development of the Japanese aesthetic sensibility.In addition to introducing students to the concepts of mono no aware, wabi-sabi, and yūgen, the unit provides students with an opportunity to study the appearance of these concepts in Japanese art and life through an examination of images and texts. Furthermore, students are introduced to the relationship between these concepts and Buddhism, and hence the larger significance of these ideas.

Buddhist Art in East Asia: Three Introductory Lessons Towards Visual Literacy
By De-nin D. Lee of the Department of Art at Bowdoin College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
A picture paints a thousand words, and for students, a picture can make an immediate and lasting impression. Images of Buddhist art can be powerful pedagogical additions to courses that teach about Buddhism or Asian culture. Buddhist art comprises a tremendous range of objects, images, and sites including jewel encrusted reliquaries fashioned from precious metals, simple yet mesmerizing monochromatic ink landscape paintings, and temple complexes housing shrines and votive sculptures for the pilgrim to worship. The vast quantity of Buddhist art can easily overwhelm, and by necessity this unit selects a limited number of works of art to introduce students to the subject of Buddhism.

A Comparative Exercise in Art History of Asia
By De-nin D. Lee of the Department of Art at Bowdoin College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
The purpose of the exercise is to encourage students to develop their visual skills and to build their vocabulary for talking about art. Additionally, students may be encouraged to confront stereotypes about certain cultures in Asia and to distinguish the art objects produced by different cultures at different times. When performed with a text and an image comparison, this exercise can be used to teach students about the differences between written and oral narratives.

Lu Xun’s “My Old Home” and Beijing Bicycle
By Roberta E. Adams of Department of English at Fitchburg State College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This teaching unit, developed for a World Literature II course, addresses the contrast between early modern and contemporary China. Lu Xun’s “My Old Home” raises questions of memory and social hierarchy and portrays the struggles individuals face based upon their social status. The film Beijing Bicycle, a good contrast to the writings of Lu Xun, raises questions about life in urban China today and one individual’s attempts to “get ahead.” This contrast allows students to explore the drastic social, political, and economic evolution China experienced over the course of the twentieth century.

Operation Babtlift Through Film: Suggestions for Classroom Use of Precious Cargo and Daughter from Danag
By Sue Gronewold of Department of History at Kean University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This moving documentary follows the life of Heidi Bub, a Vietnamese-American woman in search of her birth mother.  Adopted by a single mother in Pulaski, Tennessee (birthplace of the Ku Klux Klan), Heidi’s removal from Vietnam to the United States was conducted through Operation Babylift during the last years of the Vietnam War.  Now an adult, Heidi returns to Vietnam to meet her birth mother, but discovers much more than the family she left behind.

The Scene at the Kyoto Inn: Teaching Ozu Yasujiro’s Late Spring
By Daisuke Miyao of the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures at the University of Oregon
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Since the 1960s, Japanese director Ozu Yasujiro (1903-1963) has been the object of popular and critical attention by international film scholars and audiences. Ozu is widely considered “the most Japanese” of Japanese directors, but what does “the most Japanese” mean? Do Ozu’s films express the special characteristics of Japanese cinema? If so, what constitutes the cultural specificity of Japanese cinema? Such questions are complicated by the fact that Ozu was an avid consumer of foreign films. The director considered “the most Japanese” was himself steeped in foreign popular culture. In addition to addressing the relationship between Ozu’s body of work and Japanese cinema in general, this unit asks how we might understand his films in relation to global film cultures and international histories of cinema. This unit explores these and other questions through a close examination of Late Spring (Banshun, 1949), one of Ozu’s best-known films and a critical and popular success at the time of its release. Instructors are encouraged to use the complete film, but an option is also given for showing a single scene that addresses many of the unit’s main themes. The student readings present detailed analyses of the film, Ozu’s work, and Ozu’s place in international cinema studies. The unit also includes discussion questions aimed at helping students understand what the film might tell us about wider questions of “Japaneseness” and Japanese aesthetics.

Tradition and Innovation in Cambodian Dance
By Dr. Toni Shapiro-Phim of the Philadelphia Folklore Project
Published and developed with the Southeast Asia Outreach Program at Cornell University
This unit on Cambodia takes as its focus the tension between tradition and creativity, between moving forward and staying rooted in the past, as played out on the country’s contemporary dance stage. At the dawn of the twenty-first century, the pull to the past and the lure of future possibilities remain in conflict. As a way of exploring this dynamic, this unit looks at the circumstances surrounding three major performance events that took place in Cambodia in February, 2004. All three of the performances stirred up debate about the role of the arts in preserving, challenging, and, sometimes, creating tradition. The aim is to encourage an understanding of the relationship of history to notions of “tradition,” and to foster an appreciation of Cambodian expressive culture.

World History

Asian Cities 
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
“Exploring Asia: Asian Cities — Growth and Change” is a collaborative project between the Newspapers In Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with high school readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on the changing face of cities in Asia.

China’s Cultural Revolution
By Amy Freedman of the Department of Government at Franklin and Marshall College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit uses memoirs of China’s Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) to broaden students’ understanding of political activism and the motivations behind political campaigns. By studying the Cultural Revolution in the context of the sociology of mass mobilization, students will gain an awareness of the power behind politics and ideology. Through personal accounts and scholarly writings this unit shows how leaders use ideas, ideology, and “information” (i.e. propaganda) to mobilize people for their own aims. It also illustrates how these forces can work in the everyday lives of normal people. In addition to gaining a deeper understanding of Chinese politics under Mao, students will hopefully understand the substantial power of ideology and a charismatic leader in motivating people towards destructive ends. They should also be able to think more rigorously about where and how values and social relations are shaped and molded — values and culture are not static and can be substantially influenced by politics.

“Chinese” Perspectives on Identity Before the Nation
By TJ Hinrichs of the Department of History at Cornell University
2003-2004 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
These are good questions for beginning any survey of China , as well as courses on specific questions of Chinese ethnicity and race, empire, and nationhood. There is not one static “ China ” or “Chinese” — these ideas have changed constantly throughout history even while claiming continuity with the past. For courses that seek to address these issues in the modern period, it is useful to look at the ways in which similar issues played out in pre-modern China for two reasons. First, it gives a baseline for looking at what is new in the modern period, or in what ways notions of China , Chineseness, and non-Chineseness have changed. Second, much of modern discourse on Chinese nationhood and identity takes history, or myths of history, as its starting point. This includes, for example, the idea that racism and nationalism were entirely alien to the traditional Chinese worldview and were introduced to Chinese culture from the West.

Chinese Women and Modernity
By Jennifer Rudolph of the Department of History at the University of Albany, and State University of New York
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This three-class unit explores the conceptualization of women’s roles in modernizing China during the 1920s, a critical decade of reform for China. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, China experienced internal rebellions, imperialism, repeated defeat at the hands of the Western powers as well as Japan, various reform efforts, and political revolution. While intellectuals hoped for a new start for China, many of them despaired of that hope, because they saw the nation as mired in tradition. The revolution of 1911, which ended the dynastic system, proved unable to bring change beyond the political structure. Without a break from tradition in the form of a cultural revolution, China could not experience modernity. In the view of Chinese intellectuals, one of the keys to achieving modernity was the formation of a national citizenry. The Chinese people had to be politicized and rallied to the cause of Chinese survival in the modern world. All energies needed to be harnessed for the sake of the nation. Women were absolutely essential to this process, for they were seen as the keepers of tradition, the keepers of the home, and the source of half of the nation’s power and energy. However, women who answered the call of the nation were caught between the expectations of traditional society and their own desire for a more independent modern existence. This unit explores the roles and expectations for Chinese women positioned at the intersection of modernity and nationalism during the 1920s.

Combing the Past: Gender, Sexuality and Intergenerational Connections among Women in Zhang Mei’s “A Record”
By Sally McWilliams of the Department of English at Montclair University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
The purpose of this unit on ZHANG Mei’s short story “A Record” is to explore the relationship between contemporary urban Chinese women and their predecessors by focusing on issues of representation, gender, sexuality, and female autonomy. The unit presents materials and study questions about the construction of Chinese women’s subjectivity, the significance of women’s history, and the transnational circulation of representations of Chinese women. While offering background information on the practice of marriage resistance by women in China, this unit also helps us understand the complexities of gender and sexual politics. Such an analysis looks closely at the impact of gender and sexuality on contemporary women’s lives, intergenerational connections among women, and the production of knowledge, which forms the basis of women’s literary and cultural histories.

Continuity and Change in Asia 
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
This study guide works in conjunction with the eight-article series, Continuity and Change in Asia. The series and the guide address three broad themes in a study of power and politics in twentieth- and twenty-first century Asia: Legacies of Imperialism and Colonialism; Women’s Rise to Power, and Emerging Voices. Each theme richly demonstrates continuity and change within Asia, emphasizing the need for a deep historical and cultural approach to an understanding of current events.

East Asian Attitudes Towards Court Women: The Legend of Yang Guifei
By Fay Beauchamp of the Department of English at the Community College of Philadelphia
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
The years 755-756 were pivotal in Chinese history. The Tang dynasty (618 –906 C.E) capital of Chang’an (today’s Xi’an) had become a cosmopolitan center and hub of the Silk Road, importing horses, musicians, acrobats, dances, and Buddhist scripts from Central Asia and exporting new forms of architecture, poetry, silks, paintings, government rule, and religious practice to such places as Korea and Japan. In 755, An Lushan (703-757), a general who had roots in Central Asia, led a rebellion that not only destroyed much of Chang’an but also weakened the court’s confidence and openness to new ideas. Attitudes toward women, Buddhism, and foreigners changed precipitously. This unit focuses on the shift in attitudes towards women in particular, using the case of Yang Guifei (719-756) to explore the wider transformation in values that occurred in 8th century Chang’an. Yang, the “Prized Consort” of the emperor, was blamed for the An Lushan Rebellion, possibly due to a purported relationship with the general. When An Lushan sacked the capital, the seventy year-old Emperor Xuanzong rode out of the city with Yang Guifei, but his men would go no further until she was killed. She was executed on the spot.

East Asian Martial Arts: Historical Development, Modernization, and Globalization
By TJ Hinrichs of the Department of History at Cornell University
2003-2004 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
American students’ most common areas of contact with East Asian cultures are through martial arts, film, and food. This unit takes advantage of students’ prior interest in martial arts to teach them about East Asian history and contemporary processes of globalization. Through exploration of the historical development and spread of these practices, it seeks to develop students’ reflexivity regarding the relationships between the products (including practices and ideas) of East Asian culture that they consume, the historical processes through which these were produced, and the global processes through which they were further transformed, transmitted, and integrated into local American lives.

East Asian Security Today: Surprising Stability and Potential Flashpoints 
By Allen Carlson of the Government Department at Cornell University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit explores the contemporary security situation in East Asia through student readings that provide differing views on the security outlook in East Asia and a student activity that examines one likely security flashpoint in the region — Taiwan’s independence.  The unit argues that there is more peace and stability in East Asia today (despite the persistence of real trouble spots that have the potential to disrupt such a trend) than is conventionally acknowledged by many observers.  It also considers the validity of competing explanations of the region drawn from different aspects of international relations theory and security studies.  In short, while the unit has a regional focus on East Asia and places a particular emphasis on China’s position within the region, it is framed within the broader literature on international politics.

Exploring Asia: Human Rights
By Tese Wintz Neighbor and Jacob Bolotin of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
“Exploring Asia: Human Rights” is a collaborative project between The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education (NIE) program and the University of Washington Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with young readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on a human-rights issue in a country or region of Asia. The teaching guide provides a lesson plan for each article that includes activities to do with students before, during and after reading the featured article. Together, the articles and accompanying lessons allow students to explore human rights in several Asian countries, asking them to look at the issues from multiple perspectives and investigate organizations that protect and promote human rights

Friendship with Cambodia Lesson Plans
By Bhavia C. Wagner, educator and author of Soul Survivors Stories of Women and Children in Cambodia
Published and developed with the Friendship with Cambodia Group
Nine lessons relate to the subjects of Cambodian history, art and culture, genocide, human rights, landmines, sweatshops, refugees in America, war and peace, and powerful women. Each lesson plan relates to chapters in Soul Survivors Stories of Women and Children in Cambodia by Bhavia C. Wagner. The lessons are taught through the life stories of Cambodian people. Lists of related books, videos and websites are included. These lessons may be used in sequence or individually. The first lesson is a good overview of the country and is a useful introduction to any of the other lessons.

Global Asia: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
“Global Asia: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” is a collaborative project between the Newspapers in Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a four-article series, a teaching guide and a workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with high school readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on the changing face of empires, colonialism and modern conditions of countries in Asia.

Global Health: Asia in the 21st Century  
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies
For five weeks, students will learn about different health issues affecting various countries in Asia. Each week, students will identify one or more health issues and its effect on Asia or on a population in Asia. They will read concurrent Seattle Times articles as well as additional readings supplied in these lessons. They will discuss the ramifications of these problems and form opinions about how individual countries can begin dealing with the health issues facing them today.

History and Politics of the Muslims in Thailand
By Thanet Aphornsuvan of Thammasat University
Published and developed with the Southeast Asia Outreach Program at Cornell University
This unit covers the rich history of the Islamic peoples who have inhabited Thailand for ages. The unit also offers a close look at the politics of these peoples, offering comparisons and contrasts of other people groups in the area.

Islam in Asia: People, Practices, Traditions 
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
Exploring Asia is a collaborative project between the Newspapers In Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies’ Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a fivearticle series, a teaching guide and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with young readers in mind, articles in this year’s Exploring Asia online newspaper series titled “Islam in Asia: People, Practices, Traditions” focus on social, political, educational, devotional and cultural practices in Islamic societies in Asia, where a majority of the world’s Muslims live. The five-part series includes articles on Indonesia, Pakistan, Kyrgyzstan and China, as well as an overview of Islam in Asia. This teaching guide provides a lesson plan for each article and activities to do with students before, during and after reading the featured weekly article. Together, the articles and accompanying lessons take students on an exploration of Islam in several Asian countries, asking students to look at the issues from multiple perspectives and to promote understanding. The points of view represented in the articles and the guide materials are a sampling of perspectives among many viewpoints on these issues.

Japanese Aesthetics and The Tale of Genji
By Liya Li of the Department of English SUNY/Rockland Community College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Using an excerpt from the chapter “The Sacred Tree,” this unit offers a guide to a close examination of Japanese aesthetics in The Tale of Genji(ca.1010). This two-session lesson plan can be used in World Literature courses or any course that teaches components of Zen Buddhism or Japanese aesthetics (e.g. Introduction to Buddhism, the History of Buddhism, Philosophy, Japanese History, Asian Literature, or World Religion).

Koreans in Japan (Zainichi Koreans)
By Kazuko Suzuki of the Department of Sociology at Texas A&M University
2004-2005 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Today the notion that Japan is “homogeneous” prevails both inside and outside of Japan. This unit looks at ethnic Koreans residing in Japan and challenges the assumption that Japan is “homogeneous,” while also raising questions about what it means to be “Japanese.” Koreans constitute the largest “foreign” community permanently residing in Japan. Despite their similarities in physical appearance and considerable acculturation to mainstream Japanese society, Koreans in Japan have been discriminated against by both the Japanese state and Japanese society. This unit provides historical background on Korean migration to Japan and the subsequent discrimination against them.

Language, Reality, and Politics in Early China
By Maurizio Marinelli of the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Bristol, U.K.
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit provides a study of language and political power in early China. Through the examination of the Confucian theory on the “rectification of names” (zhengming) and its interpretations, the unit offers students an opportunity to explore the relationship between discursive acts and expressions of political power.The unit can be used in courses on Chinese history and culture to examine Chinese political discourse. It can also be used to offer a comparative perspective to a global history or “great books” class that explores the semiotic and ideological processes acting on and through language. The unit is particularly compatible with courses that explore how discursive regimes restrict the freedom of individuals, entangling them in a web of disciplinary power relations. For example, in fascist Italy, the Soviet Union under Stalin, and Nazi Germany, language control and standardization were considered essential to the regimes’ ideological projects and totalitarian aspirations.

Law and Society in East Asia: Selected Teaching Resources  
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
The following primary legal sources, organized around the theme of “law and society,” offer insight into how the power of the state or dynasty interacted with people’s everyday lives. The list includes legal cases that have been translated into English, along with films that illustrate legal procedure, from China, Japan, and Korea, starting in the thirteenth century to the present day.  Used in the classroom these legal cases not only serve as examples of legal concepts, state doctrine, or social values, but they also serve as snapshots into social history, bringing the extraordinary and ordinary of everyday society to life for students.  Reading these translated legal cases, students can gain first-hand insight into how legal practitioners envisioned social order, while also witnessing what happened when those ideas conflicted with social realities.

Literary Con/Texts 
By Paola Zamperini of the Department of Asian Languages and Civilizations at Amherst College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This exercise is a very simple, clear, effective tool to begin an undergraduate Chinese/Asian literature course in translation. It introduces students to the main issues of the course, from literary history to gender and cultural and social history, by focusing on a specific genre, namely poetry. Students are asked to read and discuss a selection of poems and guess the gender and nationality of their authors, as well as the period in which the poems were written. The exercise forces students to face stereotypes and assumptions they might hold about gender and/or Asian literature and culture and encourages them to think about translation and its dangers. Furthermore, it serves as an excellent introduction to the format of in-class discussion about primary sources from the very beginning. It also helps students to get to know each other, facilitating the creation of an open and stimulating atmosphere in the classroom.

Multi-Ethnic Japan: Nation-Building and National Identity
By Aya Ezawa of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Swarthmore College
2002-2003 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Japan is often described as an ethnically, racially, and culturally homogeneous nation. The readings presented here challenge this notion by examining the origins and multi-ethnic character of the modern Japanese nation-state. The readings explore how “minority” groups are defined in different historical periods and how the state has tried to assimilate them through the reform of language and customs. Furthermore, the unit examines how marginal groups define themselves and come to terms with what are often dual or competing national and ethnic identities.

Nationalisms in East Asia
By Fa-ti Fan of the Department of History at Binghamton University/SUNY and Laura Neitzel of the Department of History at Brookdale Community College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit examines varieties of nationalism that have emerged in East Asia since the late nineteenth century. It examines the ways in which historical actors defined, articulated and projected nationhood while negotiating cultural categories, such as Eastern/Western, traditional/modern and national/international. Particular attention is given to the interrelationship among imperialism, nationalism, and trans-nationality. Topics include nationalism and Western imperialism, nationalism and Asian imperialism, and ethnic nationalisms within nation-states.

Not Color Blind: Race, Ethnicity, and Nationality in East Asia
By Lisa Fischler, Moravian CollegeBy Aya Ezawa, Swarthmore College
By TJ Hinrichs, Southern Connecticut State University
By Bakirathi Mani, Swarthmore College
By Grace Mitchell, College of Staten Island, CUNY
By Kazuko Suzuki, Texas A&M University
By Xiaodan Zhang, Columbia University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This collection of teaching units treats ethnicity, race, and national identity as social constructs, such as aspects of group identity, which shift over time and are shaped by economics, politics, and society. These units explore the meanings of identity in different historical, political, and social contexts in East Asia and Asian Diasporas. Together these materials can be used to structure a semester long syllabus or can be used as individual teaching units.

Okinawa: Beyond the Ethnic Other
By Aya Ezawa of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Swarthmore College
2002-2003 Postdoctoral fellow at the Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
Discussions of ethnic minorities often focus on a search for roots and tradition, and the assertion of ethnic and cultural difference vis-à-vis the majority. The collection of student readings presented here questions such dichotomies by focusing on the identity struggles of Okinawans. They show how and why it has been difficult for Okinawans to assert themselves in opposition to the Japanese nation. During World War II, Okinawa was the site of a major battle between Japanese and American troops, and Okinawans were also subjected to atrocities by the Japanese army. This history of conflict and oppression lingers to this day, making the question of Okinawa’s place within the Japanese nation-state a complex one. Okinawans are at the same time “Okinawans” and Japanese citizens. This unit may be helpful in moving class discussion beyond assertions of ethnic origins and culture and may also help students begin to question the “majority”/“minority” dichotomy that shapes so much of our thinking in the U.S. today.

Patterns of Islamization in Indonesia 
By R. Michael Feener and Anna M. Gade of the Department of Southeast Asia Studies at Cornell University
Published and developed with the Southeast Asia Outreach Program at Cornell University
This project introduces patterns in the religious and cultural dimensions of the Islamic experience in Indonesia, a non-Arab Muslim society. Its goal is to foster an appreciation of the distinctiveness of Islam in Southeast Asia, as well as the significance of Southeast Asian Islam in the larger Muslim world. The unit is divided into three sections, which are loosely chronological and also thematically interrelated. These sections deploy illustrative examples of key concepts, such as that of ‘Islamization.’ Specific examples are drawn primarily from the fields of religious performance, narrative expression, or practices of piety. Each section includes study questions, a list of suggestions for further reading, and a supplementary reading from a primary source in translation. The entire curriculum unit is accompanied by a set of twenty slides, which bear direct connection to the main text, and slide images are referenced throughout the unit.

Politics of the Asian Diaspora in New York City and Beyond
By Amy Freedman of the Department of Government at Franklin and Marshall College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit uses New York City’s Chinatown as a site for the study of the immigrant experience in the United States. Beginning with the arrival of the first wave of Chinese immigrants in the 1840s and ending in the present-day, the unit introduces students to the complex politics that shape immigrant life in one of the nation’s most vibrant ethnic neighborhoods. Through the study of this neighborhood, its politics, and its history, students will gain a better understanding of political and institutional dynamics at work not only in New York, but also in cities and communities around the country.

Political Change in the 21st Century 
By Tese Wintz Neighbor of the University of Washington
Presented by the UW Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies Outreach Centers and The Seattle Times Newspapers In Education Program
Exploring Asia: Political Change in the 21st Century is a collaborative project between the Newspapers In Education program of The Seattle Times and the University of Washington’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies Asia and Global Studies outreach centers. The project consists of a five-article series, a teaching guide, and a pre-series workshop for secondary teachers. Designed with young readers in mind, each article in the online newspaper series focuses on major political changes in Asia. The five-part series begins with an overview of political change in Asia followed by articles featuring Burma, China, India and Central Asia. This teaching guide provides a lesson plan for each article and activities to do with students before, during and after reading the featured weekly article. Together the articles and accompanying lessons take students on an exploration of politics in several Asian countries, asking students to look at the issues from multiple perspectives and to explore how North America is becoming more and more connected to Asia. The points of view represented in the articles and the guide materials are a sampling of perspectives on these issues.

Poster Politics: The Art of Revolution 
By Benita Stambler of Empire State College at the State University of New York
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This one-lesson unit examines Mao Zedong as a revolutionary leader through Chinese propaganda posters from the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, 1966-1976. Both beautiful and powerful, these posters offer students a window on the cult of personality surrounding Mao and its place in the broader context of the Cultural Revolution. The lesson contains student readings and activities as well as introductory materials for the instructor and teaching strategies. It can be used either online or in the classroom.

Sacred Kingship and Sacrifice in Ancient India and China
By Thomas Wilson and Lisa Trivedi of the Department of History at Hamilton College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit aims to establish a pedagogical framework for a comparative study of ancient India and ancient China on the basis of reading primary sources across cultural traditions. This comparison aims not at finding universals, but examining practices (such as ritual sacrifice) and ideas (such as origin myths) in light of questions that arise outside of any one tradition in order to understand both what is common and what is distinctive. Ancient India and China share conceptions of the cosmos in which humans work in concert with the gods to maintain the proper order of the world. They also share a similar sense of socio-political order grounded in religious practices that served to legitimate the rule of those who possess ritual knowledge (such as kings in ancient China) or those who could employ those who possess it (such as princes in ancient India). There are important differences, such as the very early emergence of sacred kingship in China, where the sovereign, as a living descendant of gods, possessed privileged access to them, whereas in India, the kshatrya princes were reliant upon an alliance with brahmans, who possessed the ritual knowledge to conduct sacrifices (such as the horse sacrifice) that legitimated princely rule.

The Samurai in Japan and the World, C. 1900
Mark Jones of the Department of History at Central Connecticut State University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This unit addresses the role of the samurai in 20th century Japan by examining excerpts from Nitobe Inazô’s 1899 book Bushidô: The Soul of Japan, which asserts that “the way of the samurai warrior” was “the soul of Japan ” and the Japanese people. The reading also allows students to explore an important yet underexamined part of Japan’s reaction to Western imperialism: namely, how the championing of what was described as “native culture” as a modern source of strength was a way to negotiate (if not resist) the process of Westernization.

Teaching Daughter from Danang
By Bakirathi Mani  of the Department of English at Swarthmore College
By Sue Gronewolde of the Department of History at Kean University
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This moving documentary follows the life of Heidi Bub, a Vietnamese-American woman in search of her birth mother.  Adopted by a single mother in Pulaski, Tennessee (birthplace of the Ku Klux Klan), Heidi’s removal from Vietnam to the United States was conducted through Operation Babylift during the last years of the Vietnam War.  Now an adult, Heidi returns to Vietnam to meet her birth mother, but discovers much more than the family she left behind. The film can be used to address topics such as; histories of Asian American racial formation, gender and sexuality, and the changing face (and space) of Asian America, as well as many others!

Teaching Tales from Djkarta
By Mary E. Donnelly of the Department of Southeast Asian Studies at Cornell University
Published and developed with the Department of Southeast Asian Studies at Cornell University
This unit gives student an in-depth look and analysis of the words of Pramoeyda Ananta Toer and allows students to explore the cultural, social, and linguistic history of Indonesia

The Trial of Wang Shiwei 1942 
By King-fai Tam of Department of Modern Languages and Literature at
Trinity College
Published and developed with Expanding East Asian Studies from Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University
This teaching unit leads students through an exploration of a significant event in the early Chinese communist movement: the trial of Wang Shiwei in 1942. The trial had many long-reaching repercussions for the Chinese communist movement.

Tradition and Innovation in Cambodian Dance
By Dr. Toni Shapiro-Phim of the Philadelphia Folklore Project
Published and developed with the Southeast Asia Outreach Program at Cornell University
This unit on Cambodia takes as its focus the tension between tradition and creativity, between moving forward and staying rooted in the past, as played out on the country’s contemporary dance stage. At the dawn of the twenty-first century, the pull to the past and the lure of future possibilities remain in conflict. As a way of exploring this dynamic, this unit looks at the circumstances surrounding three major performance events that took place in Cambodia in February, 2004. All three of the performances stirred up debate about the role of the arts in preserving, challenging, and, sometimes, creating tradition. The aim is to encourage an understanding of the relationship of history to notions of “tradition,” and to foster an appreciation of Cambodian expressive culture.