COMP 218
Gnosis, Gnostics, Gnosticism
Last Offered Spring 2012
Division II Writing Skills
Cross-listed COMP 218 / REL 218 / HIST 331 / CLAS 218
This course is not offered in the current catalog or this is a previous listing for a current course.

Class Details

What is gnosis and Gnosticism? Who were the Gnostics? Salvation by knowledge, arch-heresy, an eternal source of mystical insights and experiences, secret esoteric teachings available only to a few. All these and more have been claims made about gnosis, Gnostics, and Gnosticism. This course will introduce you to the key ancient texts and ideas associated with Gnostics as well as to the debates over and claims made about Gnosticism in modern times. We shall explore neoplatonic, Jewish, and Christian thought, as well as modern spiritualism and esotericism. We shall also ask about how ancient Gnostics relate to later religious groups such as the Knights Templar and modern Theosophists. Readings include: Nag Hammadi writings in English, Irenaeus, Against All Heresies; David Brakke, The Gnostics; Elaine Pagels, The Gnostic Gospels; Karen King, What is Gnosticism? and The Secret Revelation of John.
The Class: Format: lecture/discussion
Limit: 19
Expected: 19
Class#: 3605
Grading: yes pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: periodic reflection papers, 2 textual analysis papers, 2 historiographical analysis papers, and a final paper that entails a revision and expansion of an earlier paper
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preferences: students with prior coursework in biblical or other ancient literature or history
Distributions: Division II Writing Skills
Notes: meets Division 2 requirement if registration is under REL; meets Division 1 requirement if registration is under CLAS or COMP
This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
COMP 218 Division II REL 218 Division II HIST 331 Division II CLAS 218 Division II

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  • COMP 218 - LEC Gnosticism
    COMP 218 LEC Gnosticism
    Division II Writing Skills
    Not offered

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