Dr David Racker
Office: Anderson 213 D
Phone :(215) 204-7893
Office Hours: TTH 11:00-12:15; MWF
Mosaic 851: The Texture of Reality
Mosaic 851 is the first half of a year-long interdisciplinary humanities seminar required for all
In the course we will closely read, discuss, and write about a variety of
primary texts spanning the last 4000 years, texts that cross disciplinary boundaries, cultures and
worldviews. The course is divided into four broad themes
Ways of Knowing--
that will inform critical thinking about and highlight connections between the
books. Along with Mosaic 852 (the second half of the seminar), Mosaic 851 has the goal of exercising
and improving your abilities
to read theoretically, historically, and/or culturally challenging texts
to recognize abstractions, large ideas, and implications associated with difficult written texts
to make connections across disciplines, history, and cultural boundaries
to construct positions, arguments, and interpretations through textual analysis and evaluation
to produce thoughtful writing that reflects (a) persuasive position(s) and the conventions of
The reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills you exercise/develop in Mosaic 851 are designed to
carry over into Mosaic 852, the other General Education Courses you are taking and will take, and the
courses that make up your major. To take Mosaic 851 you must have successfully passed or tested out
of English 0802 Analytical Reading and Writing (formerly English 1002) or passed its equivalent at
another university or college.
The Epic of Gilgamesh.
Trans. Andrew George. Penguin Classics, 2003.
Holy Bible, New Revised Standard Version.
De las Casas, Bartolomé.
An Account, Much Abbreviated, of the Destruction of the Indies.
Franklin W. Knight, Trans. Andrew Hurley. Hackett Publishing, 2003.
Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza.
Aunt Lute Books, 2007 (1987).
Introductory Lectures on Psycho-Analysis: Standard Edition.
Ed. and trans.
James Strachey. WW Norton, 1966.
Trial and Death of Socrates,
edition. Trans. G.M.A. Grube, revised by John M.
Cooper. Hackett Publishing, 2000.
Dubois, W. E. B
The Souls of Black Folk
New York: Pocket/Simon and Schuster, 2005.
Krishna’s Counsel in Time of War
Trans Barbara Stoler Miller. New
The Daodejing of Laozi.
Trans. Philip J. Ivanhoe. Hackett Publishing, 2002
NB: This schedule is my best guess of the time we will spend on each reading; however, the schedule
can change if I need more time for particular readings. Come to every class and pay attention to
announcements about changes in the schedule that I may make in class or on Blackboard. Complete