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The Nature of Knowledge: Science and Literature in East Asia (CHINA 151B, JAPAN 151B, JAPAN 251B, KOREA 151, KOREA 251)


"The Nature of Knowledge" explores the intersections of science and humanities East Asia. It covers a broad geographic area (China, Japan, and Korea) along a long temporal space (14th century - present) to investigate how historical notions about the natural world, the human body, and social order defied, informed, and constructed our current categories of science and humanities. The course will make use of medical, geographic, and cosmological treatises from premodern East Asia, portrayals and uses of science in modern literature, film, and media, as well as theoretical and historical essays on the relationships between literature, science, and society.nnAs part of its exploration of science and the humanities in conjunction, the course addresses how understandings of nature are mediated through techniques of narrative, rhetoric, visualization, and demonstration. In the meantime, it also examines how the emergence of modern disciplinary "science" influenced the development of literary language, tropes, and techniques of subject development. This class will expose the ways that science has been mobilized for various ideological projects and to serve different interests, and will produce insights into contemporary debates about the sciences and humanities.

Course ID: 
220 687
Letter (ABCD/NP)