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HUM 2211 Exam III

Open Book/Note Portion
DIRECTIONS: This is the open book, open note portion of the third unit exam.

  • You may rely on your text and any class materials..

  • You should not use any other sources. Failure to follow this instruction will result in plagiarism and failure of the exam.

  • Please cite all class sources used (e.g., Fiero, 67; classnotes, Aug. 19, Allegory of the Cave video). Failure to do so creates the presumption of plagiarism.

  • Please begin each answer with the question number.

  • You are free to study together in preparing to write your own answers but you may not submit multiple copies of a single answer.

  • Essay answers should be typed, skipping every other line, one side of the page only and stapled.

  • The completed exams are due the day of the in-class, closed book/note exam.

  • Please create a title page using the reaction paper format as your guide.


QUESTION A: Women and the Humanities (20 points)
Summarize the arguments of Christina de Pisan in Reading 3.3, City of Ladies. Then, summarize the arguments of Lucretia Marinella in The Nobility and Excellence of Women and the Defects of Men (Reading 3.10). How are they different? How are they similar? What might account for the more assertive approach of the latter as opposed to the former? What are the advantages of the polemical style Marinella uses? The disadvantages? Then, explain the context in which these women write, i.e., what are they responding to? Finally, where do you see these issues today?

QUESTION B: The Human Body and the Humanities (20 points)
What changes in understanding of the nature and value of the human body occurred as a result of the cultural shift in Europe from the middle ages to the Renaissance? Use the text of Pope Innocent III's On the Misery of the Human Condition and the relief sculpture of Francois de la Sarra (Fig. 12.2) to provide a starting place for your discussion and then compare that vision to the work of Michelangelo's David and Alberti's On the Family.. How did this shift provide a basis for the rise of medicine? Use Da Vinci's Proportional Study of a Man (Fig. 17.26) and Embryo in the Womb (Figure 17.24) as a means of explaining. Finally, what shifts in art do we see? Explain using examples.

2. MANDATORY QUESTIONS: Complete both of the following 20 point questions
C. Europe and Cross-Cultural Encounter

Begin your discussion with an assessment of Alejo Fernandez' Our Lady of the Navigators. What is Fernandez suggesting here? Where do we see attempts to legitimate the Conquest here? Explain. Howard Zinn gives a very different vision of Columbus and the "discovery" of the "New World" in his article "Columbus, the Indians and Human Progress" than that taught in elementary schools. Assuming Zinn is correct, how does it differ? Look up cognitive dissonance. What effect does the deconstruction of myths often have on human beings? Explain using the Columbus story. Finally, look up the words socialization and enculturation. Use those concepts to explain why we were not told the whole story as children.

D. Moral Reasoning and Human Nature
13. Briefly explain Lawrence Kohlberg's model of the Stages of Moral Reasoning. Make sure you explain each of the three levels and six stages. Then, assess the following two pieces of literature using Kohlberg's model. Please tell what level/stage you see the writing to embody and explain thoroughly. Then tell where we see thinking like each of these examples today in public life. Finally, which stage makes the better basis for public policy? Why?

 XVII. Of Cruelty and Clemency, and Whether It Is Better To Be Loved or Feared - Niccolo Machiavelli

 And here comes in the question whether it is better to be loved rather than feared, or feared rather than loved. It might perhaps be answered that we should wish to be both; but since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved. For of men it may generally be affirmed, that they are thankless, fickle, false studious to avoid danger, greedy of gain, devoted to you while you are able to confer benefits upon them, and ready, as I said before, while danger is distant, to shed their blood, and sacrifice their property, their lives, and their children for you; but in the hour of need they turn against you. The Prince, therefore, who without otherwise securing himself builds wholly on their professions is undone. For the friendships which we buy with a price, and do not gain by greatness and nobility of character, though they be fairly earned are not made good, but fail us when we have occasion to use them.


In their great Council at Amaurot, to which there are three sent from every town once a year, they examine what towns abound in provisions and what are under any scarcity, that so the one may be furnished from the other; and this is done freely, without any sort of exchange; for according to their plenty or scarcity they supply or are supplied from one another; so that indeed the whole island is, as it were, one family. When they have thus taken care of their whole country, and laid up stores for two years, which they do to prevent the ill-consequences of an unfavorable season, they order an exportation of the overplus, of corn, honey, wool, flax, wood, wax, tallow, leather, and cattle; which they send out commonly in great quantities to other nations. They order a seventh part of all these goods to be freely given to the poor of the countries to which they send them, and sell the rest at moderate rates.

You may choose one of the following questions for up to 10 points extra credit.
1. Hinduism, like every major religion, displays a pattern of development of its main beliefs. Trace the history of Hindu religious thought during the middle ages including an explanation of polytheism v. pantheism and how the notion of Brahman fits into this. You should explain the notion of an avatar and give some examples. Finally, you should explain the Hindu "trinity" and briefly compare it to the Christian trinity.
2. The Black Death had one of the greatest impacts on humanity of any singular event. What was the Black Death, how did people perceive this plague and how did they respond to it? Finally, how did it mark the beginning of shifts in religious thought in medieval Europe? Please cite from original source documents where applicable.
3. The story of Jean D'Arc (Joan of Arc) represents a major ambivalence in European thought about women generally and a resulting discomfort with the questioning of gender roles in late medieval society. Using Figure 15.5 to illustrate your answer, explain that ambivalence. How does the witchcraft phenomenon illustrate that ambivalence? What role does protection of male privilege play in both of these phenomena? Please cite examples from the video shown in class.
4. What characteristics did a Renaissance Man possess? a Renaissance Woman? Cite Baldassare Castiglione's l'uomo universale to explain. Then, discuss what the differences between these job descriptions might say about the implicit values in Renaissance society regarding gender roles. Finally, give one example of both a Renaissance Man and a Renaissance Woman today (get as close as possible, we know this idealized vision probably doesn't exist in reality).
5. The Reformation is often seen as a purely religious movement occurring in 16th CE Europe. What political, economic and intellectual conflicts must one be aware of to fully understand the Reformation? What difference did Gutenberg's printing press make and what role did the now literate common people play in the rise of the Reformation? Then, name two of the many issues over which Reformers and Protestants split. Provide a full explanation of both sides of the argument. Then, given those arguments, which side do you believe is the more credible and why? (Please be conscious of how our own religious views tend to shape the way we perceive "reality" and account for that)
6. Jan Hus is a good example of a dissenter. Please explain how dissent rises in the face of the status quo, the role that vested interests of beneficiaries play, why dissenters are often first discredited and later silenced, even killed. What is the cost of being a dissenter? Finally, where do we see dissenters in our world today, where do we see the pattern of the dissenter confronting

the status quo and what results?

7. Summarize the Yoruba poem God of War (Reading 3.16). What is the poet's point? Now, compare this poem to Mark Twain's short story, The War Prayer. How are they similar? How are they different? The Yoruba poem depicts a god who is destructive by nature and operates unmindful of anything. How does that relate to the reaction the people have to the stranger in Twain's poem? Where do you see this in the world today?

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