Faculty of Arts


Medieval Mentalities, Western Europe c.1100-1500

Please note: this is archived course information from 2018 for HISTORY 219.


When we study the cultures of the past, is it possible to gain a sense not only of what people did but also how they thought and felt? Can we gain a sense of their worldviews, their attitudes or outlooks, their understanding of themselves and others?

This course seeks to explore the central and late medieval period in Europe by addressing such questions. We will investigate some of the key cultural mentalities of the era, including concepts of the earth and its place in the cosmos, social hierarchies, monarchy and other structures of power, monasticism, ideas about gender and sex, concepts of the family and childhood, attitudes to death, religious faith and dissent, explanations for Plague, motivations for popular revolts and the growing desire for new forms of knowledge and geographical exploration.

Students will be encouraged to examine the ways in which historians have sought to understand past mentalities and to consider some of the practical difficulties and creative possibilities in undertaking such a project.

View the course syllabus

Availability 2018

Semester 2


Coordinator(s) Associate Professor Kim Phillips


Coursework + exam


HISTORY 219: 15.0 points


15 points at Stage I in History and 30 points passed



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