Humanities: Food For Thought

Humanities: Food For Thought

Each term I try very hard to stay connected with students with a mid and end week email. These emails vary between extra tidbits of information pertaining to the topic or clarifying assignment instructions. I usually do the assignments with students, as a way to stay up to date on the topic and make sure what they are doing is relevant and useful. I'm hoping two things happen, (1), it reminds students to do their work and (2) help students 'see' the assignment as if the instructor was doing with them. It sort of works an example and a bridge between the instructor and the student. The information changes from term to term, hopefully building a vast pool of knowledge for everyone to share. 

In the book, young Dorian Gray is bewitched by Lord Henry, a skeptical cynic, who believes life's too short for reason and logic. He encourages the impressionable Dorian to seek only pleasure and never fear the outcome. The story is wildly scandalous for its time, and famously asks the question, 'if you could do anything you want, and never suffer...

The year was 500 B.C.E. when, watching a ship sail across the ocean, over the horizon, Pythagoras says something controversial, something ludicrous, something so ridiculous he is laughed off the beach, he says, "I don't think the Earth flat, I actually believe the Earth is a sphere..."

Petrarch, the father of Humanism, fueled by curiosity, sought a life filled with ancient literature, scientific advances, art, and philosophy. Not a big deal until you consider he lived an environment dedicated only to the Word of God alone. You wake up, pray. You eat, pray. You buy supplies, pray. You sin, pray. You breathe, pray!

Each week I like to read the material with you, that way we are mentally on the same page. This week, what stuck out to me was the differences between the Renaissance man and the Renaissance woman. (There's a table on page 195 of your textbook, Landmarks in Humanities, that compares the two sexes.)

Ever wonder about the fall of Rome and how the 'church' picked up all the pieces. The graphics show just a handful of factors that lead to the fall and how the 'church' systemically picked up the pieces - talk about being in the right place at the right time!

Non-believers and believers alike might know the name Abraham as associated with the phrase, Father of the Principle Faiths. Born into the name Abram, his legacy begins in birth when the reigning king had a vision that Abram the adult would kill him. Fearing for his life, the king demands Abram's death. Abrams father tells his wife to hide...

Ever wonder why the Romans changed the names of the Greek gods when they adopted them? When Roman emerged from the dust, it understood one thing, to maintain the lands that you conquered you must make the common people think they benefit in some way, if not, you will have anarchy and civil war. Alongside this civil affairs problem...

When looking at Greek pottery did ever notice the soldiers look oddly similar to each other. That's because The Peloponnesian War involved Athens vs. Sparta - both Grecians. Surviving artifacts show brother against brother, not distant warring nations. To understand fully the rivalry between the Spartan vs the Athenians you'd have to dive deep into...