English | Projects In Reading & Writing: The Legacy of the Medieval in Modern Culture
W170 | 14722 | Erwin

<b>PROJECTS IN READING & WRITING<p>TOPIC: The Legacy of the Medieval
in Modern Culture<p>INSTRUCTOR: B. Erwin<p>14722     MWF     9:05am-
9:55am     KH 212<p></b>Living in the twenty-first century, we are
hundreds of years removed from the close of the Middle Ages, yet the
legacy of that distant era remains influential in shaping our ideas
about our own culture.  From recent bioterrorism warnings that
invoke the loss of half of Europe in the medieval Black Death, to
the continued use of the phrase “knight in shining armor” to label
ideal masculinity, we in the present day often use cultural myths
about the Middle Ages to shape our beliefs about our own era.  In
this class, our sequence of readings will focus primarily on a range
of scholarly articles and book chapters, but will also include one
novel and some short poetry.  Our papers will respond to elements of
these readings, but will also incorporate analysis of other cultural
artifacts we examine, including film and television, as well as
radio, internet media, and exhibits at the IU Art Museum and Lilly
Library. Our investigations will be guided by the inquiry question:
what do we seek to gain for our modern sense of self when we invoke
the Middle Ages in a particular way?<p>While one major goal of the
course will be to pursue a range of answers to our inquiry question,
we will focus simultaneously on developing skills for analytical
writing, reading, and thinking.  W170 is designed to fulfill the
University composition requirement; therefore, our sequence of
readings and writings will not only introduce you to some key modes
of argumentation you will encounter as you continue your college
career, but will also help you to develop the skills necessary for
success in your future written work.