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New Spring 2019 Course: Everyday China

The course will critically analyze the radical transformations that have occurred in rural and urban China, with a focus on the years since “Reform and Opening” in the late 1970s and the “rise” of China in the global world order. 

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Everyday China
Spring 2019
EALC 499 Session 25454R
Monday 2-4:50, GFS 210
Professor Jenny Chio
 
At present, China is often represented by the mass media as an inscrutable, yet imminently significant, rising “superpower,” a nation that cannot be ignored and yet somehow continues to elude our understanding. While this framing may be useful for politicians and others who attempt to situate China as a straw man in global affairs, it does little to aid our knowledge of what life is like for the 1.3+ billion people living in the country. This course foregrounds a cultural and ethnographic perspective on the study of China today, emphasizing everyday experiences, changing subjectivities and identities, and shifting desires in post-1949 China. We will critically analyze the radical transformations that have occurred in rural and urban China, with a focus on the years since “Reform and Opening” in the late 1970s and the “rise” of China in the global world order. In particular, we will examine the influences of film and media, domestic and international migration, economic “liberalization,” and social memory on the lives of contemporary Chinese citizens through the lenses of gender, ethnicity, imaginaries, and intimacy.
 
Recommended Preparation:
This course is open to advanced undergraduates and MA students. It is recommended that all students have taken at least one or two relevant courses on East Asian and/or Chinese history, society, and politics (in EALC, History, Anthropology, IR, Sociology, Political Science, Communications, or another related discipline). Graduate students will be required to complete additional independent research for full credit.
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Events

January 17, 2019 - 4:00pm
Los Angeles, California

One of the most influential modern Chinese writers and the author of Lust, Caution, Eileen Chang passed away in Los Angeles in 1995. After her death, Dominic Cheung, Professor Emeritus at USC, took care of her sea burial in San Pedro and set up the Eileen Chang Special Collection in the East Asian Library at USC in 1997. Cheung will discuss these experiences as a part of the lecture series titled Los Angeles and Shanghai: The USC Nexus.

January 24, 2019 - 4:00pm
Los Angeles, California

Please join the USC U.S.-China Institute for a book talk with journalist and author Leta Hong Fincher. Betraying Big Brother is a story of how the feminist movement in China against patriarchy could reconfigure the country and the rest of the world.