Course Offerings

Fall 2018

See complete information about these courses in the course offerings database. For more information about a specific course, including course type, schedule and location, click on its title.

Survey of Western Art: Ancient to Medieval

ARTH 101 - Bent, George R.

Chronological survey of Western art from the Paleolithic Age through the Middle Ages in Italy and Northern Europe. Examination of cultural and stylistic influences in the art and architecture of ancient Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, and Rome. Consideration of distinct interests of Early Christian, Byzantine, and Medieval Europe. Focus on major monuments and influential images produced up to circa 1400.

Survey of Western Art: Ancient to Medieval

ARTH 101 - Gustafson, Erik D.

Chronological survey of Western art from the Paleolithic Age through the Middle Ages in Italy and Northern Europe. Examination of cultural and stylistic influences in the art and architecture of ancient Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, and Rome. Consideration of distinct interests of Early Christian, Byzantine, and Medieval Europe. Focus on major monuments and influential images produced up to circa 1400.

Northern Renaissance Art

ARTH 255 - Bent, George R.

A survey of Northern painting from 1300 to 1600, examined as symbols of political, religious, and social concerns of painters, patrons, and viewers. Among the artists covered are Campin, van Eyck, van der Weyden, Dürer, Holbein, and Brueghel. Emphasis placed on interpretation of meaning and visual analysis.

Medieval and Early Modern British Literature

ENGL 250 - Kao, Wan-Chuan

This course is a survey of English literature from the Early Middle Ages to the Early Modern period. We read works in various genres--verse, drama, and prose--and understand their specific cultural and historical contexts. We also examine select modern film adaptations of canonical works as part of the evolving history of critical reception.

Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales

ENGL 313 - Kao, Wan-Chuan

This course considers the primary work on which Chaucer's reputation rests: The Canterbury Tales . We pay sustained attention to Chaucer's Middle English at the beginning of the semester to ease the reading process. Then we travel alongside the Canterbury pilgrims as they tell their tales under the guise of a friendly competition. The Canterbury Tales is frequently read as a commentary on the social divisions in late medieval England, such as the traditional estates, religious professionals and laity, and gender hierarchies. But despite the Tales' professed inclusiveness of the whole of English society, Chaucer nonetheless focuses inordinately on those individuals from the emerging middle classes. Our aim is to approach the Tales from the practices of historicization and theorization; that is, we both examine Chaucer's cultural and historical contexts and consider issues of religion, gender, sexuality, marriage, conduct, class, chivalry, courtly love, community, geography, history, power, spirituality, secularism, traditional authority, and individual experience. Of particular importance are questions of voicing and writing, authorship and readership. Lastly, we think through Chaucer's famous Retraction at the "end" of The Canterbury Tales , as well as Donald R. Howard's trenchant observation that the Tale is "unfinished but complete." What does it mean for the father of literary "Englishness" to end his life's work on the poetic principle of unfulfilled closure and on the image of a society on the move?

European Civilization, 325-1517

HIST 100 - Vise, Melissa E.

An introductory survey, featuring lectures and discussions of European culture, politics, religion and social life, and of Europe's relations with neighboring societies, from the rise of Christianity in Late Antiquity through the Middle Ages and the Italian Renaissance, to the beginnings of the 16th-century Protestant and Catholic Reformations.

European Civilization, 1500-1789

HIST 101 - Horowitz, Sarah

An individual who died in 1500 would have been surprised, if not bewildered, by many aspects of European life and thought in 1800. What changed over these three centuries? What stayed the same? Why should we in the 21st century, care? This course examines the history of Europe from the Renaissance through the beginning of the French Revolution. It explores the interplay of religion, politics, society, culture, and economy at a time when Europe underwent great turmoil and change: the Reformation, the consolidation of state power, the rise of constitutionalism, global expansion and encounters with "others," perpetual warfare, the rise of the market economy, the spread of the slave trade, the Scientific Revolution, and the Enlightenment. This course discusses how these processes transformed Europe into the Western world of today, while also challenging ideas about what "Western," "European," and "Civilization" actually mean.

The Reformation in Britain: Blood, Sex, and Sermons

HIST 225 - Brock, Michelle D. (Mikki)

The Reformation of the 16th century shattered the once unitary religious cultures of England and Scotland. Although important continuities remained, the introduction of Protestantism wrought dramatic effects in both countries, including intense conflict over nature of salvation, the burning of martyrs, the hunting of witches, religious migrations, a reorientation of foreign policy, changes in baptismal and burial practices, and more. Students explore these changes and the lives and legacies of some of history's most fascinating figures, from Henry VIII and Thomas Cromwell in England to Mary Queen of Scots and John Knox in Scotland, while also constantly asking how ordinary English and Scottish men and women experienced the Reformation and its aftermath.

Topics in European History

HIST 229A - Brock, Michelle D. (Mikki)

A course offered from time to time depending on student interest and staff availability, on a selected topic or problem in European history. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Fall 2018, HIST 229A-01: Saints and Sinners in the Puritan Atlantic (3) . May be counted as an American elective toward the major with department head notification to the University Registrar. In the mid-20th century, H.L. Mencken famously defined Puritanism as "the haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy". The popular memory of Puritans has deviated little from this caricature. But what were these devoted English (and early American) Protestants really like? This class explores the history of the Puritans—a term that was itself derisive— on both sides of the Atlantic, as well as the legacy of Puritanism in Britain and America. Topics include the development of Puritanism after the English Reformation, the settlement of Massachusetts, the dramatic trial of Anne Hutchison, relationships and conflicts with Native Americans, the English Civil War and rule of Oliver Cromwell, and the infamous Salem Witch Trials. (HU) Brock .

Medieval and Renaissance Culture

MRST 110 - Dobin, Howard N. (Hank)

An introduction to the interdisciplinary study of the Medieval and Renaissance periods through the study of a particular topic. Recent studies: The Crusades, Monasticism, Chivalry, Elizabethan England, the Birth of Italian Literature, Pilgrimage, and European Encounters with Islam. Offered as 110A when HL; or as 110 when HU; depending on topic.

Fall 2018, MRST 110-01: The Age of Elizabeth: Politics, Personalities, Faith and Culture (3). We study the 45-year reign of Elizabeth I through a variety of lenses in order to develop a complex understanding of this fascinating and formative period of English history. We look at the politics (the war with Spain, marriage negotiations, internal factions); the personalities (Elizabeth herself, Mary Stuart, key courtiers, suitors, and councilors); the religious controversies (the Elizabethan Settlement, the transition from Catholicism, the rise of Puritanism); and the rich cultural heritage (popular theater, sonnet sequences, portraiture). (HU) Dobin.

Introduction to Shakespeare

MRST 252 - Dobin, Howard N. (Hank)

A study of the major genres of Shakespeare's plays, employing analysis shaped by formal, historical, and performance-based questions. Emphasis is given to tracing how Shakespeare's work engages early modem cultural concerns, such as the nature of political rule, gender, religion, and sexuality. A variety of skills are developed in order to assist students with interpretation, which may include verse analysis, study of early modem dramatic forms, performance workshops, two medium-length papers, reviews of live play productions, and eight final, student-directed performance of a selected play.

Ancient Greek Philosophy

PHIL 110 - McGonigal, Andrew J.

An examination of the metaphysics of the pre-Socratic philosophers, especially the Milesians, Pythagoras, Xenophanes, Heraclitus, Parmenides, Zeno of Elea, and the Atomists, and the ethics and political philosophy of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. Topics include the origin and nature of the kosmos , the nature and existence of the god(s), the trial and execution of Socrates, theories of virtue, the nature of knowledge and truth, justice and the ideal state, the nature of eudaimonia (happiness, flourishing), and the possibility of akrasia (weakness of the will).

Hebrew Bible/Old Testament

REL 101 - Sonia, Kerry M.

An introduction to the history, literature and interpretation of the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament).

Introduction to Islam

REL 105 - Atanasova, Kameliya N.

This course familiarizes students with the foundations of the Islamic tradition and the diverse historical and geographical manifestations of belief and practice built upon those foundations. Throughout the course, the role of Islam in shaping cultural, social, gender, and political identities is explored. Readings are drawn from the writings of both historical and contemporary Muslim thinkers.

Truth, Belief, Dissent: Defining Insiders and Outsiders in Ancient, Medieval and Modern Religion

REL 250 - Brown, Alexandra R.

Who decides what is orthodox [acceptable thought] and what is heretical [unacceptable], how are these decisions made, and what impact do they have on societal definitions of "insider" and "outsider?" What perennial questions emerge in debates about orthodoxy and heresy -- e.g., the powers of states to enforce religious orthodoxy, the joining of political ideologies with religious interests -- and how are those questions addressed in modernity? This course explores the shifting and perpetually uncertain boundaries of truth and identity in religion. The focal religion is Christianity, but comparative religions are in view. Readings include selections from the Hebrew Scriptures, the New Testament, "Gnostic gospels", and other so-called heretical texts, writings from the Church Fathers (with special attention to St. Augustine), medieval heresy trials, a contemporary American novel, and recent scholarly treatments of the boundaries that define "insiders" and "outsiders."

Spanish Civilization and Culture

SPAN 211 - Bailey, Matthew J.

A survey of significant developments in Spanish civilization. The course addresses Spanish heritage and the present-day cultural patterns formed by its legacies. Readings, discussions and papers, primarily in Spanish, for further development of communication skills.

Introducción a la literatura española

SPAN 220 - Spragins, Elizabeth L. (Liz)

Spanish literary masterpieces from the Poema del Cid through the present. Readings and discussions are primarily in Spanish.

El Cid in History and Legend

SPAN 333 - Bailey, Matthew J.

A study of the most significant portrayals of the Castilian warrior Rodrigo Diaz de Vivar, El Cid (1045-1099), from his 12th-century biography Historia Roderici to the Hollywood blockbuster El Cid . Epic poems, late medieval ballads, and Renaissance drama all recreate the legendary life of El Cid. This course examines the relevant narratives in an effort to determine the heroic values and attributes recreated by authors and their audiences for nearly a thousand years.

Spring 2018

See complete information about these courses in the course offerings database. For more information about a specific course, including course type, schedule and location, click on its title.

Individual Shakespeare Play

ENGL 242 - Pickett, Holly C.

A detailed study of a single Shakespearean play, including its sources, textual variants, performance history, film adaptations and literary and cultural legacy. The course includes both performance-based and analytical assignments. The Spring 2018 focus is The Scottish Play: Macbeth and Its Afterlives.

Winter 2018

See complete information about these courses in the course offerings database. For more information about a specific course, including course type, schedule and location, click on its title.

Survey of Western Art: Renaissance to the Present

ARTH 102 - King, Elliott H.

Chronological survey of Western art from the Renaissance through the present. Topics include the Renaissance, from its cultural and stylistic origins through the Mannerist movement; the Baroque and Rococo; the Neoclassical reaction; Romanticism and Naturalism; the Barbizon School and Realism; Impressionism and its aftermath; Fauvism, Cubism, Dada, Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism, Pop, Minimalism, and the Postmodern reaction to Modernism.

Survey of Western Art: Renaissance to the Present

ARTH 102 - Lepage, Andrea C.

Chronological survey of Western art from the Renaissance through the present. Topics include the Renaissance, from its cultural and stylistic origins through the Mannerist movement; the Baroque and Rococo; the Neoclassical reaction; Romanticism and Naturalism; the Barbizon School and Realism; Impressionism and its aftermath; Fauvism, Cubism, Dada, Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism, Pop, Minimalism, and the Postmodern reaction to Modernism.

Greek Literature from Homer to the Early Hellenistic Period

CLAS 203 - Crotty, Kevin M.

Readings in translation from Homer, Hesiod, the tragedians, the comedians, and the lyric and pastoral poets, including selections from Herodotus and Thucydides, and from Plato's and Aristotle's reflections on literature. The course includes readings from modern critical writings. We read some of the most famous stories of the Western world--from the Iliad and the Odyssey , to Milton's Paradise Lost and Joyce's Ulysses , via Virgil's Aeneid and Lucan's Civil War . All of these works are epic narratives, each presenting a different concept of the hero, and yet, at the same time, participating in a coherent, on-going and unfinished tradition. We consider such questions as the role of violence in literature; the concept of the heroic as it reflects evolving ideas of the individual and society; and the idea of a literary tradition.

Shakespeare

ENGL 252 - Pickett, Holly C.

A study of the major genres of Shakespeare's plays, employing analysis shaped by formal, historical, and performance-based questions. Emphasis is given to tracing how Shakespeare's work engages early modern cultural concerns, such as the nature of political rule, gender, religion, and sexuality. A variety of skills are developed in order to assist students with interpretation, which may include verse analysis, study of early modern dramatic forms, performance workshops, two medium-length papers, reviews of live play productions, and a final, student-directed performance of a selected play.

Milton

ENGL 330 - Gertz, Genelle C.

This course surveys one of the most talented and probing authors of the English language -- a man whose reading knowledge and poetic output has never been matched, and whose work has influenced a host of writers after him, including Alexander Pope, William Blake, William Wordsworth, and Mary Shelley. In this course, we read selections from Milton's literary corpus, drawing from such diverse genres as lyric, drama, epic and prose polemic. As part of their study of epic form, students create a digital humanities project rendering Paradise Los t in gaming context. Quests, heroes,ethical choices and exploration of new worlds in Paradise Lost are rendered as a game. Students read Milton in the context of literary criticism and place him within his historical milieu, not the least of which includes England's dizzying series of political metamorphoses from Monarchy to Commonwealth, Commonwealth to Protectorate, and Protectorate back to Monarchy.

Seminar: The Age of the Witch Hunts

HIST 219 - Brock, Michelle D. (Mikki)

This course introduces students to one of the most fascinating and disturbing events in the history of the Western world: the witch hunts in early-modern Europe and North America. Between 1450 and 1750, more than 100,000 individuals, from Russia to Salem, were prosecuted for the crime of witchcraft. Most were women and more than half were executed. In this course, we examine the political, religious, social, and legal reasons behind the trials, asking why they occurred in Europe when they did and why they finally ended. We also explore, in brief, global witch hunts that still occur today in places like Africa and India, asking how they resemble yet differ from those of the early-modern world.

Greek Literature from Homer to the Early Hellenistic Period

LIT 203 - Crotty, Kevin M.

Readings in translation from Homer, Hesiod, the tragedians, the comedians, and the lyric and pastoral poets, including selections from Herodotus and Thucydides, and from Plato's and Aristotle's reflections on literature. The course includes readings from modern critical writings. We read some of the most famous stories of the Western world--from the Iliad and the Odyssey , to Milton's Paradise Lost and Joyce's Ulysses , via Virgil's Aeneid and Lucan's Civil War . All of these works are epic narratives, each presenting a different concept of the hero, and yet, at the same time, participating in a coherent, on-going and unfinished tradition. We consider such questions as the role of violence in literature; the concept of the heroic as it reflects evolving ideas of the individual and society; and the idea of a literary tradition.

Pre-Modern Chinese Literature in Translation

LIT 218 - Fu, Hongchu

A survey of Chinese literature from the earliest period to the founding of the Republic in 1912. Taught in English, the course presupposes no previous knowledge of China or Chinese culture. The literature is presented in the context of its intellectual, philosophical and cultural background. Texts used may vary from year to year and include a wide selection of fiction, poetry, historical documents, Chinese drama (opera) and prose works. Audiovisual materials are used when appropriate and available.

Medieval and Renaissance Culture

MRST 110A - Kao, Wan-Chuan

An introduction to the interdisciplinary study of the Medieval and Renaissance periods through the study of a particular topic. Recent studies: The Crusades, Monasticism, Chivalry, Elizabethan England, the Birth of Italian Literature, Pilgrimage, and European Encounters with Islam. Offered as 110A when HL; or as 110 when HU; depending on topic.

Senior Thesis

MRST 473 - Pickett, Holly C.

Individual research devoted to an original topic dealing with issues pertinent to Medieval and Renaissance studies. The focus of this thesis should coincide with the area of study in which the student has done the most work and should be grounded in interdisciplinary themes. Projects should be approved no later than September 30 of the senior year.

Music History I

MUS 201 - Gaylard, Timothy R. (Tim)

A survey of music from the Middle Ages through the Baroque period.

Hebrew Bible/Old Testament

REL 101 - Marks, Richard G.

An introduction to the history, literature and interpretation of the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament).

Buddhism

REL 131 - Lubin, Timothy (Tim)

A survey of the historical development of the doctrines and practices of Buddhism. After a discussion of the Hindu origins of Buddhism, the course focuses on the development of the Theravada, Vajrayana and Mahayana traditions. A class trip to at least one Buddhist center is included.

Gender, Sexuality, and Islam

REL 284 - Atanasova, Kameliya N.

How have issues of gender and sexuality in Medieval and Modern Islamic societies been debated across the Middle East, South Asia, and the West? Students examine scholarly and public discussions of gender and Islam, and they build a vocabulary in which to talk about women. queer, and intersex history as they concern Muslim societies and their foundational sources in their regional and historical contexts. No prior knowledge of Islam is necessary.

Introducción a la literatura española

SPAN 220 - Mayock, Ellen C.

Spanish literary masterpieces from the Poema del Cid through the present. Readings and discussions are primarily in Spanish.