The University of Mississippi
Fall 2020, Tuesdays and Thursdays, 8:00-9:15, Remote via Blackboard and Zoom
Instructor: Dr. Gang Guo * e-mail: gg at olemiss dot edu * Office hours: by appointment

[ Class Schedule ] | [ Student Presentations ] | [ Online Resources ] | [ Map of East Asia ]


This course is an introduction to the political economy of East Asia. In the past decades the economies of East Asia (broadly defined to include also Southeast Asia) have generally performed well compared with the rest of the world. Political scientists and economists, among others, have offered various and often opposing explanations for East Asia's high growth. A large part of the debate centers on the role of the state in the economic development of East Asia. Therefore, starting with an overview of the performance of East Asian economies, this course shall examine the development strategies and policies of the major economies in the region, and conflicting theoretical arguments and/or empirical evidence will be discussed and analyzed.

After completing this course, students are expected

  1. to be familiar with the intellectual debates surrounding the economic "miracle" and financial crisis in Pacific Asia over the past few decades;
  2. to gain a better understanding of the different and evolving economic roles played by the state in various Asian countries during the postwar era;
  3. and to be able to apply the concepts and theories to the study of political economy in Pacific Asia and beyond.

This course has a heavy reading load and links to the readings are posted and updated on this web page throughout the semester, so students should visit the course web site regularly. It is essential for students to read (often critically) the required materials before class and attend all class sessions. Class participation accounts for 10% of the course grade.

Each student is also required to make two brief in-class presentations of about 5-10 minutes in length on a recent news on East Asia. A sign-up wiki page is on Blackboard and each student will choose two dates to present that are at least a month apart. The presentation schedule will be posted on this webpage for your reference. In reporting the news, the presenter should synthesize news stories from at least two major mass media outlets. For the preparation of the presentation, there are many English-language websites that cover news on East Asia, some of which are linked from the online resources section on this web page. The PowerPoint (or PDF) file for your presentation should include at least one page on the main news story, at least one page on some background information to help the audience understand the news story better, and at least one page of sources and/or references. The PowerPoint (or PDF) file for your presentation should be uploaded on Blackboard before the class in which you present. After each presentation there will be a short period of time in which the presenter responds to questions or comments from the audience.

The presentations account for 15% of the course grade and will be evaluated using the following rubric:

  1. Content
  2. Format
  3. Delivery

There will be two (2) writing assignments for this course, one in each half of the semester. Each paper accounts for 10% of the course grade.

The midterm exam on Thursday, October 1st accounts for 25% of the course grade.

The final exam will start at 8:00 in the morning on Thursday, November 19th, according to the Registrar's Office. It accounts for 30% of the course grade.

Disability Access and Inclusion:
The University of Mississippi is committed to the creation of inclusive learning environments for all students. If there are aspects of the instruction or design of this course that result in barriers to your full inclusion and participation, or to accurate assessment of your achievement, please contact the course instructor as soon as possible. Barriers may include, but are not necessarily limited to, timed exams and in-class assignments, difficulty with the acquisition of lecture content, inaccessible web content, and the use of non-captioned or non-transcribed video and audio files. If you are approved through SDS, you must log in to your Rebel Access portal at https://sds.olemiss.edu to request approved accommodations. If you are NOT approved through SDS, you must contact Student Disability Services at 662-915-7128 so the office can: 1. determine your eligibility for accommodations, 2. disseminate to your instructors a Faculty Notification Letter, 3. facilitate the removal of barriers, and 4. ensure you have equal access to the same opportunities for success that are available to all students.


Part I: Introduction and Overview

Part II: Political Economy of East Asia Countries

Part III: East Asia and Globalization

Student Presentations

August25thTuesday(No presentation)
8thTuesdayIvy Gerrell
10thThursdayTy Madkins
15thTuesday(No presentation)
17thThursdayLauren Reddoch
22ndTuesdayHunter Jolly
24thThursdayAllison Crull
29thTuesdayMatthew LaFaver
October1stThursday(Midterm Exam)
6thTuesdayTyler Godina
8thThursdayWest Warren
13thTuesdayIvy Gerrell
15thThursdayTy Madkins
20thTuesdayLiam Little
27thTuesdayLiam Little
29thThursdayHunter Jolly
November3rdTuesdayLauren Reddoch
5thThursdayAllison Crull
10thTuesdayMatthew LaFaver
12thThursdayTyler Godina
17thTuesdayWest Warren

On-line Resources