HTY 311: Undergraduate Research Seminar: The Government of God

Instructor:  Professor Joel Anderson

Course Number: 43459

Days/Time:  Wednesday, 3:00-4:50

Location: Stevens Hall 310

Description: During the High Middle Ages, one of Europe’s most powerful and extensive systems of government was centered at Rome. Paradoxically, however, the head of this organization commanded few military resources and styled himself not as a king or an emperor but as the “servant of the servants of God.” This writing-intensive research seminar will focus on the medieval papacy. We will explore, among other topics, the basis of the Roman papacy’s claims to spiritual supremacy; its roles in launching the Crusades; its efforts to reform the Church; its conflicts with secular powers; and its complex systems of law, administration, and diplomacy. Within these fields, students will select a theme, idea, or question for further research. A sequence of preliminary writing assignments will provide practice with crafting a prospectus, evaluating primary sources, and incorporating secondary scholarship. These exercises will build towards an intermediate-length research essay, which students will submit at the end of the semester.

General Education Requirements: Satisfies the Writing Intensive requirement

Prerequisites: Three credits in History or instructor permission.