Comparative Literature 215: INTRODUCTION TO RENAISSANCE HUMANISM

Instructor: Victoria Kahn

This course fulfills the Intellectual History requirement for the DE in REMS.

Wed 2-5, 225 Dwinelle, 4 units, CCN 17356

An introduction to Renaissance humanism, focusing on the work of Petrarch, Bruni, Salutati, Valla, Machiavelli, Castiglione, Erasmus, More, Ascham, Elyot, Lipsius, and Shakespeare. In addition, we will read some of the classics of Renaissance scholarship (Burckhardt, Kristeller, Baron, Garin, Trinkaus, Greenblatt, Cave and Greene), as well as more recent work in the field. Topics will include Renaissance theories of imitation and literary production, the revival of classical rhetoric, humanist pedagogical practices, the civic and political function of rhetoric, the transformation of political theory, the relationship between Christianity and classical culture. We will also discuss the critique of humanism both in the early modern period and in modern evaluations of Renaissance humanist pedagogy by Grafton and Jardine, Halpern, Crane, Dolven and others. Reading knowledge of Italian or Latin is particularly useful but not required.

Section times and locations in the Schedule of Classes