Course Details

HIST 256: Disaster, Disease, & Rumors in East Asia

How are rumors generated and transmitted in a period of high anxiety like disaster? Do rumors and anxiety reciprocate? How do rumors enhance existing stereotypes and prejudices of people? Why do rumors arise in a society that suffers from inadequate information or the complete cutoff in communication? This course classifies the types and nature of rumors at the time of making modern East Asia. Thematically, it examines the interplay between wartime science, environmental conditions, and societal capacities in modern Japan, Korea, and China. Topics include rumor panics generated by epidemic, water pollution, atomic bomb, famine politics, industrial toxins, and lab leaks. 
6 credits; HI, WR2, IS; Not offered 2021-2022