East Asian Religion, Thought, and Culture

University of California, Berkeley

About the Program

Bachelor of Arts (BA)

The Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures offers an undergraduate major in East Asian Religion, Thought, and Culture. Knowledge of philosophical and religious traditions is important to understanding many aspects of East Asia's diverse cultures. This major seeks to train students in these traditions in a way that is grounded in a familiarity with the texts, languages, and cultures of East Asian societies, while also examining how these traditions have been (and might better be) brought into humanistic disciplines.

Students who major in the department have a variety of backgrounds and many students are double majors in a broad spectrum of other departments and programs, including anthropology, applied mathematics, architecture, art history, art practice, Asian studies, business, comparative literature, computer science, economics, English, linguistics, mass communications, molecular and cell biology, political economy, political science, psychology, rhetoric, and theater arts.

Declaring the Major

Students interested in majoring in the department should consult with the staff undergraduate adviser regarding major requirements, transfer credits, and other academic concerns. Students are admitted to the major only after successful completion (with a grade of C or higher) of the prerequisites to the major; for information regarding the prerequisites, please see the Major Requirements tab on this page. Students are advised to begin preparation for the major as soon as possible in order to satisfy University, college, and department requirements. All students should be familiar with the college requirements for graduation with a Bachelor of Arts degree, as explained in the "Earning Your Degree," a bulletin available from the College of Letters & Science, 206 Evans Hall.

Honors Program

A senior undergraduate student who has completed 12 units of upper division language courses in the department, and who has a GPA of 3.5 in those courses and an overall average of 3.0 may apply for admission to the honors program. If accepted, the student will enroll in an honors course (EA LANG H195A or EA LANG H195B) for two consecutive semesters leading to the completion of an honors thesis, which must be submitted at least two weeks before the end of the semester in which the student expects to graduate. While enrolled in the honors program, the student will undertake independent advanced study under the guidance of the student's honors thesis adviser. Upon completion of the program, a faculty committee will determine the degree of honors to be awarded (honors, high honors, highest honors), taking into consideration both the quality of the thesis and overall performance in the department. Honors will not be granted to a student who does not achieve a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.3 in all undergraduate work in the University by the time of graduation.

Minor Program

There is no minor program in East Asian Religion, Thought, and Culture. Students interested in Buddhism should consider the Buddhist Studies minor offered by the Group in Buddhist Studies.

Other Majors and Minors Offered by the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures

Chinese Language (Major and Minor)
Japanese Language (Major and Minor)
Korean Language (Minor only)
Tibetan (Minor only)

Visit Department Website

Major Requirements

In addition to the University, campus, and college requirements, listed on the College Requirements tab, students must fulfill the below requirements specific to their major program.

General Guidelines

  1. All courses taken to fulfill the major requirements below must be taken for graded credit, other than courses listed which are offered on a Pass/No Pass basis only. Other exceptions to this requirement are noted as applicable.
  2. No more than one upper division course may be used to simultaneously fulfill requirements for a student's major and minor programs, with the exception of minors offered outside of the College of Letters & Science.
  3. A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 must be maintained in both upper and lower division courses used to fulfill the major requirements.

For information regarding residence requirements and unit requirements, please see the College Requirements tab.

Prerequisites

Select one language sequence:
Elementary Chinese
and Elementary Chinese (or equivalent) 1
Elementary Japanese
and Elementary Japanese (or equivalent) 1
Elementary Tibetan
and Elementary Tibetan (or equivalent) 1
Select one Core Course (see List A below)4

Major Requirements

Select one language sequenece:
Intermediate Chinese
and Intermediate Chinese (or equivalent) 1
Intermediate Japanese
and Intermediate Japanese (or equivalent) 1
Intermediate Tibetan
and Intermediate Tibetan (or equivalent) 1
Select five additional Core Courses (see List A below) 2,320
Select two Supplementary Disciplinary Breadth courses (see List B below) 38
EA LANG 191Tools and Methods in the Study of East Asian Philosophy and Religion 44
1

Please note that students with previous language experience will be required to take a placement exam. Students who place out of language courses or into the heritage track will be required to take additional adviser-approved literature or culture courses offered by the department in order to meet the above unit requirements.

2

Of the six courses from List A, a maximum of two semesters of classical language study and no more than one lower division course may be counted toward fulfilling the requirements. 

3

The two lists of courses (List A & List B) will be updated periodically, and the full listings will be available on the departmental website.

4

A preapproved course can be substituted in an academic year during which EA LANG 191 is not offered.

Core Courses (List A)

BUDDSTD 190Topics in the Study of Buddhism (When topic is relevant, see adviser for approval)4
CHINESE 51Chinese Thought in the Han Dynasty4
CHINESE 110AIntroduction to Literary Chinese 24
CHINESE 110BIntroduction to Literary Chinese 24
CHINESE C116Buddhism in China4
CHINESE 130Topics in Daoism4
CHINESE C140Readings in Chinese Buddhist Texts4
CHINESE 186Confucius and His Interpreters4
EA LANG C50Introduction to the Study of Buddhism4
or BUDDSTD 50 Introduction to the Study of Buddhism
EA LANG 110Bio-Ethical Issues in East Asian Thought4
EA LANG C120Buddhism on the Silk Road4
EA LANG C128Buddhism in Contemporary Society4
EA LANG C130Zen Buddhism4
EA LANG C132Pure Land Buddhism4
EA LANG C135Tantric Traditions of Asia4
JAPAN C115Japanese Buddhism4
JAPAN 116Introduction to the Religions of Japan4
JAPAN 120Introduction to Classical Japanese 24
JAPAN C141Introductory Readings in Japanese Buddhist Texts4
JAPAN 144Edo Literature 24
JAPAN 146Japanese Historical Documents 24
MONGOLN C117Mongolian Buddhism4
TIBETAN 110AIntensive Readings in Tibetan4
TIBETAN 110BIntensive Readings in Tibetan4
TIBETAN C114Tibetan Buddhism4
TIBETAN 116Traditional Tibet4
TIBETAN C154Death, Dreams, and Visions in Tibetan Buddhism4

Supplementary Disciplinary Breadth Courses (List B)

Art History
HISTART 130AEarly Chinese Art, Part I4
HISTART 131ASacred Arts in China4
HISTART 134ATopics in Buddhist Art and Architecture: Buddhist Temple Art & Architecture in Japan4
HISTART 134BTopics in Buddhist Art and Architecture: Buddhist Icons in Japan4
HISTART 134CTopics in Buddhist Art and Architecture: Buddhist Art in the Modern/Contemporary World4
HISTART 190ASpecial Topics in Fields of Art History: Asian (When topic is relevant, see adviser for approval)4
Asian Literature
CHINESE 120Ancient Chinese Prose4
CHINESE 122Ancient Chinese Poetry4
CHINESE 134Readings in Classical Chinese Poetry4
CHINESE 136Readings in Medieval Prose4
CHINESE 153Reading Taiwan4
CHINESE 155Readings in Vernacular Chinese Literature4
CHINESE 156Modern Chinese Literature4
CHINESE 157Contemporary Chinese Literature4
CHINESE 158Reading Chinese Cities4
CHINESE 176Bad Emperors: Fantasies of Sovereignty and Transgression in the Chinese Tradition4
CHINESE 178Traditional Chinese Drama4
CHINESE 179Exploring Premodern Chinese Novels4
CHINESE 180The Story of the Stone4
CHINESE 187Literature and Media Culture in Taiwan4
CHINESE 188Popular Media in Modern China4
EA LANG 101Catastrophe, Memory, and Narrative: Comparative Responses to Atrocity in the Twentieth Century4
EA LANG 105Dynamics of Romantic Core Values in East Asian Premodern Literature and Contemporary Film4
EA LANG 106Expressing the Ineffable in China and Beyond: The Making of Meaning in Poetic Writing4
EA LANG 107War, Empire, and Literature in East Asia4
EA LANG 108Revising the Classics: Chinese and Greek Poetry in Translation4
EA LANG 109History of the Culture of Tea in China and Japan4
EA LANG 111Reading Global Politics in Contemporary East Asian Literature4
EA LANG 112The East Asian Sixties4
EA LANG 114Illness Narratives, Vulnerable Bodies4
EA LANG 115Knowing Others, and Being Known: The Art of Writing People4
EA LANG 116Modern East Asian Fiction4
EA LANG 118Sex and Gender in Premodern Chinese Culture4
JAPAN 130Classical Japanese Poetry4
JAPAN 132Premodern Japanese Diary (Nikki) Literature4
JAPAN 140Heian Prose4
JAPAN 155Modern Japanese Literature4
JAPAN 159Contemporary Japanese Literature4
JAPAN 170Classical Japanese Literature in Translation4
JAPAN 173Modern Japanese Literature in Translation4
JAPAN 177Urami: Rancor and Revenge in Japanese Literature4
JAPAN 180Ghosts and the Modern Literary Imagination4
JAPAN 181Reframing Disasters: Fukushima, Before and After4
KOREAN 130Genre and Occasion in Traditional Poetry4
KOREAN 140Narrating Persons and Objects in Traditional Korean Prose4
KOREAN 150Modern Korean Poetry4
KOREAN 153Readings in Modern Korean Literature4
KOREAN 155Modern Korean Fiction4
KOREAN 157Contemporary Korean Literature4
KOREAN 170Intercultural Encounters in Korean Literature4
KOREAN 172Gender and Korean Literature4
KOREAN 174Modern Korean Fiction in Translation4
KOREAN 180Critical Approaches to Modern Korean Literature4
KOREAN 185Picturing Korea4
MONGOLN 110Literary Mongolian4
TIBETAN 115Contemporary Tibet4
Film
CHINESE 172Contemporary Chinese Language Cinema4
EA LANG 180East Asian Film: Directors and their Contexts4
EA LANG 181East Asian Film: Special Topics in Genre4
JAPAN 185Introduction to Japanese Cinema4
JAPAN 188Japanese Visual Culture: Introduction to Anime4
JAPAN 189Topics in Japanese Film4
KOREAN 186Introduction to Korean Cinema4
KOREAN 187History and Memory in Korean Cinema4
KOREAN 188Cold War Culture in Korea: Literature and Film4
KOREAN 189Korean Film Authors4
History
HISTORY 100Special Topics (When topic is relevant, see adviser for approval)4
HISTORY 103FProseminar: Problems in Interpretation in the Several Fields of History: Asia (When topic is relevant, see adviser for approval)4
HISTORY 113ATraditional Korean History4
HISTORY 113BModern Korean History4
HISTORY 116AChina: Early China4
HISTORY 116BChina: Two Golden Ages: China During the Tang and Song Dynasties4
HISTORY 116CChina: Modern China4
HISTORY 116DChina: Twentieth-Century China4
HISTORY 116GImperial China and the World4
HISTORY 117ATopics in Chinese History: Chinese Popular Culture4
HISTORY 117DTopics in Chinese History: The Chinese Body: Gender and Sex, Health, and Medicine4
HISTORY 118AJapan: Japan, Archaeological Period to 18004
HISTORY 118BJapan: Japan 1800-19004
HISTORY 118CJapan: Empire and Alienation: The 20th Century in Japan4
HISTORY 119ATopics in Japanese History: Postwar Japan4
MONGOLN 116The Mongol Empire4
MONGOLN 118Modern Mongolia4
TIBETAN 118The Politics of Modern Tibet4
TIBETAN 119Tibetan Medicine in History and Society4
Music
CHINESE C184Sonic Culture in China4
MUSIC 134AMusic of the East Asia Tradition4
MUSIC 134BMusic of Japan4
Philosophy
PHILOS 151Early Chinese Thought4
Religious Studies
ANTHRO 158Religion and Anthropology4
EA LANG C126Buddhism and the Environment4
RELIGST 190Topics in the Study of Religion4

College Requirements

Undergraduate students in the College of Letters & Science must fulfill the following requirements in addition to those required by their major program.

For detailed lists of courses that fulfill college requirements, please review the College of Letters & Sciences page in this Guide.

Entry Level Writing

All students who will enter the University of California as freshmen must demonstrate their command of the English language by fulfilling the Entry Level Writing requirement. Fulfillment of this requirement is also a prerequisite to enrollment in all reading and composition courses at UC Berkeley. 

American History and American Institutions

The American History and Institutions requirements are based on the principle that a US resident graduated from an American university, should have an understanding of the history and governmental institutions of the United States.

American Cultures

American Cultures is the one requirement that all undergraduate students at Cal need to take and pass in order to graduate. The requirement offers an exciting intellectual environment centered on the study of race, ethnicity and culture of the United States. AC courses offer students opportunities to be part of research-led, highly accomplished teaching environments, grappling with the complexity of American Culture.

Quantitative Reasoning

The Quantitative Reasoning requirement is designed to ensure that students graduate with basic understanding and competency in math, statistics, or computer science. The requirement may be satisfied by exam or by taking an approved course.

Foreign Language

The Foreign Language requirement may be satisfied by demonstrating proficiency in reading comprehension, writing, and conversation in a foreign language equivalent to the second semester college level, either by passing an exam or by completing approved course work.

Reading and Composition

In order to provide a solid foundation in reading, writing, and critical thinking the College requires two semesters of lower division work in composition in sequence. Students must complete a first-level reading and composition course by the end of their second semester and a second-level course by the end of their fourth semester.

Breadth Requirements

The undergraduate breadth requirements provide Berkeley students with a rich and varied educational experience outside of their major program. As the foundation of a liberal arts education, breadth courses give students a view into the intellectual life of the University while introducing them to a multitude of perspectives and approaches to research and scholarship. Engaging students in new disciplines and with peers from other majors, the breadth experience strengthens interdisciplinary connections and context that prepares Berkeley graduates to understand and solve the complex issues of their day.

Unit Requirements

  • 120 total units, including at least 60 L&S units

  • Of the 120 units, 36 must be upper division units

  • Of the 36 upper division units, 6 must be taken in courses offered outside your major department

Residence Requirements

For units to be considered in "residence," you must be registered in courses on the Berkeley campus as a student in the College of Letters & Science. Most students automatically fulfill the residence requirement by attending classes here for four years. In general, there is no need to be concerned about this requirement, unless you go abroad for a semester or year or want to take courses at another institution or through UC Extension during your senior year. In these cases, you should make an appointment to meet an adviser to determine how you can meet the Senior Residence Requirement.

Note: Courses taken through UC Extension do not count toward residence.

Senior Residence Requirement

After you become a senior (with 90 semester units earned toward your BA degree), you must complete at least 24 of the remaining 30 units in residence in at least two semesters. To count as residence, a semester must consist of at least 6 passed units. Intercampus Visitor, EAP, and UC Berkeley-Washington Program (UCDC) units are excluded.

You may use a Berkeley Summer Session to satisfy one semester of the Senior Residence requirement, provided that you successfully complete 6 units of course work in the Summer Session and that you have been enrolled previously in the college.

Modified Senior Residence Requirement

Participants in the UC Education Abroad Program (EAP) or the UC Berkeley Washington Program (UCDC) may meet a Modified Senior Residence requirement by completing 24 (excluding EAP) of their final 60 semester units in residence. At least 12 of these 24 units must be completed after you have completed 90 units.

Upper Division Residence Requirement

You must complete in residence a minimum of 18 units of upper division courses (excluding EAP units), 12 of which must satisfy the requirements for your major.

Courses

EA LANG R1B Reading and Composition on topics in East Asian Humanities 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Spring 2017
The arts of reading a text, summarizing its argument, questioning its suppositions, generating balanced opinions, and expressing those opinions with clarity and effectiveness lie at the center of university life and educated human endeavor. EA Lang R1B is designed to help inculcate those skills, paying particular attention to East Asian humanistic topics. This four-unit course focuses on how to formulate questions and hone observations into well reasoned
, coherent, and convincing essays. Attention will be paid to the basic rules of grammar, logical construction, compelling rhetorical approaches, research techniques, library and database skills, and forms of citation.
Reading and Composition on topics in East Asian Humanities: Read More [+]

EA LANG 24 Freshman Seminar 1 Unit

Terms offered: Prior to 2007
The Freshman Seminar Program has been designed to provide new students with the opportunity to explore an intellectual topic with a faculty member in a small seminar setting. Freshman seminars are offered in all campus departments and topics vary from department to department and semester to semester. Enrollment limited to fifteen freshmen.

Freshman Seminar: Read More [+]

EA LANG 39 Freshman/Sophomore Seminar 1.5 - 2 Units

Terms offered: Not yet offered
Freshman and sophomore seminars offer lower division students the opportunity to explore an intellectual topic with a faculty member and a group of peers in a small-seminar setting. These seminars are offered in all campus departments; topics vary from department to department and from semester to semester.

Freshman/Sophomore Seminar: Read More [+]

EA LANG C50 Introduction to the Study of Buddhism 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
This introduction to the study of Buddhism will consider materials drawn from various Buddhist traditions of Asia, from ancient times down to the present day. However, the course is not intended to be a comprehensive or systematic survey; rather than aiming at breadth, the course is designed around key themes such as ritual, image veneration, mysticism, meditation, and death. The overarching emphasis throughout the course will be on the hermeneutic
difficulties attendant upon the study of religion in general, and Buddhism in particular.
Introduction to the Study of Buddhism: Read More [+]

EA LANG 84 Sophomore Seminar 1 or 2 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Fall 2012
Sophomore seminars are small interactive courses offered by faculty members in departments all across the campus. Sophomore seminars offer opportunity for close, regular intellectual contact between faculty members and students in the crucial second year. The topics vary from department to department and semester to semester. Enrollment limited to 15 sophomores.

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EA LANG 101 Catastrophe, Memory, and Narrative: Comparative Responses to Atrocity in the Twentieth Century 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Summer 2015 10 Week Session, Summer 2015 First 6 Week Session
This course will examine comparative responses to and representations of violent conflict. We will pay attention to how catastrophic events are productive of new forms of expression--oral, written, and visual--as well as destructive of familiar ones. We will examine the ways in which experience and its representation interact during and in the aftermath of extreme violence. Our empirical cases will be
drawn from our research on responses to WWII atrocities, and on the post-Cold War civil wars in Africa.
Catastrophe, Memory, and Narrative: Comparative Responses to Atrocity in the Twentieth Century: Read More [+]

EA LANG 105 Dynamics of Romantic Core Values in East Asian Premodern Literature and Contemporary Film 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Summer 2017 Second 6 Week Session, Spring 2017
This course explores representation of romantic love in East Asian cultures in premodern and post-modern contexts. Students develop a better understanding of the similarities and differences in traditional values in three East Asian cultures by comparing how canonical texts of premodern China, Japan and Korea represent romantic relationship. This is followed by the study of several contemporary East Asian films, giving
the student the opportunity to explore how traditional values persist, change, or become nexus points of resistance.
Dynamics of Romantic Core Values in East Asian Premodern Literature and Contemporary Film: Read More [+]

EA LANG 106 Expressing the Ineffable in China and Beyond: The Making of Meaning in Poetic Writing 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2012, Spring 2010, Spring 2006
This course will explore how the Chinese and English-language literary traditions (broadly defined) delineate the realm of the ineffable, and how cultural notions of the inexpressible shape the writing and reading of poems, songs, and a selection of prose pieces, from the uses of figurative language and prosody to genre and canon formation. In addition, in order to deepen our understanding of how writing achieves its aims, some attention will
be given to nonverbal modes of expression, including calligraphy and painting--and attempts to render them in writing. Over this course of study, students will not only refine their sensitivity to the power of artistic modes of indirection, but will also hone their skills in close reading, analytical writing, and oral expression. All readings will be in English.
Expressing the Ineffable in China and Beyond: The Making of Meaning in Poetic Writing: Read More [+]

EA LANG 107 War, Empire, and Literature in East Asia 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2013, Fall 2008
This course will examine war, empire, and the writing and memorialization of history through an eclectic group of literary, graphic, and cinematic texts from China, Japan, Europe, and the U.S.

War, Empire, and Literature in East Asia: Read More [+]

EA LANG 108 Revising the Classics: Chinese and Greek Poetry in Translation 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2015, Fall 2006, Spring 2006
This course will explore poetic translation, across languages, across cultures, and across historical ages, not merely from the perspective of the "accuracy" with which a classic text is represented in the translation, but as a window into the nature of poetic tradition and poetic writing itself. Works will be primarily drawn from the Chinese tradition, but in the interest of allowing a comparative discussion of the course's central
themes, a significant amount of reading from ancient and modern Greek poetry will be included as well. The goal of the class is not simply to gain familiarity with Chinese poetry and poets, but more fundamentally to gain skill and sophistication in reading, responding to, and thinking about poetry.
Revising the Classics: Chinese and Greek Poetry in Translation: Read More [+]

EA LANG 109 History of the Culture of Tea in China and Japan 4 Units

Terms offered: Summer 2016 First 6 Week Session, Fall 2015, Fall 2014
In this course we compare the cultural traditions of tea in China and Japan. In addition, using tea as the case study, we analyze the mechanics of the flow of culture across both national boundaries and social practices (such as between poetry and the tea ceremony). Understanding the tea culture of these countries informs students of important and enduring aspects of both cultures, provides an opportunity to discuss the role
of religion and art in social practice, provides a forum for cultural comparison, and provides as well an example of the relationship between the two countries and Japanese methods of importing and naturalizing another country's social practice. Korean tea traditions are also briefly considered.
History of the Culture of Tea in China and Japan: Read More [+]

EA LANG 110 Bio-Ethical Issues in East Asian Thought 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2015, Spring 2014
This course will explore some of the most difficult bioethical issues confronting the world today from the perspective of traditional values embedded in the cultural history of India, China, and Japan as evidenced in their religions, legal codes, and political history. Possible topics include population control, abortion, sex-selection, euthanasia, suicide, genetic manipulation, brain-death, and organ transplants.

Bio-Ethical Issues in East Asian Thought: Read More [+]

EA LANG 111 Reading Global Politics in Contemporary East Asian Literature 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2016
This class examines the global dynamics and local distinction of literary writings from contemporary East Asia. Beginning with the colonial connections among Tokyo, Shanghai and Seoul during the 1920s-1940s, and moving on to texts composed since 2000 in Manila, Hong Kong, India and elsewhere, the course considers how literary writers have grappled with an increasingly integrated global marketplace in which culture, ideas and people circulate alongside (and as) capital.
Discussions will reflect on the confluence of culture and politics in literary writings that treat race tension, ecological crisis, capitalist catastrophe and other themes. Primary readings will be supplemented by iconic essays of cultural criticism and recent films.
Reading Global Politics in Contemporary East Asian Literature: Read More [+]

EA LANG 112 The East Asian Sixties 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2014
The 1960s were a time of historical transformation and upheaval in East Asia. It saw the overthrow of political regimes, the consolidation of communism, unprecedented capitalist expansion, and the emergence of new technologies that affected aesthetic production and consumption. This course explores the multiple aspects of culture, aesthetics, and politics that defined this moment. It asks how and why we can define the 1960s as a period, while considering
the significance of defining East Asia (a term which denotes an imagined space of relations) as a particular region at this time.
The East Asian Sixties: Read More [+]

EA LANG 114 Illness Narratives, Vulnerable Bodies 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016
The course will introduce students to narratives about illness, disease and healing written by patients, physicians, caretakers, and others. These narratives report an experience. They reveal the interactions between the unfolding life of the patient and the shifting social meanings attached to illness. We will study the relationships between illness and society through readings of fiction, memoir, films, essays and graphic novels in order to understand how
these varied forms of storytelling organize and give meaning to crucial questions about embodiment, disability and emergent forms of sociality enabled by our bodily vulnerabilities.
Illness Narratives, Vulnerable Bodies: Read More [+]

EA LANG 115 Knowing Others, and Being Known: The Art of Writing People 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017
What does it mean to use the medium of writing to “know” a person, and precisely how does one avail oneself of that medium to make oneself—or someone else— “known”? This course will guide students in writing about one of the most challenging of subjects: people. Students will have the opportunity to (a) read deeply in a selection of writings drawn from a range of genres and cultures, to acquaint themselves with a range of rhetorical tools employed in the portrayal
of human lives and character, (b) identify the aims of their own writings, and (c) develop competency in applying what they have learned as readers to their own writing.
Knowing Others, and Being Known: The Art of Writing People: Read More [+]

EA LANG 116 Modern East Asian Fiction 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017
Comparative analysis of modern literature from China (including Hong Kong and Taiwan), Korea, and Japan with an emphasis on the short story and the novel. We will think about both the specificities of the literatures of the region as well as shared and interconnected experiences of modernity that broadly connect the cultures of East Asia during the twentieth century. Thematic concerns will include: modernism and modernity; nostalgia and homesickness; empire and its
aftermath; and the cultures of globalization.
Modern East Asian Fiction: Read More [+]

EA LANG 117 Lu Xun and his Worlds 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018
This course provides a forum for reading and discussing East Asia’s greatest and most iconic modern writers, Lu Xun. We will closely read Lu Xun’s major works , discuss his role in the reinvention of the Chinese language and literary tradition, explore the global literary and intellectual currents with which he was deeply engaged, as well as situating him within the tumultuous era of colonialism, modernization, and revolution. All readings will be available in English
translation.
Lu Xun and his Worlds: Read More [+]

EA LANG 118 Sex and Gender in Premodern Chinese Culture 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2015
This course explores Chinese cultures of sex and gender from antiquity to the seventeenth century. We concentrate on three interconnected issues: women’s status, homoeroticism, and the human body. Our discussion will be informed by cross-cultural comparisons with ancient Greece, Renaissance England, and Contemporary America. In contrast to our modern regime of sexuality, which collapses all the three aforementioned issues into the issues of desire and identity intrinsic
to the body, we will see how the early Chinese regime of sexual act evolved into the early modern regime of emotion that concerned less inherent identities than a media culture of life-style performance.
Sex and Gender in Premodern Chinese Culture: Read More [+]

EA LANG 119 The History of Heaven 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018
Higher Learning begins with the study of heaven. As the source of orientation in space and time, heaven provides humanity the foundation for its knowledge and political order. To understand what knowledge is or how politics function, we need a basic understanding of the ways of heaven. This course examines the function heaven serves in the founding of order against the void in nature through the formation of conventional systems of time and space and the role heaven
has played in the promulgation of governments. From a cross-cultural, interdisciplinary perspective that covers the course of Eurasian history and using primary sources in translation, we will see heaven unfold through the developments that leave us with the world we know today.
The History of Heaven: Read More [+]

EA LANG C120 Buddhism on the Silk Road 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Fall 2015, Fall 2014
This course will discuss the social, economic, and cultural aspects of Buddhism as it moved along the ancient Eurasian trading network referred to as the “Silk Road”. Instead of relying solely on textual sources, the course will focus on material culture as it offers evidence concerning the spread of Buddhism. Through an examination of the Buddhist archaeological remains of the Silk Road, the course will address specific topics, such as the symbiotic
relationship between Buddhism and commerce; doctrinal divergence; ideological shifts in the iconography of the Buddha; patronage (royal, religious and lay); Buddhism and political power; and art and conversion. All readings will be in English.
Buddhism on the Silk Road: Read More [+]

EA LANG C126 Buddhism and the Environment 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2011, Fall 2009, Spring 2008
A thematic course on Buddhist perspectives on nature and Buddhist responses to environmental issues. The first half of the course focuses on East Asian Buddhist cosmological and doctrinal perspectives on the place of the human in nature and the relationship between the salvific goals of Buddhism and nature. The second half of the course examines Buddhist ethics, economics, and activism in relation to environmental issues in contemporary Southeast
Asia, East Asia, and America.
Buddhism and the Environment: Read More [+]

EA LANG C128 Buddhism in Contemporary Society 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Spring 2017, Spring 2016
A study of the Buddhist tradition as it is found today in Asia. The course will focus on specific living traditions of East, South, and/or Southeast Asia. Themes to be addressed may include contemporary Buddhist ritual practices; funerary and mortuary customs; the relationship between Buddhism and other local religious traditions; the relationship between Buddhist institutions and the state; Buddhist monasticism and its relationship to the
laity; Buddhist ethics; Buddhist "modernism," and so on.
Buddhism in Contemporary Society: Read More [+]

EA LANG C130 Zen Buddhism 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2013, Spring 2010, Summer 2007 Second 6 Week Session
This course will introduce students to the Zen Buddhist traditions of China and Japan, drawing on a variety of disciplinary perspectives (history, anthropology, philosophy, and so on). The course will also explore a range of hermeneutic problems (problems involved in interpretation) entailed in understanding a sophisticated religious tradition that emerged in a time and culture very different from our own.

Zen Buddhism: Read More [+]

EA LANG C132 Pure Land Buddhism 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2015, Fall 2014
This course will discuss the historical development of the Pure Land school of East Asian Buddhism, the largest form of Buddhism practiced today in China and Japan. The curriculum is divided into India, China, and Japan sections, with the second half of the course focusing exclusively on Japan where this form of religious culture blossomed most dramatically, covering the ancient, medieval, and modern periods. The curriculum will begin with a reading
of the core scriptures that form the basis of the belief system and then move into areas of cultural expression. The course will follow two basic trajectories over the centuries: doctrine/philosophy and culture/society.
Pure Land Buddhism: Read More [+]

EA LANG C135 Tantric Traditions of Asia 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2013, Spring 2010
The emergence of the tantras in seventh and eighth-century India marked a watershed for religious practice throughout Asia. These esoteric scriptures introduced complex new ritual technologies that transformed the religious traditions of India, from Brahmanism to Jainism and Buddhism, as well as those of Southeast Asia, Tibet, Mongolia, China, Korea, and Japan. This course provides an overview of tantric religion across these regions.

Tantric Traditions of Asia: Read More [+]

EA LANG C175 Archaeology of East Asia 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Spring 2015
Prehistoric and protohistoric archaeology in China, Japan, and Korea.

Archaeology of East Asia: Read More [+]

EA LANG 180 East Asian Film: Directors and their Contexts 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2011, Spring 2008
A close analysis of the oeuvre of an East Asian director in its aesthetic, cultural, and political contexts.

East Asian Film: Directors and their Contexts: Read More [+]

EA LANG 181 East Asian Film: Special Topics in Genre 4 Units

Terms offered: Summer 2017 Second 6 Week Session, Fall 2014, Spring 2014
The study of East Asian films as categorized either by industry-identified genres (westerns, horror films, musicals, film noir, etc.) or broader interpretive modes (melodrama, realism, fantasy, etc).

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EA LANG 191 Tools and Methods in the Study of East Asian Philosophy and Religion 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Spring 2017, Spring 2015
This course is a capstone experience that centers on the philosophies and religions of East Asia examined from multiple theoretical perspectives. It comprises several thematic units within which a short set of readings about theory are followed by chronologically arranged readings about East Asia. Themes will alternate from year to year but may include: ritual and performance studies; religion and evolution; definitions of religion and theories
of its origins; and the role of sacrifice.
Tools and Methods in the Study of East Asian Philosophy and Religion: Read More [+]

EA LANG H195A Honors Course 2 - 5 Units

Terms offered: Prior to 2007
Directed independent study and preparation of senior honors thesis. Limited to senior honors candidates in the East Asian Religion, Thought, and Culture major (for description of Honors Program, see Index).

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EA LANG H195B Honors Course 2 - 5 Units

Terms offered: Prior to 2007
Directed independent study and preparation of senior honors thesis. Limited to senior honors candidates in the East Asian Religion, Thought, and Culture major (for description of Honors Program, see Index).

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EA LANG 198 Directed Group Study 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2010, Fall 2009, Spring 2009
Small group instruction in topics not covered by regularly scheduled courses.

Directed Group Study: Read More [+]

EA LANG 199 Independent Study 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2007, Spring 2007
Independent study in topics not covered by regularly scheduled courses.

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Faculty and Instructors

+ Indicates this faculty member is the recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award.

Faculty

Jinsoo An, Assistant Professor.

Robert Ashmore, Associate Professor. China, lyric poetry, Chinese literature, Chinese culture, poetic theory.
Research Profile

Weihong Bao, Assistant Professor. Film theory and history, media archaeology, critical theory, visual and performance culture, Chinese language cinema, transnational genre cinema, comparative media history and theory.

Mark L. Blum, Professor. Buddhism, Japan, culture and society, modernization.
Research Profile

Mark Csikszentmihalyi, Professor. Early China, Confucianism, Taoism, Daoism, Comparative Religion.
Research Profile

Jacob Dalton, Associate Professor. Religion, ritual, Tibet, Buddhism, Tantra, Dunhuang.
Research Profile

Yoko Hasegawa, Professor. Pragmatics, syntax, east asian languages and cultures, acoustic phonetics, semantics, sociolinguistics of Japanese, cognitive linguistics.
Research Profile

+ H. Mack Horton, Professor. Performativity, east asian languages and cultures, classical poetry, diary literature, cultural context, anthology of vernacular poetry, Man'yoshu, poetry and poetics.
Research Profile

Andrew Jones, Professor. East asian languages and cultures, Chinese popular music, sonic culture, media technology, modern Chinese fiction, children's literature, literary translation.
Research Profile

Youngmin Kwon, Adjunct Professor. Korean literature.
Research Profile

Ling Hon Lam, Assistant Professor.

Daniel C. O'Neill, Associate Professor. Modern Japanese Literature, East Asian Cinema, Global Modernism, visual studies.
Research Profile

Lanchih Po, Associate Adjunct Professor.

Robert Sharf, Professor. East asian languages and cultures, medieval Chinese buddhism, Chan buddhism, Japanese buddhism, Zen buddhism, Tantric buddhism, buddhist art, ritual studies, methodological issues in the study of religion.
Research Profile

Alan Tansman, Professor. Modern Japanese Literature, literary and cultural theory, aesthetics and politics, Comparative Responses to Violence, literary history.
Research Profile

Paula Varsano, Associate Professor. Phenomenology, translation, comparative literature, aesthetics, epistemology, classical Chinese poetry and poetics (3rd-11th centuries), traditional Chinese literary theory.
Research Profile

Sophie Volpp, Associate Professor. East asian languages and cultures, history of performance, gender theory, the history of sexuality, material culture, material objects in late-imperial literature.
Research Profile

Lecturers

Yasuko Konno Baker, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Brian Baumann, Lecturer. Mongolian language.
Research Profile

Weisi Cai, Lecturer. Chinese language.
Research Profile

Yuriko Caltabiano, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Seung-Eun Chang, Lecturer. Korean language.
Research Profile

Damien Donnelly, Lecturer. Chinese language.
Research Profile

Kayoko Imagawa, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Wakae Kambara, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Jiyoung Kim, Lecturer. Korean language.
Research Profile

Kyung-Ah Kim, Lecturer. Korean language.
Research Profile

Minsook Kim, Lecturer. Korean language.
Research Profile

Kijoo Ko, Lecturer. Korean language.
Research Profile

Yumi Konishi, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Meehyei Lee, Lecturer. Korean language.
Research Profile

Soojin C. Lee, Lecturer. Korean language.
Research Profile

I-Hao Li, Lecturer. Chinese language.
Research Profile

Hsin-yu Lin, Lecturer. Chinese language.
Research Profile

Pei-Ying Lin, Lecturer.
Research Profile

Li Liu, Lecturer. Chinese language.
Research Profile

Sanjyot Mehendale, Lecturer. Near Eastern studies, Central Asia, Central Asian studies, archaeology and art history.
Research Profile

Noriko Knickerbocker, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Junghee Park, Lecturer. Korean language.
Research Profile

Jann M. Ronis, Lecturer. Buddhist studies.
Research Profile

Chika Shibahara, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Maki Takata, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Chen-Hui Tsai, Lecturer. Chinese language.
Research Profile

John R. Wallace, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Noriko Komatsu Wallace, Lecturer. Japanese language.
Research Profile

Xianghua Wu, Lecturer. Chinese language.
Research Profile

Chunhong Xie, Lecturer. Chinese language.
Research Profile

Lihua Zhang, Lecturer. Chinese language.
Research Profile

Emeritus Faculty

Haruo Aoki, Professor Emeritus.

Cyril Birch, Professor Emeritus.

James E. Bosson, Professor Emeritus.

Kun Chang, Professor Emeritus.

Hung-Nin Samuel Cheung, Professor Emeritus. East asian languages and cultures, East Asian studies, vernacular Chinese literature and linguistics.
Research Profile

John C. Jamieson, Professor Emeritus.

Lewis Lancaster, Professor Emeritus. East asian languages and cultures, East Asian studies, east asian buddhism.
Research Profile

Susan Matisoff, Professor Emeritus. Japanese literature, performing arts and folklore.
Research Profile

Jeffrey Riegel, Professor Emeritus. East asian languages and cultures, ancient Chinese poetry and prose, early Chinese thought, Confucian classics, paleography, recently-excavated manuscripts.
Research Profile

Pang-Hsin Ting, Professor Emeritus.

Stephen H. West, Professor Emeritus.

Contact Information

Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures

3413 Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-642-3480

Fax: 510-642-6031

ealang@berkeley.edu

Visit Department Website

Department Chair

H. Mack Horton, PhD

3407 Dwinelle

hmhorton@berkeley.edu

Student Services Adviser

Grant Tompkins

3414 Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-642-4497

Fax: 510-642-6031

ealc-advising@berkeley.edu

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