Asian Studies


Department Website: www.sewanee.edu/Asianstudies/

Professor Wilson, Politics, Chair

Professor Goldberg, History

Professor O'Connor, Anthropology

Professor Peterman, Philosophy

Professor Mohiuddin, Economics

Professor Wallace, Anthropology

Professor S. Brown, Religion

Assistant Professor Yang, Asian Studies and Chinese

Assistant Professor Manabe, Asian Studies and Japanese

Asian studies majors seek to acquire a deep knowledge of one or more cultures in Asia so that they can appreciate how people in an Asian society act and view the world. Such a goal requires a firm grasp of an Asian language so that students can understand the concepts and modes of communication within a culture, historical knowledge of the culture’s development, the culture’s values and ritual practices that stem from religious and philosophical traditions, and the pattern of its social structure and economic development. Asian studies majors should also examine the forces that have integrated Asia as well as how Asian countries differ from one another, as revealed through comparative analyses. 

Major in Asian Studies requirements:

1. Completion of 10 or more courses altogether in Asian Studies, as outlined below in items 2-3-4-5.

2. Three or more integrative or comparative courses from the following list (from at least two departments):
Anth 340: Families in Asia
Anth 341: The Culture and History of Southeast Asia
Econ 310: Economic Development
Hist 211: China: Inside the Great Wall
Hist 212: China: Manchus to Massacre, Dynasty to Dictatorship
Pols 326: Comparative Asian Politics
Relg 162: Introduction to Asian Religions
Relg 262: Buddhism
Thea 226: Asian Theater

3. Five or more elective courses on Asian cultures from the following list:
Asia 203: Chinese Martial Arts Cinema
Asia 204: Themes in New Chinese Cinema
Asia 205: Modern China Through Fiction and Film
Asia 209: Japanese Literature and Culture
Asia 220: Japanese Folklore and Mythology
Asia 230: The Land of the Rising “Sons”: The Concept of the Child and Children’s Culture in Japan
Asia 232: Father Emperor, Mother Land: Family and Nationalism in Modern Japan
Asia 233: The Fantastical World of Anime
Asia 235: Love in Modern Japan
Asia 317: Modern Japanese Literature
Asia 320: Gender and Sexuality in Japanese Culture
Econ 345: Economic Development in China
Econ 347: Microfinance Institutions in South Asia
Hist 216: History of Japan
Hist 388: The United States and Vietnam since 1945
IGS 304: Politics and Society in Modern India
Phil 215: Chinese Philosophy
Phil 226: Philosophical Issues of Daoism
Pols 249: China and the World
Pols 360: Chinese Politics
Relg 264: Hinduism
Relg 342: Buddhism and Psychology
Relg 353: Buddhism and the Environment
Relg 364: Buddhist Ethics

4. An Asian language course at the 300-level or above.

5. Asia 458: Asian Studies Senior Thesis

6. Study abroad on a program approved by the chair of the program.

7. Successful completion of a comprehensive exam in two parts:
a) a written set of questions that integrate courses taken by the student; and
b) a written set of questions on specific courses taken by the student.

Honors in Asian Studies:
To earn honors in Asian Studies, a student must satisfy the following criteria:
a) at least a 3.33 grade point average from courses in the major;
b) awarding of a “B+” or better on the senior thesis; and
c) awarding of “distinction” (B+ or better) on the comprehensive exam.

Minor in Asian Studies: A minor in Asian Studies requires the completion of five or more courses, including:
a) two courses in an Asian language;
b) one integrative or comparative course in Asian Studies (from the above list 2); and
c) two elective courses in Asian Studies (from the above list 3).
No comprehensive exam is required.



Summer program in China/India: Sewanee students may take advantage of summer study in China and India. The continuing issue of the program is economic development, with other subjects also included in different summers. Note: does not fulfill the study-abroad requirement for Asian Studies.