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Studiegids

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First year

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

First semester (Fall semester)

Introduction to Asian Studies 5
Thesis & Methods Classes 5

Advanced Korean Language

Advanced Korean Reading 10

Elective (select 10 EC):

The Politics of Culture in North Korea 10
The Politics of Culture in North Korea 5
The Politics of Digital East Asia 10
Constructing Digital Language Toolkits 10
Asia through Consumption 10
The Visual and Material Culture of Exchange in Asia and Europe, 1500-1800 10
Material Culture, Memory and Commemoration along the Silk Roads in Central Asia 10
Reading the Bodhicaryāvatāra 5
Can the Subaltern Write: China’s Migrant Worker Culture 10

Second semester (Spring semester)

Study in Korea A 30

Second year

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

First semester (Fall semester)

Study in Korea B 30

Second semester (Spring semester)

MA Thesis Asian Studies (120 EC) 15
Topical Readings in Korean 5

Elective (select 10 EC):

Human Rights Discourses on North Korea 10
Democratizing Histories 10
Democratizing Histories 5
Crime and Criminal Justice: East Asian Perspectives 10
Culture and Conquest: the Impact of the Mongols and their Descendants 10
Reading Buddhist Scriptures 10

more info year in Korea

Students will spend a year in South Korea at one of Leiden’s partner universities. The precise destination of each student will be determined early in the first semester, taking into consideration his/her research interests and the profile of each university. At present, Leiden’s partner universities in South Korea include: Yonsei University, Seoul National University, Korea University, HUFS and SKKU.

It is the responsibility of the student to maintain contact with his/her Leiden supervisor throughout their stay in Korea. Furthermore, all students are required to earn 30 ECTS in Korea by following Korean language courses OR content courses conducted in the Korean language. This translates into approximately 12 credits in the Korean system of grade registration. Students should specify which courses they intend to follow during their stay in Korea with their supervisor and the Examinations Committee before they leave for Korea.

Critical Heritage Studies

MA focus Critical Heritage Studies of Asia and Europe

‘There is, really, no such thing as heritage’, states Laurajane Smith in her acclaimed book The Uses of Heritage (2006). According to her, heritage is an ‘inherently political and discordant’ practice used by different interest-groups with varying degrees of legitimacy. The MA focus on Critical Heritage Studies of Asia and Europe explores the politics of heritage and the questions of their legitimacy. Who controls heritage? What is the role of heritage in the constructed narratives of nationalism? How is heritage being used as a cultural practice to shape the discourses on nation-building and nation-branding?
The process of heritage-making entails various forms of conflict over the definition, ownership, and use of cultural attributes. Originally a concept coined by the nation-state, heritage has become the object of intellectual reclamation by academics, activists and associations. Institutional and non-institutional social actors in Asia and in Europe are increasingly involved in debating the legitimacy as well as the need to “safeguard” different expressions of heritage. Furthermore, heritage is being used as a marketable commodity for the sake of tourism.
Students enrolled in this focus will examine key issues, concepts, and international frameworks related to the disputed distinction between tangible and intangible heritage. The courses will also explore the genesis and working practices of international heritage administration, charters and conventions. Students will gain insight into the rights and responsibilities of organizations such as ICCROM, ICOMOS and UNESCO. Furthermore, the social impact of heritage themes such as diaspora, ethnicity, and nationalism will be analyzed. Current critiques of the heritage concepts of “authenticity” and “sustainability” will be provided. The courses will also elaborate on the notions of “collective” and “social” memory. In this context, special attention will be paid to the museum as a facilitating actor in the process of understanding and showcasing cultural identity. Students will review case studies of tangible and intangible heritage from Europe and Asia to see how heritage has taken on new and sometimes unintended meanings in the midst of social change, asserting religious identity and political upheaval. Students will be further encouraged to produce their own case studies and approach heritage as a growing interdisciplinary field. The course work will prepare them for careers as researchers, policy-makers, activists and practitioners.

Focus courses

The MA focus Critical Heritage Studies of Asia and Europe consists of compulsory and elective courses. Besides the general MA Asian Studies compulsory courses, the focus offers two compulsory heritage courses – “Critical Approaches to Heritage Studies” (e-Prospectus 5174KHER) at the Faculty of Humanities, and “Heritage and Museum Studies 2” (e-Prospectus 1044M08Y) at the Faculty of Archaeology. Elective courses are offered at the Faculty of Humanities and at the Faculty of Archaeology.

Background

The focus Critical Heritage Studies of Asia and Europe, jointly initiated by the International Institute for Asian Studies (IIAS) and the Leiden University Institute for Area Studies (LIAS), considers Asia as a fertile source of both theoretical and methodological insights in this highly contested arena.
Since colonial times, European-based concepts and technical approaches to conservation have dominated the understanding of heritage in Asia, in most cases through top-down imposition of ideas and processes. It is this hegemonic discourse, usually promoted by developmentalist states in Asia and elsewhere, as well as various processes of indigenous response, that this focus area is intended to highlight.

Double Degree Programme

The focus on Critical Heritage Studies of Asia and Europe forms part of a wider ambition to decentralize the production of knowledge and social agency by establishing a network of partner universities located in Asia and Europe. The contributing institutions have already established a fruitful collaboration in research and teaching. In this context, the study of heritage is re-configured as a means of reconceptualising relations between Asia and Europe in terms of mutual respect and exchange, and the creative exploration of cultural forms and practices.
Within this wider ambition, apart from the MA degree from Leiden University, students can also engage in a Double Degree Programme, offered by Leiden University, the IIAS and one of the Asian partner universities, including National Taiwan University (Taiwan) and Yonsei University (South Korea). In order to attend courses at the National Taiwan University, which are partially given in English and Chinese, students are required to have HSK Level 4 in Chinese. All courses at the Yonsei University are given in English.
As far as certification in the Double Degree Programme is concerned, upon successful completion students will obtain three certificates in total: the Leiden University MA diploma, the partner university MA diploma (two-year programme, of which the Leiden MA qualifies as one year) and a separate certificate for the Double MA Degree in Critical Heritage Studies of Asia and Europe, issued by IIAS. The focus on Critical Heritage Studies of Asia and Europe prepares students to work in the following areas: academic research, planning, museum management, tourism industries, and heritage conservation.

contact

For more information, please contact Dr. Elena Paskaleva at: e.g.paskaleva@hum.leidenuniv.nl