Education About Asia: Online Archives

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EAA Interview, Feature Article

EAA Interview with Pradeep Singh

Lucien: Thank you for agreeing to this interview. Would you please tell our readers a bit about your early years and recount some of the major factors that motivated you to start your own company in Bangalore? Pradeep Singh:I am a software entrepreneur and a firstgeneration immigrant to the US, as well as a husband, a father, and the many other identities that world-famous economist Amartya Sen would encourage us all to recognize!

Feature Article

The Sijo: A Window into Korean Culture

Many fourth graders in the United States have a Haiku Day. As I discovered from discussions with the students in my Writing Asian Poetry class, it is a great way to begin to learn about Japanese culture—the aesthetics of understatement, the appreciation for the natural world, the glimpses of humor in everyday life. Trying to write a seventeen-syllable poem about nature also seems a very doable project for almost any grade-level. The Korean counterpart is the sijo, a three-line vernacular ve...

Film Review Essay

Up the Yangtze

Chinese-Canadian filmmaker Yung Chang’s documentary Up the Yangtze is not easy to watch. Like the story it tells, the film is unsettling with the wrenching change it portrays. Chang follows two Chinese young people, Yu Shui and Chen Boyu, as they embark on new jobs with a “Farewell Cruise” company on China’s Yangtze River.

Book Review

“Socialism is Great!” A Worker’s Memoir of the New China

Those interested in teaching the China of the past fifty years have a plethora of good materials available to them. There is a wealth of information on the last ten years of Mao’s life, ranging from scholarly studies, accounts of travelers, to personal memoirs. These cover the Cultural Revolution, the rise and fall of the “Gang of Four,” and the deaths of both Zhou Enlai and Mao Zedong. For the past two decades, there are a number of accounts of the student movement of 1989 and its tragic ...

Book Review

Destiny Disrupted: A History of the World Through Islamic Eyes

The need for teachers of survey coursesinhistoryandgeographyto cover the Muslim world has become fraught, since 9/11, with a tension that doesn’t arise when the subject matter is, say, the Buddhist or Hindu world. Trying to be broadminded, non-Muslim Americans may end up presenting a bland version of the history of Islam that robs the subject of much of its dramatic interest. This book will help to correct that error....

Book Review, Columns

Imagining India: The Idea of a Renewed Nation

India today has the world’s second largest reservoir of skilled workers and a highly educated middle class of almost three hundred million fluent English speakers. Media reports, particularly in the financial press, emphasize galloping economic growth as India chases China for Asian superpower status. Nandan Nilekani, India’s IT icon and co-founder of Infosys, shares pundits’ enthusiasm for India’s breathtaking potential, but intimate knowledge of its daunting challenges tempers his opti...

Columns, EAA Interview

EAA Interview: Global India Circa 100 CE: South Asia in World History: A Brief Interview with Richard H. Davis

Richard H. Davis is Professor of Religion and Asian Studies at Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY. Previously he taught at Yale University. He is the author of Ritual in an Oscillating Universe: Worshiping Sivain Medieval India (Princeton University Press, 1991), Lives of Indian Images (Princeton University Press, 1997), and A Priest’s Guide to the Great Festival: Aghorasiva’s Mahotsavavidhi (Oxford University Press, 2010). He was the winner of the 1999 Association for Asian Studies (AAS)...

Web Gleanings

Web Gleanings: Korean Contemporary and Popular Culture

Title: Life in Korea URL: This site is useful to those who are looking for a brief overview of Korean contemporary culture. The General Information subpage consists of short paragraphs about each topic with links to additional information. The tab that leads to Culture and Language also contains information about today’s Korea. [caption id="attachment_16556" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Life in Kore...

Book Review, Feature Article

Silla Korea and the Silk Road: Golden Age, Golden Threads

Silla Korea and the Silk Road, Golden Age, Golden Threads, a curriculum guide designed for world history, geography, and Asian studies high school courses, lucidly demonstrates the normally neglected role of Korea in the history of the Silk Road.The Korea Society has a well-deserved reputation for the very high quality of everything it sponsors and publishes. This guide is no exception.The work focuses on, but is not limited to,the unified Silla Kingdom period (668–935 CE) usually referred to ...

Feature Article

Korean International Sports Stars

EDITOR’S INTRODuCTION: South Koreans are enamored with a wide variety of sports but, perhaps even more than is the case in many countries, citizens of the ROK look upon athletes who achieve international fame not onlyas heroes and heroines,but also as national symbols of South Korea’s vibrant culture. Our thanks to Bang-Chool Kim of Seoul National University of Education and Sun-Yong Kwon of Seoul National University for the following profiles of three internationally famous Korean athletes.

Feature Article

A Bully in the Classroom? Teaching Our Twisted Hero: A Modern Korean Classic

Our Twisted Hero is a novel as dichotomous and complex as Korea itself. It is a classic political allegory, a snapshot of a particular time and place, and a portrait of the human condition. The narrator, Han Pyongt’ae, a twelve-year-old boy whose family has been transferred from Seoul to a rural town, expects to be welcomed as being more sophisticated because of his schooling in the capital. On the contrary, he encounters a harrowing year of elementary school when his spirit is crushed by the ...

Feature Article

Korea: Traditional and Modern Culture in Pictures

In South Korea, traditional and modern culture appears in unexpected and beautiful juxtapositions. A short walk in Seoul treats you to traditional Korean music, beautiful temples and palaces, and a cutting-edge display of B-Boy dancing. Museums hold exhibitions of Western art that would be the envy of any Western city, and Korean cities teem with small and large Korean art galleries of all kinds. In Asia, Hallyu (Korean Wave) has already pushed Korean culture into China, Taiwan, Japan...

Feature Article

Asia in Focus: The Koreas

The comprehensive, authoritative survey of Korean history will attract post-secondary Asian history scholars to consider this publication as a course textbook. Its scope, however, extends well beyond the peninsula’s past. From the first pages, we are immersed in everything Korean: politics, geography, food, music, language, art, and belief systems. Additionally, we take in a timely briefing on what could soon be one of the world’s ten leading economies.

Feature Article

Shamans, Nostalgias, and the IMF: South Korean Popular Religion in Motion

In Shamans, Nostalgias, and the IMF, Kendall skillfully examines the role of shamanism in contemporary Korea’spopular culture.Although many regard Shamanism as an anachronistic remnant of the past, the author explains how Korea’s oldest religion has adapted itself to changing circumstances,why it is thriving in South Korea, and how it plays a significant role in alleviating anxiety in the modern world.

Feature Article

Old Gods, New TImes: A Shaman Ritual in South Korea

In the 1970s, as a young anthropologist and novice fieldworker, I spent nearly two years in the company of South Korean shamans, called mudang or mansin, observing their rituals and divination sessions and accompanying them to kut, their most elaborate ritual. In kut, the shaman puts on the costumes of the gods, dances to rapid drum beats, and when the music stops, speaks and mimes in the god’s persona, sometimes angry and demanding, sometimes comic, usually offering promises of good fortune b...

Feature Article

Becoming a Junzi: Background of Interpersonal Communication in China

Wimal Dissanayake, who created a foundation for the Asiacentric model of communication studies, maintains that Asian classical texts constitute a storehouse of communication concepts and propositions that have yet to be mined for understanding the way Chinese communicate. “Asian countries...have produced rich and complex civilizations that have grown over the centuries and no civilization is possible without a vigorous system of communication.” Before sampling those classical texts for clues...

EAA Interview, Feature Article

Richard Katz on the Japanese Economy

Richard Katz is Editor-in-Chief of The Oriental Economist Report (TOE) and also a special correspondent for the Weekly Toyo Keizai, a leading Japanese weekly business magazine. Katz holds a BA in history from Columbia University and an MA in economics from New York University. A veteran journalist, Katz has been writing about Japan and US-Japan relations for three decades. For several years, Katz was a Visiting Lecturer in Economics at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Bro...

Feature Article

Viet Nam’s Economy in Transition: Successes and Challenges

ViệtNam’s twentieth century economic development was interrupted by long years of destructive warfare and stunted by the  distortions of central planning. During the last two decades, however, under the reform policy known as Đổimới (renovation), Việt Nam’s economy has made tremendous strides, establishing the institutions of a market system and dramatically improving living standards. A land of rich natural resources that nonetheless struggled to feed its own population under prev...

Feature Article

Direct Foreign Investment in China: Sure Bet or Folly?

Between 1995 and 2003, I was the Senior Vice President of Mellon Financial Corporation responsible for international banking operations. The bank’s chief executive officer was intrigued by the prospect of establishing an operating presence in China and asked me to undertake a feasibility study. Since Mellon had very large and competitive asset management, custodial, and shareholder services businesses, there were sound reasons to evaluate growth and income generation potential for th...

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