HIST 4280 Heresy, Conflict, and Violence
Majors, Minors & Degrees:
This course looks at the regulation of belief by political and ecclesiastical authorities in medieval and Early Modern Europe, and how such regulation defined and criminalized heresy, nurtured political and social conflict, and justified the use of violence in shaping religious belief and practice. During the High and Later Middle Ages, the medieval Catholic Church developed institutions to pursue, try, and convict deviant religious of heresy. This feature of medieval religion shaped the subsequent development of Western Christianity over the next four hundred years. This course considers the reasons for the emergence of this persecuting dimension of Christian religiosity, and its consequences during the era from 1200-1700. Among the themes focused upon are the Cather movement and its suppression, the development of the Inquisition, the heretical revolts of late thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, as well as the Protestant Reformation and the witch hunts of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
Prerequisite(s): HIST 2120 Western Civilization through Religion to 1648 or HIST 2170 Body, Mind, Spirit: The Understanding of the Self in Western Culture or HIST 2180 Science and Religion in Western Tradition, or by instructor permission.
A study of Western Civilization from the Ancient World through the era of the Reformation focusing on the history of Western religious beliefs. Through the reading of religious texts, students investigate the varying conceptions of God or the gods as well as the relationship of the divine to the physical universe and humanity. In the process, students will learn basic features of Western religion and how the circumstances of human existence and broader cultural forces have shaped religious belief in the West.
(Normally offered each fall semester.)
'Who are you?' This question confronts everyone at some point in life. How you answer it is culturally determined, based on how you perceive the connection between yourself and the world you inhabit. In this course we will investigate how the understanding of the self has developed in Western culture, beginning with Ancient Near Eastern religious traditions and the philosophical discourse of Ancient Greece, and looking at how this understanding has evolved and changed over time. Particular attention will be focused on the challenge to traditional notions of the self that emerged with the development with modern psychological and sociological models of the self.
Archway Curriculum: Integrative Core: Identity Thread
One of the distinctive features of Western culture involves the interaction of religion and reason as a basis for understanding. From the Ancient World up to modern times, systems of understanding have rooted themselves in both divine revelation and rational inquiry. This course will explore the origins of such perspectives, and trace their development and interaction from antiquity to the present. The course will focus on reading and evaluating texts which exemplify these modes of thinking from mythologies of the Ancient Near East, to Greek and Roman philosophical writings up to modern debates concerning the sufficiency of religion or science as a basis for understanding. This course may be counted toward fulfillment of the Science and Religion thread, and as a Writing Instructive course.
Archway Curriculum: Integrative Core: Science and Religion Thread