MIDEAST 318 - The Church of Armenia: Profile of a National Institution
Winter 2019, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: Middle East Studies (MIDEAST)
Department: LSA Middle East Studies
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Requirements & Distribution:
Waitlist Capacity:
Advisory Prerequisites:
Upper-class undergraduates or graduate students.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:


This course highlights the religious, cultural and political role of the Church of Armenia since Armenia’s conversion to Christianity some 1700 years ago. After a slow start compounded by a violent clash with the Armenian monarchy, a hierarchy emerged, dogma developed and the Church gradually evolved into an autocephalous, national, and "ethnic" church with an exclusively Armenian flock.

After the collapse of Armenian political power, the Church assumed (and was in many ways propelled into) a role of political leadership, especially in the past several centuries. As the oldest Armenian institution, the Church still plays a very significant role in Armenian realities today.

With political, cultural and social history in the region as its equally prominent background, this course will examine the new tradition Christianity fashioned and fostered in Armenia, sandwiched between the two mighty neighbors of Iran to the east and the Roman/Byzantine Empire to the west. A close look at the Church’s rise and history, dogma and theology, canon and institutions, literature, art and architecture will give students a deep and complex insight into the ways in which the Church forged and fostered a new, Christian Armenian identity.

The Church’s relations with the Greek and Syrian churches, Islam and Arab occupation, the Roman Catholic Church and the Protestants in the Middle East will illustrate serious and violent conflicts arising from religious, cultural and linguistic intolerance and assumed superiority, rivalry, power struggle and the overt and covert uses of religion for political ends.

Course Requirements:

Grading: attendance (10%), participation in and leading class discussions (10%), one long or two short term papers (40%), one take-home exam (40%). Students’ own contributions in the written pieces will carry considerable weight.


MIDEAST 318 - The Church of Armenia: Profile of a National Institution
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 In Person
TuTh 11:30AM - 1:00PM

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