East Asian Languages & Cultures

Overview | Requirements | Courses | Faculty

Overview

The East Asian Languages and Cultures Department provides three majors for students interested in the study of China or Japan. The Chinese Studies major is intended for students primarily interested in Chinese language and literature. The Japanese Studies major is intended for students primarily interested in Japanese language and literature. These majors both aim to help students attain a high degree of fluency, and much of the coursework is done in Chinese or Japanese. The East Asian Studies major is intended for students who wish to focus on a particular disciplinary issue in East Asian Studies-art history, history, politics, religion, or a transnational issue-in the context of the study of East Asian languages and culture.

The department encourages students in all three majors to choose from a number of study-abroad options, providing the opportunity to experience East Asian languages and cultures first-hand.

Requirements

Chinese Studies

Major Coordinator: Professor Chen

MAJOR: A minimum of 10 courses (not including the 2 units of senior comps work), including 5 courses in Chinese (CHIN202 and 4 courses CHIN301 and above); 1 literature in translation course (CHIN272 CHIN273, or CHIN274), 1 methods or theory course (LING301, CHIN272, CHIN273, CHIN274, ENGL290 or ENGL370); and 3 additional China-related courses (taught in English or Chinese). The Senior Comprehensive Requirement will be fulfilled through either a seminar course (CHIN272, CHIN273, or CHIN274) or a 2-unit Independent Study in the fall semester of the senior year, in which the student will produce a 20-page paper written in English on Chinese language or literature, including texts written in Chinese; in the spring semester, the student will make any required revisions and prepare an oral presentation to be given in Chinese.

MINOR: Five courses (20 units) numbered Chinese 202 and above. Linguistics 301 may fulfill one of these courses. Three of the five courses must be completed as Occidental courses (one of the three MUST be taken at the Eagle Rock campus. The other two may be taken at an Occidental-in-China campus).
WRITING REQUIREMENT: Students will satisfy the final component of Occidental's college-wide writing requirement by submitting a paper in English from a 300 level or seminar course (in any subject) in the fall semester of the senior year, which will be evaluated by the appropriate major coordinator.

HONORS: Students with an overall GPA of 3.25 and a major GPA of 3.50 may submit an honors research proposal at the end of the 2 unit Independent Study in the fall semester of the senior year. If the proposal is supported by two faculty advisors, the student will enroll in a 2 unit Independent Study in the spring to expand the fall semester paper into a distinguished 40 page paper.

Japanese Studies

Major Coordinator: Assistant Professor Ezaki

MAJOR: A minimum of 10 courses (not including the 2 unit senior comps work), including 5 courses in Japanese (JAPN202 and 4 courses JAPN301 and above); 1 literature in translation course (JAPN271 or JAPN273); 1 methods or theory course (LING301, JAPN271, JAPN273,ECLS290 or ENGL370); and 3 additional Japan-related courses (taught in English or Japanese). The Senior Comprehensive Requirement will be fulfilled through either a seminar course (JAPN271 or JAPN273) or a 2-unit Independent Study in the fall semester of the senior year, in which the student will produce a 20-page paper written in English on Japanese language or literature, including texts written in Japanese; in the spring semester, the student will make any required revisions and prepare an oral presentation to be given in Japanese.
MINOR: Five courses (20 units) numbered Japanese 202 and above. Linguistics 301 may fulfill one of these course requirements. Three of the five courses must be completed as Occidental courses (one of the three MUST be taken at the Eagle Rock campus. The other two may be taken at an Occidental-in-Japan campus).

MINOR: Five courses (20 units) numbered Japanese 202 and above. Linguistics 301 may fulfill one of these course requirements. Three of the five courses must be completed as Occidental courses (one of the three MUST be taken at the Eagle Rock campus. The other two may be taken at an Occidental-in-Japan campus).

WRITING REQUIREMENT: Students will satisfy the final component of Occidental's college-wide writing requirement by submitting a paper in English from a 300 level or seminar course (in any subject) in the fall semester of the senior year, which will be evaluated by the appropriate major coordinator.

HONORS: Students with an overall GPA of 3.25 and a major GPA of 3.50 may submit anhonors research proposal at the end of the 2 unit Independent Study in the fall semester of the senior year. If the proposal is supported by two faculty advisors, the student will enroll in a 2 unit Independent Study in the spring to expand the fall semester paper into a distinguished 40 page paper.

East Asian Studies

Major Coordinator: Professor Chen

MAJOR: a minimum of 10 courses (to be selected from a pre-approved list of East Asia related courses, and not including the 2 units of senior comps work), including an East Asian survey course (History 241, Religion 160, AHVA H160, Politics 227); at least two semesters of Chinese or Japanese (including 202 or above); and a seminar to be chosen in consultation with the Major Coordinator. The Senior Comprehensive Requirement will be fulfilled through a seminar course or a 2-unit Independent Study in the fall semester of the senior year, in which the student will produce a 20¬page paper written in English on China, Japan, or an East Asian comparative/transnational topic; in the spring semester, the student will make any required revisions and prepare an oral presentation to be given in English.

MINOR: A minimum requirement of 20 semester units of courses in the East Asian Studies course list. CHIN201 and JAPN201 or above may be counted toward the minor. At least two of these courses must be taken at Occidental.

WRITING REQUIREMENT: Students will satisfy the final component of Occidental'scollege-wide writing requirement by submitting a paper in English from a 300 level or seminar course (in any subject) in the fall semester of the senior year, which will be evaluated by the appropriate major coordinator.

HONORS: Students with an overall GPA of 3.25 and a major GPA of 3.50 may submit an honors research proposal at the end of the 2 unit Independent Study in the fall semester of the senior year. If the proposal is supported by two faculty advisors, the student will enroll in a 2 unit Independent Study in the spring to expand the fall semester paper into a distinguished 40 page paper.

Group Language Major

Students may combine Chinese with French, German, Japanese, Russian, Spanish, or linguistics to form a Group Language major. Please see the Group Language entry in this catalog for details.

Courses

East Asian Languages and Cultures

No result

397 - Independent Study in East Asian Languages & Cultures

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor
2 or 4 units

Chinese Studies

No result

101 - Elementary Chinese I

Introduction to spoken standard Chinese (Mandarin), the pinyin romanization system, and the reading and writing of Chinese characters. May not be taken for credit by those with more than one year of previous high school (grades 10, 11, 12) study or one semester of college study of Chinese. Consult instructor for details.

102 - Elementary Chinese II

Continuation of Chinese I. Conversation, reading, elementary composition; completion of basic grammar. Prerequisite: Chinese 101 or equivalent.
5 units

201 - Intermediate Chinese I

A review of basic grammar. Reading and discussion of texts dealing with contemporary Chinesesociety and culture. Viewing and discussion of video programs. Composition writing and oral presentations. Prerequisite: Chinese 102 or equivalent.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA and REGIONAL FOCUS

202 - Intermediate Chinese II

Continuation of Chinese 201. Prerequisite: Chinese 201 or equivalent.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA and REGIONAL FOCUS

272 - The Rise of the Martial Arts Novel

This seminar course will examine the rise of the martial arts novel (wuxia xiaoshuo) in the context of its historical and literary roots. We will focus on how the figure and chivalric code of the martial hero and heroine have persisted in the historical, literary, and popular imagination - through such works as Sima Qian's historical biographies, The Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Outlaws of the Marsh, Tang dynasty classical tales, Ming dynasty court-case fiction in the vernacular language, and Pu Songling's classical strange tales written in the Qing period. We will also explore how the twentieth-century master of the martial arts novel, Jin Yong (Louis Cha), a journalist writing in exile in colonial Hong Kong, has captured the imagination of Chinese diasporic communities throughout the world and contributed to the rise of the transnational Chinese martial arts film. All readings and discussions will be in English. No prerequisites. Given in alternate years.

273 - Contemporary Chinese Writers in Exile

This seminar examines contemporary Chinese fiction since the 1990s, with a special focus on the growing number of works written in exile and in the author's native or second language. We will explore the works of Nobel laureate Gao Xingjian writing in Chinese as a French citizen, Dai Sijie writing in French in France, Ha Jin and Yiyun Li writing in English in the U.S. What are the national, transnational, cultural, gendered, and aesthetic contexts and issues surrounding the writing and reading of fiction written "out-of-country" and "out-of-language"? How do the writers, in a variety of languages, genres, and political stances, return to memories of their homeland, in particular to national traumas such as the Cultural Revolution, and re-write official versions of the nation and re-member their selves? All readings and discussions will be in English. No prerequisites. Given in alternate years.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: INTERCULTURAL

274 - Ghost and Love Stories

This seminar course will explore ghosts and other disembodied beings in the Chinese literary tradition, from the earliest historical documents, philosophical texts, and Buddhist tales, to the Six Dynasties zhiguai records of the strange, the Tang chuanqi tales of the marvelous, and Ming dynasty vernacular fiction. We will focus on recurring motifs and archetypes which weave the supernatural into love stories, especially as manifested in two Qing dynasty masterpieces, Pu Songling's Strange Tales and Cao Xueqin's The Story of the Stone. Modern stories and film will also be examined for their adaptations of traditional motifs and archetypes. No prerequisites. Given in alternate years.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA ● PRE-1800

301 - Expository Essays and Short Narratives I

Reading and discussion of expository essays and short narratives on Chinese society, culture, and current topics. Introduction to the use of literary style Chinese and idioms in public discourse. Developing advanced level oral-aural and essay writing skills. Prerequisite: CHIN202 or permission of instructor. Prerequisite: Chinese 202 or permission of instructor.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA and REGIONAL FOCUS

310 - Expository Essays and Short Narratives II

Advanced reading and discussion of expository essays and short narratives on Chinese society, culture, and current topics. Oral presentations, academic style discussions, and writing of essays and narratives. Prerequisite: CHIN 301 or permission of instructor.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA

330 - Topics in Fiction & Film

Taiwan and Hong Kong. A survey of representative works of short fiction and film by 20th century and contemporary Chinese writers and film makers. Topic and content of the course will vary from year to year according to three areas of focus: mainland China, Taiwan/Hong Kong, and transnational Chinese. Students will read and view original works, practice oral and written summaries, commentaries, discussion and analyses in Chinese. Students will also read essays on literature and film in Chinese, with some readings in English. This course may be taken three times. Prerequisite: CHIN301 or above or instructor permission.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: REGIONAL FOCUS (for mainland China and Taiwan/Hong Kong topics); GLOBAL CONNECTIONS (for transnational Chinese topic)
 

350 - Classical Chinese Thought and Sayings

Readings in short classical Chinese texts from pre-Qin historical, philosophical, and literary works that are the sources of sayings still common in modern vernacular Chinese. Students will learn the grammar, structure, and vocabulary of classical Chinese (wenyan) and gain advanced proficiency in modern spoken (baihua) and literary (shumianyu) Chinese through exercises in oral and written discussion and analysis of the use of classical Chinese thought and sayings in contemporary Chinese language and culture. Prerequisite: CHIN 301 or permission of instructor. Given in alternate years.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA • PRE-1800

460 - Translating Chinese I

This advanced level course will introduce students to the art, practice, and intercultural contexts of translating Chinese into English. The class will discuss the content, linguistic form, and cultural contexts of a variety of authentic examples of written Chinese, followed by practice in producing readable English translations. Original Chinese texts will include short stories, essays, and media. This course is open to both non-native and native speakers of Chinese who wish to develop their bilingual skills and intercultural literacy. Class discussion will be conducted in Mandarin Chinese and English. Prerequisite: CHIN301 or instructor permission. Can be taken two times for credit.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: INTERCULTURAL and GLOBAL CONNECTIONS

197 - Independent Study in Chinese

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.
2 or 4 units

Japanese Studies

No result

101 - Elementary Japanese I

Introduction to the language in all its aspects basics of grammar and oral communication, and the reading and writing of hiragana & katakana-through intensive drills and exercises. Introduction to formal and casual speech styles. May not be taken for credit by those with more than one year of previous high school (grades 10, 11, 12) study or one semester of college study of Japanese. Consult instructor for details.
5 units

102 - Elementary Japanese II

Continuation of Japanese 101. Further development of communication skills, both oral and written. Mastery of the basic conjugated forms of verbs and adjectives in the past-nonpast and positive-negative paradigms in both the polite -masu and plain forms. Students will learn to decode the speaker's assumptions or attitudes as they are integrated into certain grammatical forms. Introduction to kanji (approximately 50 characters and their multiple readings). Prerequisite: Japanese 101 or equivalent.
5 units

201 - Intermediate Japanese I

While consolidating their knowledge of grammar basics, students will learn the keigo (honorific forms) system and a variety of additional verb forms, both inflectional and paraphrastic. Increased emphasis on conversational skills as well as training in composing texts with coherence and accuracy. Introduction of additional kanji and their multiple readings (approximately 200 characters over the two semesters of the intermediate level). Prerequisite: Japanese 102 or equivalent.
5 units
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA and REGIONAL FOCUS

202 - Intermediate Japanese II

Continuation of Japanese 201. Further development of all four skills. Students will deepen their understanding of the speaker's attitudes as well as the spatial and temporal concepts integrated in grammatical forms. Mastery of at least 250 kanji with their multiple readings by the end of this level. Prerequisite: Japanese 201 or equivalent.
5 units
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: CENTRAL, SOUTH, AND EAST ASIA and REGIONAL FOCUS

271 - Fiction in Japanese Literature and Film

This course examines the art of storytelling via selected works of prose fiction and film which were originally written/produced in the Japanese language in the early modern through contemporary periods. Through close reading of texts and visual images, the student will identify and analyze specific issues that are relevant to the critical messages and the development of the narrative. The course is given in English but those whose language proficiency permits may choose to read the texts in the original Japanese. No prerequisites. Given in alternate years.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA and REGIONAL FOCUS

273 - Popular Culture and Literary Traditions of Tokugawa Japan

This course examines literary traditions and aspects of popular culture in Japan under the Tokugawa shogunate (the feudal era of the 17th through mid-19th centuries), when education spread far beyond the elite samurai class and the people’s literacy rate rose to an unprecedented level thanks to long-lasting peace and economic development. Included among various cultural activities to which the commoners now had access were travel, literary compositions (both haiku and the traditional waka poems), and the humorous oral narrative called rakugo. In this course we will primarily discuss women’s travel diaries, a relatively understudied area, that have come to light only recently, and explore how women’s literary activities intersected with the cultural context of the time and how literary traditions carried on since ancient times are represented, transformed, and reinterpreted in their works. In addition to women’s travel diaries, students will be introduced to a number of selected rakugo narratives; through their comic characters, real and fictional, historical and contemporary, we will investigate the imagination of townspeople who were among the major players of popular culture at the time. The course is given in English. No prerequisites. Given in alternate years.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: CENTRAL, SOUTH, AND EAST ASIA • PRE-1800

301 - Advanced Japanese I

Further development of the four skills. Mastery of certain grammatical forms with increasing emphasis on the speaker's attitudes or assumptions regarding the situation. Introduction of the humble form in the keigo system. Introduction of additional kanji (approximately 250) and their multiple readings over the two semesters of the advanced level. Prerequisite: Japanese 202 or equivalent.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA

302 - Advanced Japanese II

Continuation of Japanese 301. While completing the essentials of the structure of Japanese, students will prepare for a higher level of learning, with intensive training in reading and writing in particular. Students are expected to master 500 kanji and their multiple readings in total by the end of this course. Prerequisite: Japanese 301 or equivalent.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA and REGIONAL FOCUS

340 - Language in News Media and Advertising

This course focuses on current trends in Japanese language and society. By reading newspaper articles, listening to TV/radio news, and intensively studying vocabulary related to world affairs, social issues, and government, the student will be trained to grasp the critical information conveyed by these sources, and to report accurately various facts, events, and thoughts orally and in writing. The student will also be introduced to the common practice of unorthodox usage of the language in advertisement copy and comic strips to develop further their comprehensive language skills. Prerequisite: Japanese 302 or permission of instructor. Given in alternate years.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA

350 - Tales of the Supernatural

In this course the student will study various tales of the supernatural, including folk tales, myths and ghost stories, - created in the ancient through early modern periods, both aurally (from CD) and in writing. All the kanji in the text are presented with furigana attached so that a substantial quantity of reading may be accomplished time-efficiently. While reading and interpreting the text -, the student will attempt - creative writing of his/her original stories following the specific narrative styles. The student will also be introduced to the - rakugo, humorous story-telling performed in the traditional Japanese variety theater called yose. Prerequisite: Japanese 302 or permission of instructor.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET:  ASIA ● PRE-1800 and REGIONAL FOCUS

360 - Translating Texts

This advanced level course will develop the student’s cultural literacy through translating Japanese texts into English. The class will discuss the content and linguistic form of authentic examples of written Japanese, followed by practice in producing readable English translations that not only convey the original Japanese accurately but show awareness of cultural registers and contexts. An assortment of authentic materials will be used, including short stories and essays on current events and topics in popular culture. Prerequisite: Japanese 302 or instructor permission
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: ASIA

397 - Independent Study in Japanese

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.
2 or 4 units

460 - Translating Texts (Essays)

This advanced level course will develop the student's literacy through translating Japanese texts into English. This course focuses on essays on various topics including, but not limited to, literature, travel, food, and philosophy. The class will discuss the content and linguistic form of authentic examples of written Japanese, followed by practice in producing readable English translations that not only convey the original Japanese accurately but show awareness of cultural registers and contexts. Can be repeated two times for credit.  prerequisite: JAPN 302 or instructor permission.
CORE REQUIREMENT MET: GLOBAL CONNECTIONS and INTERCULTURAL

Courses that Count Towards a Major or Minor in Chinese Studies, Japanese Studies, and East Asian Studies

* Courses with Pre-modern content

+ Seminar courses


 

American Studies 270. Asian-American Literature

American Studies 272. Asian Immigrants in American Society

American Studies 280. The American Experience in East Asia

American Studies 295. Topics in American Studies: Race and Gender in Asian American Films

* Art History and the Visual Arts H160. Introduction to Asian Art

* Art History and the Visual Arts H261. Buddhist Art in South and East Asia.

Art History and the Visual Arts H266. The Arts of Japan

* + Art History and the Visual Arts H362. Art In Early China

* + Art History and the Visual Arts H364. Art In Later China

Art History and the Visual Arts H368. Japanese Painting

*+Art History and the Visual Arts H390 Seminar in Art History: Chinese Paintings at LACMA

Chinese 201. Intermediate Chinese I

Chinese 202. Intermediate Chinese II

* + Chinese 272. The Rise of the Martial Arts Novel

+ Chinese 273. Contemporary Chinese Writers in Exile

*+ Chinese 274. Ghost and Love Stories

+ Chinese 295. Representations of the Environment in Chinese Literature and Culture

Chinese 301. Expository Essays and Short Narratives I

Chinese 310. Expository Essays and Short Narratives II

Chinese 320. Current Events and Media

Chinese 330. Fiction and Film

* Chinese 350. Classical Chinese Thought and Sayings

Diplomacy and World Affairs 237. Cuba, Vietnam, China: Communism in a Post-Communist World

Diplomacy and World Affairs 251. International Relations of East Asia

* History 141. East Asian Survey Since 1600

* History 242. Imperial China

History 243. Modern and Contemporary China

* History 246. Premodern Korea

* History 247. Premodern Japan

History 248. Modern Japan

* History 249. Korean History and Culture

History 295 Topics in History: Japanese Imperialism and the Modern Korean Identity

History 295  Topics in History: Mao Zedong

History 295 Topics in History: Voices of Youth in East Asia

History 348. The Cultural Revolution in China

Japanese 201. Intermediate Japanese I

Japanese 202. Intermediate Japanese II

+ Japanese 271. Fiction in Japanese Literature and Film in Translation

* + Japanese 273. Women’s Travel Diaries

Japanese 301. Advanced Japanese I

Japanese 302. Advanced Japanese II

Japanese 310. Reading and Discussion of Essays

Japanese 340. Language in News Media and Advertising

* Japanese 350. Tales of the Supernatural

Politics 226. Contemporary Chinese Politics

Politics 227. East Asian Politics: China, Japan, Korea, and Taiwan

* Politics 259. Political Thought In The Ancient World: Greece, India, and China

* Religious Studies 160. Introduction to Asian Religions

* Religious Studies 260. Buddhist Thought From India to Japan

* + Religious Studies 365.  Seminar: Buddhist Ethics

SEMINAR/METHODS COURSES OUTSIDE OF THE EALC DEPARTMENT THAT MAY COUNT TOWARD THE MAJOR IN CHINESE STUDIES, JAPANESE STUDIES, OR EAST ASIAN STUDIES

American Studies 290. American Studies: Theory and Methodology

Art History and the Visual Arts F393. Seminar in Film Theory and Criticism

Art History and the Visual Arts H395. Junior Seminar

Diplomacy and World Affairs 235. Nationalism and Ethnicity

Diplomacy and World Affairs 337. International Relations Theory

Diplomacy and World Affairs 342. Transnational Identity and International Relations

English and Comparative Literary Studies 290. Introduction to Literary Analysis

English and Comparative Literary Studies 370. Literary Criticism

History 300. History Colloquium

Linguistics 301. Introduction to Linguistic Structure

Politics 211. Comparative Politics

Sociology 200. Classical Sociological Theory

Sociology 205. Contemporary Sociological Theory

Sociology 304. Sociological Research Methods

Sociology 305. Quantitative Research Methods

Sociology 310. Sociological Field Methods

Urban and Environmental Policy 301. Urban Policy and Politics

Urban and Environmental Policy 303. Sustainable Development

Urban and Environmental Policy 304. Community-Based Research Methods: Urban and Environmental Projects                                                                              

Faculty

Regular Faculty

Sarah Chen, chair

Professor, East Asian Languages and Cultures; Advisory Committee, Group Language

B.A., Rutgers University M.A., Ph.D., Stanford University

On Special Appointment

Motoko Ezaki

Adjunct Associate Professor, East Asian Languages and Cultures; Advisory Committee, Group Language

B.A., M.A., Seinan Gakuin University; M.A., Ph.D., UCLA

Andrew Miller

Adjunct Instructor, East Asian Languages and Cultures

B.A., Princeton University; M.A., UCLA

Yuki Taylor

Adjunct Assistant Professor, East Asian Languages and Cultures

B.A., M.A., Ph.D., UCLA

Affiliated Faculty

Tsung Chi

Professor, Politics; Affiliated Faculty, East Asian Languages and Cultures

B.A., National Chengchi University; M.A., Ph.D., Michigan State University

Alexander F. Day

Assistant Professor, History; Affiliated Faculty, East Asian Language and Cultures

B.A. Colby College; M.A., Ph.D. UC Santa Cruz

Paul S. Nam

Adjunct Assistant Professor, History

B.A., Williams College; M.A., Ph.D, UCLA

Dale Wright

David B. and Mary H. Gamble Professor in Religion, Religious Studies

B.A., San Diego State University; Ph.D., University of Iowa

Xiao-huang Yin

Professor, American Studies; Affiliated Faculty, East Asian Languages and Cultures; Affiliated Faculty, History

B.A., Nanjing University; M.A., Ph.D., Harvard University