History | Chivalry
J400 | 2772 | Shopkow


A portion of the above section reserved for majors
Above section COAS intensive writing section and also requires
registration in COAS W333

When most people think of the middle ages, they think of days of old
when knights were bold, fair ladies in castles, dungeons and
dragons.  There's a good reason for this: medieval people themselves
wrote stories about all these things and developed the code of ethics
they and we call chivalry.  But what was the political and social
reality behind the façade of chivalrous manners?  This course is
designed to examine both the realities of medieval life among the
aristocracy and the ideals they espoused.

Among secondary works, we will read Joachim Bumke’s, Courtly Culture:
Literature & Society in the High Middle Ages and Maurice Keen’s
Chivalry. But we will also explore primary sources: the documents
collected by David Herlihy in his History of Feudalism, Geoffrey de
Charny’s Book of Chivalry, and the romances of Chretien de Troyes.

Students will write a number of short assignments and will write a
paper on a topic to be agreed upon between the instructor and
individual student. Each student will be expected to present his or
her research at several stages during the semester. There will be no
examinations in this course. Class participation will factor into the
final grade.