Chinese Studies Major

Chinese studies is dedicated to the study of China both as a vital part of the world today and one of the longest continuing civilizations of human history. To study China is to be exposed to a world of difference evidenced in language, literature, art, philosophy, religion, and history, as well as social, political, and economic structures. In intellectual terms, these differences challenge students' assumptions about themselves and the world they are living in and fruitfully lead to greater self-awareness and appreciation of the richness of human traditions and conditions. In practical terms, China's unprecedented economic development and the critical role that it has come to play in the world today suggests the timely importance of Chinese studies.

The Chinese studies major has a dual focus on language and cultural studies. It provides students solid training in reading and speaking knowledge of Mandarin Chinese. An interdisciplinary major, it also introduces students to a broad range of Chinese cultural issues and critical phenomena through multiple disciplines. Students will take courses in both Chinese and English. Students will complete the major with not only a firm competence in Mandarin Chinese but also a deep familiarity of China's literary, philosophical, religious, political, and social traditions and their transformations in modernity. The major will help to prepare students to begin a professional career with a China component or start their graduate studies.

The major in Chinese studies requires 10 courses.

Coursework falls into two categories: (1) cultural study from offerings within the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures and other departments at Fordham, as well as (2) Mandarin Chinese language study (courses with the subject code MAND).

Course Title Credits
Required Courses
MAND 2500Approaches to Literature4
MLAL 3047Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism: Chinese Thought and Literature4
or MAND/MLAL 3031 Chinese Cultural Concepts
MLAL 4998Chinese Studies Senior Research Paper 14
Choose seven electives from the below list.Varies

MLAL 4998 Chinese Studies Senior Research Paper is a supervised independent study (not a traditional course), culminating in an original research paper, written in English, in an area of Chinese studies. All majors are required to write a thesis under the direction of an adviser.

Chinese Studies Electives

Courses in this group have the CNST attribute (courses with the subject code MAND are taught in Mandarin Chinese).

Course Title Credits
COLI 3006Trauma Theory 4
HIST 1450Understanding Historical Change: South Asian History3
HIST 1550Understanding Historical Change: Modern East Asia3
HIST 3538The Good Earth?4
HIST 3915Contemporary China4
HIST 3919Christianity in China4
HIST 3922East Asian Cities4
HIST 3929History of Chinese in the Americas3
LING 2075Politics of Language in China4
MAND 1501Intermediate Mandarin I3
MAND 1502Intermediate Mandarin II3
MAND 2001Mandarin Language and Literature3
MAND 2500Approaches to Literature4
MAND 2601Mandarin Conversation and Composition4
MAND 3002Topics in Chinese Culture4
MAND 3015Learning Mandarin Chinese Through Music and Songs4
MAND 3020Learn Chinese Through Film4
MAND 3025Reading Chinese Short Stories4
MAND 3031Chinese Cultural Concepts4
MAND 3032Chinese Political Thought4
MAND 3035Confucius and the Analects4
MAND 3040Topics in Mandarin Chinese Literature4
MAND 3050China in the Headlines: An Advanced Newspaper Reading Course in Mandarin Chinese4
MAND 3055China and Globalization4
MAND 3060Contemporary Chinese Politics4
MLAL 3030Masterpieces of Chinese Film: Theory and Texts4
MLAL 3031Chinese Cultural Concepts4
MLAL 3043Aesthetics and Politics: Modern Chinese Literature4
MLAL 3047Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism: Chinese Thought and Literature4
MLAL 3048Political Thought in Modern Asia4
MLAL 3049Modern Chinese Political Thought4
MLAL 3075Gender and China4
MLAL 3110Anti-Racist Pedagogy4
PHIL 3756Chinese Philosophy4
PHIL 3759Buddhist Philosophy4
PHIL 3770Daoist and Zen Philosophy4
POSC 3631China and Russia in Comparative Perspective4
POSC 3632China and U.S. in Global Era4
POSC 3634The Great Law of China4
POSC 3636China and the Global Economy4
THEO 3724Classic Buddhist Texts3


Study Abroad

All majors are strongly encouraged to study abroad. A maximum of four courses taken abroad for one semester and a maximum of five courses taken abroad for one year may apply toward the major.

Students who opt to apply study abroad credits toward their major must have these courses approved by their faculty adviser prior to going abroad.


Upon approval from their major advisers, students may double count two courses towards the major in Chinese studies and another major or minor.

AP/IB Credit

All courses counting towards the core language requirement and the major or the minor in a modern foreign language, literature and culture must be taken for credit and a letter grade. When AP or IB credits are awarded as equivalent to the 1502 level in a language, these credits will be applied toward the core language requirement and, as elective credits, toward graduation, but they will not be applied toward the major or the minor in that language.


The major in Chinese studies is available at Fordham College at Rose Hill and Fordham College at Lincoln Center. Students in Fordham's School of Professional and Continuing Studies may major in Chinese studies only if they receive the approval of their advising dean and/or department, and their schedules are sufficiently flexible to permit them to take day courses at the Rose Hill or Lincoln Center campuses.

Fordham College at Rose Hill students: The requirements above are in addition to those of the Core Curriculum.

Fordham College at Lincoln Center students: The requirements above are in addition to those of the Core Curriculum.

Professional and Continuing Studies students: The requirements above are in addition to those of the PCS Core Curriculum and any additional electives that may be required to earn a minimum of 124 credits.