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Including how to apply, please visit the following pages:

Undergraduate Programs Information

Major or minor in Asian Studies.

Graduate Programs Information

Including: Master of Arts in Asian Studies, Master’s in Asian International Affairs, and Graduate Certificates in Asian Studies.

Student Testimonials

Christina Geisse

The Asian Studies Program was incredible because most professors were undertaking their own research, passionate about their subject of study, and enthusiastic about sharing their knowledge with students. It felt fresh and profound at the same time. Inspiring! 

Christina Geisse
Kim Sluchansky

I was able to delve deep and focus on the areas of Asian Studies that truly interested me, and therefore gained a much more thorough and developed understanding of my fields of interest, which are applicable to my current career path. Also, the professors are extremely helpful and want their students to succeed. They were very supportive both while I was at UH and after I graduated.

Spring 2023 ASAN Courses

Find out more about our courses for the Spring 2023 semester. Visit STAR ( for more information. Note that ASAN 411, ASAN 600Z, ASAN 623, ASAN 630 are only offered in the Spring semester or infrequently offered.

Undergraduate Classes

ASAN 101 – Intro to Asian Studies

Prof. Azeema Vogeler ( )

Online Asynchronous

Introductory course focuses on change and continuity in the history, culture, values, and political institutions of South, East, and Southeast Asia, and the region’s interrelationships with the rest of the world. A-F only. (DH).

ASAN 201 – Intro Asian Studies: East Asia

Dr. Mark Ferguson ( )

MWF | 12:30-1:20pm | AGSCI 204

Understanding East Asia through multidisciplinary approaches. Examines the interrelationship of policies, economy, literature, religion, the arts, and history as the basis for such an understanding. (DH).

ASAN/IP 303 – Bollywood Dance, Music, & Film

Dr. Sai Bhatawadekar ( )

W | 9:30-10:50am | KT 101 & F | 9:30-10:50am | DB Studio

Unique course combining mind and body, discussion and dancing. Learn and perform Bollywood dances and the richness of their Indian poetic, classical, and folk traditions. Understand “Bollywood” in the context of cross-cultural fusion and globalization. Repeatable one time. (Cross-listed as IP 303; DA).

ASAN/POLS 308 – Chinese Political Economy

Dr. Kate Zhou ( )

TR | 1:30-2:45pm | BIL 341A

Interdisciplinary review and analysis of the social and political issues in contemporary China, the interchange between state and society in national policies, the relationship between cultural tradition and technological modernization in the social transformation process. A-F only. Pre: sophomore standing or higher, or consent. (Cross-listed as POLS 308; DS, WI).

ASAN 312 – Contemporary Asia

Dr. Patricio Abinales ( )

TR | 12:00-1:15pm | KUY 306

Multidisciplinary examination of problems and issues affecting peoples and institutions of contemporary Asia: ethnic, language, religious, and cultural differences; population growth; public health; economic development; political and social change; environmental problems; etc. Pre: 201 and 202 are recommended, but not required. (DS).

ASAN 320K – Asia Past & Present: Korea

Dr. Young-a Park ( )

TR | 10:30-11:45am | Moore 119

Multidisciplinary examination of major Asian countries; cultural, social, economic, and political lives of their peoples. (C) China; (I) South Asia; (J) Japan; (K) Korea; (O) Okinawa; (P) Philippines; (S) Southeast Asia; (Z) Other. Repeatable three times in different alphas. (DS).

ASAN 320O – Asia Past & Present: Okinawa

Dr. Stewart Curry ( )

TR | 3:00-4:15pm | Moore 103

Multidisciplinary examination of major Asian countries; cultural, social, economic, and political lives of their peoples. (C) China; (I) South Asia; (J) Japan; (K) Korea; (O) Okinawa; (P) Philippines; (S) Southeast Asia; (Z) Other. Repeatable three times in different alphas. (DS).

ASAN/HIST 323 – Way of Tea in Japanese History & Culture

Dr. Kazuko Madar ( )

TR | 1:30-2:45pm | KUY 303

History and culture of Japan as revealed in study and practice of tea ceremony: Zen, aesthetics, calligraphy, architecture, ceramics, gardens, politics. (Cross-listed as HIST 323; DH, OC, TXT0).

ASAN 324 – Chado – The Way of Tea Practicum

Prof. Akiko Riley ( )

TR | 9:00-10:15am | Jakuan

TR | 10:30-11:45am | Jakuan

Actual practice of the Urasenke tea ceremony as history and culture of Japan. Repeatable one time. Pre: 323 (or concurrent), HIST 323 (or concurrent), or consent. Two sections are available this semester. (DA).

ASAN/EALL 325D – Japanese Film: Art and History


TR | 1:30-2:45pm | Moore 119

Study and analysis of Japanese film; its history and relationship to cultural, social, philosophical, and aesthetic contexts. (B) 1900-1960; (C) 1960-present; (D) special topics. Pre: upper division standing or consent. (Cross-listed as EALL 325; DH).

ASAN 411 – Comparative Muslim Societies

Dr. Abdul Khan ( )

TR | 9:00-10:15am | KUY 407

Will compare Muslim societies and cultures in Asia with each other and with the so-called “core” Middle Eastern Muslim societies. Junior standing or higher. A-F only. (Alt. years; DH).

ASAN/HIST/WGSS 492 – Women and Revolution

Dr. Cameron Ahia ( )

MWF | 9:30-10:20am | MIL 101

Conditions under which women’s activism and participation in protest and revolutionary movements developed in the 19th- and 20th-centuries. Cross-cultural comparisons. (Cross-listed as HIST 492 and WGSS 492; DH).

ASAN 494 – Food, Culture and Politics in Asia

Dr. Patricio Abinales ( )

MW | 9:00-10:15am | Moore 423

Examines Asia’s role in the development of global foodways. Topics include the relationship between spices and imperialism, global popularity of Asian cuisines, Asian-influenced “hapa” cuisine in Hawai‘i, McDonaldization in Asia, and food security and sustainability. A-F only. (DH).

ASAN 496 – Religions of Island Southeast Asia

Dr. Andaya Barbara ( )

TR | 10:30-11:45am | Moore 203

A comparative, interdisciplinary examination of indigenous beliefs, Islam, Christianity, and Hinduism in island Southeast Asia, and how they have been adjusted because of economic and social change. (DH, ETH, WI).

Graduate Classes

ASAN 600Z – Approaches: Inter-Asia

Dr. Anna Stirr ( )

R | 1:30-4:00pm | Moore 102

Major issues in and approaches to the interdisciplinary study of Asia and Asian regions; resources for the advanced study of Asia at UH; developing a research focus; preparing and presenting research proposals. (C) China; (I) South Asia; (J) Japan; (K) Korea; (P) Philippines; (S) Southeast Asia; (Z) Inter-Asia. Pre: graduate standing.

ASAN 623 – Gender in Asian Performing Art

Dr. Ricardo Trimillos ( )

M | 3:30-6:00pm | St. John 13

Performance is a rich site for gender construction, critique, and articulation in Asia. This seminar examines gender reflected in traditional music, dance, and theatre, including character role and performer persona; approaches of performance and culture studies, and an “Asian way.” A-F only. (Once a year).

ASAN 626 – Capitalism in Contemporary Asia

Dr. Aaron Johnson ( )

R | 5:30-8:00pm | Moore 204

Historically grounded theoretical examination of capitalism in 20th-century Asia; multidisciplinary approach to fundamental change in political and economic structures and institutions, prospects for the future.

ASAN 630 – Southeast Asia Now

Dr. Barbara Andaya ( )

W | 5:30-8:00pm | Moore 204

Examines the ways global influences are shaping the cultural developments in the diverse societies of contemporary Southeast Asia. (Spring only).

ASAN 651 – East Asia Now

Dr. Cathryn Clayton ( )

M | 5:30-8:00pm | Moore 204

Views East Asia as an interactive region. Examines common historical and cultural, economic and political themes including various experiences with the West. Focus upon present state of the region. A-F only.

ASAN/EALL 665 – Special Topics: East Asian Literary Culture and Society

Dr. Ming-Bao Yue ( )

T | 3:00-5:30pm | Moore 202

This course seeks to engage students in an interdisciplinary and inter-regional understanding of translation and its impact on modernity in the context of East Asia. Through a critical reading of narrative fiction, films, and scholarly articles, this course will critically examine concepts such as “translated modernity,” “cultural translation” and “trans-lingual practice,” all of which posit modernity in East Asia as a form of translation. Therefore, this is not so much a course on practical translation but rather on how translation ought to be understood as a “structure of feeling” that embodies the historical complexity of modern East Asian cultures and societies. In that sense, this course aims to explore not only diverse theories of translation but also alternative understandings of modernity. Beginning with Walter Benjamin, whose work is central to rethinking translation as a form of historical mediation, the course material will then proceed chronologically to other theoretical writings that conceptualize, critique, or clamor for translation as a way to think about “East Asian” differences. As such, focusing on translation as a problematic of modernity will contribute to our understanding of recent historiography in the field of East Asian Studies, and challenge us to re-examine our own ways of mediating cultural translation in the contemporary world. Repeatable two times in different topics, but need consent for second repeat. A-F only. Pre: consent. (Cross-listed as EALL 665).

ASAN 689 – International Relations Asia

Dr. Kristi Govella ( )

T | 5:30-8:00pm | Online

How well do international relations theories explain interstate relations in Asia? How do international issues interact with domestic politics? Covers Japan, China, Korea, ASEAN nations, India, and touches on Russia, Australia, and New Zealand. Graduate students only. A-F only.

ASAN 710 – MAIA Capstone

Dr. Kristi Govella ( )

M | 5:30-7:20pm | Online

Capstone experience for MAIA students that emphasizes practical applications of Asia knowledge. Should be taken in final semester or after completion of all or most of MAIA core requirements. MAIA majors only. Graduate students only. A-F only.

ASAN 750 – Research Seminar

Dr. Anna Stirr ( )

T | 1:30-4:00pm | Moore 102

This listing includes 750C, 750I, 750J, 750K, 750P, 750S that are all taught by the same professor at the same time and place. The course’s purpose is to establish good writing and research skills which are crucial for thesis (Plan A) or non-thesis (Plan B) work. (C) China; (I) South Asia; (J) Japan; (K) Korea; (P) Philippines; (S) Southeast Asia. Pre: 600 or consent.

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