NEAR EASTERN STUDIES

General Near East (Division 439)

101. Introduction to Near Eastern Studies. (4). (HU).

The Near East, often called the Middle East, continues to be in the news. It is a major area of the world that stretches from North Africa to Central Asia. In spite of many years of coverage, the media have done an overall inadequate job in describing the Near/Middle East to the public, be it its present state, or its history, and its role in the world. This course introduces students to the peoples and cultures of this area. The course has four main parts. The first part offers an overview of the peoples, cultures, and countries as they are today. The second part offers insights into the heritage the modern West owes to the Near/Middle East, including the major religions, viz. Judaism, Christianity, and Israel and modern Islam. The third part from the view of modern history, sociology, economics, and human ecology. The fourth part focuses on the arts. During the course, the student will be exposed to leading specialists in these fields at the University of Michigan. In addition to the three-weekly lectures, there are discussion groups led by expert TAs focusing on the topics of the lectures presented in the four parts of the course. There are no exams. Grades are based on four reports on the four major section's of the course, and a final report on a Near/Middle Eastern topic of the student's choice selected with the assistance of the coordinator of the course and of the TAs. Cost:1 WL:1 (Windfuhr)

201/Rel. 201. Introduction to World Religions: Near Eastern. (4). (HU).

See Religion 201. (Ginsburg and Williams)

245/Rel. 245. Great Books of the Near East I. (4). (Excl).
Section 001: Masterpieces of Islamic Literature.
This course has the following objectives: 1) to provide a broad overview of the Islamic literary endeavor, noting its diversity, 2) to identify the principal themes of Muslim literary works, and 3) to make an intensive study of a small number of works. The texts to be read will be taken from several Islamic languages, but THE READINGS WILL ALL BE IN ENGLISH. An attempt will be made to include works representing literary activity in such different fields/genres as poetry, autobiography, parable, allegory, and travel and courtly literature. We will try to develop an understanding of the character of Islamic literature as a whole. Several short reports (one or two pages each) and class preparation will determine the grade. (Mir)

Section 002: The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Bible. The Dead Sea scrolls occupy a position of paramount importance among the written sources from the ancient Near East for the reconstruction of the roots of Western civilization. Not only do they help to illuminate the processes by which the texts and canons of the Bible came into being, but they offer an unprecedented link to the world out of which Judaism and early Christianity were born. No prerequisites are required. Two half-term exams required. Lecture, audio-visual presentations, and lectures by guest speakers. (Schmidt)

362/Hist. 306/Rel. 358. History of Ancient Israel I: From Abraham to the Babylonian Exile. (3). (HU).

This course will attempt to trace the history of ancient Israel as a culture and as a nation and to understand its place in the larger contemporary histories of ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, and Syria. In particular, we shall consider Israel's development from its beginning as a monarchy or kingdom in the days of David and Solomon until the Babylonian exile of the sixth century B.C.E. The main evidence for this task will be the Old Testament/Tanakh in English translation. The religion, economy, social structures, and political institutions of ancient Israel will be studied within their ancient Near Eastern context. (Tadmor)

397. Undergraduate Reading Course. Permission of instructor. (1-3). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT). May be repeated for credit.

An independent study course of 1-3 credit hours. A student must obtain permission of the instructor prior to registration. The subject and terms of grading the course should be determined by the student and instructor prior to registration as well. [WL:NA]

423/Geography 423. Geography of the Near East. (3). (SS).

See Geography 423. (Kolars)

442/Hist. 442. The First Millenium of the Islamic Near East. Junior or senior standing, or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

See History 442. (Lindner/Bonner)

445. Introduction to Ancient and Classical Near Eastern Literature. (3). (HU).

Our fascination with the Near East is not just limited to archaeological and historic records; these but suggest the outlines of life during humankind's cultural infancy. More than anything else, it is the literature of a people which reveal its heart and mind, its emotions and thoughts. This course opens the door for the contemporary student into the innermost life of ancient and more recent peoples living in the lands surrounding the Eastern Mediterranean. It identifies the popular forms of narrative and poetic expression, explains the social backgrounds of early Near Eastern literature, and considers its links with our contemporary Western literary traditions. Lectures and discussions focus on representative myths, stories and poems. The literatures covered in this course include (1) Ancient Near Eastern literatures: ancient Egyptian, Assyrian-Babylonian, Hittite, Iranian, Biblical leading to (2) Classical Near Eastern and Islamic literatures: Arabic, Persian and Turkish, and literary activity in Hebrew. Each literature is taught by a different faculty member. Student evaluation is by examination (graduates have to prepare an additional term paper). The required texts are specially selected, xeroxed and available in Course Pack form. There are no prerequisites, but NES 101 or some other background on the Near East is recommended. [Cost:2] [WL:3] (Stewart-Robinson)

450. Near Eastern Issues. (3). (Excl). May be repeated for a total of six credits.
Section 001: 1001 Nights.
The Book of the Thousand and One Nights was first mentioned, by an Arab historian, a thousand years ago. This course will deal with the history of the notion of the Nights, since its early stages as an oral tradition, up to its most recent translations into English. We will follow the emergence of the frame story, and the formation of some of the basic tales, through an astonishing interaction between the Arabic original and the French translation done in the beginning of the 18th century. We will read a selection of English translations of different tales, and study the ways the Nights were appropriated in the East and the West: in film, theater, music, literature, etc. A special attention will be paid to Borges and Barth. Requirements for the course are a presentation in class, and a Term paper. Cost: 3. (Shammas)

478/Jud. Stud. 478/Rel. 478 Topics in Modern Judaism: Modern Jewish Thought (3). (Excl). May be repeated for a total of 9 credits.

An examination of selected 20th Century thinkers and their response to the crisis of Jewish modernity: the breakdown of traditional Jewish culture and its system of meaning; the encounter with, and assimilation of, Western culture; and the impact of the traumas of World War I and the Holocaust. Primary focus will be on writers whose modes of thinking have often been called "existentialist": Franz Rosenzweig, Martin Buber, A.J. Heschel, and the radical theologian, Richard Rubenstein. The literary creations of Elie Wiesel and several seminal Hebrew authors (Bialik and Agnon) will be explored as well. In the final unit of the course, students will have the option of studying the first full-length work of Jewish feminist theology, Judith Plaskow's Standing Again at Sinai. Previous course work in either Judaic Studies, Religion, or Philosophy is recommended. Two exams and a paper. Limit:40. Cost:3 WL:3 (Ginsburg)

489. Islamic Intellectual History. (3). (Excl).

This course will introduce students to the multifaceted Islamic thought by examining the intellectual mainsprings of Islamic civilization. Among the disciplines to be studied are: Quran commentary, law, theology, philosophy, and mysticism. The emphasis will fall on the early, formative centuries, though we will also deal with some of the modern currents of thought in Islam. Two exams and a paper. OPEN TO GRADUATE AND UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS BOTH. NO PREREQUISITES. (Mir)

497. Senior Honors Thesis. Permission of instructor. (1-6). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT).

The Senior Honors thesis is for students who have been approved by the Near Eastern Studies concentration advisor, honor's advisor, and the LS&A Honor's Council. This course should be taken both semesters of the senior year, for not less than three or more than six credits per semester. The length of the thesis may vary, but 50-60 pages is common. Two advisors should be chosen. The principal advisor will be a member of the faculty in whose field of expertise the thesis topic lies, and he or she will oversee the student's research and the direction taken by the thesis. The deadline for submission of a draft of the thesis is the end of the week following spring break. The completed thesis must be submitted by the beginning of the exam period. Upon completion of the Honors thesis (and maintenance of a minimum overall grade point average of 3.5), Honors candidates may be recommended by the two advisors and Honors advisor for a degree "with highest Honors," or with "with Honors," in Near Eastern Studies (followed by the area of specialization). A notation is made on the diploma and the transcript.

Ancient and Biblical Studies (ABS: Division 317)

121/Rel. 121. Introduction to the New Testament. (3). (Excl).

Although it has influenced the Western world more than any other book, the New Testament having originated almost 2,000 years ago in the eastern Mediterranean world is not easy to understand. The course will, first of all, introduce the student to the historical, religious, and social setting of the New Testament. Then, we shall look at the various New Testament writings. They must be allowed to speak for themselves and not be clouded by any denominational or sectarian program. The student will be introduced to the insights and methods of modern scholarship when dealing with questions such as, What did the various New Testament writings really intend to say? How did they say it? Why did they say it? Finally, the problem of the development of early Christian doctrine will be addressed. Why were some of the early Christian writings excluded from the New Testament canon? The method of instruction will be Recitation. There will be two-three exams and a final paper. There are no prerequisites. Cost:2 WL:4 (Fossum)

160/Hist. 130. Introduction to the History of the Ancient Near East. (3). (Excl).

Introduction to the first 3000 years of human history as recorded in the texts of Mesopotamia, Egypt, Anatatolia, Iran and the Levant. The origins of complex societies in Sumer and Egypt will be briefly considered and the subsequent development of cuneiform and hieroglyphic civilizations studied in more detail, down to their common conquest by the Macedonians in the fourth century BCE. Particular attention will be given to the effects of ecological factors upon economic, political, religious, and intellectual history. A number of primary documents from the Ancient Near East will be read in translation. Course requirements include mid-term and final examinations as well as a 15-20 page term paper. (Beckman)

201. Elementary Biblical Hebrew. (3). (LR).

An introduction to the language and style of the Hebrew Bible, using Weingreen's PRACTICAL GRAMMAR OF CLASSICAL HEBREW as the text. Daily instruction on grammar with drills. Students are evaluated on the basis of daily homework assignments and weekly quizzes. [Cost:1] [Wl:3] (Schramm)

483/Rel. 488/Class. Civ. 483. Christianity and Hellenistic Civilization. (4). (Excl).

By moving out into the Hellenistic world, the Jewish sect holding Jesus to be the Messiah had to accommodate its distinctive beliefs to a civilization that was almost completely incongruous with it. The course will highlight various specific aspects of the dialectical process that led to a synthesis of Christianity and Hellenistic civilization, a synthesis clearly demonstrated in the emergence of Christianity as the only legal religion in the Roman empire. (Boccanccini)

Arabic (and Berber) Studies (Arabic: Division 321)

Elementary and Intermediate Language Courses

101. Elementary Modern Standard Arabic Through Self-Instruction. Permission of instructor. (2-6). (LR). May be elected for a total of six credits.

This course provides an introduction to the phonology and script of modern literary Arabic and to the language's basic vocabulary and fundamental grammatical constructions. It offers combined training in listening, speaking, reading, writing and using the Arabic dictionary. Students have access to a tutor for as many as four hours a week plus two obligatory hours per week for review and practice. Amount of credit awarded depends on number of lessons satisfactorily completed. Students should consult course coordinator in advance for the schedule of lessons per credit hour and general instructions. Arabic 101 may be taken for two or four credits each term for a total of six credits. Course grade is based on review tests completed by students at the end of each lesson (50%) and scheduled and comprehensive tests (50%). Textbooks: (1) A PROGRAMMED COURSE IN MODERN ARABIC PHONOLOGY AND SCRIPT, by E.N. McCarus and R. Rammuny; (2)ELEMENTARY MODERN STANDARD ARABIC PART ONE, by P. Abboud et al. Cost:1 WL:3 (Staff, Rammuny)

102. Elementary Modern Standard Arabic Through Self-Instruction. Permission of instructor. (2-6). (LR). May be elected for a total of six credits.

This course may not be taken until six hours of Arabic 101 have been completed. It is a continuation of Arabic 101 and includes continued drill practice on the phonological system, on basic vocabulary and morphology, and on Arabic syntactic patterns. The course stresses oral practice with increasing emphasis on reading selections based on Arab culture, and on producing Arabic orally and in writing. Students have access to a tutor for as many as four hours a week plus two obligatory hours per week for oral practice. Amount of credit awarded depends on number of lessons and tests satisfactorily completed. Course grade is based on review tests completed by students at the end of each term (50%) and scheduled comprehensive tests (50%). Textbook: ELEMENTARY MODERN STANDARD ARABIC, PART TWO, by P. Abboud et al. Cost:1 WL:3 (Staff/Rammuny)

201. Elementary Modern Standard Arabic. (6). (LR).

No previous knowledge of Arabic is required for Arabic 201. This course is especially recommended for students concentrating in Arabic or for those who expect to have some immediate use of Arabic; (2) control of the basic grammatical structures of the language; (3) mastery of about 800 vocabulary items; and (4) acquisition of related skills. The materials used are based on a combined approach stressing the four language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. This course starts with A Programmed Course in Modern Literary Arabic Phonology and Script, by Ernest N. McCarus and Raji Rammuny. These introductory programmed materials are usually completed within the first two week of classes. This is immediately followed by Elementary Modern Standard Arabic Part I, by Peter Abboud et al. This book is especially designed to provide careful guidance to both the student and the teacher. At the end of the course, the student is expected to be able to read printed and handwritten literary Arabic and to produce familiar material in a manner acceptable to a native speaker. In addition, the student should have acquired related skills to communicate (speak) in Arabic and use Arabic dictionaries. The course meets six hours per week for six credits. Use of language lab is necessary and strongly recommended to reinforce classroom work. The course grade is based on daily assignments, weekly quizzes, tests, classroom performance, and a final exam. Cost:2 WL:3 (Khaldieh)

301. Introduction to Classical Arabic. (3). (Excl).

This course is an introductiory course in Classical Arabic, the language of the Koran, the tradtions of the prophet Muhammad, Arabic poetry, Belles-lettres, and Arab history, from the beginnings around A.D. 500 to about A.D. 1500. The course begins with the alphabet, phonology, and grammar, and goes on to graded readings from selected texts in the above-mentioned categories. No prerequisites; no prior knowledge of Arabic is assumed. Students who have some prior knowledge of Arabic will not be admitted. Quizzes will given every second week, and a final exam at the end of the term. [Cost:1] [WL:4] (Bellamy)

401. Intermediate Modern Standard Arabic. Arabic 202 or the equivalent. (6). (LR).

This course emphasizes the use of Arabic language. That is, students will develop the ability to: (1) communicate/speak in Arabic with native speakers of Arabic, (2) understand spoken Arabic, (3) read and understand selected readings taken from various genres of modern prose fiction and non-fiction as well as Arabic newspapers and magazines, and (4) enhance writing skills and develop awareness of grammatical rules and structures. Use of Arabic is emphasized throughout the whole course based on communicative approaches to learning. Course grade is based on class attendance and participation, written assignments, tests and quizzes, and a final exam. Required text: Peter Abboud et al., Elementary Standard Arabic, Part II. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan, 1975 (Khaldieh)

Literature, Civilization, and Advanced Language Courses

415. Syrian Colloquial Arabic. Arabic 402. (3). (Excl).

This course teaches the basic principles of pronunciation and grammer of colloquial educated Arabic as spoken in Jerusalem, Beirut, Damascus and Amman, through oral and pattern practice drill. Towards the end of the course emphasis shifts to practical use of the dialect based on expanded vocabulary and texts containing more cultural and idiomatic content than the first lessons. FOR WHOM: This course is recommended for students who plan to travel or to work in the Levant and those who need Arabic for immediate oral use. EVALUATION AND REQUIREMENTS: Use of language laboratory to reinforce class work and also to do assignments which need to be recorded. The course grade is based on classroom performance, assignments, monthly tests, and the final examination. SPECIAL FEATURES: The course is accompanied by tape recordings of the pronunciation drills, the basic texts, the vocabulary, the conversations and the listening comprehension selections. In addition, it is taught by a native speaker of the dialect to be taught. Texts: COLLOQUIAL LEVANTINE ARABIC by Ernest McCarus et. al. [Cost:1] [WL:3] (Staff/Rammuny)

Hebrew Studies (Hebrew: Division 387)

Elementary and Intermediate Language Courses

201. Elementary Modern Hebrew. (5). (LR).

Development of basic communication skills in Hebrew. Reading, writing and grammar. Class discussion and readings in Hebrew. Class and language laboratory drills. [WL:NA] (Staff, Coffin)

301. Intermediate Modern Hebrew. Hebrew 202 or equivalent. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in Hebrew 311. (5). (LR).

The focus of instruction will be on the four language skills, with a continued emphasis on oral work and writing. Review of morphology and syntax. Continued emphasis on oral work and writing skills. [Cost:1] [WL:1] (Etzion)

Literature, Civilization and Advanced Language Courses

304. Hebrew Communicative Skills. Hebrew 302. (2). (Excl).

Development of oral communication skills. Emphasis on increasing active vocabulary and expressive competency. Activities include role-playing, presentations, and encounters with native speakers. [Cost:1] [WL:1]

401. Advanced Hebrew. Hebrew 302 or equivalent. (3). (Excl).

The object of this course is to enhance the student's Hebrew reading and writing skills. In addition, emphasis is placed on expanding student's vocabulary. To present the various levels of Hebrew, the materials include heterogeneous texts, ranging from the biblical period to modern times. [WL:NA]

403. Hebrew of the Communications Media. Hebrew 302 or equivalent. (3). (Excl).

Emphasis on readings, listening and speaking skills. The special genre of the communications media (newspapers, radio and television) will serve as the basis for discussion of current events. Unedited newspaper selections will be read and news broadcasts and television programs will be used in the classroom and in the language laboratory. [Cost:1] [WL:1] (Etzion).

Iranian Studies (Iranian: Division 398)

Elementary and Intermediate Language Courses

201. Elementary Persian. (4). (LR).

Persian has been called the French of the Near/Middle East. Certainly, Persia/Iran has been in the news. Persian is an Indo-European language, related to English, etc. Its literature, as in other arts, is a major part of Near/Middle Eastern and Muslim tradition. Persian 201 is the first term of a four term sequence. It takes the student through to the basic mastery of the skills of reading and writing, and of comprehension and speaking. Cultural as well as communicative skills are emphasized. By the end of the term the student should be well versed in these skills. Individual student by the instructor to polish and improve the student's Persian language skills. The objective is language use. Students who have special needs, such as those acquiring the knowledge of Persian for reading purposes, only, or for communicative skills, only, will be given special attention, and special sessions. Similarly, students of Iranian heritage, who may know some Persian in its colloquial form, will find the linguistic and cultural content of this course stimulating.

401. Intermediate Persian. Iranian 202 or equivalent. (4). (LR).

Persian has been called the French of the Near/Middle East. It is an Indo-European language, related to English, etc. Lack, or partial lack, of the knowledge of the monumental historical achievements of Iran is not only due to inadequate coverage by the media, but also to first and second generation Iranians' failure to inform their children. This course invites students with interest in world affairs, and those children, and emphasizes not only language, but culture. Iranian Studies 401 continues 201/202. Its objective is to lead the student to the improved mastery of the four language skills, viz. comprehension, reading, and speaking and writing. During the course, the student will learn higher levels of language registers, will be exposed to samples of Persian patterns of communicative skills via dialog, samples of expository prose, and of literature. Emphasis is on the use of Persian in these four skills. In addition, multi-media exposure, including video and news material via SCOLA and other means are utilized. Persian is the language of the class, with occasional discussions of linguistic matters in English. Cost:1 WL:1 (Windfuhr)

Literature, Civilization, and Advanced Language Courses

TURKISH STUDIES (TURKISH: DIVISION 493)

Elementary and Intermediate Language Courses

201. Elementary Turkish. (4). (LR).

Part of the departmental sequence in modern Turkish language, this course focuses on speaking, reading and writing the language of modern Turkey. Course topics include the principles of Turkish grammar with the phonological structure, basic sentence patterns and the morphology of the language. The method of instruction is of the recitation variety and includes written and oral work. There are laboratory sessions and conversation periods. Students are evaluated on the basis of class participation, written work, a midterm and a final examination. The required texts are: H. Sebuktekin, TURKISH FOR FOREIGNERS (available in departmental office) and G.L. Lewis, TURKISH (Teach Yourself Books, Hodder and Stoughton, 1980). (Stewart-Robinson)

401. Intermediate Turkish. Turkish 202 or equivalent. (4). (LR).

Part of the departmental sequence in modern Turkish, Turkish 401 is offered only in the Fall Term and Turkish 402 only in the Winter Term. The course is designed for students who have completed either Turkish 202 or its equivalent as determined by the instructor. It emphasizes futher study of Turkish grammar and stresses development of comprehension, and oral and written expression through the use of selected materials relating to Turkish culture and collected in a course pack. A strongly recommended text for the course is G.L. Lewis' TURKISH GRAMMAR (Oxford University Press, 1967 or later editions). Student evaluation is based on class performance, written work, a midterm and a final examination. [Cost:1] [WL:3] (Stewart-Robinson)

411. Introductory Ottoman. Turkish 202 and permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

Part of the sequence of courses required of concentrators, MAs and PHDs in Turkish Studies and open to Near Eastern Students with a multi-language interest and to students in other disciplines who need Ottoman for research purposes. This is a recitation-type course designed to give students speedy access to written Ottoman in the Arabic script. The texts are specially selected and xeroxed for distribution to students. Quizzes and a final examination are required in each term. [Cost:1] [WL:3] (Stewart-Robinson)

Literature, Civilization, and Advanced Language Courses

501. Modern Turkish Readings. Turkish 402 or equivalent. (2). (Excl).

Since this course is part of the departmental sequence in modern Turkish, admission to it is dependent on satisfactory completion of Turkish 402 or its equivalent as determined by the instructor. It is designed to further develop reading and comprehension competence in a variety of modern Turkish styles; newspaper and learned articles, political tracts, government publications, etc. The method of instruction is through recitation including preparation, reading and oral or written translation of texts in class or at home with discussion of grammar, style and content. Students are evaluated on their class preparation, a midterm and a final examination. Among the texts used are A. Tietze's Advanced Turkish Reading and a collection of xeroxed materials. [Cost:1] [WL:3] (Stewart-Robinson)


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