INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS OF ASIA AFTER WWII
2018/2019, Semester 1
Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (Lee Kuan Yew School Of Public Policy)
Modular Credits: 4
The course explores the connections among events in Asia as they have unfolded since the end of World War II and examines them in relation to contemporary issues. It assesses competing explanations for longstanding issues, including the Taiwan issue, division of the Korean peninsula, South China Sea dispute, and trajectory of regionalism. These issues are playing out amid a major power shift, not only as a consequence of China’s rise, but also with the emergence of Asia as a global agenda-setter. The course also examines the new threats to the region, from WMD proliferation to terrorism and competition for resources.
PP 5158: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS OF ASIA AFTER WORLD WAR II
AY 2018/2019 First Semester
Instructor: Selina Ho, Assistant Professor
Office: Tower Block, 10-01H
Consultation Hours: Monday, 17:00-18:00 and Tuesday, 17:00-18:00 or by appointment
Class Hours: Mondays, 14:00-17:00
Venue: MIA Classroom, Tower Block Level 10
This class surveys the international relations of Asia after WWII. The course explores the connections among events as they have unfolded in the region since the end of World War II and examines them in relation to contemporary issues.
Course description and objectives
This course explores the connections among events in Asia as they have unfolded since the end of World War II and examines them in relation to contemporary issues. It assesses competing explanations for longstanding issues, including the Taiwan issue, division of the Korean peninsula, South China Sea dispute, and the trajectory of regionalism. These issues are playing out amid a major power shift, not only as a consequence of China’s rise, but also with the emergence of Asia as a global agenda-setter. The course also examines the new threats to the region, from WMD proliferation to terrorism and competition for resources. These new threats offer opportunities for cooperation as well as increase the risk of conflict in the region.
The course seeks to answer the following questions:
How did Asia become how it is today? What is the relationship between current issues in Asia and its past?
How does strategic competition among the major powers during the Cold War shape Asia?
Did the Cold War end in Asia?
How did the post-Cold War regional architecture emerge in Asia?
What explains ASEAN and the Asian Miracle?
What are the legacies of history in present day Asia?
What are the new and emerging threats in Asia?
Core learning outcomes
At the end of this course, students should be able to:
analyze contemporary regional dynamics in both the historical and global contexts
understand the historical influences that currently shape the region
critically evaluate whether there are more continuities or changes in post-Cold War Asia
assess how the rise of China and the emergence of new threats, both traditional and non-traditional, impact the region
critically evaluate primary documents and texts, and learn how to use them for research purposes
acquire the skill to write effective policy memos
This is a seminar-style class. Students are therefore expected to actively participate in discussions. You are encouraged to raise questions about the readings and/or present views that differ from that of the readings and instructor. Class participation makes up a significant portion of your grades.
In addition, students will take turns to raise a contemporary issue in Asia related to the theme of the week. You will make a 10-minute presentation, followed by 10-mins Q&A, which will be counted into your class participation grade.
Course readings and assignments
Readings are to be completed ahead of each class under which they are listed. All materials are on IVLE except for those that are book-length. In addition to covering information from and drawing on the readings, each class will consider a contemporary issue in Asia and explore how the readings may tie into it, as an influence on the current situation, as a historical lesson, etc. I will also bring in primary documents and texts whenever relevant for illustration and discussion.
A key text for the class is Alice Miller and Richard Wich,
Becoming Asia: Change and Continuity in Asian International Relations Since World War II
, (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2011).
It is available on RBR loan (call number: DS35.2 Mil 2011).
Students are evaluated on the basis of their performances on two short in-class quizzes (closed book), one policy memo (1,500 words), and one in-class final exam (open book).
Two Quizzes at 10% each
One Policy Memo
Final exam (open book)
Class Participation (including presentations)
Each quiz consists of 10 questions which will require short answers. Citations are required for the policy memos.
Policy memo due 1 October 2018, 5pm
I will observe the following grading policies for the policy memo:
< >Policy memos (maximum 1,500 words, excluding footnotes and illustrations)
Format: typed, double-spaced in Times New Roman 12-point font with normal margins.
Evaluation: The policy memos will be evaluated both on the content of the argument and the manner in which it is structured.
Plagiarism: There will be none. Plagiarism is cheating and there are penalties. Cite any ideas that are not your own. If you are uncertain what constitutes plagiarism, ask!
Late submission: You will be marked a half grade lower for each day the policy memos and essay are late. (E.g., B grade becomes B-)
If you have questions about grading, please observe the following procedures:
Read my comments carefully.
Wait at least 24 hours and re-read my comments.
If you still have questions, make an appointment to meet with me.
If my explanation does not suffice, write a clear and succinct statement (typed), highlighting, with specific illustrations, why you believe you were graded unfairly. I will then consider the merits of your statement. I will NOT reconsider your grade on any given assignment without a written appeal. Also, I reserve the right to lower your grade following a re
The statute of limitations for grade queries is ONE week after the return of the papers.
Notice on disability accommodation
Any student in this course who has a disability that may prevent him or her from fully demonstrating his or her abilities should contact me personally as soon as possible so we can discuss accommodations necessary to ensure full participation and facilitate your educational opportunities.
About the instructor
Dr Selina Ho obtained her Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). Her research interests are international relations and comparative politics, with an area focus on China’s foreign policy and domestic politics. Her research expertise, current projects, and publications can be found on her webpage:
Dr. Ho was a public servant in the Singapore government before joining academia.
Workload Components : A-B-C-D-E
A: no. of lecture hours per week
B: no. of tutorial hours per week
C: no. of lab hours per week
D: no. of hours for projects, assignments, fieldwork etc per week
E: no. of hours for preparatory work by a student per week