|Crusader walls of Caesarea|
Massada, think his expansion of the Temple Mount, think the Herodion) shaped Caesarea, itself a kind of crazy idea (he built a harbor out into the sea by sinking enormous pylons, he had a hippodrome, an amphitheater, everything a good Roman city should have). And then, a thousand years later, another crazy idea: a Christian empire in the Holy Land. In both instances, a grandeur wrested. And so I shall oscillate wildly for the next three weeks as we tread not so carefully through the texts and images of the Crusades. One always has high hopes for Winter Term: that the three hours of daily teaching somehow won't stop us from writing that book review or revising that class or starting on that article due March 1. I would like to not be deterred, but for now, I'll just revel in this clarity of thought idea.