Course Themes: To whom and what do we owe obedience? What purposes do rules, duties, and obligations serve?
Consider the Code of Hammurabi and the selections already assigned from the Islamic tradition (that is, only the selections from and commentary on the Qur’an and the Hadith that are labeled Ritual 1 and Ritual 2). When we read these texts the first time, the rules, duties, and obligations that are set forth and described in these two assignments may well seem to cover very different subjects and to serve very different purposes. And indeed there are many differences to be found in the concerns and approaches reflected in these texts.
For this assignment, however, consider instead whether there may be any zones of possible similarity and/or overlap between the problems addressed and the goals advanced by the rules, duties, and obligations seen in these two sources. Do you see any areas of common concern and common purpose? Why or why not?
To explain and support your conclusions, you must use and cite evidence from the assigned texts; do not use any other readings or sourcesexcept for statements from lecture and discussion section. (And keep references to lecture and section statements to an absolute minimum: this assignment is an exercise involving your own thinking about the readings, so reliance on the analysis of others in lecture and section should not be necessary and, in any case, should not be a substantial part of your presentation.) You may not do any outside research or use the work of any other personregarding the texts or the events and circumstances that they address. Include in-text citations for all sources used. Avoid including lengthy quotes. Instead, paraphrase and explain the relevance and significance of the selected passages in your own words as much as possible. When paraphrasing or summarizing a source, also cite it with an in-text citation using the MLA format. For briefer quotations, use quotation marks when you are citing words that are not your own. For your in-text citations, give the author’s name and the page number, if there is one. Add a Works Cited page at the end of your assignment that cites all sources properly in the MLA format.
Assignment length: minimum of 500 words, maximum of 600 words.
Late Policy: For each day a Content Analysis assignment is submitted late, the grade will be lowered one step on the grade scale. Assignments submitted 10+ days after the due date will receive an automatic F. Assignments submitted after Sunday, July 31, at 11:59 pm will not be accepted: because grades are due very soon after that time, assignments submitted after that point will receive an automatic F/zero grade.
Important — Academic Integrity: MMW expects all assignments to be the product of original individual work for the course. Assignments submitted with integrity give credit where credit is due and honestly acknowledge others’ work by adhering to standards of citation, assignment requirements for use of sources and materials, and University guidelines. For more information, see the Guidelines for MMW Papers [links to an external site] and the Policy on Integrity of Scholarship [links to an external site]. All assignments for this course must be completed in accordance with university, MMW Program, and course rules on academic integrity, and all assignments will be submitted to Turnitin.com for a review that will detect violations such as plagiarism and fabrications of citations. Violations of academic integrity ruleswill have serious consequences: any student found to have committed a substantial violation of the rules concerning academic integrity will fail the entire course, and the professor will initiate a disciplinary charge of academic misconduct that may be noted on your academic record. A second offense will generally result in suspension or permanent expulsion from the university.
If you are having trouble meeting a deadline, do not be tempted to violate the rules on academic integrity. Instead, just let your TA know that you will be turning in the assignment late, and accept the relatively minor deductions for lateness. Do not risk getting an F for the course and a disciplinary record: it’s not worth it!
Week 1 required Book: Wolfgang Schivelbusch, Tastes of Paradise
— Read the Preface + Ch. 1 (Spices, or the Dawn of the Modern Age) + the Afterword to the US edition: pp. xiii-14, 227-228
Week 2: Course site:
Epic of Gilgamesh (entire)
Code of Hammurabi
Smart and Hecht, Selections from and commentary on the Qur’an and the Hadith, from Sacred Texts of the World
>>> read the sections labeled Ritual 1 and Ritual 2, pp. 118-121
Wolfgang Schivelbusch, Tastes of Paradise
— Read chapters 2 through 8