Undergraduate Programme >
Common Core Contributions
CCHU9003 Making History: Engaging with the Powerful Past (Dr. Pomfret)
The past is no longer present, but its influence can be felt everywhere. We connect
with the past in many ways in our everyday lives. Movies, websites, newspapers and magazines bombard us with recreations of pasts familiar
and unfamiliar. But what relevance or value does the past have in a globalizing world? Why should we care about the past? Could it help us
to build a better future? Is there such a thing as a 'true' historical account? What is the relationship between commercial, political and
professional discourses of the past? And how do these relate to our own memories of the past? This course engages with these questions from
multiple perspectives. It brings students face to face with the myriad ways in which the past is present in our lives today, and the importance
of thinking historically. The course introduces students to the richness and value inherent in reading, writing and reflecting on the past; or
in other words, making history.
Click here to visit the Common Core Course CCHU9003 course page.
CCHU9004 Catastrophes, Cultures, and the Angry Earth (Dr. Schencking)
This course explores how natural disasters have influenced cultures and societies across
time and geography. It will encourage students to reflect upon the interconnections between nature, society, and the built environment in new
and exciting ways. Using disasters as revealers, the course will assist participants to think critically and creatively about: what makes a
natural phenomenon such as an earthquake, a tsunami, a volcanic eruption, or a cyclone a natural disaster; how have pre-modern, early modern,
and modern societies interpreted disasters and what does this tell us about our evolving relationships with religion, science and technology;
and how and why have people portrayed disasters through art, literature, and the media. Students will also examine how governments have
responded to disasters and used reconstruction processes to redevelop landscapes, remake societies, and reorder politics. Disasters will
thus be examined not only as events that cause suffering and devastation, but as occurrences that inspire opportunism and unleash contestation.
Disasters studied will include the 1700 Cascadia Earthquake and Tsunami, the eruption of Krakatoa, the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906,
the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923, the Great Tangshan Earthquake of 1976, hurricanes in the Atlantic world including Hurricane Katrina 2005,
the Indian Ocean Tsunami of 2004, Cyclone Nargis of 2008, and the Sichuan Earthquake of 2008.
Click here to visit the Common Core Course CCHU9004 course page.
CCGL9003 Contagions: Global Histories of Disease (Dr. Peckham)
How have epidemics shaped the modern world? In what ways has globalization contributed to the spread of disease?
And how can historical awareness help us meet the challenges of the present and reconsider the relationship between the local and the global?
This course addresses these critical issues from a number of perspectives, mapping the intertwined histories of globalization and infection
from fifteenth-century European conquests of the 'New World' to the present. The course explores the economic, political and social processes
that have contributed to the rise of global epidemics, including: early modern transoceanic exchanges, the slave trade to the Western hemisphere,
global conflicts and epidemics, imperial responses to contagion, the rise of global health agencies after WWII, and emergent twenty-first-century
animal-to-human infections such as SARS and avian flu in Asia, Europe, the Americas and Africa. Within this broad scope, the course engages with
a number of fundamental questions: How and under what conditions did the 'unification of the world by disease' come about? What challenges to
global security does this infectious interconnectedness pose? What potential might globalization offer in helping to contain epidemics?
and How, and with what consequences, has the past shaped the way we think about contagious outbreaks today?
Click here to visit the Common Core Course CCGL9003 course page.
China: Culture, State and Society
CCCH9032 Sports and Chinese Society (Dr. Xu)
This course deals with sports and their impact on Chinese society with special focus on the role of sports in China's search for national identity and internationalization. It will provide students with an in-depth understanding of Chinese society, popular culture, and politics. Students will learn how the Chinese have interacted with different peoples from the rest of the world in international games such as the Olympics and the Football World Cup. The course will help students to examine how different peoples, nations, and governments have responded to sports, how the Chinese turned sports into vehicles for both nationalism and internationalism, how Chinese governments in different stages and periods have linked sports to their political legitimacy, and how sports serve as tools for nation building, expressions of national identity and national honor or personal freedom in China. By examining the role of sports in Chinese society, students will gain valuable contextual understanding to better explain culture and politics and better understand China, its society, and its positions in the world.
Click here to visit the Common Core Course CCCH9032 course page.