The Black Death, the great plague that devastated Europe from 1348 to 1350, continues to captivate the modern popular imagination. At the same time, this calamity remains one of the most poorly understood events in pre-modern European history . In recent years the Black Death has been the subject of renewed historical and scientific inquiry, much of which has questioned traditional interpretations of the etiology of the disease (was it really bubonic plague at all?) and its short- and long-term effects on the society, economy, and family structure of late medieval Europe (was it the 'end' of the Middle Ages?). Students in this course read a wide variety of primary sources in translation in order to reconstruct medieval people's reactions to the plague, as well as contemporary beliefs about the causes, remedies, and implications of the disease. The course also engages with recent historical debates surrounding the Black Death and representations of the plague in modern literature and film.