Monday, Wednesday, and Friday - 11 AM
All students registered for the course are responsible for class attendance and all scheduled examinations. Examinations will cover the assigned reading in the textbook and the material covered in the lectures. The lectures are intended to introduce students to the particular problems and issues which are central to the background and development of western society and culture to the time of the Reformation. They are not meant to be a substitute for the careful narrative of events provided by the textbook. The text also includes selections from the periods covered which carefully illustrate the sources on which the study of the era is based. They are to be considered part of your assignments for the course.
There will be two scheduled mid-term examinations in addition to the final. Students will need bluebooks for each examination. Students must turn-in an examination book for each examination by September 10 (failure to do on time will count as an unexcused absence). In every examination students should take careful note of the geographic locations associated with the material covered because questions related to them will be included. It is simply impossible to understand events adequately if you are uncertain about the geography involved. If a student misses an examination because of an excused absence a make-up will be possible but students need to understand that they must arrange to be at the make-up at the scheduled time. Any student who is unable to take the make-up at that time will be required to do so on December 1.
Students are expected to attend class. The lectures are an integral part of the course and excessive absences will be treated as a failure to fulfill the requirements of the course. Excused absences will always be allowed for serious health reasons, for deaths of members of the immediate family, or for scheduled university activities. The student has the full responsibility to substantiate that an absence is excused. Any unsubstantiated absence will be considered unexcused. Any student who has four (4) or more unexcused absences may receive an F for the course. Any student who has more than three (3) unexcused absences may have his/her grade
lowered one letter grade at my discretion. Regular and repeated tardiness will also be subject to the above penalty. Classes meet for one-hour and twenty minutes and students are expected to participate in the entire period. Anyone who has cause to leave before the scheduled end of the class must notify me in advance. There is no excuse for disrupting a class by leaving early or regularly arriving late. During so distracts the attention of other students. In addition all cell phones and pagers must be turned off during class for the same reason. All cell phones must be put away during the entire class. No electronic devices of any kind will be permitted during examinations. Regular tardiness will result in the same penalties as those for missing class.
Course Outline and Reading Assignments:
THE BACKGROUND OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION
Introduction (August 23)
The Origins of Civilization (August 25 - September 8)
Sumer and civilization in Mesopotamia.
Assyria and the origins of imperial government.
The Persian Empire.
The early Hebrews and Judaism.
Read: Chapters 1-2, pp. 1-52.
Ancient Greece (September 10-17)
Greece from the Bronze Age to the Classical Age.
The rivalry of Sparta and Athens.
Greek culture and thought.
Read: Chapter 3, pp. 55-86.
The Hellenistic Age (September 20-22)
Alexander the Great and the conquest of the
The Hellenistic Successor Kingdoms.
Hellenistic Culture: the interaction of Greek and Near Eastern Societies and Ideas.
Read: Chapter 4, pp. 89-111.
Mid-Term Examination (September 24)
The Rise and Fall of the Roman Republic (September 27 - October 4)
Early Rome and the development of the Republic.
The government of the Roman Republic.
Roman conquest of the Mediterranean basin and the collapse of the Republic.
Read: Chapter 5, pp. 113-145
Rome and the Empire (October 6-11)
Augustus Caesar and the development of the Principate.
The nature of the Roman Empire.
The crisis of the Third Century and the emergence of the Later Empire (the Dominate).
Read: Chapter 6, pp 147-170.
The Early Middle Ages (October 13-20)
The emergence of Christianity in the Roman world
The early Germanic kingdoms of the West.
The Byzantine and Islamic worlds of the eastern Mediterranean.
The kingdom of the Franks: Merovingian and Carolingian Frankland.
Read: Chapter 6, pp. 170-177; Chapter 7, pp. 179-211; and Chapter 8, pp. 213-224.
Early Medieval Society and the collapse of the Carolingian Empire (October 22-25)
The development of feudalism: the military, political and economic basis of medieval
The crisis of the ninth and tenth centuries: Saracens, Magyars, and Northmen.
Read, Chapter 8, pp. 224-240
Mid-Term Examination (October 27)
Medieval Society on the Ascendency (October 29 - November 12)
The Medieval Frontier.
The expansion of medieval society: the growth of cities, commerce, agriculture, and government.
The church in the High Middle Ages: the papacy, monasticism, and reform.
The revival of learning.
Read: Chapter 9-10, pp. 243-300.
The Late Middle Ages and the Renaissance (November 15-19)
The crisis of fourteenth century and the late medieval world.
The medieval revolution in government: the appearance of Representative Assemblies.
The collapse of the medieval synthesis.
Italian politics and society in the age of the Renaissance.
The culture of the Italian Renaissance.
The spread of Renaissance ideas from Italy throughout Europe.
Read: Chapters 11-12, pp. 303-370.
The Reformation (November 22 - December 3)
The background of the Reformation.
Martin Luther and the beginnings of the Reformation.
John Calvin and Luther’s successors.
The Radical Reformation.
The Catholic reform and the reaction to Protestantism.
Read: Chapters 12-13, pp. 346-376.
Final Examination (Monday, December 6, 10:30-12:30)