Graduate Courses

CEMERS Fall 2009 Course Offerings

MDVL 501O Medieval Colonialisms

Instructor: Marilynn R Desmond

Post-colonial theory, which is based almost entirely on modern cultures and modern global politics, seldom addresses the culture and activities of Europe before 1492. This interdisciplinary course will investigate the formation of colonizing discourses and desires in medieval European cultures. In order to look at medieval Europe in a global context, we will consider the orientalizing constructions of the crusades and crusade literature, including the visual components of illuminated manuscripts. We will also consider the development of extensive trade routes and the circulation of travel literature as well as luxury objects from abroad, which shaped medieval European perceptions/representations of and relations with other worlds. Requirements include: one 5 page paper, one 15 page paper, and one oral report (students may select topics for these assignments in their own disciplines, under the supervision of their departmental advisors). Texts: Geoffrey of Monmouth, The History of the Kings of Britain, Gerald of Wales, Journey through Wales, History and Topography of Ireland, Tales from the Thousand and One Nights, Joinville & Villehardouin, Chronicles of the Crusades, John Mandeville, The Travels of Sir John Mandeville, Marco Polo, The Travels, The Alexiad of Anna Comnena. Bartlett, R. The Making of Europe, as well at texts by Chrétien, Chaucer and Christopher Columbus.

W 9:40am – 12:40pm  LN 1406

HIST 551Q Renaissance & Reformation in 12C Europe

Instructor: Winston E Black

Renaissance and Reformation in Twelfth-Century Europe COURSE DESCRIPTION: The seminar will focus on the idea of a ‘Renaissance’ in twelfth-century western Europe, first popularized in the 1920s and still debated by medieval historians, as well as the concept of a religious ‘reformation’ in the same period. In this course students will examine the religious, literary, artistic, and scientific achievements of the ‘long twelfth century’ (roughly 1075-1215), and discuss the concepts of ‘renaissance’ and ‘reformation’ as they have been borrowed from the Early Modern period and applied to the High Middle Ages of western Europe. The format will be discussion and presentations, with occasional lectures on key topics. Assessment is based on oral reports (25%), a high level of preparation and participation (25%), and a 20-25 page research paper (50%) on a key aspect or historiographical issue of the twelfth-century renaissance.

W 7:00pm – 10:00pm  SW 308

MDVL 561L The Sultan’s Palace

Instructor: Nancy A Um

This course will examine palaces and palatial cities of the Islamic world, including the desert palaces of the eastern Mediterranean, the royal city of Cairo, the Alhambra in Spain, the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul, Emperor Akbar’s palatial city of Fatehpur Sikri in India, and the Persian palaces of the royal city of Isfahan. The course will deal with archaeological and architectural studies, as well as an examination of some royal accessory arts, like wall paintings, sculptural programs and carpets. Furthermore, we will ask questions about the imperial use of administrative and residential space and the specifics of royal ceremonial, procession and viewing. Most of the class will be devoted to chosen historical case studies, paired with a careful consideration of the ways in which the space of the Sultan’s Palace has been constructed through Orientalist literature, art, and scholarship.

W 1:10pm – 4:10pm  FA 225

MDVL 561M Inventing the Middle Ages

Instructor: Barbara Abou-El-Haj

The nineteenth century is credited, only partially in jest, with inventing the Middle Ages. This seminar will explore the modern production of the medieval past in the context of nation-state building, in the construction of political ideology and in the acquisition of cultural capital.

We will examine the role played by a medieval patrimony in newly forming nation-states, particularly France; how nineteenth century constructions of the Middle Ages have been reproduced and contested by modern scholars; and how medieval sites have been resurrected and transformed to serve current political ideologies, cultural capital and the heritage industry, including initiatives by national and international organizations: Monuments Historiques, UNESCO, EU, British Heritage.  Cross Listed with ArtH 483C/530C

M 1:10pm – 4:10pm  FA 225

MDVL 561P The Italian Renaissance

Instructor: Dana E Stewart
H - Humanities

Explores the major cultural trends of the Italian Renaissance, as reflected in the plays, letters, diaries, poetry, and treatises of the time. Themes covered include politics, art, philosophy, and religion, as well as love and the roles of women in Renaissance culture. Authors studied include Petrarch, Boccaccio, the Humanists, Machiavelli, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Renaissance courtesans such as Veronica Franco. Grade will be based on participation, oral reports, two tests, and short papers. Lectures in English. Students in the Italian program will read the texts in Italian and will have extra assignments in Italian.

T  4:25pm – 7:25pm  FA 342

THEA 572E Theatre and Music in Renaissance and Early Modern Europe

Instructor: Andrew Walkling

The aim of this course, which fulfills the Theatre degree requirement in Dramatic Theory and Structure, is to introduce students to the role of music in early modern theatre, and to provide a sense both of its importance to the cultural milieu of the late Renaissance and the Baroque, and of its complexion, structure, and modes of functioning within the drama. The class will explore primarily works produced in Italy, France, and England between the middle of the sixteenth and the end of the seventeenth centuries, looking at their historical and generic development, and the variety of ways in which music was used to enhance the theatrical experience.

 F 1:10pm - 4:10pm  FA 225

Last Updated: 3/16/16