HUM 213 : Culture and Literature of Middle East

Transcript title

Culture Lit of Middle East



Grade mode

Standard letter grades

Contact hours total


Lecture hours


Recommended preparation

WR 121.


Introductory study of representative Arabic, Persian and Hebrew literary texts in translation, placed in the context of films and other cultural media of the Middle East and Northern Africa.

Learning outcomes

1. Build knowledge of language arts and cultures different from one’s own:
a. Explain the broad features of Arabic, Persian, and Hebrew literary-historical periods and analyze individual texts from these periods in relation to their historical, social, religious, and cultural contexts.
b. Identify the role that the Arabic and Hebrew languages (in their unique histories and their linguistic features) have played in the development of literatures and cultures of the Middle East.
c. Illustrate the complex roles of literature within culture as potential representation of a culture, expression of a cultural tradition, creator of a culture, and/or critique of that culture.
d. Evaluate the limitations and benefits of studying this literature in translation (including the potential distortions of translation and the limits translation places on traditional literary analysis of style, diction, prosody, etc.).
2. Apply this knowledge to cross-cultural comparative analysis
a. Identify and explain significant differences and similarities among Middle Eastern works and cultures; and between Middle Eastern language arts and cultures, and our own.
b. Examine the effects of individual and culturally-determined factors (such as race, gender, class, nation, biases of information sources, prior cross-cultural experiences) in one’s own and others’ responses to Middle Eastern texts and cultures.
c. Identify topics of personal interest, unanswered questions, controversial claims and alternative viewpoints arising from one’s cross-cultural comparative study for further research and investigation.
3. Construct and communicate persuasive cross-cultural interpretations:
a. Use formal and informal writing to develop and express interpretations and analyses, distinguishing between personal and critical responses, and identifying and bracketing one’s use of Western models and analytical terms.
b. Use evidence from the texts and bring multiple viewpoints and cross-cultural perspectives to bear in developing one’s interpretations, evaluations, and comparative analyses of these literary works; and demonstrate the ability to reflect critically upon the meaning of cultural difference.
c. Avoid plagiarism by using an acceptable academic style (e.g. MLA) to cite direct quotations, paraphrases (indirect quotations), and summaries taken from primary and secondary sources.

General education/Related instruction lists

  • Arts and Letters
  • Cultural Literacy

Outside of

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