Quarterly Course Guide 2021-2022

Course Listing and Information Subject to Change

Fall 2021

#
Instructor
Title
Day
Time
103Huang
First Year Seminar: Asian Am Girls

Description: From To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’s Lara Jean Covey to Ali Wong’s Dear Girls, Asian American girls are having a moment. This class will explore theories of race, gender, and sexuality through an intersectional approach centered on Asian American girls as subjects worthy of study. This course will also introduce students to best practices for writing in the humanities. Possible authors include Kai Cheng Thom, Franny Choi, Fatimah Asghar, Jenny Zhang, and Barbara Jane Reyes. Possible films/TV shows include Never Have I Ever, All-American Girl, and The Half of It.

MW12:30 PM - 1:50 PM
210San Diego
Introduction to Asian Am Studies

Description: In our current social, political, and ecological climate, what is the role of Asian American Studies? How has its mission and vision changed since its inception 50 years ago? Throughout this course, we will question the limits and possibilities of Asian American Studies as a field, method, theoretical approach, mode of critique, political orientation, and platform for social justice. Themes and concepts will include: intersectionality, critical race theory, the politics of knowledge production, popular culture, drag queens, identity, activism, and strategies of survival and resistance.

Distribution Requirement: Soc/Behav
TTh11:00 AM - 12:20 PM
303-0-20San Diego
Asian American Digital Cultures

Description: From daily communications to magisterial announcements, from classrooms to war zones, from health records to national legislation, from labor to entertainment, and from dating to marriage, how do electronically mediated technologies shape our lives? How have screens, code, and algorithms become so dominant in our lives, and how does this impact Asian American identities, communities, movements, and experiences? We will explore the multiscalar formations of Asian American digital cultures in the following ways: social media platforms, video games, advertising, viral videos and memes, “hook-up” apps, surveillance, privacy, and activism.

Distribution Requirement: Soc/Behav
TTH2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
360-0-21Enteen
Trans Surgeries in Thailand

Description: This course is situated at the intersection of theoretical, cultural, medical, and commercial online discourses concerning the burgeoning Gender Affirmation-related surgeries presented online and conducted in Thailand. Using Gender, Queer, Trans, Asian American, and Digital Humanities Theories, we will discuss the cross-cultural intersections, dialogues, refusals, and adaptions when thinking about medical travel to Thailand for gender/sex related surgeries. We will examine Thai cultural/historical conceptions of sex and gender, debates concerning bodies and diagnoses, and changes in presentations of sex/gender related surgeries offered online. We will also explore how digital archives are created and managed. Investigating transcripts of live interviews, medical discourses, and an archive of web images offering GAS surgeries produced by Thais for non-Thais will serve as axes for investigating this topic.

Distribution Requirement: Soc/Behav
MW11:00 AM - 12:20 PM
376-0-2Nadiminti
Imaginary Homelands: Intro to S. Asian Literature in English

Description: South Asian writers win prizes. Ever since Salman Rushdie catapulted to international fame with the Booker Prize in 1981, writers from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka have become the mainstay of not only literary prize cultures and the festival circuit but also U.S. university campuses. What has made South Asian literature so popular, especially when it deals with somber questions of anticolonial resistance, postcolonial nation-building, violence, and loss? This course will introduce students to twentieth and twenty-first century South Asian Literatures in English characterized by exciting stylistic innovations in magical realism, modernist language games, lyrical prose, and biting satire. By examining novels, short stories, poems, political writing, and films, we will ask, how has literature shaped both the promise and failure of the postcolonial nation-state? What might South Asian writing teach us about the global project of democratic world-making? Topics of discussion will include gender, caste, empire, globalization, migrancy, and environmentalism.

Distribution Requirement: Lit/Fine Arts
MW3:30 PM - 4:50 PM

Winter 2022

#
Instructor
Title
Day
Time
216-0-1Yuh
Global Asians

Description: This is a comparative course that will examine the international migration histories of different Asian groups in the 20th century and the development of community and identity of those groups in different national contexts. We will interrogate the concept of diaspora versus migration versus immigration, and the different notions of identity implicit in each framework (diasporic community, sojourner, etc.). We will examine the immigration policies of host countries in Europe, the Americas, and Asia, and the settlement histories of Asians within these countries. We will discuss notions of group belonging and ideas of citizenship, nationality and ethnicity, and also compare how different ethnic groups and different national societies have handled ethnic/racial/cultural diversity. We will, in short, be examining the crossing and construction of multiple borders, the cultural encounters and the mixings, of various Asian groups in various socioeconomic and political contexts in different nation-states.

Distribution Requirement: Historical
TTh9:30 AM - 10:50 AM
225-0-1Nguyen
Refugee Aesthetics

Description: Refugee Aesthetics is a survey course that examines histories of racialization, war, forced migration, nation-state formation, humanitarian aid, and resettlement alongside questions of the politics of aesthetics, ethics of representation, and social justice. Students will explore how refugee aesthetics is broadly defined, performed, and contested through maps, graphic novels, films, textiles, performance art, theatre, visual art, music videos, and religious iconography. The course will offer students theoretical and creative practice-based frameworks of analysis to address historical and contemporary issues on refugees.

Distribution Requirement: Soc/Behav
TTh12:30 PM - 1:50 PM
225-0-2Cheng
Contemporary Asian Am Communities

Description: This class is an introduction to a broad survey of historical and contemporary discourses shaping Asian American communities. Through exploring various material and political stakes involved in the call to “Asian American community,” this course introduces students to the debates, contentions, opportunities, and forms of solidarity that have emerged at different points. We will explore the personal, local, and global formations of Asian American communities, with possible topics including transnationalism, gentrification, environmental racism, labor, and other activist praxes.

Distribution Requirement: Soc/Behav
MW3:30 PM - 4:50 PM
247-0-1San Diego
Asian Americans & Pop Culture

Description: This course introduces students to both historical and contemporary representations and expressions of Asian Americans in mainstream, independent, and alternative models of media. Such sites of production and reception include: documentaries, narrative film, television, print media, music, social media, literature/memoirs, video games, and more. A central focus of this course will be the various tensions that emerge vis-à-vis multiple and competing interpretations about the meanings, purposes, and affects of media for/in/about Asian Americans. Students will engage the power, pain, and pleasure of race, gender, sexuality, class, immigration, nationalism, health, and other topics through/within the multiple mediascapes of Asian America.

Distribution Requirement: Lit/Fine Arts
MW11:00 AM - 12:20 PM
303-0-1Nguyen
Race, Mental Health, and Healing Justice

Description: Race, Mental Health, and Healing Justice explores how constructions of race, class, gender, and sexuality are intimately connected to issues of mental health and chronic illness in a range of institutional and societal settings. Readings for the coursework include Frantz Fanon, Esme Weijun Wang, Aurora Levins Morales, Mariame Kaba, DSM-V, and Alternatives to Calling Police During Mental Health Crisis. Drawing from postcolonial, black feminist theory, women of color theory, critical refugee studies, and disability justice, this course focuses on how healing justice as a theoretical and methodological framework offers openings to address issues of state violence and cultural disease to imagine and manifest healthier sustainable futures.

Distribution Requirement: Soc/Behav
TTh3:30 PM - 4:50 PM
303-0-2Merseth
Asian American Politics

Description: TBD

Distribution Requirement: Soc/Behav
TTh11:00 AM - 12:20 PM
370-0-1Yuh
Global Korean Diaspora

Description: The 20th century has been marked by upheaval and consequent migration for the people of the Korean peninsula. As a result of these migrations, substantial communities of ethnic Koreans exist in Central Asia, China, Japan, the United States and Canada, South America and Europe. How and why did Koreans go to these places? What kinds of communities and identities did they construct? How do these Koreans fit into the history of Korea, particularly in the context of a country divided into two opposing states? How do they fit into the history of their host countries? By examining the histories of ethnic Koreans outside the Korean peninsula, we will examine issues of migration, diaspora, race relations, and colonialism. We will also take a fresh look at modern Korean history by examining how these “overseas Koreans” view and relate to the history and ongoing politics of their divided homeland.

Distribution Requirement: Soc/Behav
TTh2:00 PM - 3:00 PM (online)
380-0-1San Diego
Sex Work in Asian America

Description: From karaoke bars to military bases, from local dungeons to worldwide webcams, from sites of grassroots organization to spaces of neoliberal legislation, between international borders and across electronically mediated networks, how are these institutions, spaces, subjects, and normalized practices interconnected through a web of power, control, and profit and how have Asian Americans navigated and negotiated these terrains? Students will read an array of texts written by and/or relating to Asian/American sex workers, including: historical and contemporary legislation, selections from ethnographic studies of sex work in Asia and the United States, as well as first-hand accounts of Asian/American sex workers who make a living by teaching/practicing BDSM, shooting mainstream and internet pornography, supplying consensual sexual services, organizing for sex worker rights and the decriminalization of sex work, and more. Students should be prepared to engage with texts, films, and speakers covering a spectrum of experiences/intensities emerging from this course’s capacious approach to the concept of “sex work.”

Distribution Requirement: Lit/Fine Arts
MW2:00 PM - 3:30 PM

Spring 2022

#
Instructor
Title
Day
Time
203-0-1MagatAsian American Activism: Art & Social ChangeDistribution Requirement: Soc/BehavMW12:30 PM - 1:50 PM
214-0-1San DiegoIntro to Asian American HistoryDistribution Requirement: HistoricalTTh11:00 AM - 12:20 PM
275-0-1HuangIntro to Asian Am LiteratureDistribution Requirement: Lit/Fine ArtsTTh9:30 AM - 10:50 AM
360-0-1San DiegoAsian American SexualitiesDistribution Requirement: Soc/BehavTTh2:00 PM - 3:20 PM
370-0-1MagatStudies in Diaspora: Filipino DiasporaDistribution Requirement: Soc/BehavMW3:30 PM - 4:50 PM
376-0-1HuangTechno-OrientalismDistribution Requirement: Lit/Fine ArtsTTh3:30 PM - 4:50 PM