Making China Modern

Subject HIST30014 (2012)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2012.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 3 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2012:

January, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable


Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: A 2 hour lecture and a 1 hour tutorial on 4,5,6,9,10,12,13,16,17,18, January 2012, with take-home exam on Thursday-Friday, 19-20 January
Total Time Commitment: Not available




Recommended Background Knowledge:


Non Allowed Subjects:


Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:


Prof Antonia Finnane


Professor Antonia Finnane

Subject Overview:

The history of 20th century China is explored as a history of cultural change. Changes in political culture, urban and rural life, material culture and views of self and society are traced from the end of the Chinese empire through the Republican era, Liberation, the Cultural Revolution up to the Reform era.Exposure to primary source materials including film and other visual materials, together with readings in contemporary scholarly analysis of Chinese society and history, will help students develop approaches to thinking and writing about change in recent Chinese history. 

Students enrolling in this subject should be aware that concurrent enrolment in another intensive subject will make it difficult for them to complete this subject successfully.


Students who complete this subject will

  • have developed a knowledge of local historical circumstances that shaped China's engagement with nationalism and modernity.
  • have an understanding of recent Chinese history in light of global economic and political trends.
  • have a capacity to write about Chinese history in informed comparative terms

Short review 1200 words, due 11 January (30%); tutorial participation (10%); take home exam (60%)

Hurdle requirement: students must attend a minimum of 75% of tutorials in order to pass this subject. Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per day; after working five days, no late assessment will be marked. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Prescribed Texts:

Jonathan Fenby, The Penguin History of Modern China: The Fall and Rise of a Great Power, 1850 to the Present (any addition)

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

Students who complete this subject will

  • demonstrate research skills through competent use of the library and other information sources.
  • show critical thinking and analysis through recommended reading, essay writing and tutorial discussion, and by determining the strength of an argument.
  • demonstrate understanding of social, ethical and cultural context through the contextualisation of judgements, developing a critical self-awareness, being open to new ideas and possibilities and by constructing an argument.
Related Course(s): Bachelor of Arts(Media and Communications)
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Asian Studies
Asian Studies
Asian Studies
Asian Studies Major
History Major
Related Breadth Track(s): 20th Century History

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