Contemporary Asian Civilizations

Course Number:ASAN 312
Course Title:Contemporary Asian Civilizations
Course Description: Fifty years ago, Asian governments regarded modernization as a critical goal in societal progress. They sought to reach a level of development similar to the United States and Western Europe: industrialized, urbanized, technology-driven, democratic, highly educated populations, high cultures, etc. 

The study of Asia and its civilizations is explored in this course because of the multi-level impacts the region can have on students locally, professionally, and personally. At the local/state level, Hawai’i has a large Asian population and the state has more cultural, historical, and political affiliations to the Asian side of the Pacific. Professionally, in this globalized world students will find themselves interacting with Asian cultures in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors. Personally, students will hopefully be able to situate themselves as Asian-Americans or non-Asian-Americans with connections to Asia in thinking about their family histories, legacies, and how having connections to Asia may influence their growth.
Learning Objectives:

  • To give students ample knowledge about the general features of contemporary Asian politics, culture and economy

  • To enable students to figure out and discuss the many connections the United State has had with Asia, particularly in the post-war period

  • To give students an overview as to what theories of development were deployed by American scholars and policy-makers when the United States began to be actively involved in Asia

  • To situate Hawaii in this interaction between the two large Asian and American realms​