Come explore the literature, history, art, archaeology, and philosophy of 5th-century-BC Greece. Learn how a handful of small city-states developed an intellectual and artistic culture that served as the foundation for the Roman Empire, the Medieval Arab world, and the European Renaissance. Through an in-depth examination of original works, we will investigate this remarkable ancient society that first developed so much of what is now taken for granted in Western thought.
This honors course covers the equivalent of an undergraduate survey Classics course. In it we will read (in translations!) selections from original Greek texts, take (virtual!) tours of some of the major archaeological monuments of Classical Greece, and engage in active online discussions and group work as we reflect on what we read and see. The course will utilize a wide variety of web resources, including online texts of Sophocles, Aristophanes, Plato, Aristotle, Herodotus, and Thucydides. The readings and assignments in this course address such fundamental issues as the nature of humanism, science, philosophy, and history.
Throughout this course, students will develop critical thinking and writing skills in the presentation of short essays that synthesize the ideas addressed in the course.
While students should be prepared to do a substantial amount of reading (approximately 50 pages per week) and writing (paragraph-long weekly postings; two 3-to-5-page essays; and one, 5-to-10- page, final paper), this course is not set up to be a grind! Yes, this is a serious course; but at the same time you should be ready to be amazed, and to have fun, as we spend a semester basking in the intellectual light that still shines from the ancient Mediterranean world of Classical Greece!
CAVEAT: Some of this course involves the examination of Classical Greek art, including the nude human form. A mature attitude on the part of the student is necessary, and a fast DSL-computer connection would be very useful.