Comparative Literature | The Renaissance
C325 | 26844 | Prof. Sarah Van der Laan


MW 2:30 -3:45 pm
Carries A & H and CS Credit

What is the Renaissance? Why do we refer to a multi-talented person
as a “Renaissance man”? In this class, we will trace the cultural
movement known as the Renaissance from its origins in fourteenth-
century Italy, through France, Spain, and northern Europe, to its
final flowering in seventeenth-century England. We will discover the
origins of modern drama and opera, sample the last great European
epic poems, and watch the birth of the novel. We will witness the
Protestant Reformation, the rise of modern science, and the
development of new ideas about humanity’s place in the universe. We
will observe new developments in art, architecture, and music.
Finally, we will explore the origins and the legacy of the
Renaissance. The word “renaissance” means “rebirth” in French; to
what extent was the Renaissance really the revival of ancient Greek
and Roman culture that it claimed to be? The Renaissance is also
known as the “early modern” period; how does it lay the foundations
for our modern era?