Professor Wu’s Courses

FS History 201—Students and Social Protest in Modern China
A study of Chinese student movements from the 1900s to the 1980s and their impact on society and politics.  Among the topics to be considered will be the students’ role in China’s transition from an old civilization to modernity, Chinese youth subculture, state-society relations, partisan politics and students, and strategies of the students. Monographs, translated source materials, and biographies will be used to help students understand the significance of student activism in modern China, have an idea about the scholarship and learn how to use and analyze primary sources, and the multiple interpretations of historical events.

History 113—The History of Modern East Asia, 1800 – Present
A survey of political, social, economic, and cultural trends in East Asia from 1800 to the present. The course focuses primarily upon China, Korea, and Japan and to a lesser degree Vietnam. After an introduction to the tenets of East Asian civilization, we explore the profound changes that occurred in all four states as interaction with Western nations increased in the nineteenth century. We then examine the political, economic, and military conflicts of the twentieth century and conclude by focusing on the tremendous economic development that has shaped the region in more recent decades.

History 165—Pre-Modern China: Religion, Philosophy, and Society
An examination of pre-modern Chinese political and social history from 500 BCE to 1800 CE.  This course focuses on the origin and transformation of the Chinese nation-state prior to its full-scale encounter with the West.  Topics discussed may include: the origin of Chinese civilization, the formation of the nation-state, contending schools of philosophy and thought, the cycle of dynasties, and the rise of pre-modern capitalism, women’s experiences, Han and minority relations, religions, and secret societies.

History 167—Modern China, 1800 – Present
An examination of the recent Chinese past. Topics discussed include: the last century of Qing rule, confrontation with Western nations, the Republican period, the warlords and the Nationalist and Communist movements in the early twentieth century, Japanese aggression, the communist state, the Cultural Revolution, and economic growth in the 1980s and 1990s.

History 271—Knights and Concubines: Facts, Fiction and Film
An examination of how knights and concubines serve as contrasting icons of Chinese culture. Through the use of fiction and film, this course shows how both groups have been idealized and reinterpreted in the nineteenth century and twentieth centuries to become something more exotic and mythical in both the Chinese and the American mind.

History 349—Class and Statecraft in Ancient China, 1046 – 256 BCE
A study of pre-Qin (1046-256 BCE) Chinese ideas, institutions and social change.  This course covers the most turbulent period in Chinese history and examines the founding and crumbling of Chinese centralized feudalism, warfare of the rivaling feudal states, diplomacy, slavery system, the rise of the warrior-scholar class, and the formation of the various schools of philosophy.  Prerequisites: History 113 or 165 or 167 or permission of the instructor.

History 353—Women and Revolution in China
A study of Chinese women’s emancipation from 1898 to 1989 as an historical process.  The course examines the experiences of Chinese women, including their place within the patriarchal system, the rise of an emancipation movement, and their role as agents of change.  Among the topics covered are the relationship between women’s liberation and Chinese nationalism, family and marriage, the challenges for women under socialism and globalization, the feminist literature and film.  Prerequisites:  History 113 or 167 or permission of the instructor.

History 573—Mao’s Cultural Revolution
A critical study of the Chinese Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) as sociopolitical movement, collective memory, and historical trauma. The course provides an historical perspective to analyze the origin, process, and aftermath of the Cultural Revolution as both the continuation and the culmination of modern Chinese political crisis. Subjects considered include the rise of the cult of personality, anti-traditionalism, anti-intellectualism, xenophobia, student activism, changing gender identity, and state-sanctioned political violence. Prerequisites: History 167 or permission of the instructor.

INTDS 220—Introduction to Asian Studies
An overview of some of the issues pertinent to encounters between “Asia” and the “West”. In particular, the course examines the history and development of such encounters, from colonialistic notions of “Orientalism” to postcolonial critiques to econtemporary visions of Asian-Americans. To this end, varying ideas of Asia as the “Other” are contrasted with ideas that Asis has had important influences on the “West”. Specific topics vary from year to year, and could emphasize environmental, political, literary, or religious aspects. Course materials might include classic texts, scholarly works, memoirs, fiction, and films.