Fall 2013 Courses
Department of Classical Studies
CLCV 110 Archeology and Artifacts: Exploring Classical Cultures through Objects Instructor: Bryan Burns
This first-year seminar examines the past through direct engagement with objects from ancient Greek and Roman cultures. Working with a diverse collection of artifacts—including pottery, coins, and figurines—students will learn about the societies of the ancient Mediterranean as well as methods of artifact analysis and theories of material culture studies. We will explore the history of the objects now at Wellesley, collecting evidence that can be gleaned from close observation and comparative analysis. We will also consider the presentation of ancient objects as art and artifact in various local museum settings. Students will work collaboratively to design an exhibition of select pieces. Open to First Year Students only.
Tu 1:30-4:00, F 1:30-2:40
CLCV 204 Roman Literature Instructor: Liz Young
We often think of the ancient Romans as brutish soldiers obsessed with building empires and shedding blood. But the Romans were equally enthralled by the refinements of verbal art: Roman children learned to read by reciting the poems of Homer; Julius Caesar penned a book about grammar on his way to a military campaign in Gaul. In fact, the word "literature" itself comes down to us from the Romans, along with many of our assumptions about what literature ought to look like. In this course we will seek to understand why literature was so important to the Romans and why so many Latin works are still considered essential reading today. We will read a variety of poems, novels, and plays, examining their sociopolitical role in the Roman world while also exploring their impact on English literature. Authors may include Plautus, Lucretius, Vergil, Ovid, Seneca, Martial, Apuleius, and Augustine.
MTh 1:30 - 2:40
CLCV 205/305 Ancient Spectacle Instructor: Bryan Burns
The games of the Roman amphitheater were more than entertainment for the masses, just as the Athenian productions of tragedy and comedy commingled theater with religion and politics. This course examines the spectacle of competitive performances and rituals of power that helped shape ancient Greek and Roman society. Students will investigate ancient writings alongside art-historical and archeological evidence to consider how social values and identities were constructed through these shared experiences. We will also consider how the modern performances of ancient texts, the Olympic Games, and cinematic representations have emphasized the splendor, drama, and gore of antiquity. This course may be taken as either 200 or, with additional assignments, 300.
TuFr 9:50 – 11:00
GRK 101 Beginning Greek I Instructor: Kate Gilhuly
An introduction to ancient Greek language. Development of Greek reading skills.
TuWThF 8:50 - 9:40
GRK 201 Plato Instructor: Carol Dougherty
Study of selected dialogues of Plato. Socrates in Plato and in other ancient sources; Socrates and Plato in the development of Greek thought; the dialogue form, the historical context. Selected readings in translation from Plato, Xenophon, the comic poets, and other ancient authors.
MTh 9:50 - 11:00, W 10:10 - 11:00
GRK 303 Euripides’ Bacchae Instructor: Kate Gilhuly
Close reading and discussion of a play (or plays) from the extant works of the Athenian playwright, Euripides. Translation and discussion of the Greek text will be supplemented with additional readings of Greek dramas in translation as well as secondary readings on issues relating to the plays and their broader literary, social, political and cultural contexts.
LAT 101 Beginning Latin I Instructor: Ray Starr
Introduction to the Latin language; development of Latin reading skills.
LAT 200 Intermediate Latin I: Introduction to Roman Literature and Culture Instructor: Liz Young
After reviewing Latin grammar in as much detail as necessary, we'll start to make the transition from Latin grammar to Latin literature and Roman culture. Selections in Latin from such authors as Catullus (poetry), the emperor Augustus (The Deeds of the Divine Augustus), and Perpetua (one of the earliest known women Latin authors). Topics to be studied might include: social status and identity (What defined you? Might your status/identity change, whether for better or worse?); Rome's relation to Greece, which Rome conquered, but which long dominated Roman culture; or the nature and function of literature in Roman life.
MTh 11:10 – 12:20, W 11:30 - 12:20
LAT 310 Roman Historical Myths Instructor: Ray Starr
Romans based their history in myth and made their history into myths. This course includes reading from major authors such as Livy, Vergil, Horace, Ovid, Propertius, and Tacitus, focusing on historical myths such as Romulus and Remus, the Rape of the Sabine Women, Tarquinius Superbus and Hercules and Cacus. We will then examine how later Romans reworked those myths to serve current political purposes and how they transformed historical events into powerful myths.
TF 1:30 – 2:40