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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Christoph Giebel
HSTAS 221
Seattle Campus

History of Southeast Asia

Surveys Southeast Asian civilizations at the outset of Western colonial rule; the colonial impact on the traditional societies of Burma, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines; nineteenth- and twentieth-century nationalist and revolutionary movements; emergence of Southeast Asia as a region in the modern world. Offered: jointly with JSIS A 221.

Class description

This is an introductory course to the countries of contemporary Southeast Asia: Brunei, Burma (Myanmar), Cambodia, East Timor, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Viet Nam. The course will place the region as a whole in a historical context that reveals the emergence of the present day nations of what we call Southeast Asia.

Student learning goals

Broad knowledge of Southeast Asian nations, their histories, cultures, and societies, with an emphasis on unifying themes and patterns of development.

Identify broader historical trends within Southeast Asia and those influencing Southeast Asia from outside.

Historical and critical thinking.

Close reading of historical sources.

Comparativist sensitivities.

Foundational knowledge for more specialized learning and research in Southeast Asian Studies and about specific Southeast Asian nations.

General method of instruction

Lectures, documents, video segments, section discussions. Readings will include primary sources, academic texts, and literature.

Recommended preparation

No prerequisites.

Class assignments and grading

Course assignments will be outlined in the course syllabus, but usually entail a map assignment, two exams around weeks 5 and 9, a final course project, but no final exam.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Christoph Giebel
Date: 02/27/2012