East Asia Rising: Beyond the American Century? (L2074S)

30 credits, Level 6

Spring teaching

You'll learn about the rise of East Asia by examining the interconnections between regional development and geopolitical contestation in the Cold War and contemporary eras.

You'll take a historical approach, starting with an examination of the legacies of European and Japanese imperialism in East Asia and an analysis of the establishment of post-war US hegemony in the region and its implications for subsequent economic development.

You'll also examine:

  • the divergent experiences of Northeast and Southeast Asia and the rise of China
  • the implications of the decline of Cold War geopolitical rivalry
  • the rise of globalisation and its role in explaining subsequent trends such as the East Asian financial crisis, East Asian regionalism and the changing nature of US-China relations.

Within this historical context, you'll examine different analytical frameworks and debates concerning late development, such as neoclassical versus structural institutionalism, Marxist versus dependency theories ,and international/regional versus domestic factors.

You'll study these theories critically in terms of their analytical purchase and their origins and role in geopolitical rivalry itself.


100%: Seminar


30%: Coursework (Essay, Group presentation)
70%: Written assessment (Essay)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 300 hours of work. This breaks down into about 33 hours of contact time and about 267 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2023/24. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to COVID-19, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let our applicants know of material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.


This module is offered on the following courses: