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Fall 2017-2018
* HIS 413 (HA)   na, npdf

Medieval Democracy: Italian City States of the Middle Ages

Alan M. Stahl

In the Middle Ages, dozens of city-states in Italy were governed by citizens elected by the populace (limited to men of property, as was the American republic in its early years). These communes grew out of the anarchy following the dissolution of the Roman Empire in the West and flourished by playing off the German emperors to the north against the papacy. In the course of the later Middle Ages, many of these cities became autocracies, but some remained republics well into the modern era. Each student will follow the history of a single city, using documents, coins, and art works from Princeton collections.

Sample reading list:
Daniel Waley and Trevor Dean, The Italian City Republics
Katherine Jansen, et al., Medieval Italy: Texts in Translation
Trevor Dean, The Towns of Italy in the Later Middle Ages

Reading/Writing assignments:
Each student will select one Italian city to follow in its evolution from the Roman age to the Renaissance, and through a series of oral reports will discuss how it developed its own civic institutions and responded to larger scale historical developments. Class discussions will center on the analysis of contemporary sources in translation. Reading assignments (including narrative and sources) will total about 60 pages per week. There will be a final paper about 20 pages in length.

Paper in lieu of Final - 30%
Oral Presentation(s) - 30%
Class/Precept Participation - 20%
Other (See Instructor) - 20%

Other information:
Seminar weekly presentations (20%); Seminar reading discussion (20%) Final oral presentation (30%); Final paper (30%)

Schedule/Classroom assignment:

Class numberSectionTimeDaysRoomEnrollmentStatus
21528 S01 01:30:00 pm - 04:20:00 pm Th   Chancellor Green   105   Enrolled:2 Limit:12