CLCV 227 Wintersession in Athens

Offered in Alternate Years: CLCV 227 Wintersession in Athens - Archaeology & Religion




This intensive travel course explores the dynamics of ancient Greek ritual through direct engagement with the evidence preserved at archaeological sites and museums. Tracing developments from the Bronze Age through Roman periods, we will examine the interplay between ideology and landscape, between communal action and built environments. Study begins with the religious and political dynamics that integrated Attica, from the central spaces of the acropolis and agora to rural settlements and coastal landmarks. Traveling beyond Athens, we explore the Mycenaean citadels of the Argolid, the major panhellenic centers of Olympia and Delphi, and sites dedicated to the commemoration of regional heroes and heroines.

This 0.5 unit course requires students to engage with archaeology through both scholarship and personal experience. In addition to significant readings and presentations, the main assignment is a series of directed journal entries. In addition to our study of ancient culture, we students are invited to special sessions on contemporary Greek conversation, cooking, and the arts.

Much of our time is spent on-site. Winter weather in Greece is relatively mild, but often rainy and quite cold in the mountains. Participants must be prepared for the adventures of outdoor study, group travel, and new cultural experiences.

Enrollment is by application. Priority will be given to students with significant background in Greek and Classical Studies; juniors and seniors; and those who haven't spent a semester abroad.  Apply here.

Please note:

Students who have previously enrolled in an international Wellesley Wintersession course are not eligible to apply.

Archaeological travel requires stamina, an ability to climb over rough terrain, and willingness to endure rain, sun, and even snow.

It is expected that all participants will travel to Greece as a group. The flight is included in the final price, and will depart from Boston Logan.

The course fee will be announced with each session and will include airfare from Boston to Greece, all accommodations, travel, fees, and two meals per day.

  • This reduced price is made possible by support from the Provost’s Office and the Department of Classical Studies. Additional financial aid is available to eligible students.

Click here for more information on Wellesley College International Studies programs.


Want to see/know more?  Watch this student-made video from Wintersession 2018 or visit the Facebook page from the 2018 session.

For further information, please contact Bryan Burns.


Photos from the 2014 Wintersession course in Greece are available here


Click here for an interactive map.