Fall 2017 Social Sciences Courses

Fall 2017 HC 231H: Crossing the Pamir Mountains: Eurasia in Historical Perspective

Professor: Roxann Prazniak

4 credits

•  CRN 12777: Wednesday & Friday, 10:00 – 11:20 @ MAC 106
•  CRN 12778: Wednesday & Friday, 12:00 – 13:20 @ MAC 106

In this course we will consider travel accounts, art history, and scientific discourse to explore the Eurasian continent from Greek city-states and Buddhist kingdoms to the medieval era of Christian rulers and Sufi masters.  We will find our way along silk road routes linking Changan and Samarkand to Baghdad and Rome. Read More


Fall 2017 HC 231H: Gender and Sexuality in the West to 1500

Professor: Emily Gilkey

4 credits

•  CRN 12789: Tuesday & Thursday, 12:00 – 13:20 @ MAC 111

In the past, women have been almost entirely absent from classic historical narratives. As a class we will work not only to place women back in the story, but also to develop tools for considering how gender informs every aspect of the human experience. We will unpack historical definitions of masculinity and femininity, considering the social, political and literary use that these distinctions served. Read More


Fall 2017 HC 231H: Sources of the Self

Professor: Vera Keller

4 credits

•  CRN 12786: Monday & Wednesday, 12:00 – 13:20 @ MAC 107
•  CRN 12788: Monday & Wednesday, 10:00 – 11:20 @ MAC 110

With the advent of social networking sites and their emphasis on narratives of the self, the self has become a subject of increasing activity, creativity, and prominence in the everyday lives of contemporary college students.Changing media can help transform conceptions of the self and its relationship to communities, society, cultural production and consumption, intellectual property, social change, and ideas of the public sphere. Read More


Fall 2017 HC 231H: Epidemics and Epistemologies in Pre-Modern Europe

Professor: Melissa Graboyes

4 credits

•  CRN 12785: Tuesday & Thursday, 10:00 – 11:20 @ MAC 103
•  CRN 12787: Tuesday & Thursday, 12:00 – 13:20 @ MAC 103

This course examines disease epidemics, and ideas about disease, that circulated in Europe from roughly 1000 to 1450. In addition to reconstructing scientific and medical knowledge during the ancient and medieval period, we will also explore how disease is related to epistemology (how people understood and explained disease), nosology (how diseases were classified) and cosmology (how disease, ill health or general misfortune was explained within a society). Read More


Fall 2017 HC 231H: Muslim Women of the Early Islamic History

Professor: Irum Shiekh

4 credits

•  CRN 12782: Monday & Wednesday, 14:00 – 15:20 @ MAC 103
•  CRN 12784: Monday & Wednesday, 16:00 – 17:20 @ ESL 193

In this class, we will learn about the lived experiences of Muslim women of the early Islamic history (7th-14th centuries) from the geographic areas of the Middle East, Central and South Asia, Africa, and Europe. Using a variety of historical texts, we will contextualize the narratives of these women within the existing sociohistorical, cultural, and religious practices across the globe that intermingled with Islam to shape their lives and identities. Read More


Fall 2017 HC 231H: Science, Technology, and Environment in the Pre-Columbian Americas

Professor: Mark Carey

4 credits

•  CRN 12779: Tuesday & Thursday, 10:00 – 11:20 @ MAC 107
•  CRN 12780: Tuesday & Thursday, 14:00 – 15:20 @ MAC 107

Scientific knowledge and innovations—such as Mayan architecture, Inca cosmology, and Aztec botany—were fundamental for the development of ancient societies. Science and environmental knowledge often facilitated political power and imperial expansion, led to cultural change and urbanization, and influenced agricultural and technological innovations. Read More


Fall 2017 HC 231H: The History of History

Professor: Tim Williams

4 credits

•  CRN 12781: Monday & Wednesday, 10:00 – 11:20 @ MAC 107
•  CRN 12783: Monday & Wednesday, 14:00 – 15:20 @ MAC 106

Premodern peoples from the Ancient Greeks and Romans to early Christians to Mayas all thought about, recorded, and wrote history. This course explores historical knowledge in these and other pre-modern civilizations. In particular, we will ask several questions about past societies that remain relevant today: Why remember the past? For whom is the past important? How does the past enrich our present? What tools work best to disseminate historical knowledge? Read More


Fall 2017 HC 231H: War & Heroism in the Ancient World

Professor: Michael Furtado

4 credits

•  CRN 12776: Tuesday & Thursday, 08:30 – 09:50 @ MAC 106

Are warriors and heroes synonymous? This is a question that is still relevant in our world today, and it is part of a legacy that dates back nearly two millennia. What qualities did the heroes of the Ancient and Medieval world possess, and how were those qualities related to the needs and expectations of the societies of which they were a part? Were the heroes of the ancient and medieval world always admirable people, or do they reflect the characters of the intended audience for their stories, warts and all? Read More