Press Contact

SISU News Center, Office of Communications and Public Affairs

Tel : +86 (21) 3537 2378

Email : news@shisu.edu.cn

Address :550 Dalian Road (W), Shanghai 200083, China

Further Reading

SISU’s U.K. & U.S. Survey Panel Discussion Open Class wins the fame


23 June 2019 | By SES | copyedited by Deng Boyin

  • The Panel Discussion Open Class

  • The Panel Discussion Open Class

T

he class, U.K. & U.S. Survey: A Social-Cultural and Humanity Approach, is a renewed connection between U.K. & U.S. and Chinese studies. Meanwhile, "Panel Discussion Open Class" is an innovative attempt, aligning with the form of international academic conference. A fascinating breakthrough of teaching style as it is, four expert teachers joined efforts to propel a T-T, T-S, S-S three-dimensional scholastic dialogues on a Monday morning, 27th May, 2019.

The class, in effect, has attracted a great number of scholars, postgraduates and undergraduates. They are eager to observe and participate four rounds of talks led by Dr Sun Lin, Professor Xin Hua, Dr Zhang Xinbin, and Dr Yang Weijia, covering culture, economy, social studies and education.

Dr. Sun Lin was good at capturing the audience’s heart and soul. As a lead-in presenter, she focused on “home”—American culture studies. The two pieces of music –the Chinese folk song Jasmine and Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring, introduced by her soon aroused everyone’s contemplation on “how to define ‘home’”. Four teachers vividly talked about how they understood “East and west, home is the best.” This rooted conception helped Dr Sun to analyse American’s historical attachment to then mother country—England and how they shaped feeling of home with this intrinsic bounding. After that, she skillfully diverted attention to the Chinese side and presented Mr. Qian Xuesen, Mr. Ren Zhenfei and Mr. Ieoh Ming Pei’s pursuit of sense of belonging. On that base, she concluded that the American is more individual-based, contract-constructed and future-oriented with a sense of belonging and a sense of upward mobility, whilst the Chinese is community-based, blood-related and retrospective, regarding nation as an indispensable part of life.

Dr. Sun successfully ignited everyone’s aspiration to further explore China-U.S. studies. Professor Xin Hua then just succeeded in time. Being an expert of U.S. economy, Professor Xin exerted his talent in English speech and systemic analytical skills. He offered a panoramic view by summarizing 6 characteristics of American’s “empire of wealth” and explained the historical roots, evolutionary process, and current conditions of this largest economy of the world. Starting out from a multi-dimensional and macroscopic descriptive framework, he elaborated on the unique path dependency of U.S. economy based on its culture, history, and geography. In other words, its reliance on the sea-borne trade stimulates a very fast technological innovation and endless transformation of industrial structure. The momentum of this fluidity has pushed it onto the “post-industrialization” stage and created the “rust belt”. Professor Xin also analyzed the U.S. domestic socio-economic perceptions that help to propel the China-U.S. trade conflicts. During the course, the students were much evoked and asked several questions, such as “where could be the way for China’s ‘rust belt’?” “what are the main causes of China- U.S. disputes?” etc.

The classroom atmosphere was greatly heated up from Professor Xin’s host. Dr. Zhang Xinbin then seized the moment and embarked on the discussion of the partiality and possible bias held by American textbook writers. This is a unique and yet overlooked perspective of viewing American social problems. Dr. Zhang started from a periodical paper written by the Japanese scholar Okiyoshi Takeda with the title A Forgotten Minority? A Content Analysis of Asian Pacific Americans in Introductory American Government textbooks, which claims that Asian Pacific Americans are marginalized, excluded, discriminated and stereotyped by American Government or Politics textbooks. Dr. Zhang inspired the participants to further consider if this might happen to other minority groups, for example, the Chinese Americans. Dr. Zhang also asked the students to consider whether facts included in the official textbook the only and all the truth? Are those facts always true to fact? These critical questions have touched upon the inner core values of American society. Students and teachers were thus in deep thoughts.

Dr. Yang delighted the audience by inviting the students to honestly answer the question: “Why do you particularly choose English as your major?” Students were happy to reflect and manifested their genuine love for English language. Dr. Yang, being on the same wavelength with the students, presented her research on English departments of China and American Universities. She intended to boost English majors’ confidence in their English studies, as English faculties are dedicated to cultivate English talents for the same aims. First, English majors are able to write and communicate, which seems remain a rare but prized skill in almost every domain of our world (cited in Yale Univesrity prospectus). Second, they bear the ability to analyse, which not only nourishes critical minds and imaginations, but also encourages the art of close reading and interpretation. Third, they are able to change, because knowledge of history, ideas and cultures that have changed the world will shape life. Finally, Dr Yang rounded off the class with her heart-felt well-wishes: “Let our English studies be wonderful and fruitful.”

The Panel Discussion Open Class has won a good round of applauds from the pool. The sparks of thoughts, the discerning understanding, and the intellectual dialogues on China-U.S. studies are imbued in the class. It is highly recognized by the students that the open class is a success, a joyful academic journey and an enriched learning experience. Let’s look forward to the next “Panel Discussion Open Class”—Embracing China-U.K. studies. Until then…

Share:

Press Contact

SISU News Center, Office of Communications and Public Affairs

Tel : +86 (21) 3537 2378

Email : news@shisu.edu.cn

Address :550 Dalian Road (W), Shanghai 200083, China

Further Reading