Banner Credit: Marrakesh, Morocco. Photograph by Luke Yarbrough.

Winter 2020

  • Arabic 250: Premodern Arabic Literature

    Instructor: Michael Cooperson

    Seminar, three hours. Readings in Arabic texts from variety of periods and genres, along with appropriate secondary literature. Topics include pre-Islamic poetry and oratory, Qur’an, Umayyad and Abbasid poetry and literary prose, Hadith and Fiqh, historiography, biography, geography, medicine, mathematics, theology, asceticism, and mysticism. May be repeated for maximum of 24 units. S/U or letter grading.

  • Arabic M110/Comparative Literature M110: A Thousand and One Nights/Alf Layla wa-Layla

    Instructor: Susan Slyomovics

    Since its appearance in Europe in 1704, A Thousand and One Nights is the best-known work of Arabic literature in the west. This course examines the cycle of tales more commonly known as The Arabian Nights and includes the history of its translation, contemporary oral performances of the tales in the Arabic-speaking world, the literary emergence of the vernacular language in relation to Classical Arabic, and Western appropriations of the tales in music, film and the novel (Ravel, Rimsky-Korsakov, Barth, Poe, and Walt Disney). Knowledge of Arabic is not required.

  • Art History C120: Selected Topics in Islamic Art

    Instructor: Lamia Balafrej

    Seminar, three hours. Variable topics in Islamic art and architecture that reflect interests of individual regular and/or visiting faculty members. May be repeated twice for credit. Concurrently scheduled with course C220A. P/NP or letter grading.

  • History 200J: Islamic Historiography

    Instructor: Michael Morony

    This course will examine the origins and development of Islamic historical concepts and compositions. It will also examine the way that modern Western and Middle Eastern authors have treated the history of Islamic western Asia. Students will be required to report on the reading and to prepare an historiographical paper examining how the interpretation of some particular theme, event, or issue concerning Islamic history has developed, the differences among historians over it, and how their different interpretations were related to the intellectual issues of their own time.

  • Iranian 103B: Advanced Persian: Introduction to Classical Persian Prose

    Instructor: Domenico Ingenito

    Lecture, three hours. Requisite: course 102C. Students who do exceptionally well in course 20C may be permitted to enroll with consent of instructor. May be taken independently for credit. P/NP or letter grading.

  • Iranian 55: Aesthetics of Gender, Sexuality, and Ethnicity in Iranian Arts and Literature

    Instructor: Domenico Ingenito

    Lecture, three hours. Multifaceted introduction to Persian poetry, recognized as jewel of Persian culture, and to pictorial, architectural, performative, cinematographic, and photographic dimensions of artistic milieu spanning between Balkans, India, and Central Asia from 10th century CE to present. With consideration of centrality of discourses on identity, desire, and spirituality to core of Persian aesthetics, study of broad variety of socioanthropological, ethical, and historiographical issues stemming from both mainstream topics characterizing extensive field of Iranian studies and most controversial conversations on nature of sexuality, ethnicity, and religion. P/NP or letter grading.

  • Islamic Studies 151: Islamic Thought

    Instructor: Luke Yarbrough

    Based on original writings of major Muslim thinkers in English translation, provides overview of enormous ideological variety found in contemporary and historical Muslim world. Examination of representative writings from wide spectrum of Muslim intellectuals and writers on a selected theme, which this year will be interpretations of the multivalent term “jihad.” Letter grading. Recommended requisite: course M110.

  • Islamic Studies 201: Arabo-Islamic Sciences

    Instructor: Luke Yarbrough

    Seminar, three hours. Preparation: good reading knowledge of Arabic, English, and one other Western language. Comprehensive coverage of Arabo-Islamic sciences that formed matrix of Islamic education. Survey of recent developments in following disciplines: Arabic language and literature, Qur’anic sciences, traditions, jurisprudence, theology, and Sufism. Letter grading.

  • Islamic Studies 291A: Variable Topics in Islamic Studies

    Instructor: Asma Sayeed

    Seminar, three hours. Selected topics on Islam. May be repeated for credit with topic change. S/U or letter grading.

  • Islamic Studies M110 / Religion M109: Introduction to Islam

    Instructor: Asma Sayeed

    Introduction to history of Islamic civilization and beliefs and practices of Muslims globally. Survey includes major topics such as Quran, Hadith, Prophet Muhammad, Islamic law, Shi’ism, and Sufism. Introduction to discourses in contemporary Muslim societies such as feminism, human rights, and political reform. Primary source in translation (excerpts from Quran, hadith, poetry, and chronicles). P/NP or letter grading.

  • Middle Eastern Studies M111 / Islamic Studies M111 / Art History M119C: Introduction to Islamic Archaeology

    Instructor: Katherine S. Burke

    From the earliest monuments of Islam in Arabia and Jerusalem to the humble remains of a small Egyptian port, instruction focuses broadly on archaeological remains in the central Islamic lands (primarily Syria, Egypt, and Iraq), but also Iran, Turkey, North Africa, and Spain. This vast region experienced profound cultural transformations from the birth of Islam in the seventh century to the early Ottoman period in the 16th and 17th centuries CE, which are traceable in the material record. The dominant theme of the course will be identifying and interpreting the manifestations of religious practices in archaeological remains.