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The leading theme of this course is the question of the difference between the ancient and the modern world. Students who have taken Foundations of Western Culture I will obviously have an advantage in dealing with this question. Classroom discussion approaches this question mainly through consideration of action and characters, voice and form. What follows is the running argument of the course, as it informs the various works.
The instructor provides a description (PDF) of each reading used in the course.
Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. New York: Signet Classics, 1998. ISBN: 0451526929. (Download Hamlet by William Shakespeare, a version of this text from Project Gutenberg.)
Cervantes, Miguel de. Don Quixote. New York: Signet Classics, 2001. ISBN: 0451527860. (Download Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, a version of this text from Project Gutenberg.)
Austen, Jane. Pride and Prejudice. Edited with an introduction and notes by Vivien Jones. New York: Penguin, 1996. ISBN: 0140434267. (Download Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, a version of this text from Project Gutenberg.)
Nietzsche, Friedrich. Beyond Good and Evil. New York: Vintage, 1966. (Download Beyond Good and Evil by Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, a version of this text from Project Gutenberg.)
Kafka, Franz. The Trial. New York: Schocken, 1998. ISBN: 0805209999. (Download The Trial by Franz Kafka, a version of this text from Project Gutenberg.)
Eliot, T. S. The Waste Land. New York: Norton, 2001. ISBN: 0393974995. (Download The Waste Land by T. S. Eliot, a version of this text from Project Gutenberg.)