Spring 2015

History of the Scientific Revolution, HIST 257
The birth of modern science is usually located in the remarkable changes that occurred in 16th- and 17th-century Europe. Such names as Copernicus, Vesalius, Galileo, and Newton play important roles in our history. But why do we learn about these people (and not, for example, Simon Forman or Paul Wittich)? And how do we learn about them? In this version of the course we will confront such questions by exploring Galileo and his time through a first-person adventure game and producing creative projects (imagined interviews with historical actors, or plays, or ??) that are scholarly, rigorous, and historically accurate but not your typical “research paper.”

Extreme Weather in Pre-Modern Europe
What did people in pre-modern Europe think was extreme weather? What did it mean? Was a storm or an earthquake always a sign from God? In this seminar we try to recover how people understood weather. What did they fear? And why? How did they manage the economic, political, and social effects of a devastating earthquake or drought?