Great Books Courses (Division 382)

192. Great Books. Open to Honors freshmen only. (4). (HU).

Continuation of Great Books 191, from Plato to the Renaissance. We will read: Plato, PHAEDO, SYMPOSIUM, and parts of the REPUBLIC; Vergil, THE AENEID; selections from the Old Testament and New Testament; Dante, THE DIVINE COMEDY (INFERNO, and selections from PURGATORIO and PARADISO); Boccaccio, selections from the DECAMERON; one or two plays of Shakespeare. Great Books 192 is open only to freshmen in the Honors Program; other students wishing to take a similar course are encouraged to elect Great Books 202. (Cameron and others)

202. Great Books. (3). (HU).

Section 001. This course will examine the new image of man that began to emerge in the Renaissance and some of its social and political implications as these are reflected in some of the great literary and political works of the last five centuries. The works to be read include Machiavelli's THE PRINCE, More's UTOPIA, Montaigne's ESSAYS, Shakespeare's KING LEAR, Swift's GULLIVER'S TRAVELS, Rousseau's SOCIAL CONTRACT, Marx's COMMUNIST MANIFESTO, Austen's PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, Balzac's PERE GOTIOT, and Dostoevsky's CRIME AND PUNISHMENT. Class format will combine lecture and discussion. Grades will be based on class participation, three hour exams (essay), and a term paper. (Beauchamp)

Section 002 FROM A DRINKING PARTY TO TILTING AT WINDMILLS. In this class we will read and discuss texts from the ancient, medieval, and renaissance worlds: Plato's SYMPOSIUM, Vergil's AENEID, and selections from the Old Testament and the New Testament; Augustine's CONFESSIONS and Dante's INFERNO; Machiavelli's THE PRINCE, Shakespeare's ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA, and Cervantes' DON QUIXOTE. Grading will be based upon class participation, about ten pages of essay writing, a midterm, and a final exam. Our texts have delighted, instructed, and influenced many minds, great and small, for centuries, and form an important part of the foundation of our culture. Our purpose will not be to learn about these works, but to learn the works themselves, so that they become, in a sense, a part of our experience, our personal property. (Wallin)

Section 003. When the unity of the Medieval Catholic world splintered into the plurality of European national monarchies bringing with it the problems of subjectivism, democracy, and heterodoxy, literature became a mirror of this exciting development. We will begin with Dante's DIVINE COMEDY which both sums up the achievements of the Medieval World and foreshadows the tensions which are to come. Montaigne's ESSAYS brood over a human self become fascinating, but troublesome. Shakespeare, in KING LEAR and THE TEMPEST, probes the nature of the individual caught between the innocence of nature and the seduction of power. We will close the term by examining the struggle with individuation in its religious and philosophical dimensions, first in Milton's attempt to restore order in PARADISE LOST, and finally in Goethe's FAUST, who has become the symbol for both the creative vitality and the destructive possibilities possessed by modern man. Students will be evaluated on class participation, two shorter papers, and midterm and final exams. (Paslick)

221. Great Books of the Far East. (4). (HU).

An introduction to some of the great books that have exerted a commanding influence on the lives, thought, and literary experience of the Chinese and Japanese peoples through the ages, and that have the power to delight or enlighten Western readers today. Texts will include two monuments of fiction, THE STORY OF THE STONE (also known as THE DREAM OF THE RED CHAMBER) and THE TALE OF GENJI, set in two high points of these great civilizations and depicting in vivid detail their splendor and decadence. Other Chinese readings will include two Confucian texts of social and political philosophy; one mystical Taoist text; one wild Buddhist text about the experience of enlightenment; selections from THE BOOK OF SONGS; and MONKEY, a novel of myth, fantasy, comedy, and allegory. Other Japanese readings will include selections from classical poetry; a book on the Way of the samurai; a travel journal by the HAIKU poet Basho; a pair of modern novels by Natsume Soseki and Kawabata Yasunari depicting families in the context of social change; and Ibuse Masuji's BLACK RAIN, the great documentary novel of human loss and endurance in the wake of the bombing of Hiroshima. Weekly short written assignments, two brief papers, and a final examination are required. (Lin and Ramirez-Christensen)

294/Women's Studies 294. Great Books by Women Writers. Open to sophomores, juniors, and seniors. (4). (HU).

This course is designed to introduce students to "Great Books" by women writers from a variety of cultures Greek, Japanese, French, English, and American from ancient to modern times. Taught by a series of lecturers using differing critical approaches, the course aims to provide a perspective from which to critique the traditional Great Books canon; to examine differences in women's writing in specific contexts; and to explore basic constructs of feminist literary theory. Texts to be read include: Sappho's poetry; Lady Murasaki's TALES OF THE GENJI; Madame de La Fayette's THE PRINCESSE DE CLEVES; Jane Austen's PRIDE AND PREJUDICE; George Sand's INDIANA; Virginia Woolf's TO THE LIGHTHOUSE; Toni Morrison's SONG OF SOLOMON. There will be two lectures and two discussions per week. Written work: two short papers; a term paper; and a final exam. (Stanton and others)

296. Great Books of the Twentieth Century. Open to sophomores, juniors, and seniors. (3). (HU).

The purpose of the course is to introduce the student to a selection of international fiction of the twentieth century. Authors will include Kafka, Gide, Marques, Handke, Boell, Pirandello, Brecht, Nabokov, Calvino, Kundera, Duras, Beckett, and Olesha. Students will be responsible for two short papers, one term paper, and one exam. (Ferran)


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