History 375. Great Stories in Early Modern Europe
Early modern European history has been a fertile ground for both the study of human lives (historical content) and the conduct of such studies (historical method). This course will examine works like Carlo Ginzberg’s extraordinary study of Menocchio, a sixteenth-century Italian miller, who compared the creation of the world to the solidification of milk into cheese, and God and the angels to worms emerging from the cheese. In reading such fascinating stories, we will analyze the methods historians employ to recapture the hidden lives of long-lost peoples. We will also read select primary sources so that students can also practice how to analyze, interpret and use such information.