INST 213MAGIC in the ARTS and HUMANITIES†† Fall, 2005MWF 10-11

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Pat Aakhus††††††††††††††† ††† LA††


DESCRIPTION:Magic is a significant part of the integrated cosmologies of world cultures.The study of magic provides unique insight into aspects of contemporary world medicine, psychology, religion, art, literature, music and film.



Magic in the Middle Ages, Kieckhefer

Magic, Witchcraft and Ghosts in the Greek and Roman Worlds, Ogden

Doctor Faustus, Marlowe

The Tempest, Shakespeare

Ghost Stories of an Antiquary, M.R. James

One Hundred Folktales, Stith Thompson


Course Requirements

(40%)Eight quizzes on reading(30%) Midterm†† (30%) Final.




8/29 Survey of magic


8/31 Survey results; Excerpts and Definitions of Magic

Eglise Madeleine in Troyes††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††

Kieckhefer 1, Introduction: Magic as a Crossroads


Cosmological Magic: Creation of world and soul

9/2 Creation by word: Genesis, Egypt, Maya.†† Destruction of World: Apocalypse

Deferred: Flood in Genesis, Gilgamesh, Metamorphosis, Mayan


9/5 Creation by sacrifice: destruction of monster: Babylonian, Norse, Aztec†† †††


9/7 Immortality of the Soul: Egypt and Osiris.Introduction of Theurgy.

Kieckhefer 2††††† The Classical Inheritance


9/9 Creation by order and emanation: Chinese, Greek, Platoís Timaeus; Myth of Afterlife: Macrobius Ascent of the Soul †††††††††††


Descent to the Underworld††† ††††††††††††††††††††††††

9/12 Katabasis: Persephone, Hekate, Pythagoras, Orpheus, Japanese†† †††††††††††

Ogden 6.Witches in Greek Literature.


9/14 Katabasis: Hercules, Odysseus (Ogden 144) Theseus and Minotaur, Virgil, Buffy (Cumae, Reims, Chartres, Sunnydale) ††††


9/16 Katabasis: Christ and Harrowing of Hell, St. Marthe, St. Margaret (Alyscamps, Tarascon)†††††††††††


9/19 Katabasis: Dante (Dore)

9/21 Katabasis: Inanna and UR

9/23 Ram in the Thicket



9/26 Witches: Pharmacology: Circe (Ogden 72), Calypso (73) Medea, (66, 68. 69, 71)Erictho (96) Thessalian (107) MacBeth†††††††††††††††††††


9/28 Witches: Hekate (Ogden 66-69) Iynx, (224) Curse tablets, Apuleius (104 and 107)††††††††† †††††††††††


9/30 Witches: Persecution in Europe ††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††

Kieckhefer 8. Prohibition, Condemnation and Prosecution††††††††



Natural Magic: Weapons and Amulets

10/3 African Metallurgy: Smithcraft; Magic Weapons: Viking, Japanese swords Charlemagne, Roland, Arthur, Shield of Heracles, Athena, Beowulf†† ††††††††

Kieckhefer 3The Twilight of Paganism: Magic in the Norse and Irish Culture


10/5 Apotropaic Magic: Theurgy, Medusa, Evil Eye (Ogden 192-196), Romanesque demons†††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

Ogden 13 Amulets


10/7 Apotropaic Magic: Relics, Danse Macabre†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

Kieckhefer 4 The Common Tradition of Medieval Magic


10/10 Magic Gems: Dragons and Gems: Cherokee, Japan, Norse ††††††††††††††††

Kieckhefer 5 The Romance of Magic in Courtly Culture


10/12 Magic Gems: Breastplate of High Priest, Solomon, Revelations, Reliquaries (Ogden 274, 276)


10/14 Magic Gems: Theurgy, Arabic Picatrix, talismans, Medici collection, poison detecting gems †††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

Kieckhefer 6 Arabic Learning and the Occult Sciences


10/17 Natural Magic: Ficino††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††


10/19 Saturn and Melancholy: Four humors, Durer††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††


10/21 Midterm exam


10/24 Divination: Hellenistic (Ogden 163, 166, 167), Crystal Gazing, Orthanc, Cherokee, Geomancy†††


10/26Divination: Signs in the Bayeux Tapestry


Ceremonial Magic

10/28Sorcerors: Abramelin the Mage and Ars Notoria

Kieckhefer7 Necromancy in the Clerical Underworld


10/31 Samhain and Sorcerors†† Doctor Faustus

11/2 Sorcerors: Doctor Faustus

11/4 Sorcerors The Tempest



11/7 Initiation: Cupid and Psyche, East of the Moon, Beast††††

Thompson: 113-122


11/9 Animal wives: Melusine, Seal Wife, lamia. †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

Thompson. 143-147


11/11 Werewolves: Ovidís Metamorphoses


Restless Dead

11/14 The Restless Dead: Ghosts: Greek Ghosts: Marathon, Elpenor††††††† ††

Ogden 8Ghosts†††††††††


11/16 The Restless Dead: Victorian Ghosts †††††††††††††††† †††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

James 1-68


11/18The Restless Dead: Zombies: Romero and Social Critique†††††††††††††††††††

James 69-153


11/21 The Restless Dead: Vampires: Nosferatu, Dracula, Buffy



11/28 Apocalypse: Maya, Hopi, Environmental


11/30 Apocalypse: Revelations and West Portals of Romanesque and Gothic Churches



12/2 Apocalypse: Tarrochi

12/5 Apocalypse: LOTR (Helmís Deep, Isengard, Mordor; serpent slaying, volcano, darkness)

12/7 Apocalypse: Buffy, Nicholas Flamel

12/9 Review for Final-Survey of Magic††††††† 12/12 Final exam


Societas Magica: Syllabus Project

Societas Magica home page
Syllabus Project page

Posted 19 July 2005