Instructions: What shaped Western culture in the period 1300-1550 more: the Black Death’s emphasis on the afterlife (the hereafter) or the Renaissance’s emphasis on human achievement (the here and now)? Choose one of these and explain your perspective.
Start with a statement identifying your choice; this is your thesis. Then, support your choice with specific examples from at least three of the following categories:
- significant individuals (e.g., political or religious leaders, innovators, explorers);
- characteristics of worldview (e.g., philosophy, religion);
- social institutions (e.g., social mores, practices, hierarchies);
- patronage (discuss the patrons, their motives, influence, and resulting products or artifacts);
- the economies (e.g., changes, different economic systems, impact); and
- politics (e.g., forms of governance, power distributions, contests).