ASIA 481
History of Taiwan Fall 2022
Division II Writing Skills
Cross-listed HIST 481
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Almost all discussions of contemporary Taiwan reference the fierce debate over its sovereignty and international status: is the island of Taiwan an independent nation, or an “inalienable part” of the much larger and more powerful People’s Republic of China? Part of the argument for Taiwan’s separate nationhood derives from its claim to a unique history different from that of the P.R.C.. In this tutorial course, we will look closely at the distinctive aspects of Taiwan’s history that underlie this claim, including its aboriginal populations, maritime history, experience of Japanese colonialism, settlement by mainland Chinese after World War II, role in the Cold War, and the development of a Taiwanese ethnic and political identity in the postwar period. We will also examine contemporary arguments for Taiwan as part of China. The goal of the course is neither to debate nor resolve the “Taiwan question”, but to explore the history and historical arguments that inform it.
The Class: Format: tutorial
Limit: 10
Expected: 10
Class#: 1414
Grading: no pass/fail option, no fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: weekly papers and critiques
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preferences: History and Asian Studies majors/concentrators
Distributions: Division II Writing Skills
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
HIST 481 Division II ASIA 481 Division II
WS Notes: In this tutorial course, students will write bi-weekly 5- to 7-page papers with feedback from both the instructor and tutorial partner. Students will revise one of their tutorial papers as a final assignment. Students will receive from the instructor timely comments on their writing skills, with suggestions for improvement.
Attributes: HIST Group B Electives - Asia

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