- Some have characterized the period from 1912-1926 as the era of “Taisho democracy”. To what extent was Japan in this period a democracy?
- What do you think the film, The Goddess, tells us about social and cultural changes in modern urban Shanghai?
- How did the war affect the society and politics of the countries and colonies of East Asia? Why did civilian populations become such frequent targets of military violence?
4 . How did the Chinese Communist Party develop from its foundation in 1921 through 1949, and why was it able to defeat the Nationalists?
5 The postwar Japanese “miracle” transformed Japan into one of the largest economies in the world. What role did the US occupation and its Cold War policy play in this transformation? What were the political and economic goals of postwar Japan’s leadership, and how did they work to achieve them?
- How did the political campaigns of the 1950s and 60s in China, including most importantly the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution, affect the lives of Chinese people of various backgrounds? What do you think of Mao Zedong’s role and responsibility?
- What were the most important political and economic changes under Deng Xiaoping, and what were the long-term consequences?