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Undergraduate Bulletin 2008-2009

Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program

Helene Scheck, Ph.D.
Department of English

The purpose of the Medieval and Renaissance Studies program is to give students a broad, multidisciplinary training in the history and culture of Europe from late antiquity to the early modern period. Both as a major and a minor, the program offers a wide range of courses and a guide for anyone with a special interest in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. It is especially recommended as a second major for anyone considering going on to graduate study in some aspect of medieval and Renaissance studies.

Degree Requirements for the Faculty-Initiated Interdisciplinary Major with a Concentration in Medieval and Renaissance Studies

General Program B.A.: A minimum of 36 credits: 9 credits from the core courses, 3 credits in Art History, 3 credits in History, 3 credits in Literature and Cultures, 3 credits in Philosophy, 3 credits in Global Perspectives, and 12 elective credits from courses listed or specially approved by the Director of Medieval and Renaissance Studies. In the case of courses marked “approval required,” the Director of Medieval and Renaissance Studies will determine appropriateness on a case-by-case basis.

Majors are encouraged to have an elementary reading ability in Latin. In addition, it is strongly recommended that majors acquire at least an elementary reading ability in one modern Western language other than English.

Courses that conform to the intent and content of the program but are not listed below may be counted towards fulfilling the requirements upon approval of the program director.

Core Courses-9 Credits

ARH 331 Monks, Monarchs, and Medieval Art
ARH 342/342Z Renaissance Art of the 16th Century
HIS 235/235Z  Early and Medieval Christianity
HIS 336 /336Z History of the Early Middle Ages
HIS 337/337Z The High Middle Ages
HIS 338/338Z The Italian Renaissance, 1300-1530
HIS 339 Renaissance and Reformation in Sixteenth-Century Europe
HIS 346/346Z The History of England I
ENG 330 (formerly ENG 421) Literature of the Middle Ages
ENG 331 (formerly ENG 422) Literature of the Earlier Renaissance
ENG 332 (formerly ENG 423) Literature of the Later Renaissance
PHI 311 History of Medieval Philosophy

Art and Music Courses–3 Credits
ARH 230 The Art of Medieval Knighthood
ARH 303/303Z Jewish, Christian and Muslim Art in Late Roman and Early Medieval Periods
ARH 332 Gothic Art and Architecture
ARH 442 Early Painting of the Netherlands
ARH 499 Research Seminar in Art History (approval required)
MUS 230L Music History I
MUS 287 University Chamber Singers (approval required).

History Courses-3 Credits

HIS 391 Topics in European History (approval required)
HIS 463 Byzantine Empire
HIS 343/343Z Issues in Medieval Jewish History.

Literatures and Cultures Courses–3 Credits*
ENG 341 Chaucer
ENG 342 Study of an Author or Authors before the Mid-18th Century
ENG 346 Studies in Shakespeare (formerly ENG 344 and ENG 345)
ENG 348 Milton
ENG 362 (=WSS 362) Critical Approaches to Gender and Sexuality in Literature (approval required)
ENG 368 (=WSS 368) Women Writers (approval required)
ENG 411 Topics in British Literature and Culture (approval required)
FRE 201 Perspectives on the French World (approval required)
FRE 202 French Literature (approval required)
FRE 455 Life and Letters (approval required; taught in French)
ITA 315 Italian Civilization: From the Etruscans to Galileo
ITA 421 Dante
ITA 441 The Italian Renaissance
SPN 311 Hispanic Literature through the Golden Age
SPN 482 Cervantes

In addition to the courses listed, appropriate genre or topics courses offered by the English Department will also be accepted, with the approval of the Director of the Medieval/Renaissance Studies Program.

Philosophy Courses–3 Credits
JST 430 Maimonides and Spinoza
PHI 311 History of Medieval Philosophy
PHI 312 Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Philosophy

Global Perspectives Courses–3 Credits
EAC 395 Song and Yuan Painting
EAC 398 Change in Medieval China
EAC 397 The Silk Road

NB: Latin is not required, but is strongly recommended.

Honors Program in Medieval and Renaissance Studies

Honors students in Medieval and Renaissance Studies will take a structured sequence of coursework focusing upon the main areas of study offered in the Medieval and Renaissance Studies curriculum.

Degree Requirements for Honors in Medieval and Renaissance Studies (36 credits)

Three credits in each of the following areas of the core curriculum
Art History: ARH 331, ARH 342
English: ENG 330, ENG 331, ENG 332
History: HIS 235/235Z, HIS 336/336Z, HIS 337/337Z, HIS 338/338Z, HIS 339/339Z,
HIS 346/346Z

The research project is the focus of the Honors Program and must draw upon at least two of the fields offered in the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program.  In addition, it must have at least two of the following features:  use of primary resources; research conducted in a language other than English; production of an annotated bibliography to develop an historiographic analysis.  In the final semester of her or his senior year, the student will present the project formally to an Honors Committee composed of selected members of the Medieval and Renaissance Studies faculty. The student will also produce a major paper on the research project, which will be evaluated by the project’s faculty supervisor and another reader from one of the disciplines represented in the project.

Selection: The student should have declared a Medieval and Renaissance Studies major and completed at least 12 credits in the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program. Her or his overall grade point average must be at least 3.25, with a grade point average of at least 3.5 in the Medieval and Renaissance Studies major. To be considered, interested students should submit a letter of intent to the director of the Medieval and Renaissance Studies program. Students may apply beginning in the spring semester of the sophomore year through April of the junior year.