Amazon logo Help support MIT OpenCourseWare by shopping at! MIT OpenCourseWare offers direct links to to purchase the books cited in this course. Click on the Amazon logo to the left of any citation and purchase the book from, and MIT OpenCourseWare will receive up to 10% of all purchases you make. Your support will enable MIT to continue offering open access to MIT courses.

Readings are also available by class session.

Required Readings

Amazon logo Rice, Eugene, and Anthony Grafton. The Foundations of Early Modern Europe, 1460-1559. 2nd ed. New York, NY: W.W. Norton, 1994. ISBN: 9780393963045. (RG)

Amazon logo Ross, James, and Mary McLaughlin. The Portable Renaissance Reader. New York, NY: Penguin, 1977. ISBN: 9780140150612. (RR)

Amazon logo Leroy-Ladurie, Emmanuel. Montaillou: The Promised Land of Error. New York, NY: Vintage, 1979. ISBN: 9780394729640.

Amazon logo Petrarch, Francesco. The Secret. Edited by Carol Quillen. Boston, MA: Bedford/Saint Martin's, 2003. ISBN: 9780312154387.

Amazon logo Machiavelli, Niccolo. The Prince. Oxford, New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2005. ISBN: 9780192804266.
A version of this text is available through Project Gutenberg.

Amazon logo Davis, N. Z. The Return of Martin Guerre. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1983. ISBN: 9780674766907.

Readings by Class Session

1 Introduction: The History of Renaissance History
2 Geography, Demography, Global Trade, 1300-1600 Leroy-Ladurie. Montaillou. pp. 3-135.
3 The World of the Peasantry ca. 1300 Leroy-Ladurie. Montaillou. pp. 139-230.
4 The Black Death Tuchman, Barbara. "'This is the end of the world': The Black Death." In A Distant Mirror: The Calamitous Fourteenth Century. New York, NY: Ballantine Books, 1987. pp. 92-125.

Boccaccio. Introduction to The Decameron. New York, NY: Signet Classics, 2002. pp. 49-68.
5 The Discarded Image RR. pp. 580-3.
6 The Beginnings of Humanism in Fourteenth-Century Italy RG. pp. 1-10, 77-90.

RR. pp. 120-30.

Petrarch. The Secret. pp. 1-70, 149-58.
7 Petrarch Petrarch. The Secret. pp. 70-148.
8 Civic Humanism in Early Fifteenth-Century Italy and Beyond Amazon logo Kohl, Benjamin G., and Ronald G. Witt, eds. "Introduction and Bruni's Panegyric to the City of Florence." In The Earthly Republic: Italian Humanists on Government and Society. Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1978, pp. 121-175. ISBN: 9780812277524.

RR. pp. 476-9.
9 Art and Culture in Fifteenth-Century Italy RG. pp. 90-114.

RR. pp. 140-5, 527-40.

Simons, Pat. "Women in Frames: The Gaze, the Eye, the Profile in Renaissance Portraiture." History Workshop 25 (1988): 38-57.
10 A Visit to the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University Amazon logo Baxandall, Michael. Painting and Experience in Fifteenth-Century Italy. 2nd ed. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1988, pp. 1-27. ISBN: 9780192821447.
11 Burgundy and Late Medieval Politics in the North RR. pp. 185-202.
12 The New Monarchies and The Invasion of Italy RG. pp. 110-145.

RR. pp. 279-94.
13 Politics Reinvented Machiavelli. The Prince. all.
14 Christian Humanism in the North RR. pp. 80-6, 401-8, 717-21.

Sowards, J. Kelley, ed. The Julius Exclusus of Erasmus. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1968, pp. 45-141.
15 Martin Luther and the Protestant Challenge RG. pp. 146-77.

RR. pp. 677-703.
16 The Age of Reformations RG. pp. 178-202.

RR. pp. 234-41.

Hillerbrand, Hans, ed. "Radical Reform Movements." In The Reformation. 6th ed. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1978, pp. 214-38.
17 Sixteenth-Century Peasants I Davis. The Return of Martin Guerre. pp. 1-61.
18 Sixteenth-Century Peasants II Davis. The Return of Martin Guerre. pp. 62-125.
19 1543: The Copernican Revolution RG. pp. 18-26.

RR. pp. 584-611.
20 1543: The Vesalian Revolution RR. pp. 552-73.
21 Individual Consultations with Instructor
22 Review
23 Portuguese Expansion RG. pp. 32-38.
24 Spanish Exploration RG. pp. 38-44.

RR. pp. 146-57.
25 Spanish Conquest Amazon logo Burkholder, Mark A., and Lyman L. Johnson. Colonial Latin America. 4th ed., New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2000, pp. 42-59. ISBN: 9780195137026.

Amazon logo Schwartz, Stuart B., ed. "The Siege and Fall of Tenochtitlan." In Victors and Vanquished: Spanish and Nahua Views of the Conquest of Mexico. Boston, MA: Bedford/St. Martins, 1999, pp. 182-213. ISBN: 9780312154080.
26 Conclusion: The Future of the Renaissance