The Renaissance. History V MW 2:00-3:15 Fall W4 C-20 Office: 53 Washington Square South, Room PDF

The Renaissance Dr. Adina Yoffie History V MW 2:00-3:15 Fall W4 C-20 Office: 53 Washington Square South, Room 519 Course Assistant: Youn Jong Lee: Course Description:
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The Renaissance Dr. Adina Yoffie History V MW 2:00-3:15 Fall W4 C-20 Office: 53 Washington Square South, Room 519 Course Assistant: Youn Jong Lee: Course Description: This course will examine art, religion, politics, and scholarship in the fourteenth, fifteenth, and early sixteenth centuries, particularly in Italy, and often using the city-states of Florence and Venice as case studies. Many scholars have called this period the Renaissance. We will consider why and to what extent this era merits the name Renaissance ( rebirth ), as well as what differentiated it from previous revivals of learning and culture in Western Europe. We will explore the factors that could have accounted for dramatic change, such as a sense of crisis among elites in the fourteenth century, the legacy of the Roman Empire in late-medieval Italy, and connections between forms of government and patronage of the arts. In order to put the Italian Renaissance in context, the course will also look at the diffusion of some aspects of the Renaissance from Italy to the rest of Europe, with England and Poland as case studies. Lectures: The primary method of instruction will be lecture. Because there are no recitations in this course, we will be discussing primary sources at least once a week after lecture. Lectures will be shorter on those days to allow time for discussion. Readings: The focus of the readings will be on primary sources, both written and visual. Students will write weekly response papers (1-3 pages) on the primary source(s) that will be discussed in class that week. Response papers are due in lecture on Mondays, unless otherwise noted on the syllabus. Everyone will also be required to write a final paper analyzing a primary source in context. Throughout the course, secondary sources will also be assigned, both to give additional background on the period and to introduce students to historiographical debates on the Renaissance. The course textbook is Margaret King s The Renaissance in Europe (2005). Course Policies: Grading: In-class examinations: 50% (25% each) Final Paper: 30% Response papers: 20% Electronic Device Policy: No electronic devices, including laptop computers, are allowed in class. Students with a documented disability that prevents them from taking notes by hand should discuss their situations with me by the end of the second week of classes. 1 Attendance: Attendance in lecture is not mandatory but is strongly encouraged. Lecture outlines and/or Powerpoint presentations will be made available through Blackboard, but they will be brief, and students who miss lecture and the accompanying primary source discussions will have difficulty keeping up with the course. If you do not attend a lecture on the day a response paper is due, you must your response paper to Youn or me BEFORE 2:00 that day. We cannot accept late response papers except in the case of a documented illness. Students will have the opportunity to skip one response paper during the semester without an excuse. Plagiarism Policy: Plagiarism of any kind will result in an F on the assignment. A second instance of plagiarism will result in the student failing the course. I must report all instances of plagiarism to the Dean of Students. If you have any questions about what constitutes plagiarism, please make an appointment to meet with me as soon as possible. Readings: All of the following books are available at the University Bookstore, and on reserve at Bobst Library, except Bandello, which must be purchased online from Powell s for $3. Readings not on this list are available on Blackboard. Alberti, Leon Battista, On Painting Bandello, Matteo, Gonnella Tricks the Marquis D Este Boccaccio, Giovanni, The Decameron (3 rd ed. at bookstore) Compagni, Dino, Chronicle of Florence Ferrazzi, Cecilia, Autobiography of an Aspiring Saint Guicciardini, Francesco, History of Italy King, Margaret, The Renaissance in Europe (TEXTBOOK) Kohl and Witt, eds., The Earthly Republic Machiavelli, Niccolò, Discourses on Livy Machiavelli, The Prince Valla, Lorenzo, The Donation of Constantine Schedule of Lectures and Readings: Week 1 Monday (Sept. 6): Labor Day Holiday Wednesday (Sept. 8): Introduction: What was the Renaissance? Week 2 M (Sept. 13): Renaissance Institutions I: The Rise of the Italian Communes and the Coming of the Popolo W (Sept. 15): Renaissance Institutions II: Republic, Economy, and Church before 1348 Readings: Margaret King, The Renaissance in Europe (textbook), 12-53, Dino Compagni, Chronicle of Florence, entire, except Book I, sections 7-10, 12-16, 18-20, and Book III, sections 13-18, 27, Response paper due WED. this week at START of lecture 2 Week 3 M (Sept. 20): Crisis in the Fourteenth Century W (Sept. 22): After the Plague: From Disaster to Humanism Readings: King, Boccaccio, The Decameron, Author s Preface, Author s Introduction, Day I (entire), Day III (intro, tales 1, 3, 7, 10, conclusion), Day IV (intro and tales 1-2), Day VI (entire), Day VIII (tales 5 and 7), Author s Epilogue Week 4 M (Sept. 27): Humanism and the Revival of Classical Antiquity W (Sept. 29): Humanism in Practice: Lorenzo Valla and Leonardo Bruni Lorenzo Valla, Donation of Constantine Leonardo Bruni, History of Florence, Speech of Giano della Bella on the Ordinances of Justice, and Speech of the Florentine Ambassadors to the Pope, 1376, with the Pope s Reply (available on Blackboard) King, Week 5 M (October 4): Painting in the Renaissance: Accounting for Change W (October 6): Renaissance Sculpture and Architecture Leon Battista Alberti, On Painting, Introduction, both dedications, Book I, Sections 1-10, 17-24, Book II, Sections 25-30, 35-50, Book III King, Week 6 M (Oct. 11): Columbus Day Holiday No lecture W (Oct. 13): IN-CLASS EXAM No additional readings or response paper this week, but you may want to get started on next week s reading after the exam Week 7 M (Oct. 18): Republicanism and Despotism in the Fifteenth Century W (Oct. 20): Savonarola, The Italian Wars, and the End of Florentine Republicanism Angelo Poliziano, The Pazzi Conspiracy, in The Earthly Republic Girolamo Savonarola, Treatise on the Government of Florence (Blackboard) Francesco Guicciardini, The History of Italy, Books III, IV, VI, X, XI King, Week 8 M (Oct. 25): The Struggle for Power in the Sixteenth Century W (Oct. 27): Machiavelli and the Modern Niccolò Machiavelli, The Prince Machiavelli, Discourses, Book I, ch. 1-18, 24, 28-32, 40-44, 55-58; Book II, ch. 1-2, 5, 9, 29; Book III, ch. 1, 9, 31, 49 King, Week 9 M (November 1): How Many Renaissances? The Renaissance in England W (November 3): The Renaissance in Poland Sir Thomas More, Utopia Nicholas Copernicus, On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, excerpts (Blackboard) King, 298, , Week 10 M (Nov. 8): The Rise of Venice W (Nov. 10): Venice in the Mediterranean Marin Sanudo, Praise of the City of Venice, excerpts (Blackboard) Pursuit of Power: Venetian Ambassadors Reports on Turkey, France, and Spain in the Age of Philip II, , ed. Davis, excerpts (Blackboard) Week 11 M (Nov. 15): The Decline of Venice W (Nov. 17): Sixteenth-Century Despotism Guicciardini, History of Italy, Book VIII Matteo Bandello, Gonnella Tricks Marquis Niccolò d Este (available as an e-book) Week 12 M (Nov. 22): Family Life in the Renaissance W (Nov. 24): Renaissance Outsiders: Jews, Heretics, and Witches Alessandra Strozzi, Selected Letters, excerpts (Blackboard) Malleus Maleficarum (The Hammer of Witches), excerpts (available online) King, , 174, 350 4 Week 13 M (Nov. 29): Art and Life at the Papal Court W (December 1): Michelangelo and the Sistine Chapel Ceiling Art Analysis: The Sistine Chapel Ceiling King, Week 14 M (Dec. 6): The Council of Trent and the Catholic Reformation W (Dec. 8): Religious Life in the Late Renaissance Decrees of the Council of Trent, excerpts (Blackboard) Cecilia Ferrazzi, Autobiography of an Aspiring Saint King, Week 15 M (Dec. 13): Conclusion: What Was the Renaissance? W (Dec. 15): IN-CLASS EXAM 5
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