Search Results

ASIAN 240: Talking in Japan and the U.S.: Language, Identity, and Beyond

This course looks at language as it creates and responds to its cultural and social environments. Students compare and contrast major aspects of language use in Japan and the United States. Students explore the general underlying elements of talk (e.g., standard vs. regional dialects, language attitude and ideologies, politeness, gendered speech patterns, communication styles) and learn to understand how speakers convey subtle meanings, sometimes unconsciously. Knowledge of Japanese is helpful but not necessary. Taught in English. Counts toward linguistic studies and management studies concentrations.

Asian Studies

The Asian Studies Department provides students with the opportunity to study East Asia, Southeast Asia, and South Asia. The department offers majors in Asian studies, Chinese, and Japanese as well as concentrations in Asian studies, China studies, and Japan studies. A concentration in Asian studies — which presumes that a student completes a major in another department — is ideal for students with an interest in Asia who are majoring in economics, environmental studies, history, religion, sociology/anthropology, art, political science, or other areas. St. Olaf offers many international programs in Asia. The concentrations in China and Japan studies allow students to pursue advanced language study with or without an Asian studies major. The China studies and Japan studies concentrations are available only to students who entered the college before fall semester 2017.  Beginning in the fall of 2017, new incoming students with an interest in pursuing more in-depth study of China and Japan are encouraged to consider a Chinese or Japanese major.  See also Asian Conversations   ASIAN 210 ,   ASIAN 215 ,   ASIAN 220 Overview of the Major The Asian studies major allows students to gain competence in either Chinese or Japanese language and the understanding of Asian societies through a selection of courses in language, linguistics, literature, film, economics, history, religion, art history, political science, sociology/anthropology, philosophy, and psychology as well as special interdisciplinary courses on Asia. Courses that count toward the major are listed under Asian Studies, Chinese, Japanese, Asian Conversations, and other departments (listed on the courses tab of this catalog section). Many Asian studies courses also fulfill one or more general education requirements. Asian studies majors are encouraged to use their language skills to experience an Asian culture firsthand through study in Asia. Level I courses provide introductions to the languages and the fields of Asian studies. Level II courses, including the Asian Conversations program, provide students a breadth of knowledge about Asia or intermediate study of language. Level III courses offer students the opportunity to do advanced study on a topic about Asia. Please see the Chinese major or Japanese major pages for requirements specific to those majors. 


Learning Japanese introduces you to a dynamic nation of 120 million people at the hub of technological innovation, trade, and diplomatic relations in the world’s fastest-growing market: the Pacific Rim. It introduces you to a modern country that has maintained a distinct cultural identity; to a society that still emphasizes the individual’s responsibilities to family and group; and to an economy with distinctive solutions to problems of productivity, management, and motivation in the work place. It introduces you to the earliest non-Western nation to become a modern world power. St. Olaf teaches four full years of Japanese language and sends language students to three different campuses in Japan. The Japanese Major To fulfill a Japanese major, students will demonstrate both linguistic and cultural competence. For linguistic and language skills, Japanese majors will possess proficiency in listening, speaking, reading, and writing at the American Council of Teaching Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Intermediate-High level as well as metalinguistic and intercultural awareness of the use of Japanese language in different social milieus. Additionally, students will be able to analyze, interpret, and critique various discourses and cultural productions from and about Japan through their liberal arts studies, which may include literature, art, history, religion, philosophy, and/or politics. Special Programs Study programs in Japan are available at Waseda University in Tokyo through the ACM, Nagoya University in Nagoya, and Hokusei Gakuen University in Sapporo.

Linguistic Studies

...Course Other Approved Courses ASIAN 126 Language in Japanese Society ASIAN 240 Talking in Japan...


...of Modern Philosophy PHIL 240 Formal Logic Three...Modern Philosophy PHIL 251 Asian Philosophy,Science, Ethics...

Management Studies

...246 New York Art Interim (off-campus) ASIAN 240 Talking in Japan and the U...