History 2002 Later Medieval Europe  [0.5 credit] Winter Term
Professor W. R. Laird

Otto II enthroned, The Aachen Gospels, ca 975

Otto II enthroned, The Aachen Gospels, ca 975

The history of Europe in the later Middle Ages, AD 1000-1500. (Field a)
Lectures two hours a week.
Discussion groups one hour a week.

This course, the sequel to History 2001 Early Medieval Europe, is a survey of European history from the tenth to the fifteenth century. During this seminal period, the foundations were laid for many of the significant ideas, practices, and institutions that later came to characterize the modern western world, including constitutional and representative government, the nation state, the separation of church and state, and the university. The restoration of the Western Roman Empire under Charlemagne revived the dream of a unified Christendom under the two-fold authority of emperor and pope. But while these two authorities—the secular and the ecclesiastic—vied for dominion, there arose especially in France and England new forms of political and social order, founded on limited monarchy, royal governance, the rule of law, and national community. These alternatives to papal and imperial dominion brought an end to the dream of a unified Christendom and ushered in the modern era of the constitutional nation state. Topics in the course include the idea of Christendom, the Carolingian revival of Empire, serfdom and feudal­ism, empire and papacy, the Investiture Controversy, the Crusades, the revolution in government, new trends in thought and learning, the Great Schism and Conciliarism, and the decline of the dream of a unified Christen­dom. In this course, students will come to know the principal events of the later Middle Ages, to understand their causes and results, and to appreciate their contributions to the modern world.

This course is designed for second-year history students with a special interest in the Middle Ages. Students will be assumed to have successfully completed either a first-year history course, preferably History 1001 The Making of Europe (formerly Western Civilization), or History 2001 Early Medieval Europe.

Readings for each lecture will be assigned from a textbook and from a book of historical documents.

Lectures will guide students to a knowledge and an understanding of the readings assigned for each day. Students must attend all lectures, having read beforehand all of the readings assigned for that day from the textbook and the book of documents. Students who attend fewer than 19 of lectures will receive F on the course. Knowledge and understanding of the readings and lectures will be assessed in daily written responses worth a total of 40% of the final grade.

Discussion groups will prepare students to write the assignments, which will be written reports on historical documents found in the book of documents. Students must attend one discussion group each week to discuss the documents assigned for that week. Students who attend fewer than 9 discussion groups will receive F on the course. At each discussion group, students will be asked for a written response to a question on the document under discussion; the grades on these written responses will contribute to the 40%.

The required texts will be

Maurice Keen, The Penguin History of Medieval Europe (1968; reprinted London: Penguin, 1991); and

Patrick Geary, ed., Readings in Medieval History, 5th ed., Vol. 2: The Later Middle Ages (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2015).

Grades will be based on daily written responses in lectures and discussion groups (40%), and three written assignments (60%). Correct English and proper form and style on the written assignments are required.

This is a classroom course: no lecture notes will be available electronically. No electronic devices are permitted in the classroom; notes may be taken only with pen and paper.