The Love Course

seen at the Marché d'Aligre in Paris

seen at the Marché d’Aligre in Paris

‘Hubb’ is love, ‘ishq’ is love that entwines two people together,
‘shaghaf’ is love that nests in the chambers of the heart,
‘hayam’ is love that wanders the earth,
‘teeh’ is love in which you lose yourself,
‘walah’ is love that carries sorrow within it,
‘sababah’ is love that exudes from your pores,
‘hawa’ is love that shares its name with ‘air’ and with ‘falling’,
‘gharam’ is love that is willing to pay the price.

Ahdaf Soueif, The Map of Love (386)

CVSP 207 A
Dr. David Joseph Wrisley

Love is a universal topic of reflection in religion, philosophy and literature. When we say “love” we usually collapse many concepts into one word.

In CVSP 207A (Love: Human and Divine) we will attempt to unpack the complexity of the term while reading, discussing, writing and working in a humanities lab.

CVSP 207A focuses on seminal primary texts which treat the question of love across cultures and time (from Antiquity, the Middle Ages and the early Renaissance). The readings cover a variety of genres (philosophical dialogue, poetry, mystical treatise, theology, romance, and tragicomedy) as well as a variety of European, Mediterranean and Middle Eastern contexts.  The course will give you the opportunity to learn to use some digital research tools for textual study and to explore pre-modern texts within digital archives.

CVSP 207A counts as a sequence I CVSP course or a humanities elective.

Texts for Fall 2013 include:

  • Plato’s Symposium (tr. Nehamas/Woodruff);
  • Ibn Hazm, Tawq al-Hamama;
  • Bernard of Clairvaux, On Loving God;
  • Ramon Llull, The Book of the Lover and the Beloved;
  • Nizami, Haft Paykar;
  • Guillaume de Lorris, Romance of the Rose;
  • Fernando de Rojas, La Celestina (tr. Bush).

In previous semesters, this course has included the following texts in different combinations: Jahili Arabian poetry; the Song of Songs; Ovid; Ghazali’s Sawanih; Dante, Vita Nuova and Paradiso; Troubadour lyric; Bayad wa Riyad; Andreas Capellanus, De amore; Christine de Pizan, Cent Ballades; Fabliaux; Aucassin et Nicolette; Maurice Sceve, Delie.

Download the Fall 13 syllabus 207A

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