Over this course, Jeremiah will explore several foundational events in China's modern history from the 19th century onwards. By working his way through the country's history, Jeremiah will answer key questions about not only China itself but its place in our current world by engaging in group discussions.
How does China’s history inform how the country sees the world today? What are the critical junctures in the relationship between China and the group of countries collectively referred to as “The West,” particularly the United States? Which events form the lens through which the Chinese people understand international relations and world systems? What aspects of China’s past are critical for Americans to consider when learning about the Sino-US relationship? How and why do leaders such as Mao Zedong and Xi Jingping have such influence over the Chinese people and the rest of the world? We will explore these issues through informative, fun, and occasionally irreverent sessions. Each session will look at a past event with an eye to the present and future, thinking about how history and memory continue to inform China’s relations with the world, particularly the United States.
Be sure to check out Jeremiah's Context Conversation: Send Lawyers, Guns and Money: China's Opium War with Dr. Jeremiah Jenne, the prequel to this Course, to get the full experience!
How the development of the treaty system, the legacies of the legations, led to intercultural cooperation and conflict along the China coast in the 19th century.
Course Day Two: The Dowager and the Dynasty
How one woman led an empire through its most tumultuous decades and the Qing Empire's attempts to modernize and meet the challenges of modernity
Course Day Three: So, You Say you Want a Revolution?
How a generation of young people tried to save their country and ended up reshaping China's attitudes about race, sexuality, and the role of women in society
Course Day Four: Brothers and Sisters
How did civil war and foreign occupation shape the rivalry between two political parties and the trio of women who came to symbolize China's divided 20th century
Course Day Five: Mao More than Ever
What was Mao's deal? How Mao’s rule changed China, and why historical memories of this period remain a sensitive topic in today's China
Course Day Six: What if Everyone in China bought just one shoe?
How economic reforms of the 1980s unlocked China's potential and prosperity while leading to new challenges in the last years of the decade
Course Day Seven: Is Xi All That?
China in the Age of Xi Jinping and what China’s recent past can tell us about possible futures
About Your Expert
Jeremiah is a writer and historian based in Beijing since 2002. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis, and taught Late Imperial and Modern Chinese History for over 15 years. His essays and articles on China have appeared in The Economist, South China Morning Post, The Journal of Asian Studies, Los Angeles Review of Books, and The World of Chinese. His writings can also be found in China in 2008: A Year of Great Significance, The Insider's Guide to Beijing, and the 2015 collection While We're Here: China Stories from a Writer's Colony. Jeremiah is frequently asked to speak and lead workshops on history, culture, and cultural adaptation for students, embassies, companies, and community groups. Along with David Moser, Jeremiah hosts the podcast Barbarians at the Gate.
Yes. All registered participants will be sent a recording within 24 hours of each session's conclusion. The recordings are available to re-watch at leisure until 30 days after the course's conclusion.
This conversation is suitable for all ages.
90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.