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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Magic in the Middle Ages by Universitat de Barcelona

4.6
stars
1,386 ratings
450 reviews

About the Course

Magical thought has always attracted human imagination. In this course we will introduce you to the Middle Ages through a wide conception of magic. Students will have an approach to medieval culture, beliefs and practices from the perspective of History and History of Science. Popular magic, as well as learned magic (alchemy, geomancy and necromancy) will be addressed. Moreover, we will also deal with how eastern practices and texts influenced western culture. In July 2016, the course will contain a brand-new module devoted to astrology. Magic in the Middle Ages offers a captivating overview of medieval society and promotes reflection about certain stereotypes associated with this period. At the end of the course, the students: a) will have overcome the usual prejudices about the Middle Ages, b) will be able to analyze historical documentation from the Middle Ages and recognize the most common patterns of juridical documents regarding witchcraft, and c) will be capable of distinguishing between popular magic and the magic of the learned people; will have a notion of which spiritual practices were allowed in medieval Europe and which ones were related to the devil, and will be aware of the link between a cultural product and the society that produced it. This course is taught in English, although subtitles in English, Catalan and Spanish will also be provided. COURSE SYLLABUS Week 1. Introduction to medieval magic (Pau Castell). Week 2. Magic & Heresy (Delfi I. Nieto-Isabel). Week 3. From Magic to Witchcraft (Pau Castell). Week 4. Magic in Islam (Godefroid de Callataÿ and Sébastien Moureau). Week 5. Astrology & Geomancy (Theo Loinaz, Delfi I. Nieto-Isabel, Godefroid de Callataÿ and Blanca Villuendas). © Gemma Pellissa Prades (coord.), Delfi I. Nieto-Isabel and Joana Palau Mumany Magic in the Middle Ages by Gemma Pellissa Prades (coord.), Delfi I. Nieto-Isabel and Joana Palau Mumany is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License....

Top reviews

BW
Mar 23, 2018

Helpful and insightful. I try to learn as much about witchcraft and all religions as I can. The first set of videos were well lit and well read. I recommend this for anyone who wants to learn more.

NM
Jul 14, 2020

This course was really thorough and interesting. I liked how it covered a range of religions and regions and I think it's great how there are interactive assignments which judge out writing.

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326 - 350 of 446 Reviews for Magic in the Middle Ages

By Paraskevi G

Nov 12, 2017

This course is very interesting and provides objective information and "myth-busters" that prove the difference between what we think of Magic in the Middle Ages and what was most probably the reality. The lectors are all very enthusiastic and it is refreshing to have many different people with different specializations than just one lector. What I didn't enjoy about this course was having to peer review my classmate's assignments; as I often tend to complete a whole course in a short time , this process slowed down my progress and I wasn't enjoying the course as much as I wished to.

By Lisa D

Nov 7, 2020

The switch from witches, Christianity to magic in the middle east could have been better handled. Maybe in introduction of each instructor and their subject at the beginning would have helped. I also found the variety of accents a bit of a challenge. In other courses I have been able to downloads transcripts of each lesson. Having said that, I loved the course! Thank You. Very informative! I am a Canadian Indigenous women and I certainly would have been burned at the stake. You have given me such clarity on how Christianity has impacted my life.

By Angelica M A

Aug 14, 2020

It is an excellent course, I think it would be very good if they expanded a little more on Kabbalah. Check the link of the last work, it is actually http://www.billyandcharlie.com/planets/luna.html

Using graphic resources like the map in the section on magic in Islam was a great idea. Graphic resources help to better understand concepts and are great allies of memory.

I think it would be very good to add links to articles related to the subject and that the bibliography can be downloadable or written, rather than at the end of the video.

By E P

Jul 1, 2018

I really enjoyed the material of this course and the professors' careful attention to avoiding passing any judging past eras using today's standards. I was also glad that they did not only include European magic (Middle Eastern magic was also covered). The only issue I had with this course was that peer-reviewed assignments (i.e. the written ones) were difficult, in that it was not always clear what was expected of the answers (namely that fairly specific things were required of the answers, whereas the questions seemed more open-ended).

By Sian W

Jun 8, 2020

I'd give this a 4.5 if I could, overall I really enjoyed this course! Weeks 1-3 were strong, week 4 didn't hold my attention as much but it came back strong in week 5. I'd knock some points off for the written assignments, the phrasing was sometimes confusing so I had to do some digging in the discussion forums to figure out what I was supposed to write. There are also links to pictures in the week 5 assignment that are broken, would be nice if those could be edited for future students.

By Yumin X

Feb 12, 2017

This course gives general information on the magic of middle ages. However, I wish the course could be arranged in a more logical and coherent way, such as geographical or chronological, which will help to understand and memorize. Material in Week 4 is very confusing. It is hard to get the key points from those materials and what the instructors want to tell me. On the other hand, materials in Week 2 is easy to be understood and reflected in the first written assignment.

By Pang J P

Sep 27, 2017

I think the course is really helpful in determining the timeline and historical findings of the root of magic and it's fundamentals. It provided me with the insights through time and different perspective and contexts. Though much deeper info was not shared, but much reading and implied context that was relevant is mentioned within. Course may not be perfect, and there's room for some fine-tuning. All in all, I enjoyed and benefited a lot from the course.

By Angela L G

Feb 21, 2019

I found this course to be worthwhile overall. There were some technical glitches and some areas of the course that need to be addressed. However, this course was challenging, interesting, and encouraged me to explore the topic further. The instructors all clearly really enjoy this topic and I appreciate all their heard work in putting this course together. I learned new information I didn't know before and I'm glad I was able to take this class.

By Florencia M

Aug 7, 2016

Me encant+ó, no espera este tipo de temáticas en cursos impartidos por universidades; fue una grata sorpresa porque me encantan estos temas cuando están dados con seriedad y contenido

Lo único que al ser en inglés se me complico mucho, no tanto las clases en video porque tienen subtítulos, sino las actividades que si o si están en inglés.

El resto impecable, muy interesante y ojalá hayas mas cursos sobre estos temas.

By Alessandro D

Sep 5, 2017

Nice subject. I liked the videos of every unit beside UNIT 4: MAGIC IN ISLAM: those ones are the less "entertaining" because in more than a point they consist mostly in a list of book's and author's names one probably have never heard of (and probably will forget after 5 seconds).

I liked very much the part about astrology and i found very interesting the essay to be written in that unit.

By Nick P

Sep 4, 2016

First and foremost thank you for providing us with all that material which is of high quality! The only improvement I can think of is a better sound quality and also having a person of your institution to review peers' assignment (or something of similar logic in order to improve the evaluation process of the assignments). Thank you for your time and may you continue your wonderful work!

By Kate G

Feb 20, 2017

This class struggles from translation issues, and order issues, for instance having to watch bonus material before knowing the answers on some of the quizzes. However, it is an incredible class, informative, and provides a very, very interesting point of view on the Middle-Ages, which in all my learning has always been Anglo-English-centric. It's an excellent class despite everything.

By Sean O

Feb 23, 2020

A very comprehensive and succinct course. Some problems that arose included the rubric the we had to judge the assignments was not given to us while writing the text. Also, the link you provided for the first part of the second assignment did not work. Here is the real link:

https://web.archive.org/web/20190406173330/http://www.billyandcharlie.com/planets/moon.html

By Alvaro F O G

Sep 11, 2020

It was truly a pleasure to take this course. I am a historian, and this course give me new information and bibliographical resources to understand medieval cosmovision. The only problem that I see, it is that it had a really cathedratical structure, therefore it could be a little bit more didactic. Besides that, I enojoyed and learned a lot with this course.

By Phillip

Aug 12, 2016

The only reason this course did not get top marks is because very often the audio and the video did not match. Even with captions turned on it was, at times, difficult to follow as the captions follow the audio and end when the video ends even if the audio is not quite finished.

Other than that I found this course enjoyable as well as educational.

By Ashley M

May 12, 2020

The assignments could be updated (both of the links for the second assignment do not work, even though there was a lot of discussion about them in the forums!)

Otherwise, I really enjoyed the course. The professors were very thorough and seemed to really be experts and passionate about the field of study.

Great course and fun to learn about!

By Helga W

Apr 9, 2020

It was my first course in this platform and was really amazing. This new experience, in addition to bringing me more knowledge, brought me a routine, a excellent way to invert my time. I choose Magic in the Middle Age because always it seemed to me a incredible part of the Universal History. And, I love the Magic.

Thank for this course.

By Jaime J

Jul 14, 2020

A decent overview of a complex topic. I appreciate the care the creators have taken in creating the range of content. I wish the lectures included real imagery from the sources they cite: photographs of the original texts and so on. In Week 5, the final assignment needs an update to correct the broken web links.

By al l

Jan 31, 2021

Interesting material, well organized and presented. Things really fell apart in the final assignment, where the 2 main links remain broken. I managed to find links in the forums, but judging by the comments these have been broken for a while. PLEASE fix this, it leaves an unfortunate bad final impression.

By Maitreyi S

Jul 15, 2019

I had so much fun in this course. It catered to my interests and peaked my curiosity at the same time. I'm grateful to all the teachers for providing us with such brilliant works and for their painstaking efforts, providing us with so much knowledge and wisdom. Thank you so much for this wonderful journey.

By Jennifer D

Aug 31, 2017

It was awesome - apart from the video on Geomancy as that made absolutely no sense to me!!

I was much more interested in the History side of the course than the technical parts of the last two weeks - but I did find the stuff on Islam really interesting and really liked that this was included.

By Jorge d R G

Mar 19, 2017

Un curso atractivo y divertido, pero centrado en los últimos momentos de la Edad Media. Se debería puntualizar en el título "Baja Edad Media". Por lo demás, mi más sincera enhorabuena por todo el trabajo que, desde la Universitat de Barcelona, habéis realizado para sacar adelante este curso.

By Isabelle A A

May 11, 2017

Very interesting course - I enjoyed it immensely. I also liked the assignments, but I would recommend improving the peer-review rubrics (which others have recommended as well). Also, please double-check video transcripts for their accuracy. Thank you for offering Magic in the Middle Ages!

By laura u m

May 18, 2020

Es muy interesante y la verdad que es bastante completo y se hace ameno. Me gustaría saber un poco más acerca de la caza de brujas, quizás algo de sitios míticos como Salem o algo así. Pero la verdad que me ha gustado mucho, interesante, entretenido y bien explicado. ¡Recomendado!

By Jurgens P

Jan 16, 2017

The course gives a good historical view on magic and how it was perceived without being biased in terms of the practice of magic itself. Rather it looks at how the practices were perceived and the factors that influenced the development and dimise of magic and related practices.