It has been said that St. Augustine’s Confessions–the spiritual autobiography of an Amazigh bishop from Roman North Africa–was a formative event in the history of subjectivity. Here we find an early and influential enunciation of many of the major themes that would come to preoccupy Western writers, philosophers, and theologians for centuries to come: memory, embodiment, desire, love, sin, shame, worship, devotion, faith. In this seven-week course, we will read the Confessions chapter by chapter, delving deeply into the richness of a work that still captivates the world’s brightest thinkers. Students will be expected to complete about two chapters a week as well as shorter writing assignments and a final paper. Prior coursework in social sciences or literature required.
The course will be offered in the first seven weeks of the term.