Western Civilization I: Ancient to 1450
Fall Semester 2003

Frank Luttmer
113 Classic Hall
M W F: 7:30-8:00, T 10-11
866-7205 (office) (502) 454-8348 (home)

Course Description and Objectives

The beginning of a four-semester sequence in Western Civilization, this course is an introduction to the history of the Mediterranean world and Europe from ancient times to the end of the Middle Ages, with particular attention given to classical Greece and Rome and the High Middle Ages. The purpose of the Western Civilization sequence is to provide students of history and the liberal arts with a solid foundation in the principal ideas, institutions, and events that have shaped Western civilization. It seeks to promote an understanding of historical context and perspective and to encourage the skills essential to historical inquiry, including the capacity to define historical questions, analyze primary documents, evaluate alternative interpretations, develop coherent arguments, and write clearly and effectively. The course is organized in chronological sequence, with emphasis given to the close relationship between economic, social, political, religious, and intellectual developments of the same immediate historical period.

Required Readings

1. Marvin Perry, Western Civilization
2. Primary Texts and Resources from the Internet.


Final grades will be based on an evaluation of the following.

1. Two mid-term exams (15% each) and a final exam (20%)
2. A paper submitted in two drafts (15% for the first draft and 25% for the second)

3. Class participation (10%)


First Civilizations in the West

Sept. 3: Perry, 4-27; The Hammurabi Code

Sept. 5: Perry, 28-40; The Hebrew Bible

Sept. 8: The Hebrew Bible

Classical Greece

Sept. 10: Perry, 41-45; Homer; Sappho

Sept. 12: Perry, 45-53, 70-72; Plutarch (Lycurgus); Herodotus

Sept. 15: Perry, 53-56, 67-70; Thucydides; Greek Art and Architecture

Sept. 17: Perry, 56-67; Plato, Apology

Sept. 19: Plato, Republic; Plato, Phaedo

Sept. 22: Aristotle, Ethics

Sept. 24: Aristotle, Politics; Aristotle, Physics

Sept. 26: Perry, 72-84; Demosthenes; Isocrates

Sept. 29: First Exam

Classical Rome

Oct. 1: Perry, 85-88; Plutarch (Marcus Cato)

Oct. 3: Perry, 89-94, 96-100; Caesar; Plutarch (Caesar)

Oct. 6: Perry, 94-5; Lucretius

Oct. 8: Perry, 100-111;Augustus; Tacitus

Oct. 10: Perry, 111-121; Marcus Aurelius

Christianity and Empire

Oct. 13: Perry, 122-128; The Christian Bible

Oct. 15: The Christian Bible

Oct. 17: Perry, 128-141; Augustine; First Draft of Research Paper Due

Oct. 22: Augustine; The Rule of Benedict

Early Middle Ages

Oct. 24: Perry, 144-146; John of Damascus; Iconoclastic Council

Oct. 27: Perry, 146-149; The Quran; al-Ghazali

Oct. 29: Perry, 149-157; Law of the Salian Franks;The Conversion of England

Oct. 31: Second Exam

High Middle Ages

Nov. 3: Perry, 157-165; Feudalism; Commercial Revolution; Wharram Percy

Nov. 5: Perry, 165-169; Magna Carta

Nov. 7: Perry, 169-173, 177-178; The Investiture Controversy

Nov. 10: Perry, 175-7; Inquisition

Nov. 12: Perry, 173-175,178-181; The Crusades

Nov. 14: Perry, 182-188; Abelard; Bernard

Nov. 17: Perry, 189-192; Aquinas

Nov. 19: Perry, 192-194; Dante

Late Middle Ages

Nov. 21 Perry, 195-198; Boccaccio

Nov. 24 Perry, 199-208; Froissart; Joan of Arc

Dec. 1 Perry, 195; Romanesque Art and Architecture; Gothic Art and Architecture

Dec. 3: Music

Dec. 5: Review for the Exam; Final Draft of Research Paper Due

Dec. 8: 2-5 PM: Final Exam

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