Introduction to ancient and classical Indian literature in its cultural context. Texts in English translation.
Students can be expected to gain a general familiarity with some of the major texts of Indian (i.e., South Asian) tradition and civilization. These texts span the period from the middle of the second millennium BCE to the end of the first millennium CE. Texts to be read and discussed include the Rig Veda, the Mahabharata and Bhagavadgita, the Pancatantra, drama and poetry by Kalidasa, and early South Asian lyric poetry. Because this is a "W" course, students will gain practice in writing analytical essays on assigned texts.
The most effective technique for success in this course is to read the assigned texts carefully. The course has no formal prerequisites. But students should be prepared to read assigned texts, to discuss them, and to think and write critically about them.
Weekly reading assigments. Weekly study guides with discussion questions.
Midterm examination (20%); final examination (30%); 8-10 page analytic paper (35%); class participation and preparation (15%).