University of Pittsburgh Course Descriptions University of Pittsburgh Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences College of General Studies University Honors College College of Business Administration Swanson School of Engineering Course Descriptions

Key - General Education Requirements, Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences
G Seminar in Composition EX Creative Expression L Foreign Language
W Writing Intensive PH Philosophy COM International/Foreign Culture: Comparative
Q Quantitative and Formal Reasoning SS Social Science GLO International/Foreign Culture: Global
LIT Literature HS Historical Change REG International/Foreign Culture: Regional
MA The Arts NS Natural Sciences IFN International/Foreign Culture: Non-Western
Key - Basic Skills Requirements, Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences
I   Workshop in Composition
A  Algebra
Other Keys: Term/Session Codes | Subjects | Special Indicators | Days | Classrooms

CLASS Courses 2174

0020 Roman Civilization REG   3 cr.
30072 SE3 We 06:00 PM-08:30 PM 00113 CL   CGS-Day No recitation.   Enroll Limit 34 Newell, John 

Beginning as a small farming settlement situated alongside the Tiber river, Rome rose to become one of the greatest civilizations in human history, which spread its influence over much of the western world. In addition to careful investigation into the social, political, military, and economic organization of Rome as it developed from a monarchy through a republic and into an empire, the class will examine the art, architecture, literature, religion, culture, and daily life of the city across the spectrum of social classes. The class will utilize the large body of surviving Roman literature, including histories, poetry, and personal letters (in translation), as well as visual aids, such as slides and films, to create a living picture of whom the Romans were. Class time will be used for lectures as well as student lead discussion.

Prerequisite(s): none

Check with the department on how often this course is offered.

0020 Roman Civilization REG   3 cr.
29676 AT MoWeFr 01:00 PM-01:50 PM 00206 CL     No recitation.   Enroll Limit 35 Korzeniewski,Andrew J. 

Beginning as a small farming settlement situated alongside the Tiber river, Rome rose to become one of the greatest civilizations in human history, which spread its influence over much of the western world. In addition to careful investigation into the social, political, military, and economic organization of Rome as it developed from a monarchy through a republic and into an empire, the class will examine the art, architecture, literature, religion, culture, and daily life of the city across the spectrum of social classes. The class will utilize the large body of surviving Roman literature, including histories, poetry, and personal letters (in translation), as well as visual aids, such as slides and films, to create a living picture of whom the Romans were. Class time will be used for lectures as well as student lead discussion.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

0030 Mythology In The Ancient World REG   3 cr.
11245 AT TuTh 02:30 PM-03:45 PM 00209 LAWRN     No recitation. Combined w/ RELGST 0083      Enroll Limit 40 Jones,Marilyn Morgan 

Our subject will be the traditional stories--myths, legends, and folktales--of the Greeks and Romans. Traditional stories are ones that, by virtue of some compelling attraction, manage to survive from generation to generation, so our main task will be to discover just what that 'compelling attraction' was. The creation of the universe, the first woman Pandora, the Twelve Gods and Goddesses, the theft of fire by Prometheus, Helen and the Trojan War, the foundation of Rome by Aeneas, and Ovid's fanciful metamorphoses are examples of the stories from our modern illustrated reader Classical Myth by Barry B. Powell. By way of providing a context for our stories, the instructor will also devote much attention to such topics as popular belief and superstition, cult rituals, sanctuaries of the gods, oracles and prophets, the conceptualization of male and female, sexuality, and the social and cultural basis of myth in general. Throughout, we shall examine the many theories about the meaning of traditional stories from antiquity down to our own day.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered every term.

0034 Women & Men In Ancnt Medit REG   3 cr.
29674 AT MoWeFr 10:00 AM-10:50 AM 00105 LAWRN     No recitation. Combined w/ HIST 0788      Enroll Limit 25 Jones,Nicholas F 

Helen of Troy, Sappho, Pericles' lover Aspasia, and Cleopatra, Achilles, Pericles himself, Plato, and Alexander the Great. These are names familiar to many of us, but to what extent was these individuals' gender an element of their achievement and fame? This course attempts to answer this question by examining the ancient Greek and Roman civilizations from the perspective of male and female. We shall proceed by topic, focusing on legal status and citizenship, marriage, the family, the citizen life course, public roles, education, sexuality, religion, popular attitudes, and the views and conceptualizations of ancient social and political theory. Throughout we shall isolate and discuss factors determining or conditioning the peculiar features of the gender roles before us and especially those that seemed to have prompted departures from the prevailing norms. Readings will include a historical narrative, a reader of excerpts from primary sources arranged by topic, and a selection of Athenian comedies and tragedies. The course material will be illustrated by films.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

0035 Women and Men in Ancient Medit Society Writ Prac W 
30786 MoWeFr 10:00 AM-10:50 AM     WRIT   Combined w/ HIST 0789      Enroll Limit Nicholas Jones 

Writing students will fulfill the requirements of the College Writing Board by submitting a paper in draft form, to be revised and resubmitted in line with its evaluation by the instructor.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

0330 Myth And Science REG   3 cr.
28581 SE3 Tu 06:00 PM-08:30 PM 00304 CL     No recitation. Combined w/ HPS 0427      Enroll Limit 10 Kneer,Markus 

The Greeks in the sixth to fourth century B.C. initiated forms of thinking we have from then on called "scientific" and "philosophical". This course examines the question of how science is distinguished from "non-science" by studying the role of myth and science in ancient Greece. The aim is to understand what distinguishes the ideas of the first scientists and philosophers from the earlier beliefs called myth.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

0400 Ancient Empires MA  EX  HS  IFN  COM   3 cr.
20093 SE3 Tu 06:00 PM-08:30 PM 00204 FKART     No recitation. Combined w/ HAA 0160      Enroll Limit 15 Weis,H Anne 

The goals of the course are to introduce students to historically influential empires of the ancient Near Eastern and Mediterranean world: Akkad, Egypt, Assyria, Persia, Athens, and Rome. Rather than history as it is reconstructed from texts, this survey will emphasize the comparative cultural profiles of these empires as they are known from the archaeological record: the king, emperor, and in the case of Athens, the Demos, and their constituencies (elites, military, gods), the resources required to control these constituencies (essential commodities, luxuries, an expanded workforce), the visual themes and monument types that were chosen to advertise the success and promote the continuity of the regime beyond the lifetime of its founder, the use of regional themes to establish continuity with the historical past, and the cultural impact of empires on those who belonged to them and those who did not. Monument types will include: palaces and tombs, temples and booty as thank-offering for the acquisition of resources, ‘collections’ as illustrative of the regimes’ control over history and geography (i.e. gardens, zoos, museums, libraries, gifts from other monarchs), administrative buildings and institutions (law codes and their presentation).

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

0600 Intro to Mediterranean Archaeology REG   3 cr.
29678 AT MoWe 03:00 PM-04:15 PM 00324 CL     No recitation.   Enroll Limit 100 Weaver,Carrie L 

This undergraduate survey introduces students to current themes and approaches in the archaeology of the Greco-Roman world. The class begins with an overview of the history and methods of archaeology. The focus then shifts to thematic treatments of key subjects in classical archaeology, such as rural and urban landscapes, the material remains of ritual and cultic activity, domestic assemblages, and the ways in which politics, expressions of identity, and cultural exchange have shaped the material culture of the ancient Mediterranean region. The course concludes with a discussion of the reception of classical antiquity in our own society, and special emphasis is placed on the ways in which modern biases impact interpretations of the past.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered infrequently.

0618 Death In The Ancient World MA  COM   3 cr.
30378 AT TuTh 02:30 PM-03:45 PM 00125 FKART     No recitation. Combined w/ HAA 0018      Enroll Limit 30 Weaver,Carrie L 

The death of a loved one is an emotional and powerful occurrence that provokes a variety of human responses. In addition to writings describing their funerary practices, the civilizations of the ancient Mediterranean region have left artistic representations of death and dying, built tombs, and objects associated with funerary rituals. The study of these texts, images, structures, and objects allows us to better understand ancient attitudes and reactions to death. This undergraduate lecture focuses on the visual and material evidence of funerary practices and beliefs in ancient Egyptian, Greek, and Roman societies. The subject will be approached thematically. First, we will explore how archaeologists discover death-related artifacts and how scholars approach the study and reconstruction of ancient death rituals. Ancient practices and beliefs regarding mummification, the funeral, commemorative strategies, visits to the grave, and the afterlife will be explored, and images found on specific media (vases, sculpture, built tombs, paintings) will be discussed in depth. The course will conclude with discussions of the roles that sensational topics, like fear of the undead (zombies, vampires, and ghosts) and spectacles of death (gladiatorial contests and public executions), played in ancient Mediterranean civilizations.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered infrequently.

0618 Death in the Ancient World MA  COM   3 cr.
31193 AT TuTh 11:00 AM-12:15 PM 00116 CL     No recitation.   Enroll Limit 30 Weaver,Carrie L 

The death of a loved one is an emotional and powerful occurrence that provokes a variety of human responses. In addition to writings describing their funerary practices, the civilizations of the ancient Mediterranean region have left artistic representations of death and dying, built tombs, and objects associated with funerary rituals. The study of these texts, images, structures, and objects allows us to better understand ancient attitudes and reactions to death. This undergraduate lecture focuses on the visual and material evidence of funerary practices and beliefs in ancient Egyptian, Greek, and Roman societies. The subject will be approached thematically. First, we will explore how archaeologists discover death-related artifacts and how scholars approach the study and reconstruction of ancient death rituals. Ancient practices and beliefs regarding mummification, the funeral, commemorative strategies, visits to the grave, and the afterlife will be explored, and images found on specific media (vases, sculpture, built tombs, paintings) will be discussed in depth. The course will conclude with discussions of the roles that sensational topics, like fear of the undead (zombies, vampires, and ghosts) and spectacles of death (gladiatorial contests and public executions), played in ancient Mediterranean civilizations.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered infrequently.

1050 Computer Methods In Humanities Q    3 cr.
20072 AT MoWeFr 10:00 AM-10:50 AM TBA TBA   UHC   No recitation.   Enroll Limit 2 Birnbaum,David J 

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Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

UHC-designated courses: Students below a 3.25 GPA must go to the Honors College for permission. 

1130 Classical Mythology and Literature  
31235 TuTh 04:00 PM-05:15 PM 37 CL       Enroll Limit Scott, Wes 

This course will be taught essentially as a literature course; that is to say, attention will be focused on how various authors of classical (chiefly Greek) antiquity used the traditional figures and stories of their culture's mythology in order to say things of lasting value about the conditions and problems of human life. We shall begin with the emergence of the cosmos as recounted in Hesiod's Theogony and then take up each of the major Olympian dieties in turn, studying the ways in which they are depicted in other works of Greek literature, including the Homeric Hymns, various plays by Aeschylus and Euripides, and Homer's Odyssey.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

1140 Greek Tragedy EX    3 cr.
31054 SE3 Th 06:00 PM-08:30 PM 00G13 CL     No recitation.   Enroll Limit 34 Scott,Wesley B 

This course will introduce students to the ancient Greek tragedies of Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides in English translation. The content will include features of dramatic performances in antiquity and how the plays are produced in modern versions, interpretations and analyses of the plays, and the historical contexts. The methodology will include discussion, lecture, reading and viewing plays in class.

Prerequisite(s): none

Check with the department on how often this course is offered.

1164 Grk Tragedies & Mod Responses EX    3 cr.
29679 AT TuTh 04:00 PM-05:15 PM 0118D MERVS     No recitation.   Enroll Limit 19 Bromberg,Jacques Albert 

What are the social costs of war? Is it right to violate an unjust law? What obligations do the living owe the dead? Can a fallen enemy be forgiven? What is the truest measure of a great leader? These are among the burning questions of Greek Tragedy, one of the most widely-read and influential of all ancient literary genres. But how have these plays retained their relevance and power for nearly three millennia? Who have been their most important readers, translators, and critics, and what lessons have they sought to draw? This course offers an introduction to the reception of Greek Tragedy in twentieth and twenty-first century literature and thought. Each semester, we examine the modern reception history of Greek tragic dramas by Aeschylus, Sophocles, and/or Euripides. Although these plays were originally written and performed in the last half of the fifth-century B.C., they each have a unique post-Classical history, invoking profound messages and teaching powerful lessons at times of political and social instability around the globe.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered infrequently.

1220 Roman History HS  REG   3 cr.
23024 AT MoWe 03:00 PM-04:15 PM 00203 LAWRN     No recitation. Combined w/ HIST 1781      Enroll Limit 25 Possanza,D Mark 

This course is a survey of Roman history from the founding of the city in the 8th century B.C.E. to the collapse of the Western Empire in the 5th century C.E. The history of Rome is the story of how a city-state first unified the Italian peninsula under its military and political leadership; how it then developed into a Mediterranean Empire which, at its greatest territorial extent, stretched from Britain in the West to the Tigris and Euphrates in the East; and how it finally lost political and military control of its empire which broke apart into what became the states of Medieval Europe. As we read a modern narrative history of Rome and the works of Roman and Greek historians, we will examine how Rome acquired and governed its empire; under what forms of government and under whose leadership the affairs of the Roman People were administered; and what causes led to the breakup of the Roman Empire.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

1250 Law & Society In Greece & Rome HS  REG   3 cr.
27293 AT MoWeFr 11:00 AM-11:50 AM 00144 CL     No recitation.   Enroll Limit 50 Jones,Nicholas F 

The course presents an overview of the legal systems of ancient Greece (especially classical Athens) and Rome, with particular attention to the interconnections of law with the ancient Greek and Roman societies. Within this general framework, the instructor will emphasize the following themes: (1) legal interventions in private life (for example, the family, marriage, reproduction, sexual morality, religion and voluntary associations); (2) the differential design and enforcement of the law according to social class, gender and so on; (3) the dynamic interaction of law and society within the wider context of historical change; and (4) survivals of classical law in modern, and especially our own, legal systems. The purposes of the course are to gain a deeper understanding of an important aspect of the classical civilizations and to acquire a better appreciation of the classical civilizations and to acquire a better appreciation of the classical antecedents of our own legal system. The course will be organized around two modern overviews in English of the law of classical Athens and Rome, with the syllabus divided into Greek and Roman halves and each week's work geared to a specific topic or aspect. Where appropriate, readings will be supplemented by slides and videos.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

1314 Aristotle PH    3 cr.
26022 AT MoWe 11:00 AM-12:15 PM 00130 CL   UHC   No recitation. Combined w/ PHIL 1040      Enroll Limit 5  

"Aristotle is very likely the greatest philosopher of all time. In this course we will see why. Topics will include Aristotle's views on substance, change, causation, science, knowledge, soul and organic life, human nature and the human good, mind, and God."

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

UHC-designated courses: Students below a 3.25 GPA must go to the Honors College for permission. 

1402 Greco-Roman Religions REG   3 cr.
30377 AT MoWe 03:00 PM-04:15 PM 00300 OEH     No recitation. Combined w/ RELGST 1145      Enroll Limit 15  

What was/is a "pagan?" And what does "paganism" have to do with Christianity? This course will introduce students to religious texts and traditions in a formative era of Western civilization and culture. Our focus will be on the variety of religious expression in Greco-Roman culture, which flourished in the geographical area of the Mediterranean basin during the first five centuries of the Common Era. By considering such topics as debates about the nature of the gods and access to them (through oracles, ritual, and magic), the emergence of the idea of the holy person, and a variety of religious traditions as expressed in prayer, ritual, and art, students will encounter a rich religious imagination that is truly different from contemporary understandings of religion and yet strangely familiar. We will also explore the integration of religion and politics in the ancient world.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

1432 Varieties Of Early Christnity HS  REG   3 cr.
25164 SE3 Tu 06:00 PM-08:30 PM 00G13 CL   CGS-Day No recitation. Combined w/ HIST 1776 RELGST 1130    Enroll Limit 5 Denova,Rebecca I 

This course will examine the many different and often competing forms of Christianity that existed during the first five centuries of our Common Era. We will include an historical survey of Mediterranean culture and society in the historical Roman Empire to help us understand the ways in which Christianity developed in relation to the philosophical, sociological, theological, and political environment of this period. We will also focus on the contribution of the early varieties of Christianity to modern western views of the relationship between the individual body and society. Specifically, we will begin with an examination of Greco-Roman "religiousness" and attitudes toward the body as part of the natural order comprising one's duty as a "citizen." Such views will then be compared to the emerging Christian view that denied civic duty to an inferior, material world, by emphasizing individual identification with "a commonwealth in heaven."

Prerequisite(s): none

Check with the department on how often this course is offered.

1432 Varieties Of Early Christnity HS  REG   3 cr.
10596 AT TuTh 02:30 PM-03:45 PM 00232 CL     No recitation. Combined w/ RELGST 1130 HIST 1776    Enroll Limit 20 Denova,Rebecca I 

Through early Christian literature (such as non–canonical gospels and the writings of the Church Fathers) and various types of archaeological evidence, this course will examine the many different and often competing forms of Christianity that developed in the first four centuries of the common era. Among the areas of examination will be key theological issues, creedal formulation, Gnosticism, martyrdom, asceticism, Christian relations with pagans and Jews, and the battles over orthodoxy and heresy. We shall also assess the conversion of Constantine and the social and political implications of the Christianization of the Roman Empire.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

1524 Roman Architecture REG   3 cr.
18219 AT MoWe 04:30 PM-05:45 PM 00204 FKART     No recitation. Combined w/ HAA 1160      Enroll Limit 10 Weis,H Anne 

The course will examine the development of Roman architecture from its origins in Etruria and Central Italy to the High Empire (ca. 150 AD). Special attention will be given to 1) the relationship of architectural forms, types and functions to changes in Roman politics and society, 2) the significance of materials and outside influences on the development of local Italian traditions and forms, and 3) the interaction between Roman architectural forms and local traditions in the provinces to create a Roman imperial "koine".

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

1720 Sanskrit 2 L    3 cr.
11244 AT MoWeFr 09:00 AM-09:50 AM 00329 CL     No recitation.   Enroll Limit 5 Kesavan,Krishnamurthy 

This course is a continuation of Sanskrit 1.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered at least once a year.

1908 Directed Writing For Majors W  1 cr.
26816 AT  - TBA TBA   WRIT   No recitation.   Enroll Limit 3  

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Prerequisite(s): none

Check with the department on how often this course is offered.

2390 Topics In Ancient Philosophy   3 cr.
26020 AT Th 11:00 AM-01:30 PM 01001 CL     No recitation. Combined w/ PHIL 2075      Enroll Limit 5 Gelber,Jessica Louise 

The plan for this seminar is to read de Anima, using Christopher Shields’ new translation and commentary (Clarendon Aristotle Series, OUP, 2016). We will be working through the text, in order. Typically, the primary text and Shields’ commentary will be paired with one classic or recent article. Our aim will be to understand precisely what problems Aristotle thinks there are in grasping the nature of soul (or “life”), and how his solutions are supposed to resolve them. We will also read parts of Parva Naturalia, Parts of Animals and Generation of Animals, to see how the discussions in those treatises flesh out the fairly abstract claims in DA and provide insight into the physiological exercise of psychic capacities. This is a research seminar.

Prerequisite(s): none

This course is offered infrequently.

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