+ Asian Studies – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \

Asian Studies

Asian Studies

Asian Studies is designed to acquaint students with cultural elements that are unique to Asia while providing a firm foundation for further study. At HWS, students are encouraged to participate in an off-campus program in Asia as a way to become fully immersed in the discipline.

Asian Studies class

Student Profile: Joshua Salazar '22

Joshua Salazar '22

Majors: Asian Studies and International Relations

“The Asian Studies program allows students to explore a region that is becoming more important to the political, economic and cultural workings of the world. Through my coursework, I have been able to learn about historical events through the eyes of those living in China, Japan, Korea and other countries and have thus expanded my worldview. I feel confident in my career goal in the U.S. Foreign Service because of my Mandarin language classes and mentorship from my Asian Studies professors.”

Meet Our Faculty

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Spotlight: Recent Grad

Recent Grad

Cecelia M. Carsky-Bush '16

Current Position: Business Analyst, Public Consulting Group, Inc.

Current Location: Boston, Mass.

Majors: Economics and Asian Studies

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Sample Courses

Class Complete Course List

Trekking through Asia
Welcome to the "Asian Century." Asia has re-emerged as the center of the world, after a brief hiatus that started in the 18th century. With histories and religious traditions stretching back three millennia, today as we see cultures across Asia have transformed in ways to meet the demands of our rapidly changing world. China, Japan, and India are three of the world's top economies. Asia contains six of the world's ten largest countries, and is home to over half of the world's population and two of the world's major religions, Hinduism and Buddhism. For decades Asian countries have been leaders in global manufacturing, and Asian universities are now renowned centers for scientific and medical innovation. Fifty percent of the declared nuclear-weapon states are also in the region. Simply put, Asia matters a great deal! In this course, we trek through the Asian past and present, exploring this vast and vibrant region. Through writings and travelogues that documented the peoples and lands of places stretching from the Sea of Japan to Persia, and from Java to the Mediterranean Sea, we will learn about the cultural systems that helped shape Asian societies. We will consider how these traditions contributed to and were changed by historical interactions in Asia itself and in relationship to the rest of the world. Join us on the journey!