Asia Literature


**Calendar Correction

The following are not literature courses and cannot be used to fulfill the Arts Literature Requirement:
CHIN 310, 311, 312, 330, 331 and 332
JAPN 300, 301, 302, 303, 310, 311, 312, 315, 410, 411, 415, 417 and 420

The Arts literature requirements may be met with ASIA courses on Asian literature (which require no knowledge of an Asian language) as well as upper-division CHIN and JAPN courses which have “literature” or a genre of literature in the course title or in the Calendar description of the course.

ASIA 308 – Mythological Literature of Ancient India in Translation – (3) Myths of creation. Gods and goddesses of the Vedic pantheon. Connections with myths in other parts of the world, particularly in the Indo-European tradition. Literary representations of the myths.

ASIA 341 – Classical Chinese Literature in Translation – (3) An introduction to Chinese literature in the classical period (ca. 1100 B.C. – ca. 750 A.D.). Emphasis will be placed on the period during which the major forms of literature written in the classical language emerged, chiefly poetry, historical and philosophic prose writings, and the earliest genres of fiction in classical Chinese. The major recurring themes will be introduced and examined as they appear in different literary forms and genres from the hands of major writers. Students will be encouraged to draw comparisons and contrasts with the literary treatment of similar themes in Western literature.

ASIA 342 – Chinese Literature in Translation: The Vernacular Tradition – (3) The objective in this course will be to reach a basic understanding of the genres of vernacular literature in premodern China and their development over time (from the ninth through the eighteenth centuries A.D.). This will be done primarily through the reading and discussion of important or exemplary works of both drama and fiction. A further objective of the course will be to help the student gain an appreciation of how vernacular genres emerged as distinct from and sometimes opposed to the existing classical genres, not only because they were written in a different kind of language, but also because in them different concerns and values were given expression.

ASIA 347 – Traditional Korean Literature in Translation – (3) An introduction to Korean literature from ancient times to 1900.

ASIA 348 – Great Literary Works of Classical India in Translation – (3) Great Literary Works of Classical India in Translation – Major Sanskrit and Prakrit literary genres as developed in the Brahmanical, Buddhist and Jaina traditions, including folktales of riddle, intrigue, etc. Ramayana, Mahabharata. Polished poems of the urbane. Plays. Learned novels and long poems.

ASIA 349 – Southeast Asian Literature in Translation – (3) Literary works from the Malay/Indonesian speaking world (Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore) and some from other regions (mainland Southeast Asia, the Philippines). All readings in English translation.

ASIA 350 – Asian Literature in Translation: A Comparative Approach – (3) In this course students will read and discuss works of literature in translation from China, Japan, Korea, South Asia, and Southeast Asia. The aim is to examine what these literatures have in common and to what extent they are region-specific and diverge in form and content. The course will be team-taught. This is a required course for students who major in Chinese, Japanese, and South Asia Languages.

ASIA 351 – Modern Chinese Fiction in Translation – (3) Reading of selected novels and stories written between 1750 and the present.

ASIA 352 – Topics in Traditional Chinese Vernacular Literature – (3) Traditional Chinese culture as seen through reading and discussion of exemplary literary works in the vernacular language.

ASIA 357 – Modern Korean Fiction in Translation – (3)
 Selected novels and stories written between 1906 and the present.

ASIA 358 – Literature of Medieval India in Translation – (3) Devotional, mystic, and erotic poetry of medieval Hinduism, Islam, and Sikhism.

ASIA 359 – Gender Relations in Southeast Asian Literature – (3) Gender relations as portrayed in writings in English translation by women and men from the Malay/ Indonesian speaking world, mainland Southeast Asia, and the Philippines. All readings are in English translation. Students will read and discuss writings by women as well as men. The focus will be on literary texts from the Malay/ Indonesian speaking world (Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore), but works from other regions (Thailand, Vietnam, the Philippines) may be included as well. No prior knowledge of a Southeast Asian language or culture is required.

Asia 360 (001) – Re-Reading the Construction of Gender and Religion in Pre-Modern Japanese Culture – (3) This course focuses on the textual and visual representations of gender in Japanese art and literature of the Kamakura period (1185-1333) and the Muromachi period (1392-1873). Building on the widely accepted assumptions that religion is a cultural phenomenon and that gender is a crucial aspect of cultural formation, this course will explore various ways in which the issue of gender has informed the shaping of religious imagination. Primarily, we will be discussing the role of women within the religious tradition of Buddhism and society. This course is designed to show how medieval Japanese Buddhist ideas influenced social institutions like kingship or motherhood, while local customs and practices worked to shape images of Buddhist deities and icons in a culture-specific context.

ASIA 364 – Literature in Translation – (3) This course provides an introduction to the literature and cultural history of modern Japan, with readings drawn from various literary and other narrative genres (such as film, theatre, and manga), from 1868 to the present. Authors represented include: Natsume Soseki, Tanizaki Jun’ichiro, Higuchi Ichiyo, Hayashi Fumiko, Oe Kanzaburo, Oba Minako, and others. This is a reading and discussion course with emphasis on student participation. Class presentations, short writing assignments, and one paper required. No prerequisites.

ASIA 368 – Modern Literatures of South Asia in Translation – (3) Fiction, drama, and poetry of modern India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka, including works in English translation and originally written in English.

ASIA 398 – Classical Hindu, Buddhist and Jain Myths and Legends in Translation – (3) Stories of gods, goddesses and religious heroes from the Ramayana, Mahabharata, Puranas, Avadanas and in classical poetry and drama.

ASIA 444 – Topics in Modern Japanese – (3) Focuses on a limited time period or particular aspect of modern Japanese literature. Prerequisite: Asian Studies 364 or graduate standing.

ASIA 447 – Korean Women’s Literature – (3) Women’s voices and issues in the Korean literary tradition, from earliest times to the new millennium, in translation. Prerequisite: One of ASIA 347, ASIA 357. Permission of instructor is also acceptable.

ASIA 454 – Japanese Poetry in Translation (3) An introduction to Japanese poetry from its origins in song and myth, to its development from a courtly art (waka) to a popular pastime (haiku). Influences on prose, autobiography, and theatre will also be considered.

ASIA 455- Adaptations of Japanese Classics (3) Introduction to literary, stage, and film adaptations of Japanese classics and legends and the ways in which these “new” works appropriate the past to comment on the present. 

ASIA 457 – The Modern Korean Novel – (3) Survey of major single-volume novels, ranging from Yi Kwang-su’s Heartlessness to Ch’oe Yun’s There a Petal Silently Falls, in translation. Prerequisite: ASIA 357. Permission of instructor is also acceptable.

ASIA 460 – Modern Asian Women in Narrative – (3) Experience of women in the context of a particular Asian culture, as seen through literature, popular culture, film, and folklore. Narrative as a medium for the representation and constitution of gender.

ASIA 464 – Japanese Women’s Self-Writing – (3) Selected aspects of the more than 1000 years of self-writing (diary, autobiography, personal fiction). Theory and criticism about the use of writing as a medium of self-expression.

ASIA 490 – Asian Classics – Fourth Year Seminar – (3)  Focus changes from year to year. Prerequisite: Permission of Instructor and fourth-year standing.

CHIN 320/321 (001, 002, 901, 902, or 903) – (3) or CHIN 322 (951) – Readings in Twentieth Century Chinese Literature – (6) This is a course for students who have acquired a good reading knowledge of modern Chinese. It is an introduction to the twentieth century Chinese literature through selected Readings by writers of the May Fourth Era, as well as by writers from Taiwan, oversea Chinese writers, and writers in China to the present. The readings are primarily short Stories, but also includes some prose and poetry. In addition to introducing the history and the essential literary topics of Modern Chinese Literature, this course will also try to cultivate the student’s ability for literary analysis and appreciation. Students are expected to take an active part in class discussion, to do two oral presentations (10-15 minutes each), and to write two analytical papers (1000-1500 words each).
Text: Selected Readings of Twentieth Century Chinese Literature. Pre-requisite: CHIN 300, CHIN 302, or equivalent.

CHIN 410/411 (001) – Twentieth Century Chinese Short Story – (3) Selected short fiction from 1917 to the present. Only for students who do not have a good reading knowledge of modern Chinese before entering university. Completion of 60 credits is required. Pre-requisite: CHIN 300 or equivalent.

CHIN 420/421 (001) – Twentieth Century Chinese Literature – (3) Selected short stories, novels, plays, essays, and poems from 1917 to the present. For Students who have a good reading knowledge of modern Chinese. Completion of 60 Credits is required. Pre-requisite: CHIN 300, CHIN 305, or equivalent.

CHIN 430/431 (001, 002 or 901) – (3); or CHIN 432 (951) – Classical Chinese II – (6) This is a continuation of CHIN 331. It is an advanced reading course in classical Chinese, for students able to read 2500 characters, or with the pre-requisite of CHIN 331, or the equivalent taken elsewhere. The goal of the course is to prepare students for independent reading in classical Chinese. Selected readings materials cover a wide range of Chinese philosophy, history, literature and culture. CHIN 400 satisfies the Faculty of Arts literature requirement.
Text: Selected Readings of Classical Chinese from the Zhou to the Qing Dynasties. Pre-requisite: CHIN 331 or equivalent.

CHIN 440/441 (001) – (3); or CHIN 442 (921 or 951) – Readings in Pre-Modern Chinese Literature – (6) Selected texts from pre-twentieth century drama and fiction. For students who have acquired a good reading knowledge of modern and classical Chinese before entering university. Mythology, historical narratives of pre-Han and Han times, Supernatural stories of Wei-Jin, Tang tales, Bianwen, Song vernacular stories. Novels and drama of Yuan, Ming and Qing. Pre-requisite: CHIN 400 or equivalent.

CHIN 450/451 (001) – Pre-Modern Chinese Fiction and Drama – (3) Selected passages from thirteenth-century drama and seventeenth- to nineteenth-century fiction. Only for students who do not have a good reading knowledge of modern Chinese before entering the university. Pre-requisite: CHIN 400 or equivalent.

CHIN 460/461 (001) – Readings in Classical Chinese Poetry I – (3) Translation and analysis of selected work, especially from the pre-Han, North-South, and early Tang periods. This course and CHIN 414 are offered alternately.
Pre-requisite: CHIN 400, CHIN 405, CHIN 411, or equivalent.

CHIN 470/471 (001) – Readings in Classical Chinese Poetry II – (3) Readings in classical poetry from the time of Du Fu (712-770) to the end of the Qing Dynasty. This course and CHIN 413 are offered alternately. Pre-requisite: CHIN 400, CHIN 405, CHIN 411, CHIN 413, or equivalent.

HINU 400 – Introduction to Hindi and Urdu Literature – (6) Readings of various literary genres in Hindi, Urdu and their medieval equivalents. Modern fiction from India and Pakistan; the Urdu ghazal; medieval Hindi bhakti poetry; readings from the Adi Granth of the Sikhs. Hindi film. Discussion in Hindi-Urdu of all materials. Prerequisite(s): HINU 300.

JAPN 400 (001) – Readings in Modern Japanese Prose – (6) Modern essays, criticism, scholarly writings, short stories and excerpts from modern Japanese novels. Essay composition. Prerequisite: Japn 300.

JAPN 401 (001) – Classical Japanese II – (6) Advanced reading in classical Japanese literary texts.
Consult instructor before registering. Prerequisite: JAPN 300 and 312, or their equivalents, or by permission of instructor.

JAPN 402 (001) – Advanced Readings of Classical and Modern Japanese Poetry – (6) Translation and analysis of selected works from classical, medieval, and modern periods. Prerequisite: JAPN 300 and JAPN 301

JAPN 406 (001) – Readings in Modern Japanese Essays – (3) An advanced course in the reading and analysis of essays, criticism, scholarly writings in modern Japanese. Advanced conversation dealing with the content of the materials, translation into English, and practice in the use of standard reference tools will also be emphasized, with the goal of preparing students to do advanced research in Japanese. Prerequisite: JAPN 300 (and preferably 302 as well) at UBC, or must get permission of instructor to enter the class.

JAPN 408 (001) – Readings in Modern Japanese Literature – (3) An advanced course in the reading and analysis of literary texts in modern Japanese. Advanced conversation, translation into English, and practice in the use of standard reference tools will also be emphasized, with the goal of preparing students to do advanced research in Japanese. Prerequisite: JAPN 406 or must get permission of instructor to enter the class.

KORN 410 (001) – Modern Korean Short Fiction – (3/6) This course is an introduction to the 20th-century Korean short story. Students read excerpts from one short story per week in the original Korean, and supplement this with additional readings of related stories and criticism in English. Each Korean story is accompanied by detailed grammar, culture and vocabulary notes, as well as translations. Course Requirements: regular quizzes, one examination and one translation project per term. Prerequisite: KORN 300 or permission of the instructor(s).

PUNJ 300 (001) – Advanced Punjabi – (6) Advanced reading, composition and conversation. Major genres of Punjabi literature. Prerequisite: PUNJ 200 or equivalent. Course materials will be provided by the instructor.

SANS 300 (001) – Further Readings in Sanskrit – (6) Study of selected texts belonging to a particular period (e.g. Vedic) or representing a specific branch of kavya (poetic literature) or sastra (technical-philosophical literature). Prerequisite: SANS 200 or equivalent.