Course Offerings

Spring 2022

We do not offer any courses this term.


Winter 2022

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.

Medieval Art in Southern Europe

ARTH 253 - Bent, George R.

Examination of the art and culture of Italy and Greece from the rise of Christianity to the first appearance of bubonic plague in 1348. Topics include early Christian art and architecture; Byzantine imagery in Ravenna and Constantinople during the Age of Justinian; iconoclasm; mosaics in Greece, Venice and Sicily; sculpture in Pisa; and the development of panel and fresco painting in Rome, Florence, Siena and Assisi.

Italian Renaissance Art

ARTH 256 - Bent, George R.

Survey of the art and architecture of Italy during the 15th and 16th centuries. The course focuses on innovations of the Early, High, and Late Renaissance through the work of Brunelleschi, Donatello, Masaccio, Alberti, Leonardo, Bramante, Raphael, and Michelangelo. Images are considered as exponents of contemporary political, social, and religious events and perceptions.

Sex, Gender and Power in Ancient Literature

CLAS 210 - Dance, Caleb M.

Open to all students without prerequisite. An examination of literature in various genres (poetry, philosophy, drama, and history) in an attempt to understand the diverse ways in which Greeks and Romans conceived of gender identity, gender expression, and sexuality. We also interrogate the power dynamics that underpinned these conceptions. Readings include primary sources from antiquity (e.g., Homer, Euripides, Plato, Plautus, Livy, Ovid) as well as secondary sources that explore sex, gender, and power in both ancient and modern contexts.  The course examines several influential works composed in Greek and Latin between the 8th century BCE and the 1st century CE. Alongside poems and philosophical writings that were originally conceived of as literary projects, we also examine plays, historical works, and even some inscriptions, all of which come down to the present as "literature", although many may not have been conceived as such. The boundaries of "literature" is an ongoing topic of inquiry throughout the term.

Medieval and Early Modern British Literature

ENGL 250 - Ard, DeVan

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.

Shakespeare

ENGL 252 - York, Gretchen

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.

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 History, 325-1492

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.

Saints and Sinners in the Puritan Atlantic

HIST 250 - Brock, Michelle D. (Mikki)

This class explores the history of 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 covered include the development of Puritanism after the English Reformation, the settlement of Massachusetts, the trial of Anne Hutchinson, relationships with Native Americans, the English Civil War and rule of Oliver Cromwell, and the infamous Salem Witch Trials. Throughout, we will pay special attention to the relationship between religion and politics, the role of gender in Puritan life and theology, the nature of transatlantic ideas and communication, and popular practice versus orthodoxy. 

England in the Age of Shakespeare

HIST 255 - Brock, Michelle D. (Mikki)

This class uses the dates of Shakespeare's life (1564-1616) as our chronological frame to explore the history of England during the profoundly important reigns of Elizabeth I and James VI and I. Together we examine the era of personal monarchy and the growing resistance of parliament, the encounters with "others" beyond England's shores, the relationship between gender and power, the spread of religious convictions and contradictions, colonialism and the beginnings of the British Empire, and the great literary and artistic figures of the day. We also investigate what life was like for the average men and women who lived and died during England's "golden age." 

Augustine and the Literature of Self, Soul, and Synapses

LIT 219 - Kosky, Jeffrey L.

A careful reading of the depiction of the restless soul in Augustine's Confessions is followed by study of fictional, philosophical, religious, and/or scientific literature. Students reflect on the state of the soul in a world made of selves or the fate of the self in a soulless world ... and whether there might be other options

Medieval and Renaissance Culture: Literature

MRST 111 - Radulescu, Domnica V.

An introduction to the interdisciplinary study of the Medieval and Renaissance periods through the study of a particular literary topic. Recent studies: Boccaccio, the Birth of Italian Literature, and Dreaming in the Middle Ages.

Winter 2022, MRST 111-01: Medieval and Renaissance Culture: Literature: Giants of Renaissance Italian Literature (3).  An exploration of the works of groundbreaking and trail blazing Italian Renaissance writers from Dante to Boccaccio to Machiavelli. Radulescu.

Directed Individual Study

MRST 403 - Crockett, Roger A.

Individual study of selected topics in Medieval and Renaissance studies. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Directed Individual Study

MRST 403 - Bent, George R.

Individual study of selected topics in Medieval and Renaissance studies. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Music History I

MUS 201 - Williamson, Scott M.

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

Ancient Greek Philosophy

PHIL 110 - Taylor, Erin P.

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 - Filler, Emily A.

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

The Qur'an

REL 108 - Atanasova, Kameliya N.

This course approaches the Qur'an from a range of modern and pre-modern perspectives: as an oral recitation; as a material object; as a historical document; as a literary text; as it relates to the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament; as a foundation for Islamic law, theology and mysticism; and as a source for ethics and social activism. Particular attention is devoted to issues of gender and politics raised by the Qur'an, supplemented by a number of film screenings. Prior knowledge of Islam is not required.

God and Goddess in Hinduism

REL 132 - Lubin, Timothy (Tim)

This course explores the many ways in which Hindus visualize and talk about the divine and its manifestations in the world through mythic stories, use of images in worship, explanations of the nature of the soul and body in relation to the divine, and the belief in human embodiments of the divine in Hindu holy men and women. Topics include: the religious meanings of masculine and feminine in the divine and human contexts; the idea of local, family, and "chosen" divinities; and differing forms of Hindu devotion for men and women.

Augustine and the Literature of Self, Soul, and Synapses

REL 219 - Kosky, Jeffrey L.

A careful reading of the depiction of the restless soul in Augustine's Confessions is followed by study of fictional, philosophical, religious, and/or scientific literature. Students reflect on the state of the soul in a world made of selves or the fate of the self in a soulless world ... and whether there might be other options

Spanish Civilization and Culture

SPAN 211 - Mayock, Ellen C.

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 - Mayock, Ellen C.

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

Introducción a la literatura española

SPAN 220 - Hernandez, Julia C.

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

Literature of Spain Seminar

SPAN 397A - Hernandez, Julia C.

A seminar focusing on a single period, genre, motif, or writer. The specific topic will be determined jointly according to student interest and departmental approval. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Winter 2022, SPAN 397A-01: Literature of Spain Seminar: Writing the Other and Writing the Self in Early Modern Contact Zones (3). Prerequisites: SPAN 220 & 275. Travel narratives, ethnographic accounts, geographic descriptions, and other "literatures of encounter" became a hallmark of the global early modern period, as new zones of cultural contact proliferated and as inhabitants of and visitors to these spaces communicated their experiences through texts. As this course will explore, such genres have just as much to say about their creators as about the subjects they depict: in writing what was to them "other," authors held a mirror to themselves. We will consider how ancient and medieval literary conventions for describing the "fantastic," the "wondrous," the "exotic," or simply "the other" were transformed to convey new types of cultural encounters brought about by Spain's imperial expansion within the Peninsula, throughout the Mediterranean, and across the Atlantic and Pacific worlds.  Readings will reflect a range of encounters as told by diverse voices, from indigenous perspectives on colonization (Anales de Tlatelolco ; Guaman Poma de Ayala's Nueva corónica y buen gobierno ), women's accounts of global travel (Catalina de Erauso, La monja alférez ), and non-European visitor's depictions of the Peninsula (Abd al-Basit, Viaje a Granada ). Canonical literary accounts (Cervantes's "Captive's Tale") and colonizing perspectives (Cabeza de Vaca, Los naufragios ) will create space for exploring which voices win out in creating lasting historical narratives of encounters. (HL) Hernández.

Fall 2021

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.

Greek Art & Archaeology

ARTH 200 - Laughy, Michael H.

An introduction to ancient Greek art and archaeology. We encounter some of the greatest works of art in human history, as we survey the development of painting, sculpture, architecture, and town planning of the ancient Greeks. We encounter the history of the people behind the objects that they left behind, from the material remains of the Bronze Age palaces and Classical Athenian Acropolis to the world created in the wake of Alexander the Great's conquests. We also consider how we experience the ancient Greek world today through archaeological practice, cultural heritage, and the antiquities trade.

The Early Renaissance in Italy

ARTH 354 - Bent, George R.

Examination of the intellectual, cultural, and artistic movements dominant in Florence between ca. 1400 and ca. 1440. Images and structures produced by Ghiberti, Brunelleschi, Masaccio, Donatello, and Fra Angelico are considered within the context of Florentine social traditions and political events.

Greek Art & Archaeology

CLAS 200 - Laughy, Michael H.

An introduction to ancient Greek art and archaeology. We encounter some of the greatest works of art in human history, as we survey the development of painting, sculpture, architecture, and town planning of the ancient Greeks. We encounter the history of the people behind the objects that they left behind, from the material remains of the Bronze Age palaces and Classical Athenian Acropolis to the world created in the wake of Alexander the Great's conquests. We also consider how we experience the ancient Greek world today through archaeological practice, cultural heritage, and the antiquities trade.

Classical Mythology

CLAS 201 - Crotty, Kevin M.

An introduction to the study of Greek mythology, with an emphasis on the primary sources. The myths are presented in their historical, religious, and political contexts. The course also includes an introduction to several major theories of myth, and uses comparative materials drawn from contemporary society and media.

Greek Literature from Homer to the Early Hellenistic Period

CLAS 203 - Crotty, Kevin M.

While epic, drama, history and philosophy trace their beginnings in many ways to ancient Greece, they are not simply different literary genres, but each offers a distinctive model of what it means to be a human being.  In this course, we will read, discuss and write about poetic works by Homer, the tragedians and comic playwrights, as well as philosophical works by Plato and Aristotle. We will discuss the different perspectives of these diverse genres, and the light they shed on such perennially pertinent questions as responsibility, power, violence, justice, and gender.

Arthurian Legend

ENGL 240 - Kao, Wan-Chuan

Why does King Arthur continue to fascinate and haunt our cultural imagination? This course surveys the origins and histories of Arthurian literature, beginning with Celtic myths, Welsh tales, and Latin chronicles. We then examine medieval French and English traditions that include Chrétien de Troyes' Perceval , the lais of Marie de France, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight , the Alliterative Morte Arthure , and Malory's Le Morte Darthur . In addition to historical and literary contexts, we explore theoretical issues surrounding the texts, especially the relationship between history and fantasy, courtly love and adultery, erotic love and madness, romance and chivalry, gender and agency, and Europe and its Others. Finally, we investigate Arthurian medievalisms in Victorian England and in American (post)modernity through Tennyson, Twain, Barthelme, and Ishiguro. Along the way, we view various film adaptations of Arthurian legends. All texts are read in modern English translation.

The Tudors

ENGL 316 - Dobin, Howard N. (Hank)

Famous for his mistresses and marriages, his fickle treatment of courtiers, and his vaunting ambition, Henry VIII did more to change English society and religion than any other king. No one understood Henry's power more carefully than his daughter Elizabeth, who oversaw England's first spy network and jealously guarded her throne from rebel contenders. This course studies the writers who worked for the legendary Tudors, focusing on the love poetry of courtiers, trials, and persecution of religious dissidents, plays, and accounts of exploration to the new world. We trace how the ambitions of the monarch, along with religious revolution and colonial expansion, figure in the work of writers like Wyatt, Surrey, and Anne Askew; Spenser, Marlowe, Shakespeare, and Southwell; and Thomas More and Walter Ralegh.

History of the British Isles to 1688: Power, Plague, and Prayer

HIST 217 - Brock, Michelle D. (Mikki)

The history of the British Isles to 1688 tells the story of how an island remote from the classical world came to dominate much of the modern one. This course ventures from Britain during Roman occupation and Anglo-Saxon migration, to the expansion of the Church and tales of chivalry during the Middle Ages, then finally to exploration and conflict during the Tudor and Stuart dynasties. Topics include the development of Christianity, Viking invasions, the Scottish wars of independence, the evolution of parliament, the Black Death, the Wars of the Roses, the Reformation, the beginnings of Empire, and the 17th-century revolutions. 

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.

Greek Literature from Homer to the Early Hellenistic Period

LIT 203 - Crotty, Kevin M.

While epic, drama, history and philosophy trace their beginnings in many ways to ancient Greece, they are not simply different literary genres, but each offers a distinctive model of what it means to be a human being.  In this course, we will read, discuss and write about poetic works by Homer, the tragedians and comic playwrights, as well as philosophical works by Plato and Aristotle. We will discuss the different perspectives of these diverse genres, and the light they shed on such perennially pertinent questions as responsibility, power, violence, justice, and gender.

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.

New Testament

REL 102 - Brown, Alexandra R.

An introduction to the history, literature and interpretation of the New 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.

Judaism: Tradition and Modernity

REL 106 - Filler, Emily A.

This course is an introduction to the rituals, concepts, and practices of Judaism from antiquity to the present day. Through a wide variety of sources, including rabbinic debate, fiction, drama, liturgy, memoirs, film, and history, we will consider how the Jewish tradition has developed, changed, and interacted with other traditions. Particular attention will be paid to the development of modern Jewish movements and communities.  

Buddhism

REL 131 - Haskett, Christian P. (Chris)

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.

Seminar in the Christian Tradition

REL 260 - Brown, Alexandra R.

An introduction to perduring issues in Christian theology and ethics through study of one or more of the classical Christian theologians.

Fall 2021, REL 260-01: Seminar in the Christian Tradition: Christian Visionary and Mystical Traditions (3). This course explores diverse Christian sources from antiquity to modernity with a focus on experiences and expressions of the "presence of God," the "Ground of Being," the "wholly other," the "beatific vision," etc. Course materials will include primary sources from mystics and visionaries and secondary readings exploring theories about mystical experience. Near the end of the course, we will consider contemporary and even secular expression in poetry and music that points to the mystical without using traditional theological language. A field trip to a monastery will help to contextualize some themes we encounter in the course. (HU) Brown.

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 - Hernandez, Julia C.

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

Literature of Spain Seminar

SPAN 397A - Bailey, Matthew J.

A seminar focusing on a single period, genre, motif, or writer. The specific topic will be determined jointly according to student interest and departmental approval. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Fall 2021, SPAN 397A-01: Literature of Spain Seminar: Legendary Lives in the Spanish Epic, Ballad, and Theater (3) . Prerequisite: SPAN 220 and 275. This course will examine the legendary lives of the male and female protagonists of epic poetry, their later emergence in the popular ballads of the sixteenth century, and finally their portrayal on the stages of early modern theater. This examination will help us understand the way legendary figures are transformed by the expectations of audiences and societies change, the effects of literary genres on characterization, and the impact on legends of the increasing powers of church and state. (HL) Bailey .

Ancient and Global Theater

THTR 210 - Ellis, Lauren B. / Davies, Jenefer M.

This course examines the history of theater and dramatic literature from its foundations in ancient world cultures through the Renaissance. Since this history course covers over 2000 years of time, class meetings sometimes move at a fast pace. Students gain a general world-wide cultural understanding of the art and history of the theater from its beginnings, and how theater spread as a phenomenon across the globe. Since theater is primarily a cultural institution, we simultaneously examine politics, philosophy, religion, science, and other factors that influence how the art form is created, maintained, and culturally preserved. We also examine history itself as an important cultural tool for assessing the events of the past.