Study away 2007: Voices from around the globe
Art & Music in China (Music 105/190/491)
Spend three weeks in China including 5 days in Beijing and two weeks in the western province of Sichuan - a fertile plain circled by mountains and nestled up next to the high plateau of Tibet. Gain an understanding of the Chinese and Tibetans through their own words, sounds, and images. Learn More »
As instructor for the Arts of China course this J term, I am very much looking forward to introducing the students in our group to some of the wonderful artistic traditions in China that I love.
I remember when I did not have any particlar understanding or appreciation for these non-Western traditions, and I remember clearly those "AHA!" moments of discovery when I suddenly found that I understood them- like opening a door that had always been there and discovering a beautiful new world behind it.
Usually those AHA moments have happened to me when I was "on the road"- deeply immersed in a culture by living and traveling in it. I hope to be able to give our group some opportunities for these moments during our three weeks together in China.
We have not left for China yet, so I am also wondering if they share PLU's values. I will, however, look into it as I experience the Chinese culture.
For the past I don't know how many years, my family has traveled about, to various states and countries. To this day, I've been to Canada, Mexico, Japan, Korea, Ireland, and I'm not sure how many different states. I think it's safe to say that I've kind of grown fond of it, being able to travel to a distant, alien enviornment and being dropped straight into it with little knowledge of what to expect from the experience.
As a freshman student here at PLU interested in Music and Communications, Its absolutely terrific that I get to travel abroad to China my first year in college. The course will cover any number of topics of the emerging super power but will concentrate on cultural past to present. I became interested in this trip through Prof. Youtz's Music/Culture class in which I was taught about the history of musical tradition in China. Being the music nut I am, I could'nt really pass up the oppritunity to travel to one of the worlds oldest nations and study their experience with musical expression. Also, I am eager to travel to a country that isn't governed democratically and discover how they live their lives.
The question asked of the J-term trip to China is, "Do people in your host culture share PLU's stated commitment to educating for justice, health, sustainability, and peace?" Having not exactly been their yet, I know no exact details. Many could say through biased mouthes that any country opposed to another countries supposed set of definitions for those afore mentioned factors of education that the country does not share those commitments. But I expect to find at the base of things that they do hold such goals as important.
Goals such as justice, health, sustainability, and peace are rather general pillars of order for any society and I believe are the goals that every individual entity (be it a nation or single human being) strives for, often indirectly.
With our trip to China only a few weeks away, I keep thinking about what I am looking forward to. The course is looking at the various art forms in China and the effects globalization and modernity has had on Chinese traditions. As a psychology major, I'm really interested in how art forms reflect one's culture and identity, and what it might mean for a group of people when those traditional values are threatened.
I've also loved learning about other cultures. They've always fascinated me, but I've never had the opportunity to really experience other cultures. I'm so excited to have this op
Because we have not yet left, it's hard to know whether the people of China share PLU's commitment to justice, health, sustainability, and peace. I hope that my experiences and conversations during the trip will help me to learn more about these values, and the ways in which China is viewing and addressing them.
I'm definitely excited to go to China this January. I've wanted to visit China for quite some time, so this is pretty much the coolest thing to happen so far during my time here at PLU. I'm really curious about Chinese culture in general, and I hope to be able to learn from a culture so far removed from the Western world I'm used to.
Well we have about 3.5 weeks until we leave for China. After our last meeting, it finally seems real.... we are actually going to China!!!! When looking at the question of values, I am not quite sure if China shares in the same values that we here at PLU do. I am sure without a doubt that China has values that they hold new and dear to their hearts, but whether or not they match up with ours is something that we are undoubtly going to get a first hand look at here in a few weeks. I definitely think they have a strong committment for educating justice, health, sustainability, and peace, but what I am not sure of is whether or not they are along the same lines as ours.
This week was our last group meeting before we depart for China in about 3.5 weeks! I am so excited for the new experience that awaits us. Growing up, I traveled all over Europe, but have never been to Asia. I am looking forward to the experience of Chinese culture and language, even if it will be a large cultural shock from the Westernized world I am used to.
I am not exactly sure of the values of our host culture in their commitment to educating for justice, health, sustainability, and peace. At the moment, I am not sure if they addressed differently than the United States.