What can we learn about East Asian history and culture through its rich tradition of narratives featuring the martial arts? This course introduces short stories and novels dealing with combat and warfare from nearly two thousand years of East Asian literature, exploring issues such as self and society, gender, power, the body, and identity. All texts will be provided in translation, and no prior knowledge of any East Asian language or culture is necessary. Restricted to first-year students. Not eligible for CR/NCR option.