Chinese Major

Develop advanced fluency in Chinese language and literature, and study the cultural traditions of China from early times to the present day.  

Learn the language, literature and culture of China as a major or minor. You’ll receive an interdisciplinary introduction to China’s history, social, philosophical and political issues and other cultural concerns, as well as intense language study.

Students majoring in Chinese graduate as fluent speakers, writers, readers and listeners, comfortable with daily conversation, public speeches, and translation. You’ll have experience interpreting texts, understanding film and other media, and be able to sensitively engage with Chinese culture.

Majors supplement their studies with a semester abroad in Beijing or Hangzhou and are encouraged to live in our language residence hall. 

In class with Professor Sharon Hou
In class with Professor Sharon Hou
In class with Professor Sharon Hou
In class with Professor Sharon Hou

What You’ll Study

    • Advanced courses in reading, writing and translation
    • Courses in modern Chinese literature and culture
    • Courses in classical Chinese poetry or fiction
    • Courses in Chinese film or gender and sexuality
All majors are encouraged to live in the Oldenborg Center’s Chinese hall for at least one year.

Learning at Pomona

Nathan Barewin ’23

“中美关系” “The Relationship between China and America"

Looking at the U.S.-China Trade War and the coronavirus pandemic, Nathan Barewin ’23 explained the impact of these events on U.S.-China relations.

Ava Tiller ’23

“Acquisition of the Chinese Modal Particle “Le” between Heritage and Non-Heritage Learners with Different Proficiency Levels” 不同汉语水平的华裔非华裔的动态助词“了”的习得

Ava Tiller ’23 examined how second language learners learn complex grammar in Chinese.

Nathan Barewin ’23
Nathan Barewin ’23

The main reason I majored in Chinese was so I could explore the global network that is largely constructed by our two countries. Since beginning to study Chinese in middle school, I have always been fascinated by Chinese culture and the difference from American society.  Understanding the relationship between China and the United States has always been my primary source of interest, and majoring in Chinese at Pomona College has given me the opportunities to work with incredible students and faculty to continue to explore this relationship.

Faculty & Teaching

Among our Chinese professors are internationally respected translators and experts on modern and classical Chinese literature and second language acquisition. You will become adept in the language, thanks to their attentive teaching. 

Professor Allan Barr

Chinese is a challenging but rewarding language, rooted in a rich culture with a long, continuous history. Classes are typically small and interactive, introducing classic works from the Chinese tradition or focusing on the rapid changes in modern China. Proficiency in Chinese is an asset in today’s world, and our majors go on to careers in such fields as business, law, international affairs and translation.