Students

AHIS3202 – A History of Magic: From the Magi to Merlin

2021 – Session 2, Attendance for exam only, Exam centre within Australia

Session 2 Learning and Teaching Update

The decision has been made to conduct study online for the remainder of Session 2 for all units WITHOUT mandatory on-campus learning activities. Exams for Session 2 will also be online where possible to do so.

This is due to the extension of the lockdown orders and to provide certainty around arrangements for the remainder of Session 2. We hope to return to campus beyond Session 2 as soon as it is safe and appropriate to do so.

Some classes/teaching activities cannot be moved online and must be taught on campus. You should already know if you are in one of these classes/teaching activities and your unit convenor will provide you with more information via iLearn. If you want to confirm, see the list of units with mandatory on-campus classes/teaching activities.

Visit the MQ COVID-19 information page for more detail.

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Convener
Malcolm Choat
Tutor
Rachel Yuen-Collingridge
Credit points Credit points
10
Prerequisites Prerequisites
130cp at 1000 level or above or (20cp in AHIS or AHST units at 2000 level)
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
This unit surveys the history of magic from the ancient world to the present day, covering cultures from the Ancient Near East, Egypt and the Graeco-Roman world, Late Antiquity, Medieval and Renaissance Europe, down to the early modern world, as well as aspects of cognitive psychology such as perceptual illusions and delusional beliefs. It provides thorough coverage of the way magic has been defined, understood, and used in these civilisations, and the way it has been conceived and studied in the history of modern scholarship over the past two centuries. Students will focus closely on the material sources for ancient magic, especially handbooks of spells and amulets on papyrus. There will also be close consideration of the construction of magic as an antithesis to religion in the ancient and modern worlds, and a focus on the role, use, and understanding of magic in wider historical, literary, and scientific contexts.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at https://students.mq.edu.au/important-dates

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  • ULO1: Identify evidence for the understanding and practice of magic from the ancient to early modern world.
  • ULO2: Assess the ways in which definitions of "magic", labelling of magical and religious phenomena, and the cultural processes via which they developed, affects our study of them.
  • ULO3: Consider critically the impact of later academic and popular discourses on the scholarly study and general understanding of ancient and medieval magic.
  • ULO4: Classify and interpret textual, documentary, and artifactual material in terms of technical or genre-based aspects, types of discourses, and their aims and functions.
  • ULO5: Effectively and with academic integrity utilise communication skills appropriate to academic written and oral presentations.

General Assessment Information

Marking criteria and standards

Guidelines on the criteria and standards required for assessment tasks, as well as rubrics where appropriate, will be placed on the iLearn site.

Assignment Submission

ALL written assignments must be submitted via Turnitin within iLearn. Multichoice quiz components will be administered via the iLearn page.

Extensions

ALL deadlines are firm unless an extension has been requested in writing one (1) week before the due date. All requests for extensions must be submitted  via ask.mq.edu.au and be supported by appropriate documentation. A penalty for lateness (see below) will apply unless a medical certificate or other written substantiation is supplied. Assignments handed in early will not be marked and returned before the due date. Always retain a copy of work you submit in case it is lost in the online system.

Late Submission Penalty

Unless a Special Consideration request has been submitted and approved, (a) a penalty for lateness will apply – 10 marks out of 100* credit will be deducted per day for assignments submitted after the due date – and (b) no assignment will be accepted seven days (incl. weekends) after the original submission deadline.

*"100" is to be understood as 100% of the marks for that task, not the entire unit.

Satisfactory Completion of Unit

In order to complete this unit satisfactorily students must gain a mark of 50% or more, and attempt all assessment tasks.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Hurdle Due
Academic Integrity Quiz 0% Yes 23:59 13/8/2021
Mid-Session Quiz 15% No 23:59 8/9/2021
Essay 40% No 23:59 8/10/2021
Magical Spell 15% No 17:00 3/11/2021
Examination 30% No 13:00 17/11/2021

Academic Integrity Quiz

Assessment Type 1: Quiz/Test
Indicative Time on Task 2: 2 hours
Due: 23:59 13/8/2021
Weighting: 0%
This is a hurdle assessment task (see assessment policy for more information on hurdle assessment tasks)

 

Students will complete a short quiz that gives examples of academic dishonesty. Students must gain full marks in this quiz to progress to the other assessment.

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Effectively and with academic integrity utilise communication skills appropriate to academic written and oral presentations.

Mid-Session Quiz

Assessment Type 1: Quiz/Test
Indicative Time on Task 2: 10 hours
Due: 23:59 8/9/2021
Weighting: 15%

 

An online quiz covering the material from the first half of the unit.

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Identify evidence for the understanding and practice of magic from the ancient to early modern world.
  • Assess the ways in which definitions of "magic", labelling of magical and religious phenomena, and the cultural processes via which they developed, affects our study of them.
  • Consider critically the impact of later academic and popular discourses on the scholarly study and general understanding of ancient and medieval magic.

Essay

Assessment Type 1: Essay
Indicative Time on Task 2: 30 hours
Due: 23:59 8/10/2021
Weighting: 40%

 

A major essay of 2000 words (+/- 10%).

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Identify evidence for the understanding and practice of magic from the ancient to early modern world.
  • Assess the ways in which definitions of "magic", labelling of magical and religious phenomena, and the cultural processes via which they developed, affects our study of them.
  • Consider critically the impact of later academic and popular discourses on the scholarly study and general understanding of ancient and medieval magic.
  • Classify and interpret textual, documentary, and artifactual material in terms of technical or genre-based aspects, types of discourses, and their aims and functions.
  • Effectively and with academic integrity utilise communication skills appropriate to academic written and oral presentations.

Magical Spell

Assessment Type 1: Creative work
Indicative Time on Task 2: 10 hours
Due: 17:00 3/11/2021
Weighting: 15%

 

Students work in small groups to create a magical spell and upload a video of its performance to an online forum.

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Assess the ways in which definitions of "magic", labelling of magical and religious phenomena, and the cultural processes via which they developed, affects our study of them.
  • Classify and interpret textual, documentary, and artifactual material in terms of technical or genre-based aspects, types of discourses, and their aims and functions.
  • Effectively and with academic integrity utilise communication skills appropriate to academic written and oral presentations.

Examination

Assessment Type 1: Examination
Indicative Time on Task 2: 20 hours
Due: 13:00 17/11/2021
Weighting: 30%

 

A two (2) hour examination during the exam period at the end of the session.

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Identify evidence for the understanding and practice of magic from the ancient to early modern world.
  • Assess the ways in which definitions of "magic", labelling of magical and religious phenomena, and the cultural processes via which they developed, affects our study of them.
  • Consider critically the impact of later academic and popular discourses on the scholarly study and general understanding of ancient and medieval magic.
  • Classify and interpret textual, documentary, and artifactual material in terms of technical or genre-based aspects, types of discourses, and their aims and functions.
  • Effectively and with academic integrity utilise communication skills appropriate to academic written and oral presentations.

1 If you need help with your assignment, please contact:

  • the academic teaching staff in your unit for guidance in understanding or completing this type of assessment
  • the Learning Skills Unit for academic skills support.

2 Indicative time-on-task is an estimate of the time required for completion of the assessment task and is subject to individual variation

Delivery and Resources

Required and Recommended Reading

Readings required for each week's tutorial and for the essay will be placed on the iLearn site or be available electronically though the library.

Technology

The unit has an iLearn page which can be accessed at https://ilearn.mq.edu.au/login/index.php. PC and internet access are therefore required. Basic computer skills (e.g., internet browsing) and skills in word processing are also a requirement. Content, readings, and discussions for this unit will be delivered via the unit iLearn page. The lectures for this unit will be recorded and the audio recordings and accompanying slides will be available on the Echo 360 system. Readings will be available via the library and iLearn; other digital resources will also be placed on the iLearn site.

Lectures

There will two one-hour lectures per week. These will be recorded in advance and available via the Echo 360 system.

Tutorials and Online Discussions

Discussions in which we will focus on the historical interpretation of the sources for magic and assessment of the modern scholarship on it will take place in two formats: in face-to-face on-campus or zoom tutorials for internal students, and online discussions for external students.

Tutorials (on-campus or zoom) will be held on Wednesday at 1, 2, and 3 pm. Note that there are tutorials in week 1.

Online discussions will be posted weekly on the iLearn page under the relevant week. 

Unit Schedule

Week

Lecture 1

Lecture 2

Tutorial

1

Setting the scene: What is magic?

 

The study of manuscripts

 

Introduction to the study of magic

2

Ancient and modern perspectives on magic and religion

 

Scribes and the papyri

 

Definitions of magic

3

Magic in the Ancient Near East

 

Magic in Ancient Egypt

 

Theories of Magic

4

Magic in the Greek world

 

Describing manuscripts

 

Framing manuscripts

5

Magic in Rome

 

Ethnicity & the “Other”

 

Reconstructing the magician

6

Magic in Graeco-Roman Egypt

 

The Papyrology Report

 

Ancient legislation against magic

7

Magic in Judaism and early Christianity

 

Magic in Late Antique Egypt

 

Healing rituals

8

Merlin and the inheritance of magic in Medieval traditions

 

Magic and the Emotions

 

Divination

9

Magic in the Middle Ages

 

Medievalism and receptions of magic

 

Curses

10

 

Natural Magic in the Renaissance

 

 

Witchcraft

 

Love magic

11

Contemporary Magic i

 

Contemporary Magic ii

 

The Psychology of magic

12

Magic, Delusion, and Psychology i

 

Magic, Delusion, and Psychology ii

 

Preparation for the magic rituals

13

Conclusions

 

Conclusions

 

Casting the magic rituals

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central (https://policies.mq.edu.au). Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Students seeking more policy resources can visit Student Policies (https://students.mq.edu.au/support/study/policies). It is your one-stop-shop for the key policies you need to know about throughout your undergraduate student journey.

To find other policies relating to Teaching and Learning, visit Policy Central (https://policies.mq.edu.au) and use the search tool.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/admin/other-resources/student-conduct

Results

Results published on platform other than eStudent, (eg. iLearn, Coursera etc.) or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au or if you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to help you improve your marks and take control of your study.

The Library provides online and face to face support to help you find and use relevant information resources. 

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

If you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.