SOAS University of London

China & Inner Asia Section, Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures

Ch 103: History and Culture of China

Module Code:
Year of study:
Year 1
Taught in:
Full Year



Objectives and learning outcomes of the module

At the end of this module, a student should have a good basic knowledge of the major periods and trends in the development of China and her culture, from the high antiquity to contemporary issues, and he/she should be able to conduct research in traditional as well as virtual libraries, and produce a solid argument in an academic essay.


Total of 22 weeks of teaching with 3 hours classroom contact per week.

Method of assessment

One three-hour written examination (70%) May/June and 3 essays totaling a minimum of 5,000 words to be submitted on day 1, week 1, term 2, day 1, week 9, term 2 and day 1, week 1, term 3 (30%).

Suggested reading

  • Ebrey, Patricia Buckley. The Cambridge Illustrated History of China. 2nd ed. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010.
  • Idema, Wilt and Lloyd Haft: A Guide to Chinese Literature. Ann Arbor: Center for Chinese Studies, University of Michigan, 1997
  • Norman, Jerry: Chinese. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1988
  • Owen, Stephen (ed. & transl.): An Anthology of Chinese Literature. Beginnings to 1911. New York: W.W. Norton, 1996
  • Spence, Jonathan: The Search for Modern China. 2nd ed.; New York: W.W. Norton, 1999
  • Zhao, Henry (ed.): The Lost Boat. Avant-Garde Fiction from China. London: Wellsweep, 1993

On-line references include:


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules