ASST 122
Old Shanghai, New Shanghai Spring 2018 Division I; Writing-Intensive; Cross-listed as ASST122 / CHIN422
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Once nicknamed as “Paris of the East,” Shanghai, now a megacity with a population of 25 million, is the industrial, commercial and financial center of contemporary China. Shanghai is often depicted as a metropolis that marked the beginning of China’s modernity and urban culture. People from other regions in China see Shanghai as a city full of opportunities, but characterize its people as astute and shrewd, cocky and unwelcoming. Foreigners, however, find the city appealing and its people open-minded. Jews fleeing Nazi persecutions during WWII, found Shanghai to be a “paradise of ghetto” that provided the only haven of survival. For local people, there have always been two Shanghai: an old one and a new one. They are proud of the new Shanghai but constantly nostalgic about the old one. This tutorial examines the multifaceted city of Shanghai and its people from historical and cultural perspectives. We will look at the city’s history (from the late nineteenth century to present day), its local language and culture, and everyday life of the people (including migrants and foreigners) living in it. The central ideas we will explore are “modernity” and “regional identity.” We will investigate how these theoretical constructs play out in the making of the city of Shanghai and the formation of its unique local identity. Course readings include historical and cultural studies as well as documentaries in English about Shanghai, and primary sources in Chinese in a wide range of genres including fiction, essays, and films (English translation of the primary sources are available for students taking the course in English). The course is conducted in either Chinese or English. Students wishing to take the course in English should register under ASST 122T and students wishing to take the course in Chinese should register under CHIN 422T. Students will come away with a critical understanding about China’s regional cultures and one of its most important metropolitan cities. Chinese language learners will be able to improve their reading and writing skills in Chinese through this course. The course has a required field trip to a Chinese restaurant on a Saturday or Sunday, depending on all students’ schedules.
The Class: Type: tutorial
Limit: 10
Expected: 10
Class#: 3180
Requirements/Evaluation: each tutorial pair will meet with the instructor for one hour per week, during which time we will discuss a 5-page paper that one of the partners has submitted
Extra Info: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis; not available for the fifth course option
Prerequisites: none for students taking ASST 122T; CHIN 402 or permission of the instructor for students taking CHIN 422T
Enrollment Preference: current or prospective Asian Studies, Chinese, or Japanese majors
Department Notes: students wishing to take the course in English should register under ASST 122T and students wishing to take the course in Chinese should register under CHIN 422T
Materials/Lab Fee: $100
Distributions: Division I; Writing-Intensive;
Distribution Notes: meets Division 1 requirement if registration is under ASST or CHIN

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