ASIA5002 Critical Cultural Engagement with Asia

6 points
Not available in 2020UWA (Perth)Face to face
This unit allows students to gain an advanced understanding of how 'Asia' is imagined, outside and within Asia. Students will use a variety of approaches to contemporary cultural texts in state cultural policies, state media, social media, and mass and ‘high' cultures, to develop a critical understanding of the underlying ideologies and values that inform such texts. Students examine how material culture and cultural politics are informed by considerations and tensions between the ways in which notions of ‘tradition' and ‘modernity' intersect to produce contemporary Asian identities and societies in a broader sense. Students develop as reflexive practitioners and cultural brokers through developing an awareness of their own values and cultural backgrounds.

The aim of the unit is to encourage students to challenge and interrogate accepted forms of Western knowledge across traditional academic boundaries, in order to apply imaginative and sensitive problem-solving skills in complex situations requiring Asia-specific cultural knowledge. The unit equips students to exercise expert judgement in professional contexts where negotiating intercultural differences is crucial.
Students are able to (1) utilise analytical tools and critical capacity for cross-cultural engagement in Asia; (2) demonstrate ability to critically reflect on different theoretical approaches to analysing key cultural discourses in Asia; (3) demonstrate practical, expert judgement to interpret and mediate cultural difference in everyday and professional settings; and (4) formulate research questions and critically assess source material that demonstrates an advanced and integrated understanding of Asian Studies as a complex body of interdisciplinary knowledge.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) participation; (2) case study; and (3) research essay/project. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Joanna Elfving-Hwang and Dr Laura Dales
Unit rules
Advisable prior study:
Bachelor of Arts (BP001) or Bachelor of Commerce (BP004)
Contact hours
seminars: 18 hours
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  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available via the Booktopia Textbook Finder, which has the functionality to search by course code, course, ISBN and title, and may also be posted or available at the appropriate school's administrative offices. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.