Asian Families and Intimacies: Intra-regional Diversity and Transcultural Dynamics

Course Type: Lecture
Study Focus: SEG

Teacher: OCHIAI Emiko

Course Code: JK17002

To date, the research work of Asian scholars on their respective societies has typically been relayed to other areas of Asia through European and North American academic circuits.



This mediated communication has not only produced a significant distortion in focus, but has also resulted in a failure to appreciate the shared intellectual heritage of the different societies of the Asian region as well as the differences of emphasis and orientation among them. The ‘Asian Families and Intimacies’ series, the textbook used in this course, has been planned by the Asian researchers from 9 societies who have been collaborating with Kyoto University Asian Studies Unit (KUASU) for years as the first realization of a larger project, entitled ‘Asian Intellectual Heritage’, designed to collect, translate and share important and influential writings that are key texts of the academic and intellectual heritage of societies across Asia. The editors have decided to launch this ambitious project with a series on families and intimacies because ‘the family’ has typically been attributed a special cultural value in Asian societies.
This course will enable students with diverse backgrounds to engage directly and unmediatedly with the insights into the key issues of our times from the ‘insiders’ perspective’ of Asian intellectuals and provide them chances to discuss with each other and contribute to imagining the foundation on which future collaborations across the Asian region can be built.


Course Information

Module: Research 1-3
CATS Requirements: MA 1st year or above

Day/Period: Mon 4
Location: Sem. 9
Credits: 2


Course Goals

(1) To learn about the shared intellectual heritage of the different societies of the Asian region as well as the huge historical and contemporary diversity both in theory and in practice.
(2) To liberate ourselves from Orientalism and self-Orientalism so as to better understand ourselves and our neighbours and redefine our and their places in a changing world.
(3) To understand the varying and intersecting processes of ‘Sinicization’, ‘Sanskritization’, ‘Modernization’, and ‘Globalization’ across the Asian region as well as more local transcultural dynamics.
(4) To learn about changes in the family and intimate relations which are of deep and pressing concern in the Asian region today.

Course Schedule and Evaluation

For a detailed course schedule, please visit KULASIS.

Evaluation is based on an oral presentation (30%), a final report (40%), and active participation (30%).