The Division offers a great variety of courses in the humanities. For organizational
purposes, the courses are grouped into four areas: (1) Linguistics, (2) Literature, (3)
History and Anthropology, and (4) Philosophy and Religion.
The linguistics curriculum introduces students to the study of language, with a particular
emphasis on Chinese. It offers an integrated view of various linguistics components,
including the study of writing system, speech sounds and sound patterns, word
formation, sentence structure, meaning, language use, and language change. The
courses provide students with a general appreciation of language as a communicative
system and equip them with tools needed for linguistic analysis.
Aside from a general introduction to the basics in linguistics, the curriculum focuses on
the structure of the Chinese language, its history and its present state of development.
Chinese dialects are also examined.
The literature curriculum introduces students to the study of literary art and other art
forms in their multifarious aspects and various manifestations. The courses provide
opportunities for students to experience and engage with literary texts and other art
forms and train students in the analysis of different kinds of cultural “texts” from an
artistic and ideological basis, in both the global and local perspective. They aim to
refine students’ aesthetic sensibility, heighten their analytical skills, and help them
gain a broad understanding of human cultures in general and the literary art in particular.
The emphasis of the curriculum is on Chinese literature, covering a variety of genres
and periods. It also offers courses on other literary traditions and other forms of art
such as film, music, and popular cultures. Some of the courses deal with important
intellectual questions of contemporary society in terms of the study of gender issues
and cultural identities.
History and Anthropology
The curriculum in history and anthropology introduces students to an organized study
of the disciplines. It aims to show what kinds of knowledge and forms of inquiry exist
in these areas, how different means of analysis are used, and what their value is. The
courses provide guidance to students in achieving the goal of a broad education
along with particular forms of knowledge and intellectual skills in history and anthropology.
The emphasis of the curriculum is placed on China in the broadest cultural sense to
include societies in Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, the Chinese Mainland, and the Chinese
diaspora. The curriculum is organized into four foci: (1) Chinese Culture and Society,
(2) The East and the West, (3) South China, and (4) Chinese Art History.
Philosophy and Religion
The curriculum in the disciplines of philosophy and religion is designed to provide
students with as broad, diversified, and comprehensive as possible a perspective
from which they can explore the nature, the subject matter, and the methodology of
the subjects involved. Through a graded progression of the courses at different
levels, students may not only expand their intellectual horizons in a general sense but
acquire expertise in what actually concerns philosophy and religion as two major
disciplines of human knowledge.
Towards this end, the curriculum is designed to cover five major areas of interest: (1)
philosophy and religion in general, (2) Chinese philosophy and religion, (3) philosophy
and religion of the East, (4) Western philosophy and religion, and (5) world philosophy
Undergraduate Minor Programs
• The Undergraduate Minor Program in Humanities
• The Undergraduate Minor Program in China Studies
• The Undergraduate Minor Program in Liberal Studies