2020 Essence of Humanities and Social Sciences9:Political Science

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Humanities and social science courses
Nakajima Takeshi 
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Course description and aims

A variety of political issues are accumulating in modern East Asia. While the idea of "East Asian Homology" is discussed, Japan has not been able to resolve its confrontations with neighboring countries. At the center of this are the issues of "dominion" and "historical awareness". In this class, we take up specific topics and acquire fundamental knowledge before discussing ways to resolve these issues.                                           The course has 3 aims. The first is to acquire fundamental knowledge regarding the issues of dominion and historical awareness. The seconds is to discuss solutions based upon correct knowledge. The third is for students to create their own opinions and become able to persuasively present their contentions. In the future, chances to interact with East Asian countries will expand. When that time comes, we must have acquired historically accurate knowledge and be able to state our own opinions to others. Through this class, develop the foundation to be active as an international person in Asia.

Student learning outcomes

Acquire the following abilities by taking this class. ①Acquire fundamental knowledge on important political issues in East Asia faced by Japan. ②Students will understand the standpoints and opinions of opposing countries rather than simply the standpoint and assertions of their own country and then explore for appropriate solutions. ③Acquire the ability to form consensus through discussions.


East Asia,  National borders issue, Tokyo Trials, Yasukuni Issue, Comfort Women Issue

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

In the first class, attending students are separated into 7 groups, and the leader of each group is decided. Starting from the 2nd class it is in debate format, with members of relevant groups acting as panelists in a discussion. Partway through, the instructor will give a lecture on important points, and finally all students will participate in a discussion. Students will be expected to actively participate in the discussions. Those other than the presenters must also prepare for the class.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Guidance and intro Grasp the issues faced by East Asia
Class 2 National borders issue ①-Senkaku (Uotsushima) Islands Issue Understand and discuss the dominion issues which are causing contention between Japan and China/Taiwan
Class 3 National borders issue ②-Takeshima (Dokushima) Islands Issue Understand and discuss the dominion issues which are causing contention between Japan and Korea
Class 4 National borders issue ③-Northern Territories Issue Understand and discuss the dominion issues which are causing contention between Japan and Russia
Class 5 Tokyo Trials(The International Military Tribunal for the Far East) Become able to explain the good and bad aspects of the Tokyo Trials
Class 6 Yasukuni Issue Organize the points of the Yasukuni issue and present solutions to it
Class 7 Comfort Women Issue Understand the true essence of the comfort women issue and be able to present solutions to it

Out-of-Class Study Time (Preparation and Review)

To enhance effective learning, students are encouraged to spend approximately 100 minutes preparing for class and another 100 minutes reviewing class content afterwards (including assignments) for each class.
They should do so by referring to textbooks and other course material.


None required.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

None required.

Assessment criteria and methods

Students' course scores are based on presentations(30%) and final papers(70%)  

Related courses

  • LAH.S103 : Political Science A
  • LAH.S203 : Political Science B
  • LAH.S304 : Political Science C

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

Japanese ability

Contact information (e-mail and phone)    Notice : Please replace from "[at]" to "@"(half-width character).


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