ASIAN STUDIES

CRN

13407

Distribution

A/D

Course No.

ASIA 110

Title

Canons and Cultures of Asia

Professor

Gustav Heldt

Schedule

Mon Wed 1:30 pm -2:50 pm OLIN 308
Cross-listed: Asian Studies, Literature, Religion

An introduction to canonical formulations of self, society, language, and cosmology in a variety of Asian cultures through intensive engagement with philosophical treatises, religious scriptures, prose literature and poetry. Works read include The Bhagavad Gita, The Ramayana, The Analects, The Tao Te Ching, Chuang Tzu, The Lotus Sutra, The Tale of Genji and Essays in Idleness among others. Emphasis is placed on drawing connections between texts as a way of outlining dialogues that took place over thousands of years and crossed numerous cultural regions within Southern and Eastern Asia. The course takes an eastward trajectory as we consider the distinctive linguistic and rhetorical features of Sanskrit and classical Chinese, the relationship between these differences and their radically different cosmologies, the overlap between these two cultural traditions in Buddhist thought, and one precipitate of this process in Korean and Japanese literature.