Class Info


One of the most well-known traditional arts in China, Chinese calligraphy (the art of writing—書法 shufa) has long been an area of interest to both experienced artists and the general public alike. 21G.111 is an introduction course to Chinese Calligraphy, which will give students an insight into the fundamentals of this ancient art. Students will learn the Chinese writing system and gain basic knowledge and skills of Chinese calligraphy through systematic hands-on practice with brush and ink. In addition to the immediate aspects of calligraphy as an art form, this course also examines the aesthetic values, historic development and intellectual metaphors that Chinese calligraphy embodies to further students’ understanding of the Chinese art, people and worldview. Students will work on a mini calligraphy video project based on their own interest. Resources in the Boston area, including Chinatown and the Sackler collection at Harvard will also be integrated into this course. This course is designed for students who are learning Chinese as a foreign language, and it will be taught in English. 

Meet the Instructor

Kang Zhou is a lecturer in Chinese in the MIT Global Languages department. During the semester, he teaches Chinese language courses. Kang became involved in the calligraphic arts at a young age and, since then, has developed a deep apprecation for the art form. He designed and taught the inaugural Chinese calligraphy in IAP 2018, hoping that MIT students could increase their understanding of Chinese culture and history through hands-on, indepth study and could also benefit from the philosophies that calligraphy teaches. 


To submit photos of your calligraphic work to be posted on the MIT Chinese Calligraphy Instagram and uploaded to the website, email an attachment (jpg, jpeg, or png) to calligraphy-iap19 at mit dot edu. If you wish to be tagged, include your Instagram handle and make sure you are following @MITchinesecalligraphy.

For class-related questions, comments, or concerns, please email Zhou Laoshi at