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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Xiaolin Duan
HSTAS 211
Seattle Campus

History of Chinese Civilization

Intensive survey of Chinese civilization from earliest times to today. Introduces all students, including East Asian history majors, to the general sweep of Chinese history. Social, cultural, and intellectual developments.

Class description

The course provides a broad discussion of Chinese society and culture from the pre-history to the present. Themes to be covered in the class include: the religious and philosophical traditions of Chinese; the structure and mechanisms of imperial society; the diverse facets of economic development and everyday life through the history; China's vast wealth of material culture; and the new opportunities/challenges in modern China. Arrangements can be made for W credit.

Student learning goals

To understand and know the basic events in Chinese history

To understand major historical transformations through the Chinese history, from medieval time to modern China

How to read historical texts and build them into a thesis or argument

How to think critically and express themselves in a clearer and convincing way

How to compare different time periods by concluding their similarities and emphasizing their unique characteristics

How to write a clear-stated, well-structured and coherent academic paper

General method of instruction

The class format will be a combination of lecture with multimedia aids (pictures, music, videos…), in-class activities and student discussion/presentation.

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

Required textbooks are Patricia Buckley Ebrey's "Cambridge Illustrated History of China" and Ebrey's "Chinese Civilization: A Sourcebook" [2nd ed.].

Participation in class discussions and activities, One mid-term examination, Final examination or a final paper of 5-7 page (on the topic that student is interested in).


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 Xiaolin Duan
Date: 04/14/2013