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Studiegids

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Culture and Language: East Asia

Vak
2020-2021

Admission requirements

This course is only available for students in the BA International Studies programme.
Limited places are also open for exchange students.
Please note: this course takes place in The Hague. Traveling between University buildings from Leiden to The Hague may take about 45 minutes.

Description

This course focuses on contemporary societies in East Asia and the languages that are spoken there, with a particular focus on “identity” in a globalizing world. We discuss culture in the broad sense, as a system of meanings, a repertoire of behaviors and norms shared by people who belong to a certain group. To what extent can we talk about coherent culture(s) in East Asia? What diverse identities can be found in East Asian societies and how are they formed? What are the roles of the state and media in shaping national and cultural identities, and how are they influenced by consumption practices, globalization and the rapid transformations of societies in East Asia? In addition, turning to culture in the narrow sense, such as fields of high art and popular culture of Japan, Korea and China, we examine regional and global circulation of cultural products, including how East Asian culture is perceived abroad. As to the languages, we examine how they have contributed to identity formation, both at regional and national levels, but we also look at the languages themselves (what kind of languages are they? are they in any way related?) and at how they are written.

Course objectives

The student:

  • has a thorough understanding of the cultural context of a particular geographical area in the world from a global perspective;

  • is familiar with cross-cultural communication aspects of international relations within the context of a specific area;

  • is able to critically reflect on the cultural developments in the chosen geographical area from a global perspective;

  • has in-depth knowledge of cultural production and identity formation in a geographical area in its global context;

  • has the ability to analyse an artefact of the chosen area using the concepts and theories introduced in Cultural Studies, Sociolinguistics and Introduction to International Studies;

  • has the ability to reflect on the meaning of the main concepts in cultural-, sociolinguistic-, and intercultural communication studies as applied in different cultural contexts;

  • has the ability to use the theories discussed in the course to identify and compare communicative, narrative, and visual productions from regions of their choice;

  • is able to situate a cultural artefact within the context of the cultural production and cultural policies of the region of their choice;

  • has the ability to collect and analyse specialised literature using traditional and electronic methods and techniques;

  • has the ability to formulate a well-defined research problem based on specialised literature; set up, under supervision, a study of a limited size and formulate a reasoned conclusion;

  • has the ability to explain research findings in a clear and well-argued way in the form of a short essay;

  • is able to present his findings and arguments in a coherent and clear way in the form of a short presentation and during in-class debates;

  • is able to give and receive feedback to and from peers in a constructive fashion and use reasoned criticism to revise one’s own point of view or own argumentation;

  • is able to take on board the instructions and criticism of supervisors, and take previous instructions and criticism into account in new situations.

Timetable

The timetable is available on the BA International Studies website.

Mode of instruction

Lectures

Lectures are held every week, with the exception of the midterm exam week. Weekly lectures will cover issues both inside and outside the readings.

Tutorials

Tutorials are held once every two weeks, with the exception of the midterm exam week. Attending all tutorial sessions is compulsory. If you are unable to attend a session, please inform your tutor in advance. Being absent at more than two of the tutorial sessions will result in a lowering of your tutorial grade (30% of the end grade) with 1 point for each session missed after the first two sessions. Please note that being absent at any tutorial session may have a negative impact on the grade of the assignment due for that particular tutorial session. This is at the discretion of the tutor.

Assessment method

Assessment

  • Midterm Exam:

    Written examination with short open questions.

  • Final Exam:

    Written examination with short open questions.

Weighing

Partial grade Weighing
Tutorials 30%
Midterm Exam 30%
Final Exam 40%

End Grade

To successfully complete the course, please take note of the following:

  • The end grade of the course is established by determining the weighted average of Tutorial grade, Midterm Exam grade, and Final Exam grade.

  • The weighted average of the Midterm Exam grade and the Final Exam grade needs to be 5.5 or higher.

  • This means that failing Exam grades cannot be compensated with a high Tutorial grade.

Resit

If the end grade is insufficient (lower than a 6.0), or the weighted average of Midterm- and Final Exams is lower than 5.5, there is a possibility of retaking the full 70% of the exam material, replacing both the earlier Midterm- and Final Exam grades. No resit for the tutorial is possible.
Please note that if the Resit Exam grade is lower than 5.5, you will not pass the course, regardless of the tutorial grade.

Retaking a passing grade

Please consult the Course and Examination Regulations 2020 – 2021.

Exam review and feedback

How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organised.

Reading list

Required readings will be announced on Brightspace before the start of the course.

Registration

  • Enrolment through uSis for Tutorials and Lectures is mandatory.

  • Students will be enrolled for Exams by the Administration Office, as long as they have a valid Tutorial enrolment.

  • General information about uSis is available on the website.

Contact

Prof.dr. I.B. Smits

Prof.dr. R.P.E. Sybesma

When contacting lecturers or tutors, please include your full name, student number, and tutorial group number.
Please use your University email-address (uMail) when communicating with any person or department within Leiden University.

Student Affairs Office for BA International Studies

Remarks

None.