Course Description & Objectives:
The objective of this upper-division course is to
gain a thorough knowledge and deep appreciation of the Fourth Gospel,
including its relationship to the Synoptic Gospels and the rest
of the Bible. We will study the literary and theological emphases
of the Fourth Evangelist and the social and historical circumstances
of the Johannine community. We will also consider the influence
of this Gospel on the historical development of Christianity in
its early stages and in our world today. Several modern interpretive
methods will be introduced and applied to enable students to explore
further the meaning and relevance of the Gospels. Publication on
the internet of the best student work will be available, but optional.
Quast, Kevin. Reading the Gospel of John: An
Introduction. Revised edition. New York; Mahwah, NJ: Paulist,
1996. (ISBN: 0-8091-3297-4)
Meeks, Wayne A., ed. The HarperCollins Study
Bible. New York: HarperCollins, 1993. - or another
study edition (with good intros, notes, maps, etc.) of
the full Bible (Old and New Testaments and Apocrypha).
Additional materials available through this course
Library Reference Works
to be used regularly:
HarperCollins Bible Dictionary. Revised
ed. San Francisco: Harper, 1996. -- BS440 H235 1996
Anchor Bible Dictionary. 6 vols. New York:
Doubleday, 1992. -- BS440 A54 1992
"Bibloi" CD-ROM Program -- available
on the LMU Library Reference Area Computers
Several Commentaries on the Gospel according to
John -- available on library reserve (upstairs)
Attendance and Participation: On-time attendance
is required; please notify me in advance if you must unavoidably
miss a class. Always come prepared to ask questions, suggest answers,
take notes, summarize the readings, and challenge assumptions
(your own and those of others, but respectfully!). This course
is part lecture and part seminar-style, so preparation and participation
by everyone is essential and will count towards your grade.
Daily Reading Assignments: Readings must
be done before you come to class each day, so you can contribute
to the discussions (see the "Detailed Class Schedule"
webpage). Read the primary literature (the biblical texts)
first, then also read the assigned pages/chapters in the secondary
literature (our textbook and course website).
Written Exercises and Class Presentations:
There will be three short papers (approx. 1000 words each):
(1) a preliminary reflection on the Fourth Gospel as a
whole, due Sept. 17; (2) either a book review or
an essay on Johannine ethics; (3) either a film
review or an artistic analysis. Detailed instructions for
these written exercises will be given. Due dates will vary for
each student, depending on exactly which book, film, art work,
or ethical issue you choose. All papers are due at the start of
the assigned class day; late papers will be marked down one full
grade for each day late, but must still be completed in order
for you to pass the course. All papers should be revised (incorporating
my comments) and resubmitted for a final grade.
Use of Library & Internet as Research Tools:
Since you will need to do some extra research for the written
exercises and class presentations, you will need to learn how
to use the appropriate research tools (books, software, websites).
E-mail is required for receiving announcements and contacting
the professor. Student papers that receive an "A" may
be published on the professor's website (optional).
Final Exam: There will be a comprehensive
final examination at the end of the semester.
A: 90-100% B: 80-89%
C: 70-79% D: 60-69% F:
(hopefully not necessary)
Letter +/- within 3% (e.g. B+ 87-89% A- 90-92%)
Class Participation: 200 points (40% of
Written Exercises: 150 points (3x50; or
Final Exam: 150 points (or 30%)
This "syllabus" is subject to modifications
to be announced during the semester.