The East Asian Languages and Literatures Department (EALL) is dedicated to the study of the languages and cultures of China, Japan, Korea and Vietnam, in all their diversity. The long and unique civilizations of the East-Asian peoples, who make up almost one third of world's population, are introduced in courses in the fields of language, literature, and cultural studies. The department's goal is to cultivate, in the GW community and beyond, an appreciation of the rich cultural tradition and achievements of each culture, while highlighting the multivalent interrelationships that bind the East Asian region as a whole.
For our students, we strive to offer an education that will change their lives by not only providing them special linguistic and cultural experiences, but also by training them to function more wisely and competently in an increasingly globalized society. EALL prepares students for significant careers in East-Asian affairs and related fields, by helping them develop leadership qualities through rigorous academic and practical training. Careers in East Asia related fields offer very diverse opportunities in a world in which East Asia plays an increasingly important role. The students in our program go into government, diplomacy, business, academia, intelligence,medicine, and legal profession, etc.
For our faculty, we endeavor to foster an atmosphere in which dynamic research and teaching projects can be carried out, to benefit each other as well as our students. Many of our faculty members are prominent scholars in East Asian studies. Our Japanese program, in particular, is flourishing as a result of a highly innovative restructuring that faculty members designed and implemented in the recent years.
At the university level, the department works to complement and support the disciplinary study of East Asia in a number of different departments and programs in the humanities, social sciences, and professional schools, including Anthropology, Art History, History, Linguistics, Philosophy, Religion, Political Science, Business, International Affairs, Law, and Women's Studies. EALL also complements, while being its integral part, the Sigur Center for Asian Studies, which has recently been selected as one of seven areas of academic excellence by the University. The Sigur Center's main interest is in current affairs, but without knowledge of cultural and historical background of the region, a true understanding of the present is impossible.
Our departmental programs also respond to the needs of the larger Washington, D.C., community. The department also organizes special events for students, faculty members, and friends of GW to promote interdisciplinary and international dialog. The media -not only the mainstream ones such as Washington Post, NPR, News Channel 8, but also ethnic Asian print and broadcast media- often seek advice of our faculty members on East-Asian and Asian-American affairs.
The department maintains close relations with Freer-Sackler Galleries and Asian Pacific American Program of the Smithsonian Institution, the world's largest museum complex, which is minutes away from GW. We work closely also with the area's various research library and the Asian Division of the Library of Congress as well as with the East-Asian studies faculty in other universities in the area. Various embassies from East Asian countries and their cultural centers are frequent supporters of our academic and cultural activities. GW is also a university that many visiting scholars from East Asia seek. Curators, visiting faculty, and advanced graduate students from all over the world who do research at those institutions could be invited to help with guest teaching here at GW.