Arthuriana

As always, a complete set of site navigation options is available at the bottom of this page.



Undergraduate Medieval Syllabi - Alan Baragona, VMI

Spring, 1999 Syllabus  ||  Spring, 1997 Syllabus  ||  Site Navigation Options

The following are different versions of the syllabus for my Arthurian Legend course at VMI. For an earlier version of the course in which I mixed medieval and modern literature, see the Syllabi for Courses in Medieval and Post-Medieval Arthurian Legend section of this website.

EN 378 ARTHURIAN LEGEND - Spring, 1999

Prof. Baragona Office: Preston Library 201-B Office Hours: MWF 10-12

Textbooks

Norris Lacy/Geoffrey Ashe, eds. The Arthurian Handbook

James J. Wilhelm, ed. The Romance of Arthur

Chrétien de Troyes Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion and Perceval, or The Story of the Grail (both trans. by Rosemary Cline)

Thomas Malory Le Morte Darthur (ed. by Helen Cooper)

Alan Lupack, ed. Modern Arthurian Literature (from the Renaissance to the Present)

The Course

The purpose of this course is to study the most enduring tradition in English literature, perhaps in all Western literature, the story of King Arthur, primarily to give a sense of its development in the Middle Ages, but also to examine some of its more modern versions. The centerpieces of the course are Chrétien de Troyes, who represents the beginning of Arthurian Romance, and Sir Thomas Malory, who represents the culmination of the medieval tradition, and who is the source of virtually all modern treatments. As we work through these versions of the Arthur story, we will consider what appeal the legend had for different eras, for different societies, and for individual authors. In the process, I hope that you will find the story holds an appeal of some kind for you.

Papers: You will write two papers for this course. The first paper can be on almost anything to do with the medieval Arthur, and the second paper must deal in some respect with either Chrétien or Malory. The assignments will afford you as much flexibility as I can devise and still provide some guidance, and they'll give you a chance to pursue any aspect of your interest in the Arthurian legend, historical, literary or otherwise. See attached paper assignments.

Tests: The hour test will be entirely "objective," that is, it will consist of short answer, fill in the blank, and matching questions covering the reading, lectures and discussion up to that point. The final exam will consist of two parts. Part 1 will be like the hour test in format and will cover material from the entire course, including material from the introductions to the four sections of Alan Lupack's Modern Arthurian Literature that you read outside of class. Part 2 will be an essay comparing both Chrétien and Malory to one of four modern (meaning 16th- to 20th-century) treatments of Arthur from Lupack and to the films that you watch for class. Reading assignments in Lupack are attached at the end of the syllabus.

Participation: Please note that attendance and participation are not the same thing. You don't participate just by showing up. On the other hand, almost any noise you make in class does constitute participation (excluding laughter, applause, if any, rude noises, etc.). Questions, comments, pertinent wisecracks (that make me laugh) all count. Remember also that because I will have to get to know who you are in order to credit you with a noise, you will have to make your presence felt in class early, strongly and often, so that I learn to associate your face with your name. Moreover, I am genuinely interested in your opinion, which is why papers and participation make up 50% of your final average. SHYNESS IS NO EXCUSE.

Films: You will be seeing two films this semester as examples of different, peculiarly modern approaches to Arthurian legend. One is serious and the other is not, but our purpose in viewing them is serious. Since they will figure on your exam, you will be required to watch them for class even if you have seen them before.

Arthurian Home Page and Bulletin Board: Our Arthurian Legend Home Page will prove an indispensable resource throughout the semester. Through it, you have access to essays, searchable electronic texts, searchable archives of the Arthurian Internet Electronic Conference, and, most important of all, a large number of bibliographies for your research. During the semester, I will give you a number of assignments that will require using these resources, so get comfortable with the website as quickly as possible. To gain access to it, go to the VMI Home Page, then follow the links through Academics, Academic Departments, Department of English and Fine Arts, and Course Home Pages to Arthurian Legend (EN 378).

For keyboardists who hate the mouse, you can just type in the address:
http://www.vmi.edu/english/arthur.html

Our Arthurian website also includes a Bulletin Board, available only to class members (I'll tell you your Username and Password in class), where I will post messages pertaining to King Arthur (questions of my own or postings from the Arthurnet electronic conference that are pertinent to our reading). They are required reading, and you may be tested on them, so check them regularly. You should also respond to them. Any message you send will be posted instantly, and you'll be able to read each other's postings and answer them, as well. This is an excellent way to continue or supplement class discussion. I expect everyone in class to participate in bulletin board discussions whether you feel comfortable with computers or not. As an incentive, anyone who posts more than 8 serious messages will begin to accrue extra credit, one point per message beyond the first 8 added to his final grade, with a maximum of 6 points. I will also give extra credit for any message that I think is interesting enough to post on Arthurnet. To keep people from flooding the Board at the end of the semester, I will count no more than 2 postings per week toward your total. I also reserve the right to judge which messages are pertinent enough to qualify for credit or extra credit.

Requirements and Due Dates:

Paper #1: 15% Due Friday, February 12

Hour Test: 15% Friday, February 26

Paper #2: 20% Due Friday, April 30

Final: 30%

Quizzes: 10%

Participation: 10%

READING SCHEDULE

WEEK 1

W 1/13 Opening Class: Introduction to Questions of the Historical Arthur

F 1/15 Early References: Arthurian Handbook, 1-35; The Romance of Arthur, 3-9

WEEK 2

M 1/18 The Earliest Welsh Tales: The Romance of Arthur, 11-58

W 1/20 Introduction to the Chronicle Tradition: Arthurian Handbook, 36-46, 309-311

F 1/22 Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia: The Romance of Arthur, 59-93

WEEK 3

M 1/25 Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia cont'd.

W 1/27 Introduction to the Romance Tradition: Arthurian Handbook, 57-77

F 1/29 Chrétien Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, 1-133 (line 4480)

WEEK 4

M 2/1 Chrétien Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, 133-193

W 2/3 Chrétien Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, cont'd.

F 2/5 Chrétien Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, cont'd.

WEEK 5

M 2/8 Chrétien Lancelot, or the Knight of the Cart: The Romance of Arthur, 121-188

W 2/10 Chrétien Lancelot, or the Knight of the Cart, 189-199

F 2/12 Chrétien Lancelot, or the Knight of the Cart, cont'd. (PAPER #1 DUE)

WEEK 6

M 2/15 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail, 1-125

W 2/17 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail, 126-167

F 2/19 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail, 168-244

WEEK 7

M 2/22 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail Introduction, ix-xxii and notes 20-30 & 41

W 2/24 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail, cont'd.

F 2/26 HOUR TEST

WEEK 8

M 3/1 Introduction to the English Tradition: Arthurian Handbook, 121-133

W 3/3 The Alliterative Morte Arthure: The Romance of Arthur, 489-527

F 3/5 NO CLASS FOR SEEING MACBETH

SPRING BREAK

WEEK 9

M 3/15 Background to Malory (Cooper Introduction vii-xxii)

W 3/17 Malory From the Marriage of King Uther Unto King Arthur, 3-81

F 3/19 From the Marriage of King Uther Unto King Arthur, cont'd.

WEEK 10

M 3/22 NO CLASS FOR SPRING FTX

W 3/24 Malory A Noble Tale of Sir Lancelot du Lake, 95-119

F 3/26 A Noble Tale of Sir Launcelot du Lake, cont'd.

WEEK 11

M 3/29 Malory The Tale of Sir Gareth of Orkney, 120-168

W 3/31 Malory The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyonesse, 169-208

F 4/2 Malory The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyonesse, 209-227

WEEK 12

M 4/5 The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyonesse, cont'd.

W 4/7 NO CLASS FOR ASSESSMENT DAY

F 4/9 NO CLASS FOR EXCALIBUR

WEEK 13

M 4/12 Malory The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyonesse, 281-303

W 4/14 The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyonesse, cont'd.

F 4/16 Malory The Tale of the Sangrail, 310-402

WEEK 14

M 4/19 The Tale of the Sangrail, cont'd.

W 4/21 Malory The Book of Sir Launcelot and Queen Guenivere, 403-467

F 4/23 The Book of Sir Launcelot and Queen Guenivere, cont'd.

WEEK 15

M 4/26 The Book of Sir Launcelot and Queen Guenivere, cont'd.

W 4/28 Malory The Death of Arthur, 465-527

Wednesday night: Excalibur, 7:40 SS 403 (REQUIRED)

F 4/30 The Death of Arthur, cont'd.

(PAPER #2 DUE)

LAST CLASS

Friday night: Monty Python and the Holy Grail, 7:40 SS 403 (OPTIONAL)
Followed by discussion of both movies and exam review.


Top of this page  ||  Site navigation options


EN 378 ARTHURIAN LEGEND - Spring 1997

Prof.: Baragona Office: SS 435-A Office Hours: MWF 2:00-3:30

Textbooks

Norris Lacy/Geoffrey Ashe, eds. The Arthurian Handbook

Geoffrey of Monmouth The History of the Kings of Britain (trans. by Lewis Thorpe)

Chrétien de Troyes Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, Perceval, or The Story of the Grail, and Lancelot, or the Knight of the Cart ( trans. by R.H. Cline)

Thomas Malory Works (ed. by Vinaver, Oxford U. Press)

Alan Lupack, ed. Modern Arthurian Literature (from the Renaissance to the Present)

Marie Borroff, trans. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (Norton Press)

The Course

The purpose of this course is to study the most enduring tradition in English literature, perhaps in any literature, the story of King Arthur, primarily to give a sense of its development in the Middle Ages, but also to examine some of its more modern versions. The centerpieces of the course are Chrétien de Troyes, who represents the beginning of Arthurian Romance, and Sir Thomas Malory, who represents the culmination of the medieval tradition, and who is the source of virtually all modern treatments, important examples of which you will read in groups outside of class to make oral reports for the rest of the students. As we work through these versions of the Arthur story, we will consider what appeal the legend had for different eras, for different societies, and for individual authors. In the process, I hope that you will find the story holds an appeal of some kind for you.

Papers: You will write two papers for this course. The first paper can be on almost anything to do with the medieval Arthur, and the second paper must deal in some respect with either Chrétien or Malory. The assignments will afford you as much flexibility as I can devise and still provide some guidance, and they'll give you a chance to pursue any aspect of your interest in the Arthurian legend, historical, literary or otherwise.

Tests: The hour test will be entirely "objective," that is, it will consist of short answer, fill in the blank, and matching questions covering the reading, lectures and discussion up to that point. The final exam will consist of two parts. Part 1 will be like the hour test in format and will cover material from the entire course, including material from the introductions to the four sections of Alan Lupack's Modern Arthurian Literature that you read outside of class. Part 2 will be an essay comparing Chrétien and Malory to one of four modern (meaning 16th- to 20th-century) treatments of Arthur from Lupack and to the films that you watched for class. Reading assignments in Lupack are attached at the end of the syllabus.

Participation: Please note that attendance and participation are not the same thing. You don't participate just by showing up. On the other hand, almost any noise you make in class does constitute participation (excluding laughter, applause, if any, burps, etc.). Questions, comments, wisecracks (that make me laugh) all count. Remember also that because I will have to get to know who you are in order to credit you with a noise, you will have to make your presence felt in class early, strongly and often, so that I learn to associate your face with your name. Moreover, I am genuinely interested in your opinion, which is why papers and participation make up 50% of your final average. SHYNESS IS NO EXCUSE.

Films: You will be seeing two films this semester as examples of different, peculiarly modern approaches to Arthurian legend. One is serious and the other is not, but our purpose in viewing them is serious. Since they will figure on your exam, you will be required to watch them for class even if you have seen them before.

Arthurian Home Page and Bulletin Board: Our Arthurian Legend Home Page will prove an indispensable resource throughout the semester. Through it, you have access to essays, searchable electronic texts, searchable archives of the Arthurian Internet Electronic Conference, and, most important of all, a large number of bibliographies for your research. During the semester, I will give you a number of assignments that will require using these resources, so get comfortable with the website as quickly as possible. To gain access to it, go to the VMI Home Page, then follow the links through Academics, Academic Departments, Department of English and Fine Arts, and Course Home Pages to Arthurian Legend (EN 378).

For keyboardists who hate the mouse, you can just type in the address: http://www.vmi.edu/english/english.html

Our Arthurian website also includes a Bulletin Board, available only to class members (I'll tell you your Username and Password in class), where I will post messages pertaining to King Arthur (questions of my own or postings from the Arthurnet electronic conference that are pertinent to our reading). They are required reading, and you may be tested on them, so check them regularly. You should also respond to them. Any message you send will be posted instantly, and you'll be able to read each other's postings and answer them, as well. This is an excellent way to continue or supplement class discussion. I expect everyone in class to participate in bulletin board discussions whether you feel comfortable with computers or not. As an incentive, anyone who posts more than 8 serious messages will begin to accrue extra credit, one point per message beyond the first 8 added to his final grade, with a maximum of 6 points. I will also give extra credit for any message that I think is interesting enough to post on Arthurnet. To keep people from flooding the Board at the end of the semester, I will count no more than 2 postings per week toward your total. I also reserve the right to judge which messages are pertinent enough to qualify for credit or extra credit.

Requirements and Due Dates:

Paper #1: 15% Due Friday, 2/14


Hour Test: 15% Friday 2/28
Paper #2: 20% Due Friday, 5/2
Final: 25%
Quizzes: 10%
Participation: 15%

READING SCHEDULE

WEEK 1

W 1/15 Opening Class

F 1/17 Introduction to the Chronicle Tradition: Arthurian Handbook, 48-72, 342-344

WEEK 2

M 1/20 Geoffrey of Monmouth Dedication (51-2), Parts 4, 5 & 6 (149-211)

W 1/22 Geoffrey of Monmouth Part 7 (212-261)

F 1/24 Geoffrey of Monmouth, cont'd.

WEEK 3

M 1/27 Introduction to the Romance Tradition: Arthurian Handbook, 72-99

W 1/29 Chrétien Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, 1-133 (line 4480)

F 1/31 Chrétien Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, 133-193

WEEK 4

M 2/3 Chrétien Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, cont'd.

W 2/5 Chrétien Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, cont'd.

F 2/7 Chrétien Yvain, or the Knight with the Lion, cont'd.

WEEK 5

M 2/10 Chrétien Lancelot, or the Knight of the Cart, 1-140 (line 5043)

W 2/12 Chrétien Lancelot, or the Knight of the Cart, 140-196

F 2/14 Chrétien Lancelot, or the Knight of the Cart, cont'd. (PAPER #1 DUE)

WEEK 6

M 2/17 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail, 1-125

W 2/19 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail, 126-167

F 2/21 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail, 168-244

WEEK 7

M 2/24 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail Introduction, ix-xxii and notes 20-30 and 41

W 2/26 Chrétien Perceval, or the Quest of the Holy Grail, cont'd.

F 2/28 HOUR TEST

SPRING BREAK

WEEK 8

M 3/10 Introduction to the English Tradition: Arthurian Handbook, 99-146

W 3/12 Borroff, trans. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, 1-53

F 3/14 Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, cont'd.

WEEK 9

M 3/17 Background to Malory

W 3/19 Malory The Tale of King Arthur, 3-110

F 3/21 The Tale of King Arthur, cont'd.

WEEK 10

M 3/24 Malory A Noble Tale of Sir Launcelot du Lake, 149-173

W 3/26 A Noble Tale of Sir Launcelot du Lake, cont'd.

F 3/28 Malory The Tale of Sir Gareth of Orkney that Was Called Bewmaynes, 177-226

WEEK 11

M 3/31 Malory The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyones, Bk. I "Isode the Fair," 229-274

W 4/2 Malory The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyones, Bk. IV "Madness and Exile," 294-320

F 4/4 The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyones, Bk. IV "Madness and Exile," cont'd.

WEEK 12

M 4/7 NO CLASS FOR FTX

W 4/9 NO CLASS FOR ASSESSMENT DAY

F 4/11 NO CLASS FOR EXCALIBUR

WEEK 13

M 4/14 Malory The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyones, Bk. XIV "Launcelot and Elaine," 477-506

W 4/16 The Book of Sir Tristram de Lyones, Bk. XIV "Launcelot and Elaine," cont'd.

F 4/18 Malory The Tale of the Sankgreal, 515-608

WEEK 14

M 4/21 The Tale of the Sankgreal, cont'd.

W 4/23 Malory The Book of Sir Launcelot and Queen Guinevere, 611-669

F 4/25 The Book of Sir Launcelot and Queen Guinevere, cont'd.

WEEK 15

M 4/28 The Book of Sir Launcelot and Queen Guinevere, cont'd.

W 4/30 Malory The Most Piteous Tale of the Morte Arthur, 673-726

Wednesday night: Excalibur, 7:40 SS 403 (REQUIRED)

F 5/2 The Most Piteous Tale of the Morte Arthur, cont'd.

(PAPER #2 DUE)

LAST CLASS

Friday night: Monty Python and the Holy Grail, 7:40 SS 403 (OPTIONAL)
Followed by discussion of both movies and exam review.


Top of this page  ||  Site navigation options


Site Navigation Options

Pre-School & Kindergarten  ||  Elementary School  ||  Middle School  ||  High School

Undergraduate School  ||  Graduate School  ||  Adult Learners  ||  Short Seminars & Lectures

Textbooks and Films  ||  Maps  ||  Graphics  ||  Audio and Video Files  ||  Related Websites

Arthurnet Discussions  ||  Pedagogy Homepage  ||  Arthuriana


© Arthuriana
Site Administrator: Alan Baragona sabaragona@gmail.com
Last revised: August 5, 2014
This page is http://www.arthuriana.org/teaching/syllabi_medieval_baragona.html
SMU Required Secondary Information Server Disclaimer:
The contents of this Secondary Information Server are the sole responsibility of Arthuriana and its contributors, and do not necessarily represent the opinions or policies of Southern Methodist University or the Norwick Center for Media and Instructional Technology. The administrator of this Secondary Information Service is Bonnie Wheeler \ bwheeler@mail.smu.edu