This course will examine the Judeo-Christian Bible as a cultural document that continues to exert a strong and often unexamined influence on all aspects of our behavior, beliefs, literature, and art. We will read key sections of the Bible—both from the Hebrew and the Christian portions—examining them as a complex tradition of mythic and narrative patterns, heroic images, poetic and legendary modes, and ethical prescriptions. We will also look at how later cultures took the gaps in biblical narrative — the parts of the story that the Bible leaves out — and created their own answers and stories in response.
Arts & Letters (A&L) courses create meaningful opportunities for students to engage actively in the modes of inquiry that define a discipline. Courses are broad in scope and demonstrably liberal in nature (that is, courses that promote open inquiry from a variety of perspectives). Though some courses may focus on specialized subjects or approaches, there will be a substantial course content locating that subject in the broader context of the major issues of the discipline. Qualifying courses will not focus on teaching basic skills but will require the application or engagement of those skills through analysis and interpretation.
Media, Folklore, and/or Culture courses focus on print and non-print media to explore culture and its processes of creative expression.
English Minor courses offer students centuries of cultural experience and representation in poetry, prose, drama, film, TV, new media, and folk artifacts. The English minor can focus and extend the values of a liberal arts education, while also providing extensive training in writing, speaking, and critical thinking.