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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Robert C. Stacey
HSTAM 367
Seattle Campus

Medieval Jewish History

Social and intellectual history of the Jews in western Europe to the fifteenth century. Jews under Islam and Christianity; the church and the Jews; the Crusades and their legacy; intellectual achievements; conflict and cooperation. Offered: jointly with JSIS C 367.

Class description

The history of Jews from the beginnings of the Common Era to ca. 1500. The focus will be on the Jews of western Europe, and the changing relationships between Jews and Christians. But we will also pay some attention to Jews in the Muslim world, including Egypt and Spain.

Student learning goals

Students should finish the course with a better understanding of the complex historical relationship between Jews and Christians in European history up to 1500.

Students should understand the importance of this history for the subsequent development of Jewish/Christian relations in Europe.

Students should understand the dimensions of Jewish cultural achievements during a period too often dismissed as "the dark ages."

Students should be better equipped to reflect upon the complexities of religious and ethnic conflict in other societies outside medieval Europe.

General method of instruction

Lecture/discussion format. One film.

Recommended preparation

A general course in European medieval history (HIST 112, or HSTAM 331, 332, or 333) is strongly recommended. Students who do not have this background should plan to read through a good western civ textbook prior to the beginning of the class, to make sure they have the necessary background. I presume no previous knowledge of Jewish history or Judaism, but clearly some knowledge of either or both will be an advantage.

Class assignments and grading

Two papers: a short analysis of a primary source, and a longer paper examining in detail a subject of the student's choosing; and a final exam, in essay format.

Class participation 10%; Source analysis paper 10%; Second paper 40%; final exam 40%.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Robert C. Stacey
Date: 01/24/2007