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Dr. Martha Selby, Chair 120 INNER CAMPUS DR STOP G9300 WCH 4.134 78712-1251 • 512-471-5811

Course Descriptions

ANS 301M • Introduction To Islam

31835 • Azam, Hina
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm MEZ 1.306
(also listed as HIS 306N, ISL 310, R S 319)
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The objective of this course is to give students an understanding of what it means to be Muslim, in terms of beliefs (cosmology and theology), practices (rituals and moral teachings), and culture. In order to achieve this three-part objective, we will read materials from various perspectives and of different genres. We will devote some time to the history of the foundations and civilization of Islam, for even if a religion is conceived in terms of universals and ideals, its actual manifestation is always tempered by historical, cultural and social context. We will explore the meaning of Islam as a worldview and a moral system through examining its doctrinal, ritual, philosophical, ethical and spiritual dimensions. This course is designed for students with no prior knowledge of Islam.


To be provided by instructor. 


Final exam, Midterm exam, Quizzes, Class attendance

ANS 301M • Intro To Japanese Film

31840 • Cather, Kirsten
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm ART 1.120
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This course will offer a broad survey of Japanese cinema, including early silent films, fictional feature films, documentaries, and anime (animated films). The goals of this course are: to gain a familiarity with and appreciation for Japanese films and culture, to learn the basic history of Japanese cinema, to acquire the necessary vocabulary and tools for analyzing films as cinematic texts, and to develop critical thinking skills when viewing, discussing, and writing about film. This class requires no background in Japanese language, film, or history; all films are subtitled in English. Classes will include a lecture component, but will be heavily focused on whole class and small group discussions. Your consistent attendance and active participation are essential to the success of this class and your grade in it.


The basic general format will be as follows: each Tuesday, we will watch a new film beginning at 5 p.m. in PAR 203. In Thursday’s class, we will discuss the film, our reactions to it, the key issues it raises, etc. as an entire class and in small groups. On the following Tuesday, most weeks you will be assigned to read an article that relates to this film and/or the issues it raises; occasionally, you will instead or in addition have a homework assignment due in class (as indicated on the class schedule). In Tuesday’s class, we will discuss the film in the context of the readings and/or the assignment. Pop quizzes will often be held at the beginnings of class on Tuesdays and/or Thursdays to make sure that you’ve completed the viewings/readings and are in attendance. In addition, you will do frequent in-class assignments individually or in groups that help you develop the necessary skills of film analysis.


Most weeks there will be film screenings on Tuesdays starting at 5 p.m. This is your homework for the next class. You should plan on attending these, but if you have a legitimate excuse may watch the films on your own before class on Thursday.


Films will likely include:

Seven Samurai (Shichinin no samurai, Kurosawa Akira, 1954, 200 min., DVD 5759)

Tampopo (Itami Juzō, 1985, 114 min., DVD 107)

Fireworks (Hana-bi, Kitano “Beat” Takeshi, 1997, 103 min., DVD 713)

Sisters of the Gion (Gion no kyōdai, Mizoguchi Kenji, 1936, 66 min., VC 2762)

Late Spring (Banshun, Ozu Yasujiro, 1949, 108 min., DVD 4924)

Crazed Fruit (Kurutta kajitsu, 1956, Nakahira Kō, 86 min., DVD 4185)

Millenium Actress (Sennen joyū, 2001, Satoshi Kon, 87 min.)

The Neighbor’s Wife and Mine** (Madamu to nyōbō, Gosho Heinosuke, 1931)

Page of Madness (Kurutta ippeiji, Kinugasa Teinosuke, 1926, 60 min., VC 9429)

China Nights (Shina no yoru, Osamu Fushimizu, 1940, 124 min.)

The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On (Yukiyukite shingun, Hara Kazuo, 1987, 120 min., DVD 6094)

Death by Hanging (Kōshikei, Ōshima Nagisa,1968, 117 min.)

ANS 301R • History Of Religions Of Asia

31845 • Brereton, Joel
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am UTC 3.102
(also listed as CTI 310, R S 302)
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This course surveys the central beliefs and patterns of life of living religious traditions of Asia. It will focus particularly on the basic texts or narratives of these traditions, on their essential histories, and on the concepts of humanity, the world, and the divine that are distinctive of each. In addition, the course will explore not only what people believe religiously but also what they do religiously.


Text:W. Oxtoby, R. Amore, (A. Hussain) World Religions: Religions of the East, 3rd ed/4th ed. The Ramayana by R.K. Narayan, The Life of the Buddha (Buddhacarita) translated by Patrick Olivelle, Zhuangzi: Basic Writings, translated by Burton Watson, Basho's Narrow Road translated by H. Satol


Grading:Each of three essays on the assigned reading 15%, Midterm exam 15%, Final exam 30%, Attendance 10%

download syllabus

ANS 302C • Introduction To China

31850 • Sena, David M
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm UTC 4.112
(also listed as HIS 302C)
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Course Description
Geographically, linguistically, ethnically, and economically, China today is a land of diversity, characterized by striking regional variations. Yet underlying this diversity is a shared cultural heritage: a unifying set of historical, literary, and artistic traditions, philosophical and religious ideas, political institutions, and a common writing system. This course introduces the study of Chinese society and culture through an examination of the cultural unities and diversities, continuities and discontinuities that comprise the historical development of Chinese civilization. Topics include philosophy and religion; cosmology and the life cycle; literature and arts; science, technology and medicine; power and authority; gender, ethnicity, and cultural identity. This course provides a foundation for continued study of Chinese history and society for students who plan to go on to more specialized, upper-division courses including Chinese anthropology, history, literature, sociology, economics, law, policy, international business, art history, architecture, environmental science, and philosophy.

Course Goals
The primary learning goal for this course is to acquire a broad understanding of the historical development of civilization in China. This course adopts a "hands on" approach by asking students to consider primary historical evidence of both a textual and visual nature. Therefore, a second goal of this course is to develop one's ability to interpret texts and images as historical evidence by considering such material within its particular cultural, social, and political context. The ultimate goal of the course is to acquire a richer understanding of Chinese civilization and to develop research skills that will facilitate continued study of and coursework on China and East Asia.

This course carries a University Global Cultures Flag. The goal of this flag is to challenge students to explore the beliefs and practices of non-U.S. cultural communities in relation to their own cultural experiences so that they engage in an active process of self-reflection.

Course readings
Patricia Buckley Ebrey, Cambridge Illustrated History of China,2nd Edition (Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010).

Additional required readings consisting of primary historical sources drawn from a wide variety of archaeological, literary, and archival materials will be distributed electronically via the course website.

Final grades will be calculated according to the criteria below. Grades of plus/minus will be assigned as appropriate.

Class participation and attendance: 10%
Quiz: 5%
3 Tests: 60% (20% each)
Final exam: 25%

download syllabus

ANS 302D • Intro To Korean Cul And Hist

31855 • Oh, Youjeong
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm WAG 214
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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 307C • Intro To The History Of India

31865 • Guha, Sumit
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm UTC 3.110
(also listed as HIS 307C)
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This course surveys the long history of the Indian subcontinent. It has two goals. The first is to provide you with an outline of the major phases of South Asian history from the rise of its first civilization five thousand years ago, up to the development of modern self-governing states after the end of the British empire. The second is to enable you to think about how humans organize themselves to live in the mega-societies that occupy the world today. India created one of the earliest such societies on the planet. Since the course surveys five thousand years, it will be directed to identifying lasting patterns and institutions rather than individuals and events. But class discussions will especially focus on key personalities and important texts that have left historic legacies or offer insight into their times. The format will be a mix of lectures with discussion, as well as discussion meetings devoted to specific readings.

The course is designed to accommodate students with no previous knowledge of Asia. It does require students to attend regularly, contribute to a collective learning process, keep up with weekly readings and participate constructively in discussions. Discussions will usually focus on primary sources. A primary source is something that historians use as a valid record of the past. All good historical narrative is constructed on the basis of evidence from primary sources. Reading and discussing these will enable you reason from evidence, just as historians do. There may be occasional snap quizzes.


Thomas Trautmann India: Brief History of a Civilization Oxford University Press, 2011 pback, ISBN 978-0-19-973632-4

All other readings will be available on the course website or free download.



Make-ups will be available for those absent for adequate and documented reasons (e.g. illness). Extra participation credit may be awarded for attendance at special lectures or events.


ANS 322M • Politics In China

31870 • Lü, Xiaobo
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm WAG 201
(also listed as GOV 322M)
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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 of selective policy issues in the China. We conclude the course by discussing the political reforms implemented in the last three decades and contemplating the potentials for future political development in China.



Six semester hours of lower-division coursework in government.


Course Requirement and Grading:


1.         Four quizzes on assigned readings.                                                                           15%

2.         First in-class midterm exam (Oct. 2):                                                                         20%

3.         Second in-class midterm exam on material covered since first midterm (Nov. 4):             25%

4.         Final (cumulative) exam (Dec. XXX):                                                                          40%


Course Materials:


The readings for this course are based on book chapters and articles. All the readings can be accessed through Documents on the Blackboard site for this class or online via our UT library website (




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



Fewsmith, Joseph. 2013. The logic and limits of political reform in China. New York: Cambridge University Press.



Global Cultures

ANS 340 • Sufism & Islamic Mysticism

31880 • Hyder, S. Akbar
Meets T 400pm-700pm CLA 0.126
(also listed as HIS 364G, ISL 340, MES 342, R S 358)
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This class explores Sufism and other Islamic mystical traditions as they infused cultural milieus spanning four continents and fourteen centuries. The first half of the semester will focus on the historical developments in Islamic theosophical traditions of the Arab and Persian worlds. We will concentrate on the prose and verse traditions tied to Ali b. Abi Talib, Jafar as-Sadiq, Mansur al-Hallaj, Rabia al-Basri, Suhrawardi Maqtul, Ibn Arabi, Ibn al-Farid, Sanai, Attar, and Rumi. In the second half of the semester, we will move to a discussion of Islamic mysticisms' growth over time and beyond the porous borders of Arabia and Iran. The relationship between Sufism and modernism, Sufism and colonialism, and Sufism and post-colonial resistance movements will also constitute a significant part of this course. Issues of gender, sexuality, globalization and pluralism will be discussed throughout the semester. This class assumes no prior knowledge of Islam.

ANS 346N • Indian Subcontinent, 1750-1950

31890 • Chatterjee, Indrani
Meets TTH 930am-1100am CMA 3.114
(also listed as HIS 346N)
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This course studies the processes that led to the carving out of the Indian subcontinent into various nation-states, the biggest of which were India and Pakistan in 1950. It will survey changes spanning the late eighteenth to the mid- twentieth century and survey the gradual consolidation of British colonialism through the redrawing of social, economic, religious, political boundaries and identities. The course outlines the growth of modern political forms and structures, like nation-state and political parties; the reshaping of social institutions of caste and family by colonial laws; the reorganization of consciousness and expression in terms of technologies of print, theater and cinema and the final cataclysms of Partition and the establishment of new nation-states, India and Pakistan in 1947-50.

The course has two aims: the first, to acquaint students with a basic chronology of events, their protagonists and the processes within which each of these events unfolded; the second, to familiarize students with key outlines of the debates among historians around each of the themes touched on above.  


Requirements. 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, CUP, 2012, ISBN-13 978-1107672185

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

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

In addition to the above, they will read the following on Blackboard/Canvass:

1)         Chris Pinney’s Camera Indica pp 10-50

2)         Lakshmi Subrahmanyam, The Classicisation of Carnatic Music, IESHR, 1999

3)         Rosalind O Hanlon trans. Tarabai Shinde `A Comparison between Men and Women’, pp. 221-235

4)         Embree and Hay eds. Sources of Indian Tradition, pp. 243-333

5)         Kamala Bhasin and Ritu Menon, Borders and Boundaries, pp. 52-112

6)         J.D.M.Derrett, The Hindu Law of Marriage and Succession, pp 55-121.


Grading is based on attendance and participation in the classroom (20%), a two-page report on a film (20%), one four-page book-review (20%) and a final exam (40%).Grading Policies: LETTER GRADES OF A, B+, B, C+, C, D, F will be given in this course in the following fashion: total of 90-100= A; 80-89= B+; 70-79=B; 60-69=C+; 50-59 C; 40-49=D; Under 40 is a Fail or F.

ANS 361 • Chinese Literati Art

31893 • Sena, Yun-Chiahn
Meets TTH 800am-930am ART 2.208
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Selected topics in south and east Asian anthropology, economics, history, geography, government, art, music, and philosophy.  Specific offerings are listed in the Course Schedule.  Asian Studies 320 and 361 may not both be counted unless the topics vary.  Prerequisite: Varies with the topic and is given in the Course Schedule.

ANS 361 • Contemporary Pakistani Fiction

31895 • Shingavi, Snehal
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm BEN 1.122
(also listed as E 360L)
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Instructor:  Shingavi, S

Unique #:  35880

Semester:  Fall 2014

Cross-lists:  ANS 361, ISL 372

Flags:  n/a

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: In the last twenty-five years, global interest in Pakistani writing has flourished. Partly because of Pakistan’s important role as a frontline state in the war in Afghanistan and partly because of an increase in the number and quality of writers from Pakistan, international publishers have found willing audiences for new Pakistani products. Alternatively, though, this writing still finds itself having to contend with western biases about Pakistan. This course will chart the major themes and directions of Pakistani writing to understand both how Pakistan is represented and how it is consumed/marketed: why are certain kinds of fiction necessary to represent the Pakistani nation? Can the nation ultimately be represented? We will also be interested in major themes: history, Islam, gender, nationality, migration, and class. We will read writers from Pakistan as well as Pakistanis in the diaspora. Students are not expected to have a historical background in South Asia, but are expected to be curious and inquisitive.

Texts: (possible) Rushdie, Shame; Suleri, Meatless Days; Kureshi, My Beautiful Laundrette; Hamid, Reluctant Fundamentalist; Mueenuddin, In Other Rooms, Other Wonders; Aslam, Maps for Lost Lovers; Sethi, The Wish Maker; Naqvi, Home Boy; Sidhwa, Crow Eaters; Ali, The Duel.

Requirements & Grading: Midterm exam – 25%; Final exam – 30%; Course blog (500 words weekly and peer reviews) – 30%; Participation – 10%.

ANS 361 • Development And Its Critics

31900 • Hindman, Heather
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm PAR 210
(also listed as ANT 324L)
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This course will consider how international development practices emerged from post-World War II policies of reconstruction and Cold War strategies of gaining alliances through aid. Looking particularly at Asia and the Global South, the course will consider how the needs of donor countries in the mid-20th Century were made to align with (or not) the needs of new nations and recently decolonized territories. 

With this historical field as a background, the class will examine various trends in international development practice since the 1980s, including sustainable development, women in development (WID), social entrepreneurship, microfinance and the recent rise of voluntourism. We will examine these practices both from the metropole and from their on-the-ground implementation sites.

Although a look at development economics and statistics will be a part of the class, albeit mainly from a critical perspective, the course will take a more ethnographic approach, examining case studies of development saturated sites and locations where large projects were put in place.

ANS 361 • Political Economy Of Asia

31906 • Maclachlan, Patricia
Meets TTH 930am-1100am PAR 206
(also listed as GOV 365L)
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Fall 2014

Political Economy of Asia

GOV 365L/ANS 361 (Global Cultures/Writing Flags)

Patricia Maclachlan

TTH: 9:30-11:00


Course Description

This intensive reading and writing course explores the dynamic political economies of Japan, China and South Korea.  We will examine the reasons for the region’s “miraculous” GDP growth rates; the notion of the “developmental state” and the role of industrial policy in economic development; the nature of government-business relationships; industrial structure (chaebol, keiretsu, Chinese State-Owned Enterprises); the experiences of East Asian consumers and workers; East Asian approaches to social welfare; and the reactions (both positive and negative) of East Asian political economies to the pressures of globalization.  In addition to analyzing these topics from theoretical, comparative, and historical perspectives, the course introduces students to political-economic themes and concepts that will benefit them in their reading of current events in global economics and finance. 


Individual classes will alternate between lectures and seminar-style sessions based on discussions of assigned readings. Some knowledge of East Asia and or comparative politics/political economy is recommended but not required.


Grading Policy 

1.  Quizzes:  15%

2.  Two take-home midterm exams (5 pages each):  20%

3.  Research paper (4,000-4,500 words) in 2 drafts:  40%

4.  Final exam:  25%



1.   Barry Naughton, The Chinese Economy: Transition and Growth (2007)


Additional readings will be made available at the beginning of the semester.

ANS 361 • Rights & The State: S Asia

31910 • Newberg, Paula
Meets M 300pm-600pm CBA 4.340
(also listed as GOV 365L)
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(Global Cultures Flag)


Course overview:  Politics in modern south Asia are shaped, often dramatically, by contests about the nature of rights, the ways that citizens claim their rights, and the ways that states respond to those claims.   Every state in the region contends with popular movements to assert rights, whether through war and insurgencies, experiments with constitutions and the rule of law, or efforts to secure the rights of excluded groups, minorities and the economically disadvantaged.  Each state has also tried variously to promote and protect rights – on their own, and with their neighbors and the international community -- and to limit them in order to consolidate power.


What do rights have to do with political change?  With contemporary cases as our guide, we will explore basic elements of political change in the region by asking how states and societies are meeting the challenges of creating rights-based political orders, and how and why they succeed or fail.   The range of potential topics is intriguingly varied and broad; after our introduction to the field and the region, we will focus on topics related to rights and conflict.


Using political writings, government documents, laws and regulations, social science analysis, local journalism and reporting from local and international organizations we will dissect the meanings of rights in the region, and strive to understand the different ways that these complex issues affect citizens, states, observers and advocates.  In the process, we will examine the tools that are employed to protect rights or limit them, and how reports on rights conditions are developed and used.


Neither prior experience with the region nor detailed knowledge of human rights is required for this course (although those who have studied either or both are very welcome).  We will use our readings and discussions to learn about the region through the lenses of rights and governance, and to refine our understanding of rights through the experiences of the people and states that comprise south Asia today.  By the end of the course, each student should have a working understanding of some of the many challenges involving fundamental rights in south Asia, a grasp of analysis and reporting related to rights, and the skills needed to write about rights and politics.


Prerequisites:  Six hours of lower-division Government courses. 


Requirements:  A seminar succeeds when all of us are fully engaged.  Please use any electronic devices – including computers, tablets, and telephones -- in the classroom only when we are consulting documents that are most easily available online.  If you carry a cell phone with you, please silence it before/during class.


All seminar members are required to attend all classes punctually; complete all assignments (both written and oral); participate actively in class and as designated, lead class discussions on assigned readings and written projects.   Your class attendance and participation will be included in determining your final grade.


Grading:  Class participation and collegiality will be essential to the success of this seminar. Your oral and written products will be graded on the basis of their clarity, organization,  structure and quality of argument, including your ability to marshal evidence to support your arguments.   Grading will be done on a 100-point scale, translated into plus and minus grades.


Participation:  Participation will count toward 40% of the term grade.  As part of class preparation, I will assign, on a rotating basis, 1-2 page memos on specific topics related to readings and class discussion.  Specific assignments for class discussion will be indicated as we progress through the semester.   All class members are expected to participate in every class session.


Papers:  Each student will be expected to prepare two concise, 1500-1750 word written assignments and a final paper of approximately 2250-2500 words.  Submission dates will be late in the second, third and fourth months of the term.  Paper #1 will count toward 15% of your grade; paper #2 toward 20% of your grade; and paper #3 for 25% of your grade. 


Please provide your papers to me in hard copy (in person) as well as electronically.  Please take the time to revise, proofread, and follow accepted form for footnotes and references. 


Penalties for late paper submission will be ½ grade for each late day, unless you provide timely and appropriate documentation from health services or your personal physician. 


Course readings:   Two books are available for purchase:


Andrew Clapham:  Human Rights:  A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2007). This volume is optional, but recommended.


Jack Donnelly:  Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice, 2nd Edition (Cornell University Press, 2003).  This volume is required.


For reference and background, you might want to refer to a compendium edited by Micheline Ishay entitled  The Human Rights Reader:  Major Political Essays, 2nd. Edition.


Other materials (including videos):  I will post class assignments – including PDFs when URLs are not available -- and other notices on Blackboard on a regular basis.   Class readings are generally available online; in some instances, I will distribute materials in class.  Should you miss a class session, please contact me (and perhaps a classmate) for further information. 


Global Cultures

ANS 361 • Urban Experiences In East Asia

31915 • Oh, Youjeong
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm JES A203A
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Selected topics in south and east Asian anthropology, economics, history, geography, government, art, music, and philosophy.  Specific offerings are listed in the Course Schedule.  Asian Studies 320 and 361 may not both be counted unless the topics vary.  Prerequisite: Varies with the topic and is given in the Course Schedule.

ANS 361 • Intl Rels Of E/Stheast Asia

31920 • Maclachlan, Patricia
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm PAR 203
(also listed as GOV 365L)
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Fall 2014

International Relations of East and Southeast Asia

GOV 365L-3/ANS 361-23 (Global Cultures Flag)

Patricia Maclachlan

TTH 12:30-2:00, PAR 203


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


Course Description

Toward the end of the 20th century, pundits looked to the spectacular economic growth of East and Southeast Asia and predicted that the 21st century would be the “Pacific Century.”  Although analysts have been far less optimistic about the economic and political future of the region following the 1997 financial crisis, most nevertheless agree that the region has more growth potential than any other part of the world.  It is also home to some of the globe’s most dangerous “hot spots.”


This upper division undergraduate course introduces students to some of the major themes and topics in the post-Cold War 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, and the impact of nationalism and historical memory on intra-regional affairs.  Along the way, we will explore the ongoing North Korean nuclear threat, tensions between China and Taiwan, and the United States’ so-called Asia Pivot, as well as basic theoretical approaches to the study of international relations.


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.    Susan L. Shirk, China: Fragile Superpower (2008)

         2.    Victor Cha, The Impossible State: North Korea, Past and Future (2012)

         3.    Daniel Chirot, Gi-Wook Shin, and Daniel Sneider, eds., Confronting

              Memories of World War II: European and Asian Legacies (2014)


 Additional readings will be made available at the beginning of the semester.   

ANS 361 • Anthropology Of The Himalayas

31925 • Hindman, Heather
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm PAR 210
(also listed as ANT 324L)
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This course looks at the history and culture of the Himalayan region, including Northeast India, (briefly) sections of Pakistan and Afghanistan, 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 372 • East/West: Spirit/Intel Encoun

31935 • Metzler, Mark
Meets TH 1100am-200pm GAR 1.122
(also listed as HIS 350L)
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This upper-division seminar provides a forum for exploring some spiritual and intellectual encounters of “East” and “West,” with a focus on ideas of mind, spirit, and consciousness. “East” and “West” are relative and relational terms, directions rather than places. They are relative, mutual, and shape-shifting. As metaphors they are generative and multivalent; when one starts to look, one finds many Easts and Wests at play, as various as the “Oriental philosophy” of Ibn Sina (Avicenna), Xuanzang’s “journey to the West” to discover the Heart Sutra, and the Zen journeys of the West Coast beatniks. In this exploration of comparisons and connections, we will encounter a full house of canonical figures including Zhuangzi, Zhu Xi, Avicenna, Ibn ‘Arabi, Hume, Swedenborg, Blake, Nietzsche, Tagore, and Jung, along with some brilliant but less well known thinkers. We will spend much of our time in the open spaces between civilizational control systems. Many of the texts are dense and difficult, reflections of deep and often distant traditions. They need to be read slowly and with care. They also repay sincere inquiry with new vistas and unexpected bounties.


Readings include Joanna Macy, Mutual Causality in Buddhism and General Systems Theory; Jonathan Spence, The Memory Palace of Matteo Ricci; and many online readings TBA.


1. Participation in class discussion:  one overall grade, worth 20% of the course grade.

2. Eight papers of 1.5 pages each on weekly readings (altogether, 40% of the course grade).

3. Midterm essay (20% of course grade).

4. Final essay (partial revision of midterm essay; 20%).

ANS 372 • Relig/Fam Japanese Society

31938 • Traphagan, John W.
Meets MWF 900am-1000am BUR 134
(also listed as ANT 324L, R S 352)
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More than any other social institution, the family represents the primary locus of religious activity for contemporary Japanese.  This course explores the structures of family, kinship relationships, and religion in Japan since the Meiji Restoration (1868) with a strong focus on the post-war era and examines how both religion and family have been used as concepts and institutions for the creation of national identity as well as the expression of individual identities.  Students will develop a strong understanding of contemporary Japanese religious ideas and rituals and their connections to kinship structures, with particular attention focused on how family and kinship structures and ideologies have changed in the post-war era.

ANS 372 • South Asian Migration To US

31940 • Bhalodia, Aarti
Meets MWF 900am-1000am CMA 3.114
(also listed as AAS 325, HIS 365G)
show description

Flag: Cultural Diversity in the U.S.

This course examines the South Asian diaspora in United States. We will focus on Americans who trace their descent to India, Pakistan or Bangladesh. 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 early twentieth century following the journey of the first South Asian migrants to arrive in California. The second part of the course will focus on the effects of the 1965 Immigration and Naturalization Act. Topics covered include economic and social reasons for immigration, 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.

This course may be used to fulfill three hours of the U.S. history component of the university core curriculum and addresses the following four core objectives established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board: communication skills, critical thinking skills, personal responsibility, and social responsibility.

ANS 372 • Women And Gender In China

31945 • Li, Huaiyin
Meets TH 330pm-630pm GAR 1.134
(also listed as HIS 350L, WGS 340)
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This course examines women and gender in China from imperial times to the present.  Major themes include the changing conceptions of masculinity and femininity in Chinese cultural and religious contexts; gender roles and inequalities in the patriarchal family and society; the varying discourse on women and gender in the modern period; women’s dilemma in the Chinese Revolution; new challenges to women and new conceptions of gender and sexuality during the reform era since the 1980s.  There is no prerequisite for attending this course, but some background in Chinese history is recommended.


Robin Wang, Images of Women in Chinese Thought and Culture (Hackett Publishing Company, 2003)

Patricia Ebrey, The Inner Quarters: Marriage and the Lives of Chinese Women in the Sung Period. (University of California Press, 1993)

Zheng Wang, Women in the Chinese Enlightenment: Oral and Textual Histories (University of California Press, 1999)

Leslie Chang, Factory Girls: From Village to City in a Changing China (Spiegel & Grau, 2009)

Emily Honig and Gail Hershatter. Personal Voices: Chinese Women in the 1980's. (Stanford University Press,1988)

Xueping Zhong, Some of Us: Chinese Women Growing up in the Mao Era. (Rutgers University Press, 2001)


1) Class participation (20%)

2) Mid-term and final examination (15% each, 30% total)

3) Research paper (40%)

4) Attendance (10%)

ANS 372 • South Indian Cultural Hist

31950 • Radhakrishnan, Sankaran
Meets TTH 930am-1100am WCH 4.118
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May be repeated for credit when the topics vary.  Some topics partially fulfill legislative requirement for American history.  Prerequisite: Varies with the topic and is given in the Course Schedule.

ANS 372 • Mod Japanese Lit In Trans

31955 • Cather, Kirsten
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm MEZ 2.124
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This course looks at literature written by key Japanese authors in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. We will learn to read, think, discuss, and write about Japanese literature critically and analytically with attention to a work’s content, style, and form. Equally importantly, we will think about our own individual tastes in literature - why we read fiction and how. We'll also consider the socio-historical context of the production and reception of literature and how it deals with themes like the breakdown of tradition and the crisis of individualism; nostalgia and nationalism; war and cultural amnesia; “women’s literature”; sexuality, gender, and power; and the dynamics of cross-cultural influence. This is a small discussion-based class that requires the active and engaged participation of all class members to ensure its success.


Readings will include:

Sōseki, Natsume. Kokoro

Mishima, Yukio. Confessions of a Mask

Ooka, Shohei. Fires on the Plain

Goossen, Theodore W., ed. The Oxford Book of Japanese Short Stories

ANS 372 • Supernat In Trad Chi Fict

31960 • Lai, Chiu-Mi
Meets MWF 1200pm-100pm MEZ 2.118
(also listed as C L 323)
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[Open to all students -- All lectures, discussion and readings in English. Carries Global Cultures Flag]

 Required Text:

John Minford and Joseph S.M. Lau, eds. Classical Chinese Literature – An Anthology of

Translations, Volume I: From Antiquity to the Tang Dynasty (Columbia, 2002)

Other Readings:       Articles and book chapters will be posted onBlackboard.  (See Course Documents.) 

Course Description               

This course will provide an introduction to the so-called supernatural and otherworldly phenomena in traditional Chinese literature and “pseudo-history.”  Readings in English translation will encompass a selective sampling of prose, short fiction, and drama/opera from pre-modern China (end of imperialism in early 20th century).  Lectures and discussions will focus on the literary, cultural, historical, social, political, philosophical, and religious background against which these representative works arose.  Background reading will be assigned to supplement the primary works of literature and pseudo-history.  Course emphasis will be given to close and critical reading of primary works (in English translation) which were originally written in Classical Chinese and vernacular Classical Chinese.  Topics covered include otherworldly concepts of the Dao (the Way) and various interpretations of the afterlife, with an introduction to differences between spirits, souls, ghosts and other ethereal beings in various Chinese secular and religious belief systems.  Readings introduce Chinese notions of the supernatural in the form of such beings as immortals, goddesses, and shape-shifters. 

The grade for this course will be based on the following:

  • There is a class attendance policy for this course.
  • There is no final exam in this course.

15%     Class and online discussion, participation and preparation (Attendance policy)

50%     Reading and Discussion Questions (Response “Quizzes”)

20%     One Research Inquiry Paper (4-5 pages)

10%     One Oral Presentation/Lead Discussant

5%       Creative Writing – short story/prose/dramatic act (Evaluated CR/NC)


ANS 379 • Pilgrimage Networks And Islam

31988 • Mohammad, Afsar
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm MEZ 1.102
(also listed as ISL 340, MES 342, R S 358)
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Performing a pilgrimage to Mecca is an ultimate religious obligation in Islam. Each year in the twelfth month of the Islamic calendar, millions of Muslims throughout the world travel to Mecca in Saudi Arabia to perform this obligation, hajj. The Prophet’s 631CE pilgrimage with his followers is now historically considered to be the first hajj performed by a clearly identified group of the Muslims. This pilgrimage became particularly famous in history for the Prophet’s heralding of a new era of Islam by defining certain practices such as destroying the idols, the five pillars of Islam, and re-constructing a Muslim community.

This course introduces us to these Muslim-related pilgrimage practices and their significance in contemporary Islam. Due to its high significance in Islam, several aspects of Muslim pilgrimage have now become a major component in current research in Islam from various disciplines such as religious studies, anthropology, history and politics. By closely reading few of these scholarly works, we look into the questions of the changing notions of pilgrimage and modern transformations of this classical ritual obligation.  

While studying various classical and historical sources of pilgrimage, we discuss how contemporary Muslim and non-Muslim communities understand this idea of pilgrimage. We analyze how these modern communities offer alternative interpretations or try to find different ways to meet this major religious requirement. Contemporary research also shows how Popular Islam with a blend of Sufism provides different pilgrimage modes to circulate the idea of local sainthood practices. We also read materials related to these variations of Sufi pilgrimage.


Required Texts:


  1. Bianchi Robert, Guests of God: Pilgrimage and Politics in the Islamic World, New York: Oxford University Press, ISBN-13: 978-0195342116.
  2. Eickelman, Dale and James Piscatori, Muslim Travellers: Pilgrimage, Migration, and the Religious Imagination, Berkeley: University of California Press, ISBN-13: 978-0520072527.
  3. Bigelow, Anna. Sharing the Sacred: Practicing Pluralism in Muslim North India, New York: Oxford University Press.  ISBN-13: 978-0195368239.
  4. Cooke, Miriam and Bruce Lawrence. Muslim Networks from Hajj to Hip-hop, The University of North Carolina Press. ISBN-13: 978-0807855881.
  5. Mohammad, Afsar. The Festival of Pirs: Popular Islam and Shared Devotion in South India, New York: Oxford University Press. 2013.

ANS 379 • Writing/Authority: Early China

31990 • Sena, David M
Meets M 300pm-600pm MEZ 1.206
(also listed as CTI 345, HIS 364G)
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Course description

This course examines the critical role of writing in one of the world's oldest literate civilizations. Beginning with the origin of Chinese characters in the Bronze Age, we examine the crucial role of writing in staking claims of political, social, and religious authority in ancient and early Imperial China (ca. 1200 BCE-200 CE). Aiming to situate writing within the cultural practices in which it was generated, we explore a diverse array of textual artifacts, including inscriptions on bone, bronze, and stone and manuscripts on bamboo and silk, in addition to texts in the received literary tradition. Topics include the magico-religious dimensions of writing, the sociology of writing and textual production, and the role of cannon and commentary in articulating and challenging imperial claims of legitimacy.

Course readings
Selections from the following texts, available electronically:

  • Primary sources:
    Book of Documents
    Book of Poetry
    Analects of Confucius
    Records of the Historian
    Songs of Chu
  • Secondary scholarship:
    Mark Edward Lewis, Writing and Authority in Early China (1999).
    Edward L. Shaughnessy, Rewriting Early Chinese Texts (2006).

class participation: 20%
informal writing: 15%
short paper: 20%
midterm exam: 20%
final paper: 25%

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