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Welcome to Early European Family (History 4495). Students wanting to learn more about the course should consult the following links:

Syllabus (pdf)
E-learning page (login required)

Email Prof. Berkhofer

Course Description
This course explores different aspects of the early European family from late imperial Rome to the fifteenth century. To explore such a vast topic over many centuries, it is necessary to focus on particular aspects of family life. This course will emphasize three themes: family consciousness, marriage, and love/sexuality. Possible topics will include: the development of marriage out of the combination of Roman law, Christian theology and daily experience in Europe; evolving notions of family structure; inheritance; princely dynasticism and its impact on everyday families; gender roles in the family; concepts of love, laws governing sexual behavior and patterns of licit and illicit sex. This course seeks to provide students with an understanding of how the family, gender, and human sexuality are studied by scholars and the historical context in which to understand these issues.

Main Image
Tree of Jesse Window at Saint-Denis (photo Robert Berkhofer)

How to Use This Page
Students should familiarize themselves with the syllabus, the e-classroom (BroncoNet ID required), and the Study Aids listed above-which are designed to help with common course tasks.

Robert F. Berkhofer
Dept. of History
4301 Friedmann Hall
Western Michigan University
1903 W. Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5334

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All Content © Robert F. Berkhofer
Last Revised: January 10, 2011