Professor — Ph.D., 1988, Hebrew University
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: 512-471-4358
- Office: GAR 2.104A
- Office Hours: Spring 2011 - T 1:30-3 p.m.
- Campus Mail Code: B7000
Spanish and Portuguese Inquisitions; post-Expulsion Sephardic Jewry; Jews and the Reformation
Jewish Martyrdom; The Church and the Jews; The Spanish Inquisition; Early Modern Jewish History; Medieval Jewish History; Modern Jewish History
National Jewish Book Award in history, 1998
First annual Koret Jewish Book Award in history, 1998
EUS 306 • Jewish Civ: 1492 To Present
TTH 930am-1100am GAR 1.126
(also listed as
HIS 306N, J S 304N, R S 313N )
This course deals with Jewish civilization in the period from 1492 (the year of the expulsion of the Jews of Spain) to the present. It will give students a grasp of major trends and episodes in Jewish history in this period, including the rise of eastern European Jewry, Hassidism, emancipation, modern antisemitism, nineteenth-century Jewish nationalism, the development of American Jewry, the Holocaust, the establishment of the State of Israel, and the Arab-Israeli conflict.
Eli Barnavi, A Historical Atlas of the Jewish People: From the Time of the Patriarchs to the Present.
Paul Mendes-Flohr and Jehuda Reinharz, eds., The Jew in the Modern World: A Documentary History.
Assignments and grading:
Participation (10%), two quizzes (10%), mid-term (30%), final exam (50%).
EUS 306 • Jewish Civilization: 1492-Pres
MWF 100pm-200pm WEL 2.304
(also listed as
HIS 306N, J S 304N, R S 313N )
This is the second half of a two-semester survey of Jewish civilization, from the Second Temple period (c. 500 BCE) to the present. In broad strokes, the sequence will give students a conception of a culture and history that has preserved certain continuities, but has also undergone great transformations as Jews have migrated, encountered other cultures, and adapted to changing circumstances.
This segment of the two-semester sequence, which can be taken independently of the first, deals with Jewish civilization in the period from 1492 (the year of the expulsion of the Jews of Spain) to the present. It will give students a grasp of major Jewish migrations in this period, the impact of the Reformation on Jewish life, the emergence of new attitudes to Jews in early modern Europe, the breakdown of traditional authority, and the impact of secularization. It will deal with the following transformative events: the rise of eastern European Jewry, the spread of kabbalah, Hassidism, Jewish Enlightenment (Haskalah), emancipation, modern antisemitism, nineteenth-century Jewish nationalism, Jews in the Muslim world, the development of American Jewry, the Holocaust, the establishment of the State of Israel, and the Arab-Israeli conflict.
EUS 306 • Roots Of Religious Toleration
MW 330pm-500pm CBA 4.344
(also listed as
CTI 310, HIS 317N, J S 311, R S 306 )
Throughout the medieval period, religious conformity was enforced by religious authorities in Christian, Jewish, and Islamic societies alike, though with differing degrees of coercion. But in the wake of the Protestant Reformation, a fundamental revision of thinking about religious difference began to take root. This course will examine how think about freedom of conscience and religion crystallized in western and central Europe, both as a pragmatic practice and as a matter of principle. We will consider the following questions: What were the psychological and theological obstacles to accepting the practice of toleration, and why were they so powerful (as they still are in some societies)? What social conditions and patterns of thinking led to the emergence of a principle of toleration? How did this principle become embedded in western legal systems? And how did quite different models of religious toleration emerge in different places?
Three exams (together, 60% of the grade),
Three 3-5 page exercises (together, 30% of the grade).
Attendance and participation will account for 10% of the grade.
Texts (subject to change)
Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, in Edward Peters, ed., Heresy and Authority in Medieval Europe, 182-3.3.
Bernard Gui, Heresies of the High Middle Ages
Judaism.Ruether, Rosemary Ruether, "The Adversus Judaeos Tradition in the Church Fathers" in Jeremy Cohen, ed., Essential Papers on Judaism and Christianity in Conflict
Lester Little, “The Jews in Christian Europe,” in Jeremy Cohen, ed., Essential Papers on Judaism and Christianity in Conflict
R.I. Moore, The Formation of a Persecuting Society
R. Po-Chia Hsia, from “Introduction” to Hsia, ed., A Companion to the Reformation World, xii-xv.11.
Bagchi and Steinmetz, eds., Reformation Theology
Bob Scribner, “Heterodoxy, literacy and print in the early German Reformation,”in Biller and Hudson, eds., Heresy and Literacy
Carlo Ginzburg, “The High and the Low: The Theme of Forbidden Knowledge in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries,” Clues, Myths, and the Historical Method
Keith Thomas, Religion and the Decline of Magic
Jonathan Israel, Radical Enlightenment
Judith Pollmann, “The Bond of Christian Piety: The Individual Practice ofTolerance in the Dutch Republic,” in Calvinism and Religious Toleration in the Dutch Golden Age
Miriam Bodian, “Jews in a Divided Christendom,” Blackwell Companion to the Reformation.26.
Sebastian Castellio.Castellio, excerpts from Counsel to France in her distress (1562)
Michel de Montaigne.From Apology for Raymond Sebond (1580)
Jean Bodin, Colloquium of the Seven about Secrets of the Sublime (1588)
Dirck Volckertsz, Coornhert Synod on the Freedom of Conscience (1582)
Benedict Spinoza, Tractatus Theologico-Politicus (1670)
John Locke, From A Letter Concerning Toleration (1689)
Voltaire, “On Toleration in Connection with the Death of Jean Calas” (1763)
Christian Wilhelm Dohm, “On the Civil Improvement of the Jews” (1781)
Michael Walzer, On Toleration
EUS 346 • The Church And The Jews
TTH 930am-1100am WAG 101
(also listed as
HIS 362G, J S 364, R S 357 )
This course will examine the complex relationship between the Western Church and the Jews over two millenia. How did theological ideas about the Jews crystallize in the early centuries? How were they expressed in legal and social terms in the centuries that followed? How did economic and social realities dovetail with theology to produce the extreme persecutions of the Jews in the late medieval period? What led to the striking changes in Christian attitudes to Jews in from the post-Reformation period to the present? We will analyze relevant documents and images, emphasizing how theological positions both created and responded to the socio-economic roles of Jews.
Required to purchase:
Revised Standard Version of the Bible (any edition)
The course will make used of a website designed specifically for it by the instructor. The website includes many of the readings. Other assigned readings will be posted on Blackboard.
Class attendance and participation (10%), participation on Discussion Board (20%), two 1-3 pp. assignments (20%), mid-term exam (20%), final exam (30%).
EUS 346 • The Spanish Inquisition
TTH 330pm-500pm GAR 2.128
(also listed as
HIS 350L, R S 357 )
The Spanish Inquisition operated for three and a half centuries, and became one of the most notorious institutions in history. It is popularly known for its secret trials, autos-da-fe, and burnings at the stake. But why was it established? Why did it survive even when heresy seemed virtually eliminated? What purposes did it serve that allowed it to survive for so long? These are some of the issues we will explore in this course. Each student will carry out a project “tracing” one (fictitious) personality through the various phases of the inquisitorial process, from the time of arrest (or re-arrest) to the day of the sentencing. By discussing one another’s projects we will get a sense of the great diversity - in time and space, and in motives and aims - of this institution.
Henry Kamen, The Spanish Inquisition: A Historical Revision
Lu Ann Homza, The Spanish Inquisition, 1478-1614
Attendance and participation (20%), project proposal (20%), draft of project (20%). Final project (40%).
EUS 306 • Roots Of Religious Toleration
MWF 200pm-300pm CBA 4.348
(also listed as
HIS 317N, J S 311, R S 306 )
Religious intolerance seems to be endemic in human societies. It takes different forms, ranging from subtle discrimination to mass violence. There are times when it is less intense than at others. At least as a social phenomenon, there is little chance that it will ever be eliminated.
But history shows that political and legal structures can ensure a high degree of religious freedom. These structures have been built gradually and with great effort. They have very particular roots. That is, at a certain moment in history, and in a certain geographical context, principles of religious toleration - principles that could be translated into permanent political and legal protections - were worked out. This was a momentous innovation, one that took place in Europe from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries. In this course we will try to understand in historical perspective how this happened. It is a story about events in the powerful states that emerged in the Christian West in this period.
To understand the extraordinary struggles of this period, we’ll first have to understand the basic position and practices of the western Church toward heretics and non-believers as they were formulated in the first few centuries of the Common Era and as they were elaborated in the Middle Ages. We will then turn to the events and changed perspectives of the Reformation period. Finally, we will look at the range of theoretical ideas about religious toleration proposed by European thinkers, and consider their practical implications. We’ll conclude with some reflections on the persistent problems that have arisen and still arise in the the effort to achieve religious toleration, including recent issues particular to the multiculturalism experiment.
The course, then, has a three-part structure:
Part 1: A survey of the medieval European background;
Part 2: A look at how new conditions in the Reformation period encouraged the emergence of ideas of religious toleration;
Part 3: A study of the variety of theoretical positions – then and (briefly) now.
You will take an exam after each segment of the course (together, 60% of the grade), and write a 3-5 page exercise for each of them (together, 30% of the grade). Attendance and participation will account for 10% of the grade. Plus/minus grades will be assigned, as mandated by the new policy.
1. August 26 – What do we mean by religious freedom – or do we know what we mean?
2. August 28 – In the beginning there was theology (1): Christian doctrine concerning heresy.
From the article in The Catholic Encyclopedia on “heresy.”
From Thomas Aquinas, on the question of whether heresy should be tolerated, from his Summa Theologica, in Edward Peters, ed., Heresy and Authority in Medieval Europe, 182-3.
3. August 31 – The medieval Inquisition and the suppression of heresy.
From Bernard Gui on heresy, in Wakefield and Evans, eds., Heresies of the High Middle Ages, 1000-1530, 373-378, 386-404.
4. September 2 - In the beginning there was theology (2): Christian doctrine concerning Judaism.
Ruether, Rosemary Ruether, "The Adversus Judaeos Tradition in the Church Fathers" in Jeremy Cohen, ed., Essential Papers on Judaism and Christianity in Conflict, 174-189.
5. September 4 – Discrimination and violence against Jews.
Lester Little, “The Jews in Christian Europe,” in Jeremy Cohen, ed., Essential Papers on Judaism and Christianity in Conflict, 276-297.
SEPTEMBER 7 – NO CLASS: LABOR DAY
6. September 9 – The papacy, the state, and late medieval persecution.
R.I. Moore, The Formation of a Persecuting Society, 1-45.
7. September 11 – REVIEW.
8. September 13 – EXAM.
9. September 16 – Early modern skepticism about the knowability of truth.
The “Story of the Three Rings” from the Decameron: Decameron, Day 1, Novel 3: online at
10. September 18 – - The Reformation: the breakdown of western Christian unity.
R. Po-Chia Hsia, from “Introduction” to Hsia, ed., A Companion to the Reformation World, xii-xv.
11. September 21 - The Reformation: the attack on the authority of the western Church.
Bagchi and Steinmetz, eds., Reformation Theology, 42-49.
12. September 23 - The idea of multiple paths to religious truth. From the Catholic irenicism of Erasmus to the idea of natural religion.
Erasmus, from The Complaint of Peace (1521).
13. September 25 – The Reformation: religious wars and their fallout. Temporary pragmatic solutions: Peace of Augsburg, Union of Utrecht, Edict of Nantes.
Mout, “Limits and Debates: A Comparative View of Dutch Toleration in the 16th and 17th Centuries,” in The Emergence of Tolerance in the Dutch Republic, 37-47.
14. September 28 – TBA.
15. September 30 - The impact of print in the Reformation period...
Bob Scribner, “Heterodoxy, literacy and print in the early German Reformation,”
in Biller and Hudson, eds., Heresy and Literacy, 1000-1530, 255-278.
16. October 2 – …and of censorship.
Carlo Ginzburg, “The High and the Low: The Theme of Forbidden Knowledge in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries,” Clues, Myths, and the Historical Method, 60-76.
17. October 5 - – “Disenchantment.”
Keith Thomas, Religion and the Decline of Magic, 51-77.
18. October 7 – The impact of the discovery of new peoples. Anthropological speculation. The status of the “new” pagans.
The Travels of Fernando Mendes Pinto, 87-89.
19. October 9 – State-building ideologies. Raison d’état, mercantilism, and toleration.
Menasseh ben Israel’s letter to Oliver Cromwell.
20. October 12 – The emergence of a non-clerical intelligentsia.
Jonathan Israel, Radical Enlightenment, 1-22.
21. October 14 – Habituation: The everyday practice of religious toleration.
Judith Pollmann, “The Bond of Christian Piety: The Individual Practice of
Tolerance in the Dutch Republic,” in Calvinism and Religious Toleration in the Dutch Golden Age, 53-71.
22. Octobor 16 – REVIEW
23. October 19 – EXAM
24. October 21 – Images of Cruelty, from John Foxe’s Acts and Monuments
25. October 23 – Shifting attitudes about Jews in Reformation Europe.
Miriam Bodian, “Jews in a Divided Christendom,” Blackwell Companion to the Reformation.
26. October 26 - Sebastian Castellio.
Castellio, excerpts from Counsel to France in her distress (1562).
27. October 28 – Michel de Montaigne.
From Apology for Raymond Sebond (1580), tr. Ariew and Grene, passages on pp.127-8, 131-136, 139-141, 146-147, 152.
28. October 30 – Jean Bodin
Colloquium of the Seven about Secrets of the Sublime (1588), 150-159.
29. November 2 – Dirck Volckertsz Coornhert
Synod on the Freedom of Conscience (1582), 151-162.
30. November 2 – Benedict Spinoza
Tractatus Theologico-Politicus (1670), Chapter 20.
31. November 4 – Benedict Spinoza
Tractatus Theologico-Politicus (continued).
32. November 6 – John Locke
From A Letter Concerning Toleration (1689).
33. November 9 – John Locke
A Letter Concerning Toleration (continued).
34. November 11 – The Calas Affair
From Voltaire, “On Toleration in Connection with the Death of Jean Calas” (1763).
35. November 13 – Dohm on the Status of Jews
From Christian Wilhelm Dohm, “On the Civil Improvement of the Jews” (1781).
36. November 16 – The French Revolutionary Period and the Status of Jews
From the debate on the Status of the Jews in the French National Assembly.
Napoleon and the Assembly of Notables.
37. November 18 – The American Experiment
Jefferson’s draft of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom
38. November 20 – Religious Toleration in Historical and Cultural Context
Michael Walzer, On Toleration, 2-13.
39. November 23 – Religious Toleration in Context (continued).
Walzer, On Toleration, 14-36.
40. November 25 – Walzer, On Toleration, 66-82.
November 27 – No class – Thanksgiving holiday
41. November 30 – Walzer, On Toleration, 83-112.
42. December 2 – REVIEW
43. December 4 –FINAL EXAM
EUS 346 • The Spanish Inquisition-W
M 500pm-800pm GAR 2.124
(also listed as
HIS 350L, J S 364, R S 357 )
These courses cover the topics of European Anthropology, Geography, History, and Sociology