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Explore a region of inspiration and influence.

The scope of Asian Studies is broad, covering some of the world’s oldest cultures. Through hands-on learning and study abroad opportunities, you’ll explore firsthand the history, politics, economics, and cultures of the eastern, southeastern, and southern regions of Asia.

Asian Studies is multidisciplinary, challenging your fluency in the social sciences, humanities, arts, and business. From immersing yourself in post-World War II Japanese literature and film to studying the rapid economic growth of China, you’ll learn about the traditions, languages, and historical contexts that shape emerging Asian countries — and will impact the entire world.

Requirements for:

Why Choose Asian Studies at Clark?

  • Declare a focus in one of three areas — China, Japan, or the combined region of East, South, and Southeast Asia — and complete a minor (or a second major) in another department that complements your area of interest.
  • Complete immersive study abroad and internship experiences in China, Japan, and/or Vietnam, through one of several programs with leading institutions in those countries.
  • Gain functional literacy in a language relevant to your area of focus; Clark offers courses in Chinese and Japanese.
  • Asian studies is one of seven undergraduate programs affiliated with Clark’s Center for Gender, Race and Area Studies, a community of faculty and students who study diverse, disadvantaged, or marginalized societies and populations, with an emphasis on promoting social justice.
This is Clark

Our Stories

Tiana Golding in China

Eastward Ho! To China via Clark

Clark’s Asian Studies major has made it possible for Tiana Golding ’19 to study Chinese language and culture, a subject that has long fascinated her. Following a language-intensive January term in Beijing, she spent a semester at Donghua University in Shanghai while interning with DoBe WE, an events planner for cultural and creative industries in China.

No matter what problem I was going through, there was always someone here at Clark for me to talk to and receive the help I needed.
—Tiana Golding

Class of 2019

Your Will. Your Way.

The Major Path

Twelve courses are required to complete the Asian studies major. You’ll choose a specialization in one of three areas: China, Japan, or the combined region of East, South, and Southeast Asia, and complete a minor (or a second major) in another department that complements your area of focus.

Attaining a level of functional literacy in an Asian language relevant to your area of specialization is a key component of the Asian studies major. You accomplish this by taking language courses, and by studying abroad for at least one semester — a full year is strongly recommended — through one of four programs:

  • Kansai Gaidai University near Osaka, Japan
  • CET Language Program in Beijing, China
  • CET Internship Program in Shanghai, China
  • CET in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Asian studies is one of seven undergraduate programs affiliated with Clark’s Center for Gender, Race and Area Studies, a community of faculty and students from a variety of disciplines who study diverse, disadvantaged, or marginalized societies and populations, with an emphasis on promoting social justice.

Skills you will learn include:

  • Proficiency in an Asian language
  • Resilience, persistence, and the creativity required to understand, live in, and negotiate an unfamiliar culture
  • Ability to integrate your new knowledge of Asian history and culture into a deeper understanding of liberal education

During your junior year, you might be accepted into the Asian studies honors program. Joining the program means you’ll work closely with a professor to create a thesis on a topic of your choice. Examples of recent honors thesis topics are:

  • Scar Literature of the Chinese Cultural Revolution
  • Cinema of the Defeated: The Postwar Crisis of Masculinity in 20th Century German and Japanese Films
  • Horror, Eros, and Fantasy in Modern Japan

The LEEP difference

An education merging knowledge, action, and impact

With Liberal Education and Effective Practice, lessons begin in the classroom but never end there. Your learning includes world and workplace experiences that forge your skills and shape your path.

Learn more

Explore what the Asian Studies Program has to offer