Spring 2023; This course is Cross-Listed with JUDC 3100.
The Middle East is not only a place of conflict. There have also been moments of thriving inter-communal societies. This course explores sites in ancient and modern Syria and Israel-Palestine, where many different religious and/or ethnic communities lived side by side for long periods in peace and sometimes in conflict. It seeks to examine the conditions that allowed for mutual cooperation and inter-communal amity as well as the factors that led to moments of violent conflict. It particularly focuses on how people of various groups in a community chose to interpret symbols in art and literature in ways that promoted amity as well as how changes in these interpretations caused the breakdown of society. The course will then shift to modern-day Israel-Palestine. Students will learn about grassroots efforts to ameliorate the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by meeting with involved Arabs and Jews in Israel-Palestine. Drawing on what they have learned about the successes and failures to create peace as well as conclusions from historical peaceful situations they will draft their own proposals for advancing grassroots peace. When conditions allow this course will include a week-long study tour of relevant sites in Israel-Palestine.
History students must enroll under the HIST 3100 to earn credit toward the Major and Minor.