Humanities 102: Cultural Traditions of the World Since 1700
Fay Beauchamp
Community College of Philadelphia
Spring 2007 Tuesday/Thursday 12:30 CRN 11733

Note: Humanities 102 is required to have sections on the European Enlightenment, Romantic and Modern Periods and to also include one Non-Western Civilization. This Section of Humanities 102 emphasizes Japan and its interactions and the West.

Humanities 102 is an interdisciplinary course which studies key texts in history, art, literature, music and philosophy. Essays in-class and at home will be the primary basis for your grade.


33% Reading Responses and homework assignments; class participation.
33% Essays
34% Two in-class tests, and Final Exam

Required Books:

The Humanities and the Modern World (Vol. II) Witt, Brown, etc. Houghton Mifflin.

Mary Shelley Frankenstein

John Hersey Hiroshima or alternate from short list



Tuesday: Introduction to Humanities and the concept of “culture”

Intro. to themes of the course: Ideas of “East” and “West”: Connections and Conflicts; Conflicting desires for equality and power.

Problems with lack of equality: Excerpt from Dickens’ Tale of Two Cities

Timeline of American and French Revolutions

Thursday: Background to the Modern Age: Scientific Revolution, (Copernicus 1473-1543, Galileo 1564-1642)

Protestant Reformation (Martin Luther, 1483-1546)

Contacts with Africa and Asia and the Americas: British East India Company 1600

Importance of Asian trade on American colonies (tea and porcelain)

Introduction to Reading Literature: Blake’s poem “ London” 1794

Homework assignment: “Blake’s “Chimney Sweeper”


Tuesday: Images of Inequality:

Discuss “Chimney Sweeper” in the context of the Industrial Revolution in 18 th Century England

Short history of Louis XIV and his wars

Rigaud Portrait of Louis XIV

Thursday: Introduction to Enlightenment Period

Architecture of Versailles

Enlightenment Painting:

French: Jacques-Louis David: “Death of Marat” “Death of Socrates” “Oath of the Horatii”

Homework: Read textbook: “Enlightenment”

WEEK 3. From European to American Enlightenment

Tuesday: Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) Speculation on “mankind” in a state of nature

John Locke (1632-1704) Tabula Rasa theory of human nature

Excerpt from “Concerning Civil Government”

Thursday: Thomas Jefferson and “Declaration of Independence” How does the Declaration defend the act of military revolution? What are the assumptions? What are the most important reasons given?

Enlightenment Architecture: University of Virginia, Independence Hall, Philadelphia Homework: Due Thursday: assignment on Wollstonecraft

WEEK 4.: Search for Equality

Tuesday: Equality and Abolition of Slavery: Frederick Douglass and “Fourth of July Speech”

Beginning of “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass”

Thursday: Women’s Rights Mary Wollstonecraft “Vindication of the Rights of Women” Biographical material: Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley

Introduce Frankenstein; Assign Walton Letters and Chapters 1-8

WEEK 5: Romantic Period — Definitions

William Wordsworth “Tintern Abbey”

Thursday: Frankenstein: Discuss Prefaces and Walton letters.

Art: Paintings of Blake and Turner.

Assignment: Finish Frankenstein (Explain essay assignment)


Discuss Chapters 1-8 of Frankenstein Theme of Guilt

Coleridge: “Rime of the Ancient Mariner”

Romantic Images of Asia: “Kubla Khan”


Tuesday: Mid-term In-Class Writing: Comparing Enlightenment and Romantic Values. Writing about Art.

Thursday: Essay on Frankenstein Due

Beethoven as Romantic Hero; Beethoven’s 9 th Symphony



Tuesday: History Lecture: Influence of China on Japan: Map, Writing system, Emperor System, Capital City, Poetry, Buddhism; Introduction to Japanese Art: Ando Hiroshige (1797-1858) Japanese Woodcut prints; Simplicity, Asymmetry, Transience, Suggestion Tokaido Road in Tokugawa Japan

Thursday: Hiroshige’s influence on Whistler, Monet, Van Gogh

Whistler (Japanese motifs, design, color, as “art for art’s sake”

Monet (Multiple perspectives of same object; transience of color and light; ideas about subjectivity; his use of a Japanese garden designer at Giverny)

Van Gogh (Van Gogh’s letters about Japan and idea of artistic cooperative Utopia, his self-portrait as Buddhist “bonze”, color and emotional affect)


Tuesday: Influence of Japanese architecture on Frank Lloyd Wright (1876-1959):

Falling Water; Imperial Hotel in Tokyo; Explain ART ESSAY.

March 22, Thursday: TRIP to Philadelphia Museum of Art (Chinese and Japanese art; Japanese Tea House exhibit; Impressionists)

WEEK 10:

Tuesday: The manuscripts of Ernest Fenollosa literal translations of East Asian texts and Ezra Pound’s translations of Chinese poetry.

The values of imagism: concrete, visual, suggestive, simplicity

Pound’s Influence on T.S. Eliot, “Love-Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”

Thursday: Test on Japan; includes analysis of a poem by Basho; Map test.

WEEK 11: ART ESSAY Due (Choosing own paintings to discuss Japanese influence on European and American artists)

Lecture: Causes of World War I: Imperial competition in Africa; growing dependence on raw materials; Nationalism; armament buildup; treaty system.

Thursday: Ireland: Yeats: Easter 1916

“The Second Coming” (Connection between Japanese aesthetics, Pound and Yeats)

Assign: WWI or WWII book

Students to read 150pages from one of : All Quiet on the Western Front (German), or Farewell to Arms (American set in Italy) or Hersey’s Hiroshima or Ishigura’s When We Were Ophans ( Japan’s invasion of Shanghai).

WEEK 12: World War I and the Treaty of Versailles

Type of Warfare: Read Wilfred Owens: “Dulce et Decorum Est”

Trench warfare, tanks, explosives, airplanes. Impact of the 1919 Treaty on both Europe and East Asia.

Thursday: W.E.B. DuBois; Pan Africanism, and Impact of WWI on African-Americans

WEEK 13: 1920’s and 1930’s

Tuesday: Harlem Renaissance, Poetry of Langston Hughes

Thursday: The Blues; the life and music of Paul Robeson

WEEK 14:

Tuesday: Essay of WW book due.

Japanese invasion of Shanghai to Pearl Harbor Dec. 1941

Thursday: Discussion of “Victor’s Justice” using excerpts from Dower Embracing Defeat (Chapter Fifteen pp. 444-484).

Excerpts from Akira Yoshimura’s One Man’s Justice (Japanese novel gives

Japanese viewpoint on both the firebombing of Japanese cities and trial)

WEEK 15 Final Exam (Open-Book Open Notes; 3 comparative essays with choices of topics)