Classes

HST251 Development of Japanese Civilization 1 

This course covers the history of the peoples living in the Japanese archipelago from prehistoric times to the nineteenth century. Though dominated by the political structure of the elite, the course also explores the cultural context which the elites shared with others. The goal of the course is to see history not as a linear process or natural progress that led a nation to modernity but one of struggle and change. We will investigate the country’s history through a variety of source materials and reexamine our images and ways of thinking of “Japan” in a critical and stimulating way. 

HST302 Topics in History 1

The focus of this class is the history of Tokyo. The specific spaces of the city were appropriated, transformed, and assigned meaning throughout the centuries. We will examine the transformation of a fishing village to the shogun’s capital. Specifically, this course discusses everyday urban life, class, gender, and status, space and place, art and religion, and natural disasters. The material includes a wide variety of sources, such as maps, paintings, architecture, poetry, memoirs, ordinances, museums, theaters, etc. Besides reading and analyzing primary sources (in translation), we create our own guides of Edo.

HST352 Women in Japanese History

This course provides an introduction to the study of women in Japan. By following a rough chronological order, we investigate a wide range of women’s issues in terms of ideological constructions of womanhood. This course offeres an entry into the theory of women studies and also introduces tools to critically analyze cultural differences and gender differences while at the same time learning more about Japan’s history.

JS532 Japanese History

The nineteenth century connects the world by empire, law, commerce, war, and the exchange of ideas. The course examines some of these ideas and ways of life in Japan. It considers the pivotal events from the vantage point of transnational history. The student will be trained in conducting independent research. The course readings will include a wide variety of primary source, which will be discussed and analyzed.