The course I teach most often at Temple University is the “Geography of South, Southeast and East Asia.” It is an introductory level course enrolling mostly freshmen and sophomores and a total of as many as eighty to one hundred students per section. Some of the students enjoy Asia and go on to be Asian Studies majors. Others use the course as an introduction to geography and continue with other courses in that field. However, most students by far enroll because they are required to take a certain number of “international studies” courses in the university’s core curriculum, and choose this particular course because it offers a convenient time slot, empty seats, and a teacher who is known for darkening the room to show slides. In other words, they do not all come because of an interest in Asian geography.
‘Have Fun in China,’ She Said as I left For Japan