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Course syllabi

Discover the Liberal Arts College course syllabi for the 2023-24 academic year.

Two Liberal Arts College students hold books and discuss the readings in class.

LBCL 291: Political and Philosophical Foundations I

This course emphasizes the intellectual, cultural, and political traditions from the Biblical period and classical antiquity to the mid-17th century. Texts studied are related to changing social and historical contexts. Primary sources may include Genesis, Plato, Republic, Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Machiavelli, Prince and Discourses, and Hobbes, Leviathan.

LBCL 292: Modes of Expression and Interpretation I

A study of major Western literary, religious, and philosophical traditions, involving the reading and interpretation of significant texts from antiquity to the mid‐17th century. Emphasis is placed on development of writing skills and interpretative analysis. Primary texts may include Homer, Odyssey, Plato, Symposium, Augustine, Confessions, Dante, The Divine Comedy, and Cervantes, Don Quixote.

LBCL 295: The History of Art

This course is an integrated study of the nature of the visual arts from antiquity to the 20th century. Artistic expression is examined through chronological and thematic approaches, with attention to the relation between art and society.

LBCL 390: History of Music: Ancient to Classical

This course is a survey of the major trends in western art music from the Middle Ages to the 1820s. The course materials are designed to augment sensual musical experience with knowledge of the principal genres, forms and technical features of western art music from the period. The major goals of the course are to promote the recognition of musical genres and to develop an understanding of the stylistic differences between the music of various historical periods. Some knowledge of music theory is valuable but not essential for this course.

LBCL 391/3: Political and Philosophical Foundations II

This course emphasizes the intellectual, cultural, and political traditions from the mid-17th century to 1914. Texts studied are related to changing social and historical contexts. Primary texts may include Spinoza, Theological Political Treatise, Locke, Second Treatise of Government, Rousseau, The Social Contract, Wollstonecraft, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, Marx, Capital, and Nietzsche, Genealogy of Morals.

LBCL 393: Modes of Expression and Interpretation II

A study of major Western literary, religious and philosophical traditions from the mid-17th century to 1914. Primary texts may include Stendhal, The Red and the Black, Diderot, Le neveu de Rameau, Goethe, Faust, Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, and Baudelaire, Les fleurs du mal.

LBCL 394: History of Science: From Antiquity to the Renaissance

This course explores the history of science from antiquity to the Renaissance. Primary sources may include Aristotle, Physics, Plato, Timaeus, and Copernicus, On the Revolution of the Heavenly Spheres.

LBCL 490: The Twentieth Century and Beyond: Forms & Critiques

This course emphasizes key issues in contemporary society and culture. Major 20th-century texts and documents — philosophical, literary, political, and artistic, as well as analytical materials drawn from history and the social sciences, are read. Primary sources may include de Beauvoir, The Second Sex, Woolf, To the Lighthouse, Levi, Survival in Auschwitz, Hayek, The Road to Serfdom, Heidegger, Being and Time, as well as theorists such as Foucault, Lévi‐Strauss, Barthes, and Derrida.

LBCL 494: Thinking about Translation

LBCL 496: Honours Essay Seminar

This course will help you prepare, organize, plan and write a successful honours essay (thesis), developing skills that provide a foundation for all research and writing. You will learn how to familiarize yourself with the literature in your area of interest, develop a focused thesis topic, take useful notes, and then plan and organize your thesis through prewriting. You will want to figure out what has been said on your topic and how you will enter the scholarly conversation.

By the end of the first term you will have a research proposal and a literature review for your topic. In the second term, emphasis will be on research and writing; class time will be devoted to honing your critical skills, reading and commenting on each other’s work. Once you have a more complete first draft, we will work on revision at the levels of structure and content. You will then read and polish second drafts. By the end of the course, you will have produced a well-researched, clearly expressed 30 to 40 page honours thesis.

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