16:217:525 / 01:165:463 Nature in Chinese Literature

Description: This course will examine representations of nature in major Chinese literary genres and of human relations to nature during the early and medieval periods. Special attention will be paid to general shifts in conceptions of nature as well as larger questions of experience, perception, and representation. Readings consist of both primary texts in English translation and secondary critical works. Relevant cultural and historical contexts will be highlighted in class. Students are expected to participate actively in class discussions, during which the texts will be read closely. In addition to class discussion, students are required to do at least one in-class presentation on the assigned readings. At the end of each class, the professor will briefly introduce the coming week’s readings and provide questions and issues for thinking about the texts. No background in Chinese language or literature is required. Students with reading ability in Classical Chinese are encouraged to read the texts in the original, though class discussions will be based on the English translations.

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Prerequisites: None 

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