Courses - Fall 2021

CAPS 1622 The World of Modern Japan

In 1868, samurai revolutionaries and their allies seized the reins of power and established a new capital they called Tokyo.  Against all odds, this fragile regime survived and made Tokyo a center of power that would transform both Japan and the world.  This survey of Japanese history explores the rise and fall of Japan as a modern imperial power; its foreign relations; its economic and scientific development from "feudalism" to futuristic technologies; and Japan's many modern revolutions, from the rule of the samurai to Westernization and democracy, from democratic collapse to fascism and World War II, and from Japan's postwar rebirth to the present.  We will examine not only big events but also everyday life, including gender and sexuality, family and schools, and art and popular culture.

Distribution: (HA-AS, GLC-AS, HST-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Kristin Roebuck (kar79)
Full details for CAPS 1622 : The World of Modern Japan
CAPS 1920 Modern China

This course surveys modern Chinese history from 1600 to present. Time will be devoted to each of the three major periods into which modern Chinese history is conventionally divided: the Imperial Era (1600-1911), the Republican Era (1911-1949), and the People's Republic of China (1949-present). It guides students through pivotal events in modern Chinese history, and uncovers the origins of China's painful transition from a powerful early modern empire to a country torn by civil unrest and imperialist invasion, and then from a vanguard of world revolution to a post-communist party-state whose global power is on the rise.

Distribution: (HA-AS, GLC-AS, HST-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Yue Du (yd367)
Full details for CAPS 1920 : Modern China
CAPS 2132 Law and Society in Early Modern and Modern China

China was and still is regarded in the Western world as a country without the rule of law. In this course, students examine recent scholarship that challenges this simplified understanding of the role of law in Chinese politics and society. It approaches law in early modern and modern China both as a state institution of governance and control, and as a platform that facilitates interactions and negotiations between state and society, between different social forces, and between different cultures. At the same time, this course guides students to develop projects of their own choice, either addressing legal issues or using legal sources, from tentative proposals to research papers based on their examination of original or translated primary sources.

Distribution: (HA-AS, GLC-AS, HST-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Yue Du (yd367)
Full details for CAPS 2132 : Law and Society in Early Modern and Modern China
CAPS 3000 Seminar on American Relations with China

A historical review of the fragile and volatile U.S.-China relationship from the opening by Richard Nixon in the early 1970s until the present. Several individual sessions will be led by current or former executive branch or congressional officials, business people, journalists, representatives of nongovernmental organizations and others who have worked in China or have participated in the making of U.S. policy toward China.

Distribution: (HA-AS, HST-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Cynthia Watson (caw333)
Full details for CAPS 3000 : Seminar on American Relations with China
CAPS 3352 Getting Rich in Modern China

People outside China often talk about "China's rise", the changes in world economics and politics that come from the increase of the power of the People's Republic. From a domestic perspective, though, China's rise represents a promise to regular people that they will lead richer lives, both literally and figuratively. This course will examine the nature and history of that promise as it is experienced through literature, film, and other cultural texts. Why and how do PRC citizens want to get rich, and what happens when they don't? How does economic class shape identity in contemporary China? Can parts of the population be happy outside of the pursuit of material wealth? All texts in the course will be available in English, and most primary texts will be available in Chinese; writing assignments will be submitted in English.

Distribution: (LA-AS, ALC-AS, SCD-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Nick Admussen (na347)
Full details for CAPS 3352 : Getting Rich in Modern China
CAPS 3967 What is China?

China is often thought of as being isolated from the outside world. It is imagined as existing in historic seclusion, and, following the establishment of the People's Republic, as pursuing a path of autarky. Such separation has then only been somewhat modified by the set of economic reforms that Deng Xiaoping first instituted in the late 1970s. In this lecture we will seek to turn such conventional wisdom on its head through examining "what China is" via a consideration of transnational currents within the country's development. However, the course's primary focus will not be upon the past, but rather the present and attempting to determine just where the point of intersection between China and the rest of the world is. Coming to terms with such an issue will provide those who enroll in the class with a deeper, more nuanced, understanding of China's rise and this trend's implications for the rest of the world. We will accomplish this task through a combination of surveying the existing literature on China and transnational politics, and considering new theoretical perspectives on both.  

Distribution: (CA-AS, GLC-AS, SSC-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Allen Carlson (arc26)
Full details for CAPS 3967 : What is China?
CAPS 4001 China in Transition

This seminar, using faculty-directed research projects, is intended to survey China's transformation through revolution and reform since 1949, and to examine major issues under the themes of modernity and sustainability in the reform era.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Xu Xin (xx12)
Full details for CAPS 4001 : China in Transition
CAPS 4010 Honors Thesis Tutorial I

Honors students conduct research to prepare a thesis on a topic of their own choosing under the direction of a faculty member. The application must be successfully submitted and an Honors Committee formed by the end of applicant's junior year in order for the student to be an honors candidate. Permission to enroll in CAPS 4020 is contingent upon the advisor's judgment of the viability of the student's honors thesis by the end of the semester.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Xu Xin (xx12)
Full details for CAPS 4010 : Honors Thesis Tutorial I
CAPS 4020 Honors Thesis Tutorial II

Honors students complete research and finish a thesis on a topic of their own choosing under the direction of a faculty member.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Allen Carlson (arc26)
Full details for CAPS 4020 : Honors Thesis Tutorial II
CAPS 4127 The Body Politic in Asia

Visions of bodily corruption preoccupy ruler and ruled alike and prompt campaigns for moral, medical, and legal reform in periods of both stability and revolution. This seminar explores the links between political, sexual, and scientific revolutions in early modern and modern Asia. The focus is on China and Japan, with secondary attention to South Asia and Korea. Interaction with the West is a major theme. Topics include disease control, birth control and population control, body modification, the history of masculinity, honorific violence and sexual violence, the science of sex, normative and stigmatized sexualities, fashion, disability, and eugenics. The course begins with an exploration of regimes of the body in "traditional" Asian cultures. The course then turns to the medicalization and modernization of the body under the major rival political movements in Asia: feminism, imperialism, nationalism, and communism.

Distribution: (HA-AS, HST-AS, SCD-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Kristin Roebuck (kar79)
Full details for CAPS 4127 : The Body Politic in Asia
CAPS 4355 Work and Labor in China

China's transition to capitalism has resulted in more than a generation of rapid and nearly uninterrupted growth. It increasingly dominates the production of all sorts of goods, from the very low end and labor intensive, to the high value added and capital intensive. China is aiming to dominate future product cycles, and is making major inroads in digital technology, AI, and robotics. This spectacular re-emergence as a world power has also increasingly lead to political conflict, both domestically and internationally. 

Distribution: (SBA-AS, GLC-AS, SSC-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Eli Friedman (edf48)
Full details for CAPS 4355 : Work and Labor in China
CAPS 4827 China, Tibet and Xinjiang

Seminar intended to examine the increasingly complex relationship that has evolved between China and the rest of the international system, with particular focus on the rise of Chinese nationalism and the extent to which those in Tibet, Xinjiang, and, to a lesser extent, Taiwan, are contesting such a trend. In so doing, the course emphasizes the interrelated, yet often contradictory, challenges facing Beijing in regards to the task of furthering the cause of national unity while promoting policies of integration with international society and interdependence with the global economy.

Distribution: (HA-AS, GLC-AS, SSC-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Allen Carlson (arc26)
Full details for CAPS 4827 : China, Tibet and Xinjiang
CAPS 4998 Inquiry in Politics and Policy

This required course forms the core of the Cornell in Washington academic program. The foundational skill of both politics and policy is taking knowledge, analyzing it, figuring out how to convert it into action. This course aims to give students the experience and understanding of how this process of knowledge into action works. Students will undertake a substantial research project in a topic related to or affected by politics and/or policy (broadly defined), and examine it through a variety of approaches and disciplines. The main goal is to understand the issue, analyze what is going on, and evaluate what options are available to respond.  The idea is to not only define and examine the issue, but also think how to create and implement a solution. To do this, students will examine their issue using multiple different forms of inquiry (normative, empirical, and policy analysis) to see what each of those reveal as well as to see how the choice of how they investigate it shapes their results. CAPS students must do a topic that is related to Asia. GPHS students must do a topic that is related to public health.

Distribution: (SBA-AS, SSC-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: David Silbey (ds90)
Full details for CAPS 4998 : Inquiry in Politics and Policy
CAPS 4999 CAPS Independent Study

Independent study course in topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses. Students select a topic in consultation with the faculty member who has agreed to supervise the course work.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Allen Carlson (arc26)
Xu Xin (xx12)
Full details for CAPS 4999 : CAPS Independent Study