Department of Asian Studies
Department of Asian Studies

ANS 301M • Introduction To Islam

32282 • Moin, A
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM MEZ B0.306
(also listed as ISL 310, R S 319)
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This course provides an introduction to the religion of Islam. It is designed for students with a general interest in the Islamic world, in religion, or in History. We will examine the theology, history, and main social and legal institutions of Islam. Islam, as a major system of belief in the world, is experienced by Muslims and non-Muslims alike. Consequently, besides studying the basic tenets and texts of the religion, this course will focus on the variety of ways in which Muslims and non-Muslims have understood and interpreted Islam. We will review the debates surrounding the life of the prophet of Islam, Islamic pre-modern and modern history, the Islamic concept of God and society, the role of women, and finally, Islamic government and movements. The course is designed for students with a general interest in the Islamic world, religions, or history. No prior knowledge of Islam or Islamic history is necessary.


To be provided by instructor. 


To be provided by instructor.

ANS 301R • History Of Religions Of Asia

32285 • Freiberger, Oliver
Meets MWF 9:00AM-10:00AM UTC 3.122
(also listed as CTI 304, R S 302)
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This course offers a survey of major religious traditions of Asia (Hinduism, Buddhism in South and East Asia, Confucianism, Daoism, and Shinto). It focuses on the historical development of their beliefs, practices, rituals, and customs in social context. The course will combine lectures with class discussions on readings.
Course materials:
Willard G. Oxtoby, Roy C. Amore, Amir Hussain, eds. World Religions: Eastern Traditions. 4th ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014; R. K. Narayan, The Mahabharata: A Shortened Modern Prose Version of the Indian Epic. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2000: Zhuangzi: Basic Writings, translated by Burton Watson. New York: Columbia University Press, 2003; readings provided as PDF files on Canvas.
Attendance/participation: 20%
Two quizzes: 20% (10% each)
Two short essays: 20% (10% each)
Midterm exam: 20%
Final exam: 20%

ANS 302C • Introduction To China

32290 • Lai, Chiu
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM BUR 136
(also listed as HIS 302C)
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Introduction to Chinese Culture and Civilization

Course Description:

This course will provide an introduction to major concepts and ideas from Chinese cultural traditions to construct a course inquiry into understanding Chinese culture and society. A guiding principle in this course inquiry will be to investigate the past to help inform the present.   Lectures and discussion will examine key concepts from art, history, language, literature, and thought that greatly shaped, and continue to influence, “Chinese” cultural and geopolitical entities.  

Required Text:  (Available at University Co-op Bookstore)

Charles A. Desnoyers, Patterns of Modern Chinese History (Oxford, 2017)

[Additional readings on Canvas Course Site]


Rana Mitter, Modern China: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford, 2016)

Evan Osnos, Age of Ambition – Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2014)

Statement on Global Cultures Flag:  This course carries the Global Cultures flag. Global Cultures courses are designed to increase your familiarity with cultural groups outside the United States. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from assignments covering the practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one non-U.S. cultural group, past or present.


ANS 302D • Intro To Korean Cul And Hist

32295 • Oppenheim, Robert
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM BUR 116
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Introduction to Korea's history, culture, and civilization from antiquity to the present.  Asian Studies 301M (Topic 10) and 302D may not both be counted.

ANS 302J • Introduction To Japan

32300 • Cather, Kirsten
Meets MWF 9:00AM-10:00AM CLA 0.128
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This course is aimed at providing a broad-based introduction to Japanese history, society and culture, beginning with prehistoric times and continuing to present.  We will follow a chronological format, focusing on understanding how Japanese who lived in different historical periods created particular political, social and cultural systems to realize their beliefs and values.  In addition to the main textbook, course materials will include literature, historical documents, art, and film.

ANS 321M • Politics In Japan

32307 • Maclachlan, Patricia
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM UTC 4.104
(also listed as GOV 321M)
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Politics in Japan: GOV 321M/ANS 321M

Global Cultures Flag

TTH 9:30-11:00, UTC 4.104

Patricia L. Maclachlan

Fall 2018


This upper division course surveys key themes in the domestic politics and political economy of postwar Japan.  After briefly exploring the politics and institutions of the pre-war era, we will examine the impact of the American Occupation (1945-52) on the Japanese political economy, the secrets of Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) dominance in postwar elections, voting trends, legislative and policymaking processes, gender politics, and interest group and social movement politics. We will devote our final weeks to the analysis of developments in contemporary Japan, including the movement toward political-economic reform—particularly in the public sector, defense and agriculture.  These and related topics will be examined from a comparative perspective and with reference to relevant political science theories.



            6 semester hours of lower-division Government courses.  Graduate students may take this course for graduate credit.



Grading Criteria:


            1.  Quizzes on readings:                                                        15%

            2.  First midterm exam:                                                        20%

            3.  Second midterm exam or short research paper:         25%

            4.  Final examination:                                                           40%





  1. Robin LeBlanc, Bicycle Citizens: The Political World of the Japanese Housewife. University of California Press, 1999.
  2. David Pilling, Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival.  Penguin Books, 2015.
  3. Frances M. Rosenbluth and Michael Thies, Japan Transformed: Political Change and Economic Restructuring. Princeton University Press, 2010.
  4. Jacob M. Schlesinger, Shadow Shoguns: The Rise and Fall of Japan’s Postwar Political Machine. Sanford University Press, 1999.


            Additional readings will be provided to students at the beginning of the semester via Canvas.

ANS 322M • Politics In China

32310 • Lu, Xiaobo
Meets MW 1:00PM-2:30PM SZB 330
(also listed as GOV 322M)
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Politics in Contemporary China


GOV 322M

ANS 322M



Course Description:


This Course is designed as an introductory course in Chinese politics primarily for upper-level undergraduates with a good background in political/social science, but not necessarily any background on China. The aim of the course is to provide a foundation that will enable the

non-specialist to make informed use of China as a case in more general arguments and give the intended China specialist a solid footing from which to pursue more in-depth study of particular topics.


This course primarily focuses on domestic politics in post-1978 China. We start the course by introducing the key institutions and players in order to understand the distribution of political power in China. We then detail various forms of political participation by different individuals, which allow us to understand the political logic and consequences of policymaking and selective policy issues in China. We conclude the course by discussing the political reforms implemented in the last three decades and contemplating the potentials political development in the future. The course consists of lectures and in-class discussions in order to enhance students’ learning.




Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.


Course Requirement and Grading:


1.         Four (randomly scheduled) quizzes                                                                           15%

2.         First in-class midterm exam:                                                                                      25%

3.         Second in-class midterm exam:                                                                                  25%

4.         Third in-class midterm:                                                                                              25%

5.         Attendance                                                                                                                  10%

Course Materials:


The readings for this course are based on book chapters and articles. All the readings, except for the required textbook, can be accessed through the Canvas website for this class.


Required Textbook:

Lieberthal, Kenneth. 2004. Governing China: from revolution through reform. 2nd ed. New York: W. W. Norton.


ANS 340 • Hinduism In US Pop Culture

32315 • Hyne-Sutherland, Amy
Meets MW 2:30PM-4:00PM JES A205A
(also listed as R S 346)
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Please check back for updates.

ANS 340 • Natural Theology East And West

32320 • Phillips, Stephen
Meets MWF 2:00PM-3:00PM WAG 308
(also listed as PHL 348)
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Is there a God? Are there reasons to believe or not to believe in a God?

This course surveys and at the same time evaluates arguments for and against the existence of God in Jewish, Christian, and Islamic traditions, along with arguments for Brahman (Hinduism) and Emptiness (Buddhism).

The course takes a global point of view, comparing arguments proferred originally in Arabic, for example, with medieval arguments expressed in Latin and with a collection of arguments originally expressed in Sanskrit.

We will also examine the primary atheistic arguments in the West from Epicurus through Bertrand Russell and in India principally from a philosopher of the eighth century named Kumarila Bhatta.

We will also consider differing concepts of God. An important Buddhist argument purports to prove the Buddha's omniscience. But the Buddhist idea of omniscience differs from the mainstream view of God's omniscience in the West.

Our main focus throughout the course will be on the strengths and weaknesses of each argument.

We will examine passages from a wide variety of thinkers, including Aristotle, Epicurus, Paul, Augustine, Uddyotakara, Kumarila Bhatta, al-Farabi, ibn Sina (Avicenna), Anselm, Udayana, al-Ghazali, ibn Rushd (Averroes), Aquinas, Keśava Miśra, Gangesa, Descartes, Leibniz, Paley, Hume, and Gödel, as well as some contemporary articles illuminating the structure of the arguments.

ANS 346N • Indian Subcontinent, 1750-1950

32325 • Chatterjee, Indrani
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM GDC 4.304
(also listed as HIS 346N)
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Description: The Indian Subcontinent can teach us a great deal about diversity in the cultures of the past, as well as the conditions under which that diversity can also disappear rapidly. This course studies both the flourishing and the disappearance of pluralism in the subcontinent between the eighteenth and the twentieth centuries. It begins with ‘caste’ and ‘religion’ in the subcontinent, moves to the gradual consolidation of British colonialism, the redrawing of social, economic, religious, political boundaries and identities and ends with the growth of modern political forms such as political parties, and ends with the cataclysms of Partition in 1947.

Aims: 1) to acquaint students with basic concepts and a basic chronology of events, people, and processes.

2) familiarize students with an understanding of the differences between ‘primary’ and ‘secondary’ sources in the understanding of any past

3) teach students to think critically by exposing them to a variety of perspectives on the past, including some key controversies around each of the themes of the course.

Requirements. On days marked ‘Read’ in the syllabus, students are required to read a compulsory number of pages in a given text in each topic before they come to class. They will be required to purchase/borrow/ rent the following

1) Barbara and Thomas Metcalf, A Concise History of India, (3rd edition) Cambridge University Press, (2012 paperback), ISBN-13 978-1-107-67218-5

2) Rudyard Kipling, Kim (2005 paperback) ISBN-13, 978-0486445083

3) Kushwant Singh, Train to Pakistan (1994 paperback) ISBN-13, 978-080232215

All other readings are on Canvas OR on recommended websites for particular days.

ANS 361 • Africa/Indian Ocean World

32326 • Falola, Oloruntoyin
Meets T 3:30PM-6:30PM MEZ 2.122
(also listed as AFR 374C, HIS 350L)
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Africa has a long history of trade, migration, and exchange throughout the Indian Ocean world. This course seeks to understand the history of Africa by examining the people, goods and ideas that traversed its shores by exploring the many interconnections that have existed in pre-colonial societies, how these relationships changed because of colonial impositions, and the subsequent decolonization struggles and post-colonial issues. Most of African history is studied from the perspective of the Atlantic. However, this course will examine African history from the perspective of the Indian Ocean. As a result, students will broaden their understanding of what it means to be African, how African movements have been influenced by external forces, including actors beyond Europe and America, and will conclude by examining South-South issues that are relevant to the continent today. Students will engage in both primary and secondary source analysis throughout the course, including examinations of film and literature, in addition to various primary sources related to each week’s discussion.  The goal of this course is to understand the complexities of African history from a more unique vantage point offered by the Indian Ocean world.

Course Objectives:
1)    Students will increase their knowledge and understanding of African history, culture and society. This includes becoming aware and critical of misunderstandings and perceptions of Africans and their history.
2)    Students will identify key themes in African history that transcend national boundaries.  This includes the economic, political, cultural and social agents, which have influenced Africa’s history.
3)    Students will learn how to analyze primary source documents and apply this to their written work.
4)    Students will learn how to analyze secondary sources, including film and literature, and apply this to their written work.

Course Materials:
Alpers, Edward, Nancy Clark and William Worger. Africa and the West: A Documentary History from the Slave Trade to Independence. Phoenix: Oryx Press, 2001.

Jayasuriya, Shihan De Silva and Richard Pankhurst. The African Diaspora in the Indian Ocean. Trenton: Africa World Press, 2003.

Hawley, John C., ed. India in Africa, Africa in India: Indian Ocean Cosmopolitanisms. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2008.

Alpers, Edward. East Africa and the Indian Ocean. Princeton: Markus Wiener Publishers, 2009.

Captain Philips
Lost Kingdoms of Africa: Great Zimbabwe
Rain in a Dry Land
Zanzibar Soccer Queens
Wooden Camera
The Flame Trees of Thika
General Idi Amin Dada

Articles: all articles can be accessed electronically through the UT library website and are listed on the course schedule.

Course Requirements:
Primary Source Analysis: 20% of final grade
Students will find five primary sources that fit a particular theme discussed in this class. They can be acquired from digital archives or from a local archive/museum/library, etc. First, students must pick a theme to address (see course schedule). Then, students must narrow their topic through a process of secondary and primary research. Details of this process will be discussed in class. The final product will be an analytical essay, which uses the primary and secondary sources to support a student-generated thesis. All submissions should be 3-5 pages, double-spaced, size 12, times new roman font.

Response Paper: 20% of final grade
Students must respond to a current event occurring in Africa during this semester and explain how it connects with classroom content and discussions. Students should use classroom readings, films, lectures and discussions as well as outside sources that reflect scholarly works. Contemporary media outlets are also useful, but must be contextualized appropriately. An essential component of this assignment is a thorough examination of the multiple impacts and layers to current events when considering their historical context and contemporary impacts. Students’ papers must include an introduction with a strong, clear thesis, specific points clarifying this thesis, and a clear and concise conclusion. All submissions should be 3-5 pages, double-spaced, size 12, times new roman font.

Book Review: 10% of final grade
Students are required to evaluate and analyze a book from the reading list. Reviews should not just restate the information in the book, but must be analytical and show the students reflections on the topic. Things to discuss in a book review could include the following: synthesis of argument, historical content, writing style, any criticisms or confusions encountered or the impression the book made on you personally.  Students can also focus on important themes within the book or connections to the course specifically. Opinions are welcome; however, they must be well supported and explained. Be sure to proofread, include an introduction and conclusion. All submissions should be 3-4 pages, double-spaced, size 12, times new roman font.

Film Review: 10% of final grade
Students may evaluate any of the films included in this syllabus. Film reviews should include an analysis of the film, not a simple retelling of the plot.  Analysis can include opinions, but they must be well supported and clearly explained. Things to consider is the historical context of the film (both when it was filmed and setting of the film), analysis of the acting performances, structure of film (including plot flow), music and visual analysis, and contributions (or not) to class content. Most importantly, be sure to discuss the role of Africa and Africans in the film, and others with which they interact.

Research paper  40%

Course Schedule:

Week One: Course Introduction: What is the “Real” Africa?
Reading: Curtis Keim, Mistaking Africa: Curiosities and Inventions of the American Mind. Boulder: Westview Press, 2014.
Preface, Ch.1 & 2 (pg. 1-34)

This week will include an overview of the course and its expectations. Additionally, a heavy focus will be on misconceptions and stereotypes of Africa often harbored by American students. The goal is to discuss and discard these misconceptions in order to facilitate a more open and honest conversation about Africa and Africans in the remainder of the semester.

Pre-Colonial Africa
Week Two: Pre-Colonial Cultures
Jayasuriya, Shihan De Silva and Richard Pankhurst. The African Diaspora in the Indian Ocean. Trenton: Africa World Press, 2003.
      Ch.3, (pg. 53-80)
Alpers, Edward. East Africa and the Indian Ocean. Princeton: Markus Wiener Publishers, 2009.
    Ch. 2 & 6 (pg. 23-38 & 99-128)

    Film: Lost Kingdoms of Africa: Great Zimbabwe

Students will learn about various pre-colonial African cultures, including the Great Zimbabwe, Mozambican cultural identities, Swahili gender traditions and West Indian Ocean influences on food networks.  Students will begin to understand the complicated relationships that existed in pre-colonial Africa and how these relationships affected local cultures in different ways.
Week Three: Pre-Colonial Economies
Hawley, John C., ed. India in Africa, Africa in India: Indian Ocean Cosmopolitanisms. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2008.
    Ch. 1 & 3, (pg. 17-54 & 77-94)
Alpers, Edward. East Africa and the Indian Ocean. Princeton: Markus Wiener Publishers, 2009.
   Ch. 1 (3-22)

Students will learn about the slave trade and the Indian ocean, pre-colonial negotiations of power and privilege, and pre-colonial trade networks highlighting East Africa.  Students will compare their existing knowledge of the Atlantic slave trade system with their readings on the slave trade in the Indian Ocean. Students will begin to understand the complexities and contributions of Africans to global world systems, illustrating how Africans have influenced societies throughout the world. Additionally students will understand various free movements of people and trade, especially highlighting the Indian Ocean region.

Week Four: Pre-Colonial Migrations
Hawley, John C., ed. India in Africa, Africa in India: Indian Ocean Cosmopolitanisms. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2008.
       Ch. 8, (203-230)
Alpers, Edward. East Africa and the Indian Ocean. Princeton: Markus Wiener Publishers, 2009.
     Ch. 3 & 4 (pg. 39-78)

This week’s focus is on pre-colonial migrations. Students will examine the movement of Africans, such as Siddis to various regions in South Asia. Additionally, students will examine the movements of people on the various African Islands in the Indian Ocean. Students will also examine historical Mugadishu in order to understand the pre-colonial urban-rural relations that existed in East Africa. The goal of this week is for students to begin to see Africa and vibrant, active and continually changing; that Africa did not begin to “develop” as a result of colonialism, but has been thriving and developing before Europeans arrived.

Colonial Infiltrations
Week Five: Europeans Arrive: early Europeans, the Portuguese and the Dutch
Santos, Aurora Almada. “The Role of the Decolonization Committee of the United Nations Organization in the Struggle Against Portuguese Colonialism in Africa: 1961-1974.” The Journal of Pan African Studies, Vol 4, No. 10 (January 2012), 248-260.
    Film: Tabu

This week students will begin to examine early stages of colonialism, highlighting the migration of Portuguese and Dutch sailors around the Cape of Good Hope and into East Africa. Students will discuss the impact these explorers had on local economies, cultures and peoples. In addition, students will begin to question the different styles of colonialism, and their connections to modern day Africa.

Week Six: African Diaspora in the Indian Ocean
Indrani Chatterjee, “Abolition by Denial: the South Asian Example,” in Gwyn Campbell (ed), Abolition and its Aftermath in the Indian Ocean, Africa and Asia, pg. 137-153.
Jayasuriya, Shihan De Silva and Richard Pankhurst. The African Diaspora in the Indian Ocean. Trenton: Africa World Press, 2003.
      Ch.1-2, (pg. 7-52)

Students will examine the movement of Africans into the Indian Ocean as a result of increased colonial influences. The slave trade and then slavery were abolished by the British in the early 19th century. Other countries followed suit throughout the century. Students will begin to see the complicated relationships the Atlantic slave trade had on East Africa, understanding shifts in legal and illegal trade, and how this influenced the development of the region, including its global impacts. Students will also begin to understand the influence on changing technologies in the 19th century and how they influenced free and coerced movement of people, goods and ideas around Africa.

Week Seven: European Intrusion: the British and the French
Jayasuriya, Shihan De Silva and Richard Pankhurst. The African Diaspora in the Indian Ocean. Trenton: Africa World Press, 2003.
      Ch.5, (pg. 99-122)
    Film: The Flame Trees of Thika

Students will examine the “Scramble for Africa,” specifically looking at French and British colonization of Africa, noticing how their policies differed from each other and from previous colonial powers. Additionally, students will understand the long lasting implications these policies had on Africans, their livelihoods and their agency.

Post-Colonial Issues
Week Eight: Decolonization: an Indian Ocean Perspective
Wood, Sally Percival. “Retrieving the Bandung Conference…Moment by Moment.” Journal of Southeast Asian Studies, 43 (Oct 2012), 523-530.
Lee, Christopher J. “At the Rendezvous of Decolonization: the Final communique of the Asian-African Conference, Bandung, Indonesia, 18-24 April 1955.” Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies, 11(2009), 81-93.
Brennan, James. “Lowering the Sultan’s Flag: Sovereignty and Decolonization in Coastal Kenya.” Comparative Studies in Society and History.” 50(2008), 831-861.
    Film: Rain in a Dry Land

Students will learn about processes of decolonization in various African countries, by firstly examining it through and Indian Ocean lens. This means, understanding the events and significance of the Bandung Conference in 1955. Additionally, students will begin to understand the multi-faceted challenges Africans experienced in the decolonization process and how this varied from colony to colony.

Week Nine: Post-Colonial Political and Economic Issues
Alemazung, Joy Asongazoh. “Post-Colonial Colonialism: An Analysis of International Factors and Actors Marring African Socio-Economic and Political Development.” The Journal of Pan African Studies. Vol. 3, No. 10, (Sept 2010), 62-84)
Jerven, Morten. “The Quest for the African Dummy: Explaining African Post-Colonial Economic Performance Revisited.” Journal of International Development. Vol 23 (2011), 288-307.

This week students will examine the specific political and economic issues various countries experienced in the decolonization process. Images of contemporary Africa are rife with discussions of underdevelopment or failed states. This week we will examine the role decolonization and neocolonialism played in these issues.

Week Ten: Case Study: Uganda and Postcolonial Policies
Nyeko, Balam. “Exile Politics and Resistance to Dictatorship: The Ugandan Anti-Amin Organizations in Zambia, 1972-29.” African Affairs. 96(1996), 95-108.
Leopold, Mark. “Legacies of Slavery in North-West Uganda: The Story of the ‘one-Elevens’.” Africa. 76(May 2006), 180-199.
Langan, Mark. “Cultivating Success in Uganda: Kigezi Farmers and Colonial Policies.” Book Review. Journal of Modern African Studies. 48 (September 2010), 514-516.
Young, Nicholas. “Uganda: Ally Gone Bad?” Foreign Policy in Focus. (May 2011), 1.
Film: General Idi Amin Dada

This week, students will examine the decolonization of Uganda as a case study in postcolonial policies. Students will discuss the complicated figure of General Idi Amin Dada to understand how such dictators could come to control newly independent countries, various post-colonial and neocolonial implications, and what this meant for Africans in Uganda and throughout the continent.

Week Eleven: Case Study: Tanzania, Nationalism, Language and Identity
Aminzade, Ronald. “The dialectic of Nation Building in Postcolonial Tanzania.” The Sociological Quarterly, 54(Summer 2013), 335-366.
Schneider, Leander. “Colonial legacies and Postcolonial Authoritarianism in Tanzania: Connects and Disconnects.” African Studies Review. 49(Apr. 2006), 93-118.
    Film: Zanzibar Soccer Queens

This week, students will examine the case study of Tanzania, whose system of decolonization emphasized national pride and nationalism over individual cultural groups and ethnicities. Students will understand the complexities of transitioning from colonial governments and governing post-colonial multi-cultural and extremely diverse populations and what this meant for policy makers in the 20th century. Language and identity in Tanzania are targeted as illustrating one way Africans dealt with this complexity.

Week Twelve: Case Study: South Africa and Race Relations
Muyeba, Singumbe and Jeremy Seekings. “Race, Attitudes and Behaviour in Racially-Mixed, Low-income Neighbourhoods in Cape Town, South Africa.” Current Sociology. Vol. 59, (2011), 655-671.
Bornman, Elirea. “Patterns of Intergroup Attitudes in South Africa After 1994.” International Journal of Intercultural Relations. Vol. 35, (2011), 729-748.
Solomon, Hussein. And Sonja Theron. “Behind the Veil: India’s Relations with Apartheid South Africa.” Dec. 2010.
Hofmeyr, Isabel and Michelle Williams. “South Africa—India: Connections and Comparisons.”  Journal of Asian and African Studies. Vol. 22, (2009), 5-17.
    Film: The Wooden Camera

South Africa has a long and complicated racialized history, linked to colonization, which did not officially end until 1994. Students will learn about the various ways these historical legacies have played out in South African history and how they directly impact the nation today. Additionally, students will also learn about the complex ethnic diversity that exists within South Africa, including the legacy of Indians that settled there in the 19th century.

Week Thirteen: Case Study: Somali Pirates
Weitz, Richard. “Countering the Somali Pirates: Harmonizing the International Response.” Journal of Strategic Security. Vol.2, No.1, (Sept. 2009), 1-12.
Lucas, Edward. “Somalia’s ‘Pirate Cycle,’: The Three Phases of Somali Piracy.” Journal of Strategic Security. Vol.6, No.1, (Spring 2013), 55-63.
Davey, Michael. “A Pirate Looks at the Twenty-First Century: The Legal Status of Somali Pirates in an Age of Sovereign Seas and Human Rights.” Notre Dame Law Review. (Vol. 85, No. 3, 2010), 1197-1230.
Collins, Victoria. “Dangerous Seas: Moral Panic and the Somali Pirate.” Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology. Vol.45, No.1 (2012), 106-132.

Film: Captain Philips

This week, students will learn about how colonialism left an economic and political legacy of corruptness and destruction, and begin to examine how Africans and the international community deals with the result of this. Often, African problems, such as Somali pirates, are treated ahistorically especially in western media. This case study will delve into the historical elements, which provide the background for understanding why Somali pirates exist in the form they do today and why the international community has reacted in the way it has.

Contemporary Concerns
Week Fourteen: South-South Relations
Strauss, Julia C. “china and Africa Rebooted: Globalization(s), Simplification(s), and Cross-cutting Dynamics in ‘South-South’ Relations.” African Studies Review. 56 (April 2013), 155-170.
Taylor, Ian. “India’s Rise in Africa.” International Affairs. 4 (2012), 779-798.
Cornelissen, Scarlett. “Selling Africa: Japan’s G8 Politics and Its Africa Diplomacy.” Global Governance. 18 (2012), 461-470.

South-South Relations are emerging as increasingly significant in contemporary literature and media, especially focusing on economic relationships between Africa and India and China.  Students will learn that there is a long history of interaction, which existed in pre-colonial, colonial and now post-colonial times. They will understand how these interactions have changed over time, and what implications these developments have for Africans, both in areas of economic development and socio-political implications.

Week Fifteen: Contemporary Issues and the New Diaspora
Cook, Susan and Rebecca Hardin. “Performing Royalty in Contemporary Africa.” Cultural Anthropology. 28(May 2013), 227-251.
Clark, Msia Kibona. “Representing Africa! Trends in Contemporary African Hip Hop.” The Journal of Pan African Studies, 6(Sept 2013), 1-4.
Morris, Ray. “Africa’s Moment.” World Policy Journal. (Winter 2012/2013), 1-2.
Riedl, Rachel Beatty. “Transforming Politics, Dynamic Religion: Religion’s Political Impact in Contemporary Africa.” Africa Conflict and Peacebuilding Review, 2(Fall, 2012), 29-50.
Prah, Kwesi Kwaa. “The Language of Development and the Development of Language in Contemporary Africa.” Applied Linguistics Review. 3(Oct. 2012), 295-313.
    Film: Moolade

This week students will be exposed to variety of different contemporary issues affecting Africans, such as local/urban identity struggles, development of Hip Hop, religion, language development and female genital mutilation. Students will finish the semester understanding the diversity and range of experiences, problems and issues Africans must deal with on a daily basis. Additionally, students will examine how contemporary media outlets treat these issues and modern Africa in general.

ANS 361 • Anthropol Of The Himalayas

32350 • Hindman, Heather
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM CLA 0.122
(also listed as AAS 330, ANT 324L)
show description

This course looks at the history and culture of the Himalayan region, including Northeast India, sections of Pakistan and Afghanistan, and Tibet, but especially Nepal. Some understanding of Asian history, politics and religion will be helpful (but not necessary) as our attempt will not be a comprehensive survey of the region. The Himalayas have been the site of a great deal of anthropological attention and as such we will be simultaneously be exploring several key theoretical, historical and methodological issues within the discipline of anthropology as we learn about places and people in the region. Particular attention will be paid to the area as a site for negotiating identity (caste and indigeneity), development politics, the environment, tourism, diasporas as well as the current political tensions in the region. At the conclusion of the class, students should have a stronger idea of the important role this area has played in the political, religious and social imagination of the world and an appreciation of concepts such as ritual theory, social movements, modernity and gender studies.

ANS 361 • Biomedicine, Ethics, & Cul

32355 • Traphagan, John
Meets MWF 9:00AM-10:00AM BUR 208
(also listed as ANT 324L, R S 373M)
show description

Health-care professionals, bio-medical researchers, patients, and families in all societies are increasingly faced with ethical issues that arise because of new medical technologies and because of alternative approaches to health and illness. This course focuses on ethical questions such as allocation of medical resources, stem cell research and cloning, organ transplantation, abortion, human experimentation, prolonging life and the right to die, suicide, euthanasia, and the diagnosis and treatment of illnesses such as Alzheimer disease, AIDS, and mental disorders.

This course explores these topics from a global perspective, emphasizing how cultural values and ethical systems define moral issues and inform decision-making about medical care. We will consider ethical theories that have been used in the West to consider medical practice, and compare these with approaches in non-Western cultures such as Japan and India. The course emphasizes the use of case studies to explore issues in medical ethics and to develop the ability to apply ethical theories in ways sensitive to variations in cultural values. 

Students in this course engage in discussion and debate about difficult moral issues and it is likely that members of the class will have different, and sometimes profoundly conflicting, ideas about what is right and wrong. You should feel free to express and support your position; this is an important component of the class.

ANS 361 • Captl/Consum/Civ Soc Korea

32345 • Oppenheim, Robert
Meets TTH 5:00PM-6:30PM CLA 0.106
show description

This is a course about contemporary social and political life in urban South Korea—to use a complex and problematic concept, about Korean modernity.  It focuses on present conditions and their historical background: on capitalism and development from the colonial era (1910-1945) to the present, on the perspectives of workers, white-collar employees, and students over time, on the lifestyles of the new middle class, and on the struggle for democracy and its aftermath.  We will read ethnographies of corporations, factory work, consumption, and activism, as well as accounts of popular culture and changing gender systems and roles.  We will also watch several recent films and examine other visual materials.

ANS 361 • Gov And Politics Of Se Asia

32327 • Liu, Amy
Meets TTH 8:00AM-9:30AM PAR 105
(also listed as GOV 347N)
show description

GOV 347N, GOV and Politics of SE Asia


Prerequisites (if any)


Students wishing to enroll in this class must have taken a foundational course in government or Asian studies. The course also assumes basic knowledge of world history.



Course Description


This course is designed to introduce students to the politics of Southeast Asia. The course is divided into two parts. The first part focuses on the different political regimes in the region. We will learn about the democracies – and how they compare to the United States. We will also learn about the different institutions employed by dictators to stay in power – personal cult, the military, a party structure, or the royal family (Brunei). In the second part, we will examine whether democracies or dictatorships are better at accommodating ethnic minorities. Note that this course is not about Southeast Asian foreign policy or US-Southeast Asia bilateral relations.



Grading Policy


Your final grade is composed of the following five parts:

  1. Quizzes: 20%
  2. Midterm Examination: 20%
  3. Final Examination: 20%
  4. Coding Assignment: 20%
  5. Coding-Based Paper Assignment: 20%





D.R. SarDesai. 2012. Southeast Asia: Past and Present. 7th Edition. Boulder, CO: Westview Press. Note: Student Economy 7th Edition (2015) acceptable.






GOV 390L, Comparative Ethnic Politics


Course Description


This graduate-level course introduces students to the principle concepts, questions, and answers in the subfield of ethnic politics. The readings and discussions will draw on all major regions in the world, including the United States. In this course, we will study the following four sets of topics: ethnic identity; ethnic diversity; ethnic parties; and ethnic accommodation. The objective of this course is fourfold. The first is to acquaint students with the theoretical literatures on ethnic politics. The second is to teach students how to design and evaluate theoretically-oriented research. The third is to train students to carry out various types of assignments that political scientists – or social scientists more broadly – are frequently required to perform. And the fourth is to enable students to move toward a publishable paper.



Grading Policy


Your final grade is composed of the following five items:

  1. Attendance and Participation: You are allowed two absences for any reason. Any additional absence beyond that will drop your semester grade by a letter.
  2. Weekly Writing Assignments: Abstracts, Essays, and Reviews (25%)
  3. Coding Assignment (25%)
  4. Mock Grant Proposal (25%)
  5. Research Design Paper (25%)





Adida, Claire L. 2014. Immigrant exclusion and insecurity in Africa. New York NY: Cambridge University Press.


Selway, Joel Sawat. 2015. Coalitions of the Well-Being: How Electoral Rules and Ethnic Politics Shape Health Policy in Developing Countries. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.


ANS 361 • Intl Rels Of E/Stheast Asia

32340 • Maclachlan, Patricia
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM CLA 0.112
(also listed as GOV 365L)
show description

International Relations of East and Southeast Asia

GOV 365L/ANS 361

Global Cultures Flag


Fall 2018


Prof. Patricia L. Maclachlan

TTH 12:30-2:00, CLA 0.112


Course Description:


This upper division undergraduate course introduces students to some of the major theories and themes in the post-Cold War—and particularly contemporary—international relations of East and Southeast Asia: “Great Power” (China, Japan, and the United States) contributions and challenges to the military and economic security of the region, the objectives and processes of economic globalization and institutional integration in the Asia-Pacific, the domestic political determinants of international relations, and the future of the liberal institutional order in the region.  Along the way, we will explore the ongoing North Korean nuclear threat, tensions between China and Taiwan, territorial disputes in the East and South China seas, and the fate of the United States’ so-called Asia Pivot.




6 semester hours of lower-division Government courses.  Graduate students may take this course for graduate credit.



Grading Policy:


         1.    Quizzes on readings: 15%

         2.    First mid-term exam: 20%

         3.    Second mid-term exam or short research paper:  25%

         4.    Final exam: 40%




         1.    Andrei Lankov, The Real North Korea: Life and Politics in the Failed Stalinist Utopia.  Oxford University Press, 2014.

         2.   David Shambaugh, China’s Future. Polity, 2016.




 Additional readings will be provided to students via Canvas at the beginning of the semester.

ANS 361 • Urban Experiences In East Asia

32335 • Oh, Youjeong
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM CLA 0.118
(also listed as URB 354)
show description

Urbanization in East Asia has taken place in rapid, massive and turbulent ways. The purpose of this class lies in employing urbanization as an analytical category through which we can examine development, modernization, the politics of accumulation and distribution, state-­‐society relations, urban struggles and activism in East Asia. The class lectures are organized, therefore, around topics rather than by country and city. For more critical examinations, we will also learn and discuss key concepts in Geography and Urban Studies, such as modernity, uneven development, place-­‐making, gentrification, cultural agglomeration, global cities, and urban social movements. Reading various books and articles on urban issues, this course aims to advance the understanding of East Asia’s contemporary dynamics and East Asia in global context. We will supplement our readings by drawing various other materials including maps and illustrations, films, and video clips of TV programs.

ANS 362 • Research In Asian Studies

show description

Individual instruction for Asian studies majors and nonmajors. Discussion, research, and the writing of papers about various general and specialized Asian subjects.  Prerequisite: Six semester hours of coursework in Asian studies and
written consent of instructor on form obtained from the undergraduate adviser.

ANS 372 • Indian Cinema

32364 • Kumar, Shanti
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM CMA 3.124
(also listed as AAS 320, RTF 342S)
show description

This course will provide a general overview of Indian cinema. We will critically examine some of the main genres and themes represented in a variety of commercial Hindi films -- popularly known as "Bollywood". We will analyze how Bollywood films represent issues of gender, class, caste, race, national identity, transnational mobility, and cultural traditions in India and in the Indian diaspora. We will also examine the ways in which the "Bollywood" film industry has evolved in relation to the political, economic, and cultural changes taking place at the global, national and regional levels of Indian society. Background in Hindi language or Indian cinema is not necessary to take this course. All films screened in this course will have English subtitles.

ANS 372 • South Asian Migration To US

32367 • Bhalodia-Dhanani, Aarti
Meets MWF 10:00AM-11:00AM CMA 3.114
(also listed as AAS 325, HIS 365G, WGS 340)
show description

This course examines the South Asian diaspora in United States. We will cover migration of people from India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh to United States and other parts of the world. While studying the history and culture of South Asian America, we will discuss globalization, transnationalism, migration, assimilation, formation of a diaspora, discrimination, and gender and sexuality, all major themes in Asian American Studies. The course is arranged chronologically and thematically. We will start in the nineteenth century following the journey of the first South Asian migrants to US. We will then move on to studying the Bengali and Punjabi immigrants to U.S. and the formation of Bengali-African and Punjabi-Mexican communities. We will study how American immigration laws have facilitated or inhibited South Asian migration to US in the twentieth century. Topics covered include economic and social reasons for migration, adaptation to American life, cultural and religious assimilation, changing family structures, and discrimination and exclusion. We will end the semester by discussing South Asian American life in the twenty-first century. 

Through the semester we will study more than a century of South Asian American history. A primary goal of this course is to highlight the diversity within South Asian America. We will encounter a diaspora whose members belong to different religious, linguistic, economic and social groups. Many came to the United States forcibly to seek economic opportunities lacking at home. Others came enthusiastically with dreams of making it “big” in the land of abundant opportunities. We will also examine South Asian American interactions with other Americans in the fields of social activism and community development.

You are encouraged to participate in South Asian American life in Austin. I will bring to your attention relevant films, lectures, art, music, and dance performances. Assignments for this course will help you in improving writing and communication skills. Our class meetings will be a blend of lectures and discussions.

ANS 372 • Tale Of Five Chinese Cities

32365 • Tsai, Chien
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 1
show description

Cultural critic Michel de Certeau once observed, “A city, no matter how efficiently planned out or how beautiful, is rendered worthless without people.” Studies of cities thus are studies of people, their everyday life, and their stories. In this course, we will study both literary and cultural products about five Chinese cities: Beijing, Hong Kong, Nanjing, Shanghai, and Taipei. We will treat the featured cities not so much as concrete jungles, but as objects of literary and filmic representation and sites of cultural production. By examining themes such as modernization, migration, globalization, gender, and labor in literature and films about the five cities, we aim to radically rethink certain historical moments and the notion of Chineseness in an increasingly and culturally deterritorialized world.


Attendance 15% and Class Participation 20% Weekly reading response 15%
Detailed outline (3 pages) for final project 15% Final project 20 %

Final project presentation 15%

ANS 372 • Women/Wealth In South Asia

32370 • Chatterjee, Indrani
Meets T 3:30PM-6:30PM GAR 2.128
(also listed as HIS 350L, WGS 340)
show description

International aid agencies and modern humanitarians take for granted the poverty of all South Asian women. The question that is seldom asked is how did so many women become so poor? Have women always been poor in the subcontinent? How can we measure poverty and wealth across time and cultures? This course tries to discuss such questions by combining legal, political and social histories of the subcontinent between the seventeenth and the twentieth centuries.

This course carries a Writing Flag. Writing Flag classes meet the Core Communications objectives of Critical Thinking, Communication, Teamwork, and Personal Responsibility, established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Writing Flag courses are designed to give students experience with writing in an academic discipline, in this case, History.

The goals of the course are to teach students two distinct and graduated forms of historical writing. One is review: it begins with learning the skills of summary (presenting the main points of another text concisely), and is completed by learning skills of evaluating texts in terms of their ‘sources’, interpretative methods, persuasiveness in comparison with other similar texts. Students will acquire a familiarity with writing reviews of both published and unpublished writing by commenting on the essays published by established authors as well as by their not-yet-published peers. They will learn to ask the same questions of both. A second form of writing students will learn is that of narrative: ie the arranging of documents, events according to a timeline that establishes an unfolding ‘story’. Historical narrative begins with ‘primary’ sources, taken from the time in which they occurred. At each stage of writing they will be asked to develop careful citation practice, develop the ability to give and take peer criticism, and learn to revise multiple drafts. The end result is to ensure that students write a substantial essay which brings both narrative and reviewing skills together with good citation practice.



1) Reading and Writing: Most readings for this course will be available on Canvas or online at University of Austin Library. Students are expected to read the assigned texts ahead of the class, and be willing to discuss their responses to these texts in class without prompting from the Instructor. The success of the class depends largely on the willingness of students to discuss their ideas and questions in class. Each student should bring to class each week a basic list of 3 questions on the readings. After discussion in class, this list of questions is submitted to the instructor and contributes 20 points to the total grade earned by a student. Questions should be about the author’s arguments and methods, or something that catches your attention but is unexplained in the text, etc. When writing, use the questions you have asked on your readings to form the key organizing principles of your paragraphs. The components of an organized essay are a strong thesis statement in the introductory paragraph, clear and consistent paragraphs with clear opening statements in each, succinct conclusion. Good spelling will count as well.

In addition to regular questions, all students will write 1) a 500-word summary of an article (10 points, 2 of these points will be for correct citation of sources acc. To the Chicago Manual)

2) a 8-10 page essay presenting a summary and review of multiple articles and some primary documents ( 20 points)

3) 3 sets of peer-reviews (15 points)

4) a 15-page final essay reviewing a debate on dowry (20 points)

2) Participating in Class-Discussion: (for 15 points) The assessment of oral discussion shifts in its emphasis from the beginning to the end of the semester. IN the beginning, a student’s ability to speak coherently will be sufficient; by the middle, a student’s ability to synthesise old and new readings, to remember the beginning and be able to refer to it in discussion will be

favorably assessed; in the end, bringing all the older readings to bear upon the latest readings or viewing materials and being able to discuss these in a clear and mature fashion will be rewarded.

3) Attendance: Students will be allowed no more than one unexplained absence, unless there is a serious, documented, medical or personal problem.

ANS 379 • Art Of Autobiography In Jpn

32380 • Cather, Kirsten
Meets MW 11:30AM-1:00PM WCH 4.118
show description

This seminar examines autobiographies written by prominent figures in Japan from the tenth century to the present and considers how they negotiated their lives and their legacies through the act of self-portraiture. We will look at how these works are informed by both the historical and cultural contexts in which they were written and by the genre itself. Examples include works by highborn ladies-in-waiting and imperial consorts in the premodern era; samurai men who found their class on the verge of extinction in the mid-19th century; and avant-garde artists and filmmakers in the 20th and 21st centuries. In order to consider in depth how the form or medium guides the content of these self-portraits, our objects of study will encompass a wide variety of mediums that go beyond the traditional book form to include paintings, poems, songs, films, and manga.
This is a Writing Flag and Global Cultures Flag course. In this class, you can expect to write and revise regularly during the semester, complete substantial writing projects, and receive feedback from your instructor and your peers to help you improve your academic writing. You should expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from your written work. It is also designed to increase your familiarity with practices, beliefs, and histories of at least one non-U.S. cultural group, past or present.

Required Materials:

1) Books to Purchase (available at Co-op, or feel free to purchase on your own, but be sure to get the right version):

**Lady Kagerō, The Kagerō Diary: A Woman's Autobiographical Text from Tenth-Century Japan (ca.
974), trans. Sonja Arntzen
**Lady Nijō, The Confessions of Lady Nijō (1307)
**Katsu Kokichi, Musui’s Story: The Autobiography of a Tokugawa Samurai (1843)

**Jun’ichi Saga, Confessions of a Yakuza: A Life in Japan’s Underworld (1989)
**Mishima Yukio, Confessions of a Mask (1949)

ANS 379 • Comparing Religions

32385 • Freiberger, Oliver
Meets W 4:00PM-7:00PM PAR 103
(also listed as R S 375S)
show description

Comparing religions is nothing new. Religious people have always compared their beliefs and practices with those of their neighbors, sometimes with a sincere religious interest, sometimes only to claim the superiority of their own religion. When the academic discipline of Religious Studies was established in the late 19th century, scholars sought to compare without favoring a particular religious tradition. They were struck by the fact that the religions of the world seemed to have similar – or completely different – answers to the same existential questions. Some religious expressions (beliefs, practices, literature, art, institutions, etc.) appeared drastically different and others strikingly similar. Some scholars wondered if comparing religions would reveal a common sacred truth that underlay all the diverse forms of religious phenomena, while others warned that assuming such a religious essence was not an analytical but rather a religious assertion. Critics of comparison say that by alleging analogies in other cultures Western scholars impose their own concepts on those cultures, while comparativists insist that because all scholarly categories are comparative, comparison is indispensable. Analyzing those debates, this course will explore the risks and benefits of comparison in the study of religion. We will discuss and evaluate potential goals of a comparative study and develop ways in which it may be conducted both responsibly and productively. Numerous examples from Asian and other religions will enrich the discussions. During the course of the semester, students will also develop individual comparative projects.

Readings: Course packet

Attendance/participation: 25%
Reading responses: 20%
Oral presentation: 10%
Research project: 45%