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A Brief History of Doom: Ragnarok & Other Apocalypses

This course examines the idea of the “end of the world” as conceived in Old Norse, biblical, and other traditions, ancient and modern. Topics to be discussed include visions of the apocalypse and afterlife in Norse Mythology (Snorri’s Edda, The Poetic Edda, The Saga of the Volsungs), the Book of Revelation, Shakespeare’s King Lear, Wagner’s Ring cycle, and Marvel’s Thor franchise. Students will consider how thinking about “the end” has shaped the present in varied historical and cultural contexts. 

Course Code

ENGL 13651




High School Students
UChicago Undergraduates
Visiting Undergraduates



Class Day(s)

Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri

Class Start Time


Class End Time


Primary Instructor

Jeffrey Turco


Session II

Start Date

End Date


  • Eligibility: current high school sophomores and juniors, 14 years and older (unless clearly stated otherwise); current College undergraduate students; and visiting undergraduate students.
  • The Priority application deadline is February 2. Students who apply by the Priority application deadline will have their $50 application fee waived. Any applications received after the Priority deadline will be admitted using rolling admission and will require a $50 application fee. 
  • International students who will require a visa to attend, applications will be considered no later than April 2 in order to allow enough time to complete the visa application process.
  • Rolling admissions: courses fill quickly, so submit your complete application as soon as possible.

Additional Details

  • Orientation for high school students is July 7-8.

Cost & Aid

Tuition is $4,085 per course. (Full-time registration is two courses taken during the same session.)
Additional fees apply; housing and dining costs not included.

Complete Cost & Aid Information (including housing and other fees) for high school students can be found here.
Complete Cost & Aid Information (including housing and other fees) for undergraduates can be found here.