What is an Asian studies degree?

Knowledge of other cultures, especially from a region as influential as Asia, is critical for a complete education. An Asian studies Bachelor of Arts degree is an intensive course of study in the cultures, politics, economics and history of Asia, exploring connections across the Pan-Asian region or focusing on China, Japan and South Asia.

Why study Asian studies at Furman?

Our Asian studies program takes an interdisciplinary approach to prepare you for a career at home or abroad. We offer the Bachelor of Arts degree with three majors focusing on Asian Studies, Chinese Studies and Japanese Studies. As a major in our department, you can gain a broad understanding of the entire continent or specialize in a particular region. Our program introduces our students to everything from the languages of China and Japan to South Asian music and popular culture to the social and environmental implications of rising Asian economies. Plan a visit to Furman’s beautiful campus or start your application today.

How will you learn?

Engaged learning within a private liberal arts and sciences university is the framework for your student experience at Furman. Our interdisciplinary approach will give you a deep breadth of knowledge and inspire you to discover connections between varied interests. Our program includes faculty from seven different academic departments, including history, literature, philosophy, anthropology, religion and others, ensuring you will have the opportunity to study Asia from every angle. At Furman, we believe an interdisciplinary approach will help you explore and understand the planet’s largest and most populous region – and our robust language, study away and internship programs will help you see that region from the ground up.

Featured Asian studies courses

  • 94%
    placement rate six months after graduation (employed or in graduate school)
  • No. 6
    U.S. News and World Report rank among national liberal arts colleges in the Southeast
  • 9:1
    student to faculty ratio

What our students say

“The Asian studies major helped expand my worldview, and it armed me with the tools necessary for critical analysis. The professors are supportive and challenging, always pushing you to analyze a bit further. The study abroad opportunities within the Asian studies department are unmatched, and the department works with you to ensure that your schedule allows you to study abroad.”
– Julia Freeman ’20

Our faculty

Eiho Baba

Associate Professor of Philosophy and Asian Studies

Alexander Francis-Ratte

Associate Professor, Asian Studies; Department Chair, Asian Studies

Lane Harris

Professor and Chair, History

Nadia Kanagawa

Assistant Professor, History and Asian Studies

Katherine "Kate" Kaup 白荷婷

James B. Duke Professor of Asian Studies and Politics and International Affairs

Lisa Knight

Alva and Beatrice Bradley Professor of Anthropology, Asian Studies, and Religion; Chair, Department of Anthropology

Savita Nair

Gordon Poteat Professor of Asian Studies and History

Izumi Tokunaga

Lecturer of Asian Studies

Andrew Womack

Assistant Professor, Asian Studies, Anthropology

Shusuke Yagi

Professor of Asian Studies, Japanese Studies, Anthropology, and Film Studies

Edward Yazijian

Assistant Professor of Religion and Asian Studies

Dongming Zhang

James B. Duke Associate Professor of Asian Studies
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Asian Studies Major F.A.Q.