Your first paper will be a comparison of Bernard of Clairvaux's "On Loving God" and "Sermons on the Song of Songs" with Hadewijch of Brabant's letters and poems.  Hadewijch is introduced on the syllabus as representing "A different kind of Love."  To what extent do you find that to be true?  In what ways are the two texts and approaches to God similar and in what ways different?  What might account for this?

Your pursuit of this topic is meant to be an exercise in close reading and hard thinking rather than a research project.  You are free to apply whatever course or outside readings  are helpful to you, but do not fill your paper with background information.  You should focus on the assigned primary source readings and introduce specific passages of text (citing page numbers!!) to illustrate your points.  It is not necessary or desirable to quote extensively--simply introduce and summarize or paraphrase the passage.  (eg: We see in Hadewijch's poem entitled x (Hart, p. 0) that her understanding of y was z.)  Of course you will go on to elaborate and provide analysis. You should consider contextual/historical/political issues as well as theological ones.

A general guide for length is 4-6 pages, typed, double-spaced, full margins. 

Your paper will be judged on the care with which you construct your argument, quality of writing (including grammar and spelling), and your mastery of the concepts at hand.

Please see my plagiarism policy; if you have any questions about appropriate use and citation of sources, please ask.

Deadline and policy on late papers:

Your paper is due in the Blackboard dropbox before class on Tuesday, October 18.

Extensions will be granted only in cases of serious emergency.  If an extension has not been granted, your paper will lose one partial letter grade for each day that it is late.  The same rule applies to any new due date given by extension. 

Availability: In addition to my office hours, feel free to contact me via e-mail if you have questions or would like to set up an appointment.

Remember the significance of naming your work; choose a title for your paper with care.