Topics in EALC: Intertwined Literatures of Postwar Asia

Course Number: 
EALC 10710
N. Lambrecht
Course Description: 

This course explores literature that illustrates the interconnectedness of Asia in the decade following the conclusion of the Second World War. While the surrender of Japan and the onset of the Cold War contributed to the re-entrenchment of fiercely independent national literatures in Asia, national frameworks tend to obscure the ongoing links across Asia evoked in the works of many writers dealing with this period. Further, the notion of the “postwar” tends to disregard the ways in which war’s effects continued to shape the Asian continent through Allied occupations and such widespread conflicts as the Chinese Civil War and the Korean War. By putting the postwar literatures of Asia in conversation with one another, we will aim to achieve a fuller understanding of these texts that have both depicted international circulation and spread through international communities themselves. Course materials include short stories, novels, plays, reportage, and autobiographical writings from Japan, China, Hong Kong, Tibet, Mongolia, Okinawa, and North and South Korea. All readings for this course are available in English; no knowledge of any Asian language is required.