Spring 2016 - Undergraduate Course Descriptions
Description of Course:
The objective of this course is to increase students' understanding of the history, texts and religious traditions of Daoism. This will involve introducing the philosophical texts, scripture, liturgy, and practice of China's only indigenous religion. Since no religion develops in a void, the context and setting for the growth of Daoism will be a major focus of the class. The scope of the course will be generally historical and chronological, accommodating excursions into the related realms of Chinese philosophy, literature, and art. Additionally, the instructor aspires to teach his students how to "do history" through extensive readings and discussions of primary documents. To facilitate this goal, students will write regular analyses of selected documents and discuss these sources during class.
Required Textbooks and Materials:
Robinet, Isabelle. Taoism: Growth of a Religion. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1997. ISBN: 0804728399.
Lao Tzu. Tao-te Ching. D.C. Lau, trans. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1985. ISBN: 014044131X.
Chuang Tzu. Basic Writings. Burton Watson, trans. New York: Columbia University Press, 1996. ISBN: 0231105959.
Kohn, Livia. The Taoist Experience. Albany: SUNY Press, 1993. ISBN: 0791415805.
The following book is recommended:
Ebrey, Patricia. Cambridge Illustrated History of China. 2nd ed, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010. ISBN: 0521124336.
Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria:
Attend class. Read. Think. Write. Discuss. Repeat.