History | Western Europe-Early Middle Ages
B351 | 21525 | Deliyannis

Above class carries culture studies credit
A portion of the above class reserved for majors
Above class open to undergraduates only

The Early Middle Ages (c. 400-1000 AD) was a time of dramatic
cultural, political, and social change.  In the year 400, the Roman
empire was a political entity that embraced most of western Europe,
as well as much of eastern Europe, the Levant, and North Africa.
People belonged to a variety of different religious, cultural, and
ethnic groups, but all coexisted under a common Roman administrative
and social umbrella. In the year 1000, western Europe was divided
into various different political units, but again shared similar
sorts of economic and social institutions, and had a common religion
centered on Rome.  However, the eastern and southern Mediterranean
areas had gone in very different directions.  The civilization of
1000 was very different from that of 400; during these seven hundred
years, Europe experienced invasion, conversion, and other upheavals
that overturned the old Roman order and shaped entirely new
systems.  Europe in 1000 contained many of the political, cultural,
religious, ethnic, and linguistic boundaries that we know today, and
thus the Early Middle Ages can be regarded as the period in which
the foundations of modern western society were put into place.  We
will be examining the different ways that Roman, Germanic,
Christian, and Islamic traditions interacted to produce this new

Assignments: four essays (5-7 pp) on primary source readings,
participation in one in-class debate, a midterm, and a final exam.