LARTS 246 – Ancient Near East
This course is a survey of the literary and other cultural artifacts of the Ancient Near Eastern civilization, focusing on Mesopotamia, Egypt and the Maghrib (North Africa), ancient Iran (Persia) and the Levant (Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and Palestine). The course considers ideas of kingship, society and social stratification, mythologies, and the arts from the early bronze age (about 3300 BCE) to the time of the Babylonian and Israelite kingdoms (through 539 BCE). Archaeology and art-history discussions will be based on the excavations of Ur, Nineveh, and Egyptian sites. In addition the course examines the fragility of preserving historical materials and sites and the role of warfare, plunder and politics in defining the history of the Ancient Near East in the twenty-first century. Readings include The Gilgamesh; the Book of the Dead; western descriptions of Troy; selections from the Hebrew Bible; the Ras Shamra (Syria) hymns to Nikal; Hebrew chant and early lyric poetry. (2 credits) Hoffman  

LARTS 319 – Europe in the 19th Century
The story of European society in its greatest age. Students will examine the social and cultural forces making for European supremacy in the 19th century, looking at the rise and triumph of the middle classes, the decline of religious belief and emergence of secular societies, the ideas of nation and nationalism, imperial ambitions, and the ascent of urban societies and urban culture. We will also study the artistry behind European culture, including works by David, Hoffman, Balzac, and Wells. (2 credits) Klein  

LARTS 343 – Race for the Presidency
This course follows the presidential campaign as a way of learning more abut the U.S. electoral process, the structure of party politics, the role of such intermediary groups as contributors, political action committees, and the media, as well as economics, political psychology, and sociology of American voters.
(2 credits) Klein  

LARTS 411 – The Travels of Marco Polo
A close reading of The Travels of Marco Polo, an iconic text in world history and literature, is a journey of discovery. Through Marco Polo’s eyes students will encounter the cultures along the Silk Road as they were at the end of the 13th century. In addition to the study of the text itself, students will be required to undertake guided research pertaining to Polo’s travels in multiple contexts – historical, cultural and geographical. The results of these research projects will be presented in class. (2 credits) Row  

LARTS 416 – China and Japan in the Twentieth Century
Students will follow the history of these two Pacific powers over the last hundred years as they have pursued their unique social, cultural, and political ambitions on the world stage. Readings, discussions, and lectures will focus on China’s transformation from an ancient, closed empire to a modern international state, with special emphasis on the social and cultural transformations of Mao Zhedong’s Communist regime. In contrast, studies of Japan will evaluate that state’s strategy of modernizations, using Western means to achieve traditional Japanese goals. (2 credits) Klein  

LARTS 417 – Europe in the 20th Century
The story of Europe’s decline from great power into civil war, totalitarianism, and cultural confusion. Students will read and discuss such issues as the alienation of the ‘Lost Generation,’ the appeal of fascist and communist ideologies, the emergence of anti-democratic thinkers, the retreat from liberal ideals, loss of empire, and collapse of Sovietstyled socialism. We will read and discuss such 20th century artists and thinkers as Ernst Junger, Picasso, Jean Paul Sartre, Fredrich Hayak, Dmitri Shostakovich, and Franz Fanon. (2 credits) Klein  

LARTS 423 – Holocaust: Germany and the Destruction of the European Jews
This course will examine the German program of genocide from 1933 until 1945, focusing on the rise of fascist and anti-Semitic ideology, the political successes of Hitler and his National Socialist Party, the creation of the Nazi totalitarian regime, and the construction of that regime’s supposed enemies – critics, outsiders, social deviants, and, above all, Jews. We will then turn to the program of ‘the final solution’: how it emerged out of the chaos of Nazi ambitions, when it became policy, where it was carried out, who exercised responsibility, and why a program of such violence and destruction met so little resistance. Students will analyze the roles of perpetrators, victims, and bystanders to understand better the implications of this genocide, both for modern Germany and for politics in the 21st century. (2 credits) Klein  

LARTS 442 – The American Century
A study of the rise of America from frontier nation to world empire. Topics include conservation, the Depression, the Civil Rights Movement, America’s rise to world power, the protest movements of the 1960s, and the development of contemporary American literature, art, and music. (2 credits) Klein  

LARTS 444 – Presidential Campaign: Party Politics in the 21st Century
The Presidential Campaign introduces students to American electoral politics through prism of contemporary candidates’ efforts to win their parties’ nominations and to prepare for the looming national elections. The class will focus on the coming election, yet will do so by exploring the historical development of such campaigns: the emergence of the primary system; the changing roles of parties and media; the complex legalities of fund-raising and spending; the development of issues and issue advocacy; and the mobilization of supporters, activists, and voters. (2 credits) Klein