The Medieval Quest as a Model for Us Today - Humanities Seminars Program

Monday, September 30, 2013 - 2:00am to Monday, December 16, 2013 - 5:00am
All Humanities Seminars take place in the Humanities Seminars room in the Helen S. Schaefer Building at 1508 E. Helen Street (one block north of Speedway and one block west of Cherry Avenue).

The Medieval Quest as a Model for Us Today

Mondays 9:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m.

September 30 until December 16, 2013

This course, taught by Professor Albrecht Classen, will focus on some of the central and most significant texts from the Middle Ages which have withstood the test of time and continue to exert a tremendous fascination on us today. We will explore what some of the fundamental issues in human life have always been and how responses to them in the past prove to be most illuminating for us today. Some of those issues are: meaning of fortune/misfortune, happiness in human life, experience of death, loss of love, love itself, heroism and tragedy, friendship, gift giving, exploration of the unknown, religious conflicts and difference, the quest for God, and the meaning of life as such.

As diverse as those issues all seem to be, ultimately they all circle around the one and the same critical point, human life. Medieval literature offers a treasurehouse of most insightful examples of how to approach this huge question from many different perspectives.

Classen, Albrecht, ed. Medieval Answers to Modern Problems. 2nd rev. edition. Cognella, 2013. ISBN: 978-1-62131-979-5.

This book is available for purchase in digital format through the University Readers' student e-commerce store
( A few copies will be available at the UA bookstore at the General Books Counter on the main floor.

Albrecht Classen is University Distinguished Professor of German Studies at the University of Arizona. He has published numerous 70 books and articles on the European Middle Ages and the early modern age. He is the editor of two scholarly journals, Mediaevistik and Humanities Open Access. In 2004 the German government awarded him with the Order of Merit (Bundesverdienstkreuz); in 2008 he received the Henry and Phyllis Koffler Prize for Research, and in 2009 the Five Star Faculty Award. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching awarded him with the 2012 Arizona Professor of the Year.


Cost: $195.00

If you wish to register immediately by mail, please download the form below.

Click here to download the Registration Form for Fall 2013
Portable Document Format (PDF) (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

Please mail the Registration Form to:

Humanities Seminars Program
Attention: Kerstin Miller
P.O. Box 210150
1508 E. Helen Street
Tucson, AZ 85721-0150

For any other registration questions, please call Kerstin Miller at (520) 626-7845 or contact our program by e-mail at


HSP will charge an administrative fee of $25.00 for early drop-outs before the second class meeting with refunds of the balance of the original tuition.