Education About Asia: Online Archives

Global Goes Local: Popular Culture in Asia

Download PDF

EDITED BY TIMOTHY CRAIG AND RICHARD KING

HONOLULU: UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII PRESS, 2002

320 PAGES. PAPERBACK: ISBN 0-8248-2611-6

Reviewed by W. Lawrence Neuman

Teaching Western undergraduates or other students who have very little background on Asia can be a daunting task. First, one must combat simplified stereotypes and myths to convey the great diversity/complexity of Asia. More significantly, teachers often find it difficult to discuss one specific issue detached from an entire interwoven web of Asian traditions, history, art/aesthetics, beliefs, language, social relations, and political and economic conditions. Thus, a teacher who wants to discuss gender relations finds that to help students understand its significance, he/she first must provide students with a salittle background on Asian history, family, politics, philosophy, and so forth. Likewise, when a teacher tries to contrast a feature in an Asian society with the same feature in the student’s own culture/society, he/she often must first assist students in developing the skills to critically evaluate the parallel feature “close to home.”