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									History 2130 (L01) Studies in History: Paranormal History

                            Examination of a Witch by T. H. Matteson (1853)
Fall 2010
3 Semester Hours
MW 12:15-1:30
Prerequisite: None
SH 139

Scott Cook
Office: SH 111
(931) 393-1738
Skype: profscottcook,

Office Hours:
Posted on Office Door and on Web

The instructor believes that part of a professor’s obligation to a class is to be available for help
and questions. Students may telephone the instructor or come to the office during posted office
hours. Also, students may email at any time. Otherwise, students may make an appointment for
a specific meeting.

Course Description:
Studies in History: Paranormal History traces the political, religious, and social developments
integral to understand the evolution of paranormal mythology, primarily witchcraft, vampirism,
and monsters, and the social effects of that mythology.

Course Objectives:
To increase competency in communicating ideas
To enhance success in other collegiate courses
To improve vocabulary
To increase critical thinking skills
To apply Standard American English to historical inquiry
To improve one’s ability to make an academic argument
To increase one’s knowledge of historical paranormal phenomena
To understand the evolution of the Church and heresy
To become familiar with the European witch hunts and the Salem Witch Trials
To understand origins and the legend associated with vampire stories
To appreciate the evolution and the impact of Frankenstein
To illustrate how these historical myths have affected modern culture
To relate key literature with the historical myths

Course Conduct:
This is a lecture, discussion, presentation, and visual course. Because of the emphases on
discussion, presentation, and relationships with the literature and film, students must read the
assignments from the books if they wish to be successful in this course.

Midterm Exam: 15%
Final Exam: 25%
Essay I: 10%
Essay II: 20%
Group Presentation (Witchcraft): 10%
Group Presentation (Vampirism): 15%
Group Discussion Questions (Frankenstein): 5%
       F=59 and below

Tests: Students have two major exams. These tests will contain material from the text, class
discussions, lectures, group presentations, and videos and will include a combination of
identification, multiple choice, and long essay. The exams are students’ opportunities to show
the instructor the wealth of information that they have gleaned during the term. Students should
take copious notes from lectures; material on the exams does not come directly from the books.
Students, generally, may not take a missed exam; students should schedule the exam before the
absence. Any student for whom the instructor approves a make-up exam must complete either

an oral or a long-essay written exam at the discretion of the instructor during the instructor’s
regularly scheduled office hours.

Essays: Each student must complete two (2) critical research essays as part of the course. The
goals of these assignments include thinking critically about a problem in history, making an
academic argument, and supporting suppositions with credible, academic resources. Students
should refer to the essay guidelines to complete the assignments.

Written Assignments: The instructor expects all written assignments to be grammatically and
historically accurate. Students who repeatedly produce grammar, mechanics, or usage errors
should expect to earn no higher than a “C” on written assignments—regardless of length or
historical accuracy. If a student needs help writing an argumentative research paper or a
grammatical summary, he or she should utilize the service that the college provides from
Smarthinking. Students pay for this service when they pay for tuition; they should at least get
their money’s worth.

Group Presentation: Each student must complete two (2) group presentations, one from
Mappen’s Witches and Historians and one about European vampirism. The series of group
presentations will aim to explain the underlying causes and motives for the Salem Witch Trials.
September 16 is reserved for groups to meet and discuss their presentations, and students will
present their findings between September 21 and September 30. Students should refer to the
presentation guidelines to complete the assignment.

Attendance: Regular attendance and punctuality are mandatory by the nature of this course.
Generally, students who maintain regular attendance and actively engage in the course’s content
have the most successful outcomes. Students cannot learn or discuss if they do not come to
class. The instructor will take attendance at the beginning of each class. Because of the
importance of attending classes, the instructor does not differentiate between “excused” and
“unexcused” absences. Students may miss no more than four (4) MWF classes, three (3) TR or
MW classes, or two (2) night/block classes. A student who fails to meet the minimum
attendance requirement will earn the grade “F” in the course regardless of any other grades.
Sleeping in class, regardless of the point in the class during which the student falls asleep,
or texting in class is an absence. Additionally, habitual tardiness will not be condoned. Three
(3) tardies equal one (1) absence. Leaving class early without explicit verbal consent from the
instructor counts the same as a tardy. Completion of the drop and withdrawal processes is the
responsibility of the student; simply not attending does not remove the student from the roll. The
instructor may make exceptions to the attendance policy in consultation with the student in
extreme circumstances, but that responsibility lies with the student. Any student who
maintains perfect attendance will receive five (5) points added to his or her final average.

Acceptance of Late Work: Assignments are due at the beginning of the class period. Failure to
submit work timely will result in a late penalty; an absence or tardy is not an excuse. Students
who come late for class on a due date will garner a late penalty. Nevertheless, it is much better
to submit a late assignment than take a “0.” The instructor will penalize all late work 25%.

Cheating/Plagiarism: An education has two key components: intellect and character. The
instructor expects students’ words and actions to reflect high standards. Because plagiarism is, at
its essence, stealing, any student caught engaging in this iniquitous behavior will earn an “F” in
the course regardless of any other grades, and the instructor will peruse the maximum penalty for
which the college provides—suspension or expulsion from the college.

Classroom Decorum:
   1. The instructor reserves the right to confiscate all ringing cell phones and hurl them out of
       the window. If a student must have a cell phone (or pager) during class, the instructor
       requests that phone be on VIBRATE mode. If an apparatus disrupts class, the instructor
       will ask the student to leave for the remainder of that class and will record an absence for
       that student. The student may, instead, have the option of singing the chorus of the
       offending ringtone.
   2. Texting during class is disruptive and disrespectful. Any student who must text is absent.
   3. Students are only permitted to use laptops to take notes. Any student who uses a laptop
       for some other nefarious reason, such as Facebook, during class, he or she will earn an
   4. The instructor encourages and welcomes classroom discussion but reminds students to be
       mindful and respectful of others’ opinions and beliefs. For any student who speaks
       inappropriately, threateningly, or disrespectfully, the instructor will ask the student to
       leave for the remainder of that class, will record an absence for that student, and, if
       warranted, notify the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs.

Texts/Course Materials:
Fowler, H. Ramsey, and Jane Aaron. The Little, Brown Handbook, 10th ed. New York:
       Longman, 2006.

Karg, Barb. The Everything Vampire Book: From Vlad the Impaler to the Vampire Lestat, A
       History of Vampires in Literature, Film, and Legend. Avon, MA: Adams Media, 2009.

Mappen, Marc. Witches & Historians: Interpretations of Salem, 2nd ed. Malabar, FL: Krieger,

Miller, Arthur. The Crucible. New York: Penguin Books, 1976.

Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. Ed. Maurice Hindle. London: Penguin Books, 2003.

Two large examination books (“green books”)

                                Tentative Course Schedule
08/30 Introduction to Course, Expectations, and Texts

09/01 Lecture I: Origins of the Christian Faith, Origins of the Church, the Witch, and Heresy
      No Assigned Reading
09/03 Last Day to Add a Class

09/06 No Class (Labor Day)

09/08 Lecture I: Origins of the Christian Faith, Origins of the Church, the Witch, and Heresy
      Lecture II: The European Witch Hunts and the Salem Witch Trials

09/10 Last Day to Be Deleted from a Class

09/13 Lecture II: The European Witch Hunts and the Salem Witch Trials
      Video: History’s Mysteries
      Read Mappen’s Witches and Historians: Interpretations of Salem

09/15 Group Meetings: Mappen’s Witches and Historians: Interpretations of Salem

09/20 Groups 1 and 2 Presentations and Discussions

09/22 Groups 3 and 4 Presentations and Discussions

09/27 Groups 5 and 6 Presentations and Discussions

09/29 Group 7 Presentations and Discussions

10/04 Read Miller’s The Crucible

10/067 Video: The Crucible
       Essay I Due

10/11 Video: The Crucible

10/13 Midterm Exam: The Church, Heresy, and Witchcraft

10/18 No Class (Fall Break)

10/20 Lecture III: Vampirism
      Read Karg’s The Everything Vampire Book

10/25 Lecture III: Vampirism

10/27 Lecture: A Brief History of Halloween

       Group Meetings

11/01 Groups 1 and 2 Presentations and Discussions

11/03 Groups 3 and 4 Presentations and Discussions

11/08 Groups 6 and 7 Presentations and Discussions

11/10 Group 7 Presentations and Discussions

11/15 Video: Dracula (1931) with Bela Lugosi

11/17 Video: Bram Stoker’s Dracula

11/22 Video: Bram Stoker’s Dracula
      Last Day to Withdraw with a “W”

11/24 Video: Carmilla
      Lecture IV: Monsters

11/25- Thanksgiving Holiday

11/29 Read Shelley’s Frankenstein
      Group Discussions of Frankenstein

12/01 Video: Frankenstein (1931) with Boris Karloff
      Frankenstein Group Discussion Questions Due (Bring a copy for each student in the

12/06 Video: Bride of Frankenstein (1935) with Boris Karloff

12/08 Video: The Munsters
      Essay II Due
      Final Days to Submit Any Late Work

12/15 Final Exam: Monsters and Vampirism
      Students may not submit late work during final exam week.

                            Paranormal History Midterm Exam Review
supernatural, preternatural, Mesopotamia, Hebrew Civilization, Canaan, Israel, Judaism,
Christianity, Roman Civilization, Nero, Agrippina, crucifixion, Tau cross, Latin cross,
Constantine, Bible, Old Testament, Ten Commandments, Code of Hammurabi, Shamash, Sodom
and Gomorrah, Nebuchadnezzar II, Babylonian captivity, New Testament, Marcion, heresy,
heretic, excommunication, Eusebius, Eusebian Bible, Council at Carthage, Lilith, Adam, Eve,
Original Sin, Lives of Adam and Eve, Book of Jubilees, Awan, Book of Enoch, Uriel, Book of
Thomas, magic (high, low, black, white, green, red, purple), witch, Great Goddess (Earth
Mother, Mother Goddess), Circe, Medea, Black Death, Thomas Aquinas, maleficia, Exodus
22:18, Leviticus 20:27, familiar spirit, apparition, specter, spectral evidence, sabbat, Malleus
Maleficarum, Kramer and Sprenger, swimming test, devil’s marks, witches teats, inquisition,
garrote, pear of agony, wheel, heretics’ fork, breast ripper, burning at the stake, torture saw,
torture chair, hanging, Reformation, Martin Luther, John Calvin, Predestination, Puritanism, H.
L. Mencken, European witch hunts, burning times, Enlightenment, gendercide, femicide,
holocaust, Salem Witch Trials, Tituba (Tibita), Increase Mather, Cotton Mather, Memorable
Providences, Wonders of the Invisible World, Charles W. Upham, Albert Bandura’s Social
Learning Theory, Samuel Parris, Betty Parris, Abigail Williams, Thomas Putnam, Ann Putnam
(Junior and Senior), George Burroughs, Rebecca Nurse, Ergotism, ergot, Encephalitis, Lyme
Disease, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, witch cake, Sarah Good, Dorcas Good, Giles Corey,
Wicca, Pandora, sexual deviation and witchcraft, infanticide, ordeals, John Hale, Court of Oyer
and Terminer, John Hathorne, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Salem, Naumkeag, Sarah Osborne, John
Indian, Nicholas Noyes, Arthur Miller, The Crucible

Possible Essay Questions: Prepare a two-page (single spaced) response to the following

   1. Compare and contrast the events in Salem with the text and video adaptation of The
   2. Discuss the origins of the Christian faith in connection with heresy and witchcraft.
   3. How did the Puritan faith itself create an atmosphere conducive to the Salem Witch Trials
      of 1692?
   4. Detail the general characteristics of witches in Europe and contrast that with the accused
      in Salem.
   5. Examine the European witch hunts and the Salem Witch Trials and either support or
      refute the claim that witch hunts are gendercide or femicide.
   6. What caused Salem anyway?

                                Paranormal History Final Exam Review
revenant, reanimation, vampire, vampirism and sexuality, Bram Stoker, The Undead, Dracula
(book and film), Nosferatu, Friedrich Murnau, Bram Stoker’s Dracula,Bela Lugosi, Count
Dracula, Abraham Van Helsing, Carmilla, J. Sheridan Le Fanu, Carmilla, Marie (Laura), Leo,
Inspector Amos, Enlightenment, Lilith, lamia, incubus, succubus, Kali, Sekhmet, vampirism and
Christianity, porphyria, Augustin Calmet, Treatise on Vampires and Revenants, vrykolakas,
strigoi vii, strigoi mort, night waster, blood sucker, alp, mara, tlahuelpuchi, kappa, chiang shih,
James Spalding, Elizabeth Bathory (Erzebet Bathory), the blood princess, poltergeist (p. 137),
John Haigh, Vampire of London, Fritz Haarmann, Vampire of Hannover, Vlad Dracul, Vlad
Dracula, Sighisuara, Wallachia, Order of the Dragon, Boyars, impaling, crosses, garlic, onions,
salt, mustard seed, holy water, Bible, mirrors, stake, light, fire, tuberculosis, Snuffy Stukeley,
Sarah Stukeley, afrit, ekimmu, The Vampyre (1819), Lord Ruthven, historic symbolism of blood
(pp. 80-82), Vampire Bite (p. 83), vampire characteristics (Chapter 8), Halloween, Samhain,
Calan Gaeaf, All Hallows Even, tick-or-treating, Jack O’Lantern, Stingy Jack, monster,
leviathan, zombie, zombie characteristics, fear, Ezekiel 37, Goliath, Book of Samuel, Genesis
6:4, werewolves, werewolf characteristics, ergot (p. 101), silver bullet, rye, ashes, exorcism,
adolescence, the outsider or other, film and social responsibility, mummy, Romanticism, Age of
Revolution, revolution, Mary Shelley, War for American Independence, French Revolution,
guillotine, religion and Romanticism, transcendentalism, deism, Gothic, sublime, grotesque,
William Godwin, Mary Wollstonecraft, Percy Shelley, abortion, Frankenstein, Prometheus,
alchemy, Victor Frankenstein, Robert Walton, Clerval, William Frankenstein, Elizabeth
Lavenza, Frankenstein’s monster, Boris Karloff, Bride of Frankenstein, Son of Frankenstein, The
Munsters (pp. 250-251), Herman Munster, Grandpa Dracula, Lily Munster, Eddie Munster,
Marilyn Munster, Dragula

Possible Essay Questions: Prepare a two-page (single spaced) response to the following

   1. Describe how the zombie myth might symbolize cultural fear.
   2. Discuss abortion as a possible theme from Shelley’s Frankenstein (the text).
   3. Detail the monster myth, particularly referencing the werewolf and tying the story to human
   4. Use Shelley’s Frankenstein (the text) to discuss notions of the other or the outsider.
   5. From a historical perspective, how might monster myths have evolved?
   6. Specifically referencing the Age of Revolution, how does Shelley’s Frankenstein deal with
       themes of fairness and justice?
   7. Compare Shelley’s text with the film version of Frankenstein.
   8. Compare and contrast Dracula (1931) with Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
   9. Discuss the vampire myth as repressed sexual desire.
   10. Use The Munsters to discuss the evolution of vampire, monster, and werewolf myths.


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