General honors (GH) classes

Previously Offered general honors (GH) classes

General Honors (GH) courses are the heart of the University Honors Program curriculum and feature small class sizes, dedicated faculty members, interdisciplinary perspectives, active learning and an exciting array of topics. These classes can be accessed by searching under University Honors in the catalog. The following is an example of a General Honors (GH) course that has been offered in the past. This course may or may not be offered again.

GH301: Medieval Chivalry and Courtly Love


course description

If you’re into things gothic, loved the DaVinci Code, are a fan of Monty Python, or ever wondered what it was like to be a knight or a lady, this course is for you!

Get up close and personal with a real medieval knight. William Marshal did it all—rose from obscure beginnings to be one of the most powerful and respected men in England,  won tournaments, went on crusade, joined the Knights Templar, served Richard Lionheart, built a great castle, married a trophy wife. No wonder he was called “the flower of chivalry.” Marshal is the class’s way into the tumultuous twelfth century and the beginnings of the phenomenon of chivalry. He was part of the most important court in Europe, at a high point of the middle ages.  His career is a lens, as it were, through which to view knighthood—both the reality knights lived, and the ideal they (or contemporary authors) aspired to.

We’ll explore castles, armor, tournaments, heraldry, crusades, orders of knighthood, courtly love, King Arthur, the Holy Grail. The readings for the course were all written by Marshal’s contemporaries, many of whom he knew or knew of.  We’ll read excerpts from manuals of chivalry, political treatises, troubadour poems, romances, etc. In this class you’ll learn about chivalry first hand, from those who were there. 




Instructor: Dr. Harriet Hudson

Professor Harriet Hudson joined the English Department in 1985 after receiving her Ph.D. in English from Ohio State University. She specializes in medieval literature, but has wide-ranging interests which include folklore, and 19th and 20th century literature. She teaches classes on Chaucer, the Arthurian legend (medieval and modern), surveys of medieval literature, and surveys of English and early western European literature. Her research focuses on Middle English popular romances: she's edited Four Middle English Romances: Sir Isumbras, Octavian, Sir Eglamour of Artois, Sir Tryamour and published numerous articles on the topic. Currently she serves as Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.  (English Dept. website  includes more information and curriculum vitae)