This course is an examination of the Renaissance and its cultural, social, and political developments first in Italy and then throughout Europe. It will explicitly address the ways that the idea of the Renaissance and its iconography are integral to conceptions of modernity and periodization, with special focus on gender, race, and conceptions of progress. Beginning with the context of the thirteenth century, this course follows the geographically and socially expanding Renaissance through the seventeenth century, and explores its reverberations in the development of Western institutions and the modern world. Topics include city-states and Renaissance kingdoms, humanism, Papal Rome, Renaissance art and architecture, women in the Renaissance, gender and race in Renaissance art, the policing of sexuality and morality, religion in the Renaissance and Reformation, warfare and persecution, technology and science, printing, and the relationship between Europe and the New World. Through these topics, this course will challenge modern assumptions about the Renaissance and explore what the Renaissance was on its own terms, highlighting the role this tension plays in our comprehension of both the past and the present.
Archival research involves primary sources held in an archives, a Special Collections library, or other repository. Archival sources can be manuscripts, documents, records (including electronic records), images, artifacts, recorded sound or moving images, or other materials. This guide includes resources and instructions for defining primary sources, developing archival research strategies, locating and citing archival materials, and understanding essential aspects of archival theory and practice.
The Special Collections Department of the College of Charleston was founded to support the teaching and learning mission of the College of Charleston and to promote scholarship on the South Carolina Lowcountry and the broader Atlantic World. It is located on the third floor of the Marlene and Nathan Addlestone Library. Its holdings include over 600 manuscript collections related to the history and culture of the South Carolina Lowcountry, the archives of the College of Charleston, the Spoleto Festival Archives, and more than 40,000 rare books and pamphlets.
Special Collections shares reading room and storage space with the holdings of the South Carolina Historical Society.
The primary mission of Special Collections is to evaluate, acquire, organize, preserve, and make available regionally significant and/or rare printed and archival materials to support the college curriculum and student, faculty, and patron research. Special Collections faculty and staff are committed to utilizing a collaborative, multi-faceted approach in support of that mission and are dedicated to employing established best practices to enhance access to our collections.
Special Collections envisions itself as an incubator for research through the stewardship of and access to the diverse histories of our institution, communities, and beyond. We encourage curiosity, enhance discovery, stimulate critical thinking, and provide innovative and collaborative approaches to scholarship, access, and pedagogy.