Hellenic Studies

Chair: John Geanakoplos, 30 Hillhouse Ave., 432-3397, john.geanakoplos@yale.eduDirector: George Syrimis, 34 Hillhouse Ave., 432-9342, george.syrimis@yale.edu; http://hsp.macmillan.yale.edu/

Hellenic Studies is a program of the European Studies Council. The core of the program is the teaching of modern Greek, supplemented with other courses and events related to the study of postantiquity Greece, as well as the society and culture of modern Greece and its interaction with the rest of Europe and the world. Related courses can be found in the listings of Anthropology, History, History of Art, Literature, Political Science, Religious Studies, and Russian and East European Studies. A major in Ancient and Modern Greek is described under Classics. Students who have an interest in postantiquity Greek language, society, or culture are advised to consult with the program administrator of the Hellenic Studies program.

Hellenic Studies is an interdisciplinary program of the Council on European Studies located at the Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies. The core of the program is comprehensive instruction in the modern Greek language at the elementary, intermediate, and advanced levels. The program supplements this language instruction with a variety of courses and events focused on modern Greek literature and culture as well as Ottoman, Balkan, and modern Greek history, all situated within the broader geographical, historical, and comparative context of postantiquity Greece. Relevant courses are taught in various departments in the humanities and social sciences.

A major in Ancient and Modern Greek is offered in conjunction with the Department of Classics. In addition, the program in Hellenic Studies offers language and research fellowships to eligible Yale students. First-year students are encouraged to consult with the directors of the program for advice on appropriate programs of study.


Professors John Geanakoplos (Economics)

Lecturers Paris Aslanidis, George Syrimis

Senior Lector Maria Kaliambou


MGRK 110a, Elementary Modern Greek IMaria Kaliambou

An introduction to modern Greek, with emphasis on oral expression. Use of communicative activities, graded texts, written assignments, grammar drills, audiovisual material, and contemporary documents. In-depth cultural study.  L11½ Course cr
MTWThF 9:25am-10:15am

MGRK 120b, Elementary Modern Greek IIMaria Kaliambou

Continuation of MGRK 110. Prerequisite: MGRK 110.  L21½ Course cr
MTWThF 9:25am-10:15am

* MGRK 130a, Intermediate Modern Greek IMaria Kaliambou

Further development of oral and written linguistic skills, using authentic readings and audiovisual materials. Continued familiarization with contemporary Greek culture. Prerequisite: MGRK 120 or equivalent.  L31½ Course cr
MTWThF 10:30am-11:20am

* MGRK 140b, Intermediate Modern Greek IIMaria Kaliambou

Further development of listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills in modern Greek. Presentation of short research projects related to modern Greece. Prerequisite: MGRK 130 or equivalent.  L41½ Course cr
MTWThF 10:30am-11:20am

* MGRK 151a, Advanced Modern GreekMaria Kaliambou

Advanced language course intended to further develop reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills, while sharpening students’ sensitivity toward modern Greek culture. MGRK 140 or permission of instructor.  L5
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

* MGRK 215a / CLCV 209a / LITR 230a, Nikos Kazantzakis: From Revolution to NihilismGeorge Syrimis

The Greek poet, novelist, essayist, philosopher, playwright, and travel writer Nikos Kazantzakis. The philosophical influence of Darwin, Nietzsche, and Bergson on Kazantzakis; his fascination with the figures of Christ and Odysseus. Questions of fiction and autobiography, history and revolution, travel writing, twentieth-century existentialism, and the reception of the Homeric tradition.  WR, HUTr
Th 1:30pm-3:20pm

* MGRK 216a / CLCV 216a / LITR 239a / WGSS 209a, Dionysus in ModernityGeorge Syrimis

Modernity's fascination with the myth of Dionysus. Questions of agency, identity and community, and psychological integrity and the modern constitution of the self. Manifestations of Dionysus in literature, anthropology, and music; the Apollonian-Dionysiac dichotomy; twentieth-century variations of these themes in psychoanalysis, surrealism, and magical realism.  HUTr
F 1:30pm-3:20pm

* MGRK 218b / FILM 243b / WGSS 245b, Family in Greek Literature and FilmGeorge Syrimis

The structure and multiple appropriations of the family unit, with a focus on the Greek tradition. The influence of aesthetic forms, including folk literature, short stories, novels, and film, and of political ideologies such as nationalism, Marxism, and totalitarianism. Issues related to gender, sibling rivalry, dowries and other economic factors, political allegories, feminism, and sexual and social violence both within and beyond the family.  WR, HUTr
F 1:30pm-3:20pm

* MGRK 222b / HIST 237Jb, History of Modern GreeceParis Aslanidis

This seminar studies the history of modern Greece since the early 19th century. Greece’s contested position between East and West, both geopolitically and symbolically, functions as the ideational backdrop for the study of the country’s historical trajectory and the development of its main institutions. Discussion of the future of the Greek state vis-à-vis the ongoing sociopolitical crisis it has been facing since its near bankruptcy in 2010 is also considered.  HU
T 1:30pm-3:20pm

* MGRK 236a / PLSC 138a / SOCY 221a, The Euro CrisisParis Aslanidis

Examination of how Europe continues to struggle with repercussions of the Great Recession and the impact of the Eurozone crisis in countries such as Portugal, Ireland, Spain, and, especially, Greece. Topics include the euro as a viable common currency; why and how the Eurozone crisis erupted and spread; and whether this catastrophe could have been averted.  SO
Th 1:30pm-3:20pm

* MGRK 237a / GLBL 215a / LAST 386a / PLSC 375a / SOCY 389a, Populism from Chavez to TrumpParis Aslanidis

Investigation of the nature of the populist phenomenon and its impact on politics, society, and the economy in various regions of the world. Conceptual and methodological analyses are supported by comparative assessments of various empirical instances, from populist politicians such as Hugo Chavez and Donald Trump, to populist social movements such as the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street.  SO
T 1:30pm-3:20pm

* MGRK 300b / CLCV 319b / HIST 242Jb / WGSS 293b, The Olympic Games, Ancient and ModernGeorge Syrimis

Introduction to the history of the Olympic Games from antiquity to the present. The mythology of athletic events in ancient Greece and the ritual, political, and social ramifications of the actual competitions. The revival of the modern Olympic movement in 1896, the political investment of the Greek state at the time, and specific games as they illustrate the convergence of athletic cultures and sociopolitical transformations in the twentieth century.  HU
Th 9:25am-11:15am

* MGRK 304b / ER&M 376b / PLSC 376b / SOCY 307b, Extreme and Radical Right MovementsParis Aslanidis

Extreme and radical right movements and political parties are a recurrent phenomenon found in most parts of the world. Discussion of their foundational values and the causes of their continuous, even increasing, support among citizens and voters.    SO
Th 1:30pm-3:20pm

* MGRK 482a or b, Independent TutorialStaff

For students with advanced language skills in modern Greek who wish to engage in individual study or concentrated reading and research on material not otherwise offered in courses. Applicants submit a detailed project proposal to the associate program chair. The student must meet with the instructor for at least one hour each week, and the work must terminate in a term paper or its equivalent.