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Graduate Course Offerings for Spring 2008

MVGA 0910           Maintenance-Medieval          0 Credits                (Staff)                     
MVGA 8500           Independent Research            2 Credits (Staff)                     
MVGA 8501           Independent Research            1 Credit                   (Staff)                     

MVGA 5079: Medieval Manuscripts, Music, and Liturgy, 4 credits                       (Boyce)                                  M 5:00-7:30 pm
Monks, nuns, canons and friars spent many hours each day in the performance of the medieval liturgy; their liturgies shaped their corporate identity and their personal spiritual life.  The complex group of manuscripts that were written for use in celebrating Mass and chanting the Divine Office were essential to performing the liturgy correctly.  These liturgical books were meticulously prepared and treated with great care by the participants.  The course will discuss the shape of the medieval liturgy, the importance of music as a vehicle for prayer, the role of the choir books in liturgical performance, the composition of the books and their relationship to each other.  Students will learn how to sing some of the chants, how to analyze the music of the pieces, how to understand the structure of an individual feast and how to understand the composition of the books as a whole.  In addition we will discuss the monastic and cathedral liturgies, including the important role of the mendicant orders, founded in the thirteenth century, in the organization and dissemination of the Masses and offices of saints' feasts

ENGA 5210: Introduction to Old Norse Language and Literature, 3 credits (Chase)                                          W 5:00-7:00 pm
The course will involve both an introduction to Old Norse language, and the study of representative works from a variety of genres: historical prose, saga prose, and hagiography, as well as eddic poetry (wisdom, myth, legend) and the encomiastic poetry of the skalds. Readings will be partly in Old Norse, partly in translation. We will attempt to situate the texts in their medieval cultural context (analogues in English, French, German, and Latin literature), and we will spend some time on Old Norse palaeography and codicology so that students can better appreciate their material context. There is no prerequisite for the course and no prior knowledge is assumed, but students should be aware that the course will involve language study.

ENGA 7227 Pilgrimage, Relics and Saints in Medieval Literature, 3 credits       (Yeager)                                 Thur 2:00-4:00 pm
This course will explore literature written by and for medieval pilgrims who traveled among the destinations of Canterbury, Compostella, Jerusalem, Paris, and Rome.  These traditions of itinerant devotion inspired songs, poetry, and prose including the lively Milagros de Nuestra Señora, The Prologue to the Tale of Beryn, and the Itineraries of William Wey; these and a variety of other works will be studied in English translation where appropriate.  Along with the literature, we will also examine historical texts which address the medieval culture of relic trade and saint making, taking into consideration the popular and ecclesiastical uses of relics, their cults, and the events which inspired them.

HSGA 6154 Medieval Warfare and Society, 4 credits                (Kowaleski)                                                           Mon 2-4:30 pm
This course examines the role of warfare in medieval society from the “barbarian invasions” through the Hundred Years War and the Wars of the Roses.  We will focus in particular on the impact of technological developments on the conduct of war and on social hierarchies; on the relationship between social stratification and the conduct of war; on the influence of the Catholic Church on warfare; and on the social consequences and economic costs of warfare.  Students are required to do a short oral report and annotated bibliography, as well as an historigraphical essay.

HSGA 6074 Medieval Politics and Authority, 4 credits             (Paul)                                                                      Tue 4:45-7:15 pm
Fundamental to the study of any society are questions about that society’s notions of authority and its approaches to the structure and application of political power. Few societies have received as much attention in this regard as have those of medieval Europe which, with its exchequer offices and representative assemblies, is often seen as the birthplace of the modern state. But what kinds of political discourse existed in the middle ages? How and why did medieval institutions develop? How did medieval men and women take part in political life? Drawing on both influential scholarship of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and the recent theories and approaches that have challenged them, we will discuss the uses of ritual, the practice of lordship, the theory of sacral kingship, the function of castles and palaces, the visual representation of power in artworks and regalian symbols, and many other topics. During the course, students will have the opportunity to choose a particular source or base of evidence to explore and an area of historiographical inquiry for critical analysis.

HSGA 8110 Seminar: Church Law and Medieval Society, 4 credits         (Mueller)                                              Thur 4:45-7:15 pm
The course forms the second part of a two-semester pro-seminar/seminar sequence and invites graduate students to pursue original research projects in the field of medieval church law.  Their inquiries may address a wide range of issues, such as legal theory, judicial practice, and the medieval uses and perceptions of canonical justice.  The previous pro-seminar has provided an introduction to the field and helped formulate appropriate study agendas.  This seminar will offer a forum for the presentation, discussion, and refinement of each participant's scholarly work-in-progress.  The ultimate goal will be to submit a fully annotated 30 to 40-page essay which successfully analyzes select source material.

LAGA 6521 Latin Paleography, 3 credits                                     (Clark)                                                                    Fri 2:00-4:00 p.m.
A study of the development of Latin handwriting from antiquity to the Renaissance. Includes a study of the manuscript as book (codicology) and as cultural artifact.  Some consideration of textual transmission and critical editing.  There will be hands-on practice in reading the various scripts.
PHGA 5010 Introduction to St Thomas, 3 credits                        (Davies)                                                     Wed 7:00-9:00 p.m.
This course will be a general introduction to Aquinas's philosophical thinking.  We shall pay special attention to his philosophy of God.  We shall also look at what he says about questions such as the scope of human knowledge, the nature of the human being, and the nature and significance of human action. As well as being expository, the course will consider the cogency of Aquinas's positions on various topics.  It will also try to relate what Aquinas says to what other philosophers, especially modern and contemporary ones, have had to say. The course will not presuppose any previous knowledge of Aquinas on the part of student

PHGA 5012 Introduction to Augustine, 3 credits                        (Pini)                                                            Tues 7:00-9:00 p.m.
This course will provide a survey of the main works and themes of St. Augustine’s philosophy and theology. Topics will include faith and reason; divine ideas; time, eternity, and creation; the theology of the Holy Trinity; the nature of the soul; skepticism; divine foreknowledge and predestination and human free will; the problem of evil; original sin and divine grace; happiness; the human history as the history of salvation. These topics will be approached by studying relevant sections from Augustine’s major works.

RSGA 5300 History of Christianity I, 3 credits                            (Tilley)                                                                   Thur 3:15-5:15 pm
This course surveys the history of Christianity from the close of the New Testament to the fourteenth century. It is an intense exposure to the political, cultural and theological landscape of Christianity over a thousand year period.

RSGA 6360: Alexandrian Theology, 3 credits                             (Lienhard)                                                              Wed 1-3 p.m.
The goal of this course is to reach a critical understanding of the theology of the School of Alexandria or the Alexandrian Tradition in the early Church.  This school had its own tradition of exegesis and a distinctive theology of the Person of Christ, as well as a series of brilliant theologians and churchmen, two of whom were also patriarchs of this great church.  The means to reaching this goal will be extensive reading in, and analysis of, the writings of Christian theologians from Alexandria: Clement, Origen, Athanasius, Didymus the Blind, and Cyril, against the background of the pagan and Jewish intellectual traditions of Alexandria.  Much of the course will be concentrated on Origen and Cyril, and their writings.  The requirements are insatiable curiosity and eagerness to read; there will be frequent class reports, an extensive term paper, and a written final examination

RSGA 6462 Dissenters and Heretics, 3 credits             (Hornbeck)                                                                  Tues 3:15-5:15 p.m.
In the text we know as I Corinthians 11.19, St. Paul writes that "there must be heresies among you, in order that those who are approved may be made known"  Indeed, the history of the development of doctrine may be read as a history of dissenters who raised questions which required Christian communities to refine their own self-understanding.  In this course, we will consider the implications of heresy and theological dissent for the project of Christian theology, working in both historical and systematic modes.  Reading such texts as Athanasius' Orations against the Arians, Walter Bauer's Orthodoxy and Heresy in Earliest Christianity, polemical and theological tracts against the "Cathars" or "good men" of southern France, and Tissa Balasuriya's Mary and Human Liberation, our primary objectives will be these: (a) to examine the ways in which the defenders of what ultimately became "orthodoxy" used theological argumentation, rhetoric, and political power to characterize their opponents as dangerous "heretical" "parties" or "sects"; (b) to consider the methodological and theoretical challenges which confront the scholarly study of the relationship between orthodoxy and heterodoxy, especially where the use of primary sources is concerned; and finally, (c) to apply the categories, themes, and tropes we can gather from the study of past cases of heresy and dissent to the systematic discussion of dissent within Christian communities today.

Summer courses:

MVGA 5212         Women’s Voices in Medieval France, 4 credits      (Dudash)                  Summer Session I, TR 3-6:30 p.m.
In this interdisciplinary seminar, we will explore a variety of different texts by and about medieval French women of diverse social milieu:  those penned by the Italian-born Christine de Pizan, a member of the French royal circle; those concerning the rural maid and French national savior, Joan of Arc; and those recording the religious, fantastical, and/or mythical experience of woman of 12-15th c. France. Readings will include a selection of historical, political, literary, polemic, and/or religious texts, film, and contemporary scholarship.

LAGA 5093          Ecclesiastical Latin                                            (Clark)                                Summer Session II: MW 6:00-9:00
Study of the grammatical structure, form, and vocabulary of Church Latin, focusing on the Bible, the Church Fathers, and medieval thinkers.

LAGA 5090  (0)                      Latin for Reading (at LC)                                    (Owesny)    Summer Session I: MW 6:00-9:00
FRGA 5090  (0)                      French for Reading                                              (Staff)          Summer Session I:  TR 1-4
ITGA 5090  (0)                       Italian for Reading                                               (Staff)          Summer Session I: TR 6-9
SPGA 5090  (0)                      Spanish for Reading                                            (Staff)         Summer Session I: MW 6-9

Last modified: April 17, 2008
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