Courses in Asian Studies

AS 182  Asian Civilization II
Lecture/Recitation
Introduction to major themes and events in the histories of China, Korea, Japan, the Indian subcontinent, and Southeast Asia in recent centuries. Considers the impacts of colonialism and imperialism, the emergence of nationalist and revolutionary movements, decolonization and the Cold War. Our goal is to understand the historical forces and transformations shaping contemporary Asia, the common experiences that different areas of Asia have shared in the recent past, and what distinguishes the histories of particular Asian nations within a comparative perspective. This course is the same as HIS 182 and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.

AS 199  UB Seminar
Seminar
The three credit UB Seminar is focused on a big idea or challenging issue to engage students with questions of significance in a field of study and, ultimately, to connect their studies with issues of consequence in the wider world. Essential to the UB Curriculum, the Seminar helps students with common learning outcomes focused on fundamental expectations for critical thinking, ethical reasoning, and oral communication, and learning at a university, all within topic focused subject matter. The Seminars provide students with an early connection to UB faculty and the undergraduate experience at a comprehensive, research university. This course is equivalent to any 199 offered in any subject. This course is a controlled enrollment (impacted) course. Students who have previously attempted the course and received a grade of F or R may not be able to repeat the course during the fall or spring semester.

AS 333  South Asian Cinema: Bollywood and Beyond
Lecture
This course is a chronological exploration of Hindi cinema, stretching from the 1940s to the present. With its flashy item numbers, chocolate, heroes, masala films, and playback singers, Bollywood films offer delights that no other genre can. But beneath its flashy exterior, Bollywood also offers moral lessons for social uplift, provides examples of changing class and family dynamics, tracks the influence of the West on a decidedly South Asian art form, and has its finger perennially on the cultural pulse of India.

AS 338  Islam and Literature      
Lecture
The purpose of this course is to expose students to the wide variety of poetic and prose literary forms associated with Islam, including contemporary English-language novels and translations from Arabic, Bengali, Persian, and Urdu originals. We will explore literature through a variety of themes and genres common to the literary traditions of these languages. This will serve to frame larger questions central to the study of Islamicate literatures. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.

AS 345  Korean Pop Culture       
Lecture
This course explores contemporary Korean popular culture by engaging in social and cultural representations from the Korean War to the present day. This course will help students to understand current Korean popular culture as well as the Korean Wave (Hallyu) that is spreading across the globe. This course will also help students to grasp contemporary Korean culture and Korean identity; as well as the values and images depicted in modern Korea. It explores diverse topics including music (K-pop), movies, K-dramas, K-beauty, fashion, food, gaming culture, leisure activities, as well as sports. This course is the same as KOR 345 and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.

AS 347  The Fantastical World of Japanese Anime
Lecture
This course explores contemporary Korean popular culture by engaging in social and cultural representations from the Korean War to the present day. This course will help students to understand current Korean popular culture as well as the Korean Wave (Hallyu) that is spreading across the globe. This course will also help students to grasp contemporary Korean culture and Korean identity; as well as the values and images depicted in modern Korea. It explores diverse topics including music (K-pop), movies, K-dramas, K-beauty, fashion, food, gaming culture, leisure activities, as well as sports. This course is the same as KOR 345 and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.

AS 374  History of Christianity in Asia
Lecture
This course traces the introduction and spread of Christianity in Asian history, focusing primarily on East Asia and giving special attention to Korea. It begins with an examination of Jesuit missions to Japan and China, as well as the role that India played in the establishment and maintenance of these missions. The different Jesuit strategies for accommodating or rejecting indigenous religious beliefs and customs are compared and considered, as well as the Nestorians in China much earlier. Then we turn to the unique way in which Catholicism was subsequently established in Korea, where Christianity has enjoyed unparalleled success in East Asia. We will look closely at how Christianity has affected and been affected by socio-political developments, its interactions with and influence upon traditional Asian religions, its relationship to nationalism since the late 19th century, and its tensions and conflict with colonialism and Communism in the 20th century. It concludes by asking what factors might have enabled Christianity to have such success in Korea (and the Philippines) and compare these to the situation in China and Japan. This course is the same as HIS 374 and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.

AS 375  The US and East Asia
Lecture
A survey of relations between the U.S. and East Asia from the eighteenth century to the present.

AS 431  Special Topics Course Great Muslim Empires of the Near East & India
Lecture
The course examines the common intellectual heritage of the Ottoman, Safavid, and Mughal societies through the study of their political institutions, religious doctrines, economic structures, and cultural sources. In addition to reading modern scholarship, we will examine primary sources from the fields of theology, political science, literature, and the arts in order to gain a more intimate knowledge of the ideological trends of the period. This course provides an overview and context for a deeper understanding of modern Middle East through a close study of its history and culture in the early modern period.

AS 498  Senior Research in Asian Studies
Tutorial
A capstone course required for all majors in Asian Studies. Research, writing, and oral presentation of project carried out under the guidance of a faculty member.

Fall 2022

AS 101 Introduction to Asian Studies
Are you interested in a career related to Asia, or considering studying abroad in Asia? Or maybe you just want to know more about its cultures and histories because your classmates, neighbors, and coworkers are from there? What is Asia, anyway, and who and what should we consider Asian? This class is designed to introduce students to the diversity of Asia and to the resources at UB and beyond for studying Asia and Asian diasporas. Students will develop critical thinking and writing skills while exploring the fields of Asian and Asian-American studies. The class will hear from distinguished UB professors who will discuss the latest research, trends, and resources in the field of Asian and Asian-American studies. Students also will start thinking about the impact of developments in Asia on their career goals and be encouraged to consider study abroad opportunities in Asia.

AS 181/HIS 181 Asian Civilization I
Introduction to major themes and events in the histories of China, Korea, Japan, the Indian subcontinent, and Southeast Asia in early times. Considers the developments of ways of thought, the emergence of and interactions among states and empires, and artistic and literary movements. Our goal is to understand the historical forces and transformations shaping Asia before about 1600. This course is the same as HIS and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.   

AS 221 Survey of Asian Literature
This course will introduce students to narratives of romance that span Asia’s wide variety of religious, literary, theatrical, and cinematic traditions. Rather than defining romance by what it contains, we will instead consider what romance as a genre does. Through this approach, it becomes possible to examine why certain narratives were compelling enough to be transmitted across and preserved within a diverse range of cultures and historical periods. Texts include English translations of Sanskrit drama, a Hindi Sufi mystical work, an early Japanese novel, recent Bollywood cinema, Korean television melodramas, and the worldwide Harlequin Romance phenomenon. There are no prerequisites for this class. We will be covering a wide range of materials, and it is essential that students complete assigned readings before class and actively participate in class discussions. All are welcome in this class, regardless of age, race, sexual orientation, gender identity, ability, ethnicity, or religion. I ask that you keep an open mind towards the course materials and be tolerant and respectful of the opinions expressed by your fellow classmates. This course is the same as ENG 222 and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.

AS 391 / HIS 391 China and the World
Survey of Chinese views of the world order, exchanges in material culture across China’s borders, and the ways in which Chinese governments and people have interacted with the world from the imperial era to the present era of the rise of China. This course is the same as HIS 391, and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.

AS 496 Asian Studies Internship
Are you interested in developing skills in public outreach, online content, podcasting, and social media? Do you want or need 1 to 3 internship credits? Please email Asian-Studies@buffalo.edu to ask about AS internship options for fall or spring 20-21.

AS 499 Independant Study

Spring 2022 Courses

AS 182 / HIS 182 Asian Civilization II
Introduction to major themes and events in the histories of China, Korea, Japan, the Indian subcontinent, and Southeast Asia in recent centuries. Considers the impacts of colonialism and imperialism, the emergence of nationalist and revolutionary movements, decolonization and the Cold War. Our goal is to understand the historical forces and transformations shaping contemporary Asia, the common experiences that different areas of Asia have shared in the recent past, and what distinguishes the histories of particular Asian nations within a comparative perspective.

AS229 Contemporary Asian Societies
Introduces students to major features of societies in East, Southeast, and South Asia, and may incorporate material on Central and Southwest Asia depending on the instructor. Discusses the ways in which social scientists analyze contemporary societies and survey theories developed by social scientists to explain social phenomena in contemporary Asian societies. This course is the same as PSC 229 and GEO 229 and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.

AS333 Bollywood and South Asian Cinema
This course is a chronological exploration of Hindi cinema, stretching from the 1940s to the present. With its flashy item numbers, chocolate, heroes, masala films, and playback singers, Bollywood films offer delights that no other genre can. But beneath its flashy exterior, Bollywood also offers moral lessons for social uplift, provides examples of changing class and family dynamics, tracks the influence of the West on a decidedly South Asian art form, and has its finger perennially on the cultural pulse of India

AS 347 The Fantastical World of Japanese Anime
In the past three decades Japanese popular culture has surpassed the technology industry to become Japans largest export. In particular, anime (Japanese animation), the most profitable form of Japanese popular culture, has become increasingly visible all over the world. Although anime fandom in the U.S. is anchored by several works of mass appeal, it remains a subculture whose increasingly influential devotees occupy a cultural fringe. This course introduces students to this unique subculture and introduces an academic approach to viewing the anime art form. In addition to the focus on specific genres of anime, this course will pay special attention to four influential anime directors; Oshii Mamoru, Satoshi Kon, Hosoda Mamoru and Miyazaki Hayao. This course is designed to be interactive, while it builds a rigorous understanding of the anime medium through its history, its artists, and its institutions. Not only will the course focus on critical analysis of films, it will use anime as a medium by which to study Japanese culture at large, with some attention given to production. Taught in English.

AS364 Chinese Film and Visual Culture
This course is an introduction to Chinese film and visual culture from the earliest days until the present. Chinese film and media studies are rich fields with links to literature, theater and opera, and visual art. This class invites students to watch, read, and discuss films from several periods and traditions, including auteur films (films by famous directors), genre films (for example, martial arts films), and animated films. This is a film and media studies course. Students will be graded for discussion and participation, short response papers, and one final written essay. This course is taught in English. The films are subtitled in English and the readings are also in English. There are no prerequisites for this course, just an interest in Chinese film and visual culture. This course is the same as CHI 364 and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements.

AS374 History of the Spread of Christianity in Asia
This course traces the introduction and spread of Christianity in Asian history, focusing primarily on East Asia and giving special attention to Korea. It begins with an examination of Jesuit missions to Japan and China, as well as the role that India played in the establishment and maintenance of these missions. The different Jesuit strategies for accommodating or rejecting indigenous religious beliefs and customs are compared and considered, as well as the Nestorians in China much earlier. Then we turn to the unique way in which Catholicism was subsequently established in Korea, where Christianity has enjoyed unparalleled success in East Asia. We will look closely at how Christianity has affected and been affected by socio-political developments, its interactions with and influence upon traditional Asian religions, its relationship to nationalism since the late 19th century, and its tensions and conflict with colonialism and Communism in the 20th century. It concludes by asking what factors might have enabled Christianity to have such success in Korea (and the Philippines) and compare these to the situation in China and Japan. This course is the same as HIS 374 and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements. 

AS 380 Chinese Tradition and Guanxi
Surveys major cultural and traditional elements that have influenced various aspects of contemporary Chinese life. Topics include Chinese philosophical ideals, religion, women, family, education, Chinese language and symbolic reference, literature and art in both traditional and modern China. This course is intended to introduce Chinese culture at its deep level or philosophical value of the Chinese culture. Taught in English; requires no knowledge of Chinese language.

AS 410 Communication in Asia and Pacific Rim Countries
Provides students with knowledge of communication and its related issues in East Asian and Pacific Rim countries, which are going to be the world’s focal point for economy and politics in the next century.

AS423 Korean Language and Culture
Introduces Korean culture and society, including readings and discussions of Korean history, politics, economy, art, literature, and language. Taught in English. This course is the same as KOR 421, and course repeat rules will apply. Students should consult with their major department regarding any restrictions on their degree requirements

AS492 Poisons, Drugs, and Panaceas
What is a poison? How do we understand the effects of poisons on our body? How do we make the best use of these potent matters that can benefit us and the society at large? These are some of the fundamental questions to the history of medicine, and driving ones for this course. Examining the history of poisons through twelve case studies, we will explore the complexity of poison materiality by contemplating the intimate relations between poisons, medicines, and foods. We will learn how the experiences of the body shaped the conceived values of poisons. We will examine the circulation of poison knowledge across social and geographical domains. Using specific poisons as the anchor of our analysis, we will explore the social fabric and cultural milieu in which particular ideas and practices of poisons emerged, flourished, or diminished. One key aspect of the course is to introduce a comparative perspective to the study of medical history. By studying above topics in both European/American and Asian contexts, we will identify surprising parallels, striking differences, and hidden connections between these traditions. Finally, we will ponder how knowledge of poisons in the past illuminates our notions and habits of ingesting and experiencing drugs today. This course is the same as HIS 492.

AS 498 Senior Capstone Course
A capstone course required for all majors in Asian Studies. Research, writing, and oral presentation of project carried out under the guidance of a faculty member.