Faculty of Arts

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This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2016 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

Monash University

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

School of Languages, Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics


Dr Reto Hofmann



  • First semester 2016 (Day)


This unit provides a broad overview of Asian history from 1500 to today. It has an ambitious scope, focussing on key moments and longer trends across the region, with a primary focus on China, Indonesia, Korea and Japan. In particular, it examines how Asia was reshaped by forces such as imperialism, nationalism and modernization. The goal of the unit is to provide students with a solid basis of knowledge in the history of the region, either as the foundation for further studies on Asia, or as an important complement to their Asian language studies.


Upon successful completion of this unit students will have:

  1. Gained a broad understanding of some of the historical trends that have shaped the development of Asia over the past five hundred years.
  2. Been introduced to debates about 'imperialism', 'colonialism', 'race', 'gender', 'modernisation' and 'globalisation'
  3. Gained an understanding of how different societies function and change over time.
  4. Gained an understanding of how the dynamic trading world to Australia's 'near north' came into being, and offer perspectives about where Asia might be headed in the 21st century.
  5. Developed intelligent reading habits and learned to exploit library and internet sources efficiently and intelligently for specific purposes.
  6. Become acquainted with the way scholars use 'evidence' to construct an 'argument'.
  7. Been introduced to the technical elements of scholarly writing, such as the use of footnotes or endnotes.
  8. Gained an understanding of what we can learn from studying and 'representing' past events and episodes.


Within semester assessment: 70%
Exam: 30%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study