This upper-level seminar course explores the history of contemporary China through its social, political, economic and environmental transformations over the past seventy years. Students will build historical knowledge as a foundation for understanding contemporary China and explore the dynamics of Chinese society through selected topics including agriculture, population, and gender relations. Participants will become familiar with key issues and major approaches to the study of contemporary China that will help them understand its changing role on the world stage. Discussions in the seminar will focus on weekly readings and progress reports on research. Assessment will include quizzes, a research proposal, and a 2,000-word research paper.