Classical Civilization (CLCV)

* CLCV 051a / HUMS 061a / LITR 029a / MUSI 054a / THST 051a, Performing AntiquityPauline LeVen

This seminar introduces students to some of the most influential texts of Greco-Roman Antiquity and investigates the meaning of their “performance” in different ways: 1) how they were musically and dramatically performed in their original context in Antiquity (what were the rhythms, the harmonies, the dance-steps, the props used, etc.); 2) what the performance meant, in socio-cultural and political terms, for the people involved in performing or watching it, and how performance takes place beyond the stage; 3) how these texts are performed in modern times (what it means for us to translate and stage ancient plays with masks, a chorus, etc.; to reenact some ancient institutions; to reconstruct ancient instruments or compose “new ancient music”); 4) in what ways modern poems, plays, songs, ballets constitute forms of interpretation, appropriation, or contestation of ancient texts; 5) in what ways creative and embodied practice can be a form of scholarship. Besides reading ancient Greek and Latin texts in translation, students read and watch performances of modern works of reception: poems, drama, ballet, and instrumental music. A few sessions are devoted to practical activities (reenactment of a symposium, composition of ancient music, etc.). Enrollment limited to first-year students. Preregistration required; see under First-Year Seminar Program.  WR, HU
TTh 1pm-2:15pm

CLCV 125a / PHIL 125a, Introduction to Ancient PhilosophyStaff

An introduction to ancient philosophy, beginning with the earliest pre-Socratics, concentrating on Plato and Aristotle, and including a brief foray into Hellenistic philosophy. Intended to be taken in conjunction with PHIL 126.  WR, HU0 Course cr

CLCV 160a / ARCG 243a / HSAR 243a, Greek Art and ArchitectureMilette Gaifman

Monuments of Greek art and architecture from the late Geometric period (c. 760 B.C.) to Alexander the Great (c. 323 B.C.). Emphasis on social and historical contexts.  HU
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

CLCV 200b / GLBL 204b / HIST 204b, Global Leadership, 600 BCE–600 CENoel Lenski

This course provides students with an accessible and engaging introduction to both the classical world and the problems of political organization and leadership through time and across societies. Students learn to think comparatively between individuals, societies, and systems and to analyze different ideals of leadership. This means considering not only traditional masculine and military conceptions of rule but also the leadership roles and styles of women, slaves, and rebels. We hope to bring into view, in other words, the intersectional challenges to power faced by non-traditional leaders in a world dominated by gender, class, and cultural prejudices, and to show how non-traditional leaders confronted and overcame these. Students draw upon this experience to access the premodern world as an alternative but related historical reality which can productively inform their engagement with the present.  HU0 Course cr
MW 9am-10:15am

CLCV 204b / HIST 300b, Alexander the Great and the Hellenistic WorldStaff

The history and culture of the ancient world between the rise of Macedonian imperialism in the fourth century B.C.E. and the annexation of Egypt by Augustus in 30 B.C.E. Particular attention to Alexander, one of the most important figures in world history, and to the definition of "Hellenism."  HU0 Course cr

CLCV 205a / HIST 205a, Introduction to Ancient Greek HistoryStaff

Introduction to Greek history, tracing the development of Greek civilization as manifested in the political, military, intellectual, and creative achievements from the Bronze Age through the end of the Classical period. Students read original sources in translation as well as secondary scholarship to better understand the rise and fall of the ancient Greeks—the civilization at the very heart of Western Civilization.   HU0 Course cr

CLCV 206a / HIST 217a / HUMS 144a, The Roman RepublicStaff

The origins, development, and expansion of Rome from the earliest times to the deaths of Caesar and Cicero. Cultural identity and interaction; slavery, class, and the family; politics, rhetoric, and propaganda; religion; imperialism; monumentality and memory; and the perception and writing of history. Application of literary and archaeological evidence.  HU0 Course cr

CLCV 207b / HIST 218b, The Roman EmpireStaff

The history of the Roman Empire from its establishment by Augustus to the reign of Justinian. Attention to social, intellectual, and religious changes, as well as to the framework of historical events within which these changes took place, and to the processes by which the Roman Empire was replaced by the institutions of the Western Middle Ages and the Byzantine Empire.  HU0 Course cr

* CLCV 216a / LITR 239a / MGRK 216a / 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
W 1:30pm-3:20pm

CLCV 219a / HIST 311a / NELC 111a, Egypt of the PharaohsStaff

Egypt was among the first centralized territorial states in the world, and, because Egyptian history offers us 4000 years of institutional development and change, the focus of this course is on the long-term development of the ancient Egyptian state, its institutions, and its culture. The course introduces students to the history and culture of ancient Egypt from the rise of the central state to the early Christian period. General historical trends, the relationship of Egyptian history to other contemporary ancient cultures, and the legacy of Egypt to the “West” are also considered. At the end of the course, students have an understanding of the material culture and the historical development of ancient Egypt, and an appreciation for the relationship of the ancient sources to the construction of ancient Egyptian history.  HU0 Course cr

CLCV 223a / HIST 212a, The Ancient EconomyStaff

A survey of the economies of the ancient Mediterranean world, with emphasis on economic institutions, the development of the economies over time, ancient economic thought, and the interrelationships between institutions and economic growth. Material evidence for studying the economies of the ancient world, including coinage, documentary material, and archaeology.  HU0 Course cr

CLCV 236a / HIST 225a, Roman LawStaff

Basic principles of Roman law and their applications to the social and economic history of antiquity and to the broader history of international law. Topics include the history of persons and things, inheritance, crime and tort, and legal procedure. Questions of social and economic history and the history of jurisprudence from the fifth century B.C.E. to the present.  HU0 Course cr

* CLCV 319b / HIST 242Jb / MGRK 300b / 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
W 9:25am-11:15am

* CLCV 320b / PHIL 499b, Before SocratesBrad Inwood

The origins of Greek philosophy lie in the period before Socrates and Plato. The so-called Presocratics set up many of the questions developed by Plato: the nature of being, the structure of matter, human knowledge and its limitations, causation, etc. Three of the most important early Greek thinkers are studied in this course: Heraclitus, Parmenides, and Empedocles. Knowledge of ancient Greek is not required. Prerequisites: PHIL 125, CLCV 125 or the fall semester of Directed Studies Philosophy.  WR, HU

* CLCV 345a / HUMS 145a, Ancient Greek and Roman Novels in ContextStaff

A thorough examination of ancient novels as ancestors to the modern novel. Focus on seven surviving Greek and Roman novels, with particular emphasis on questions of interpretation, literary criticism, and literary theory, as well as cultural issues raised by the novels, including questions of gender and sexuality, ethnicity, cultural identity, religion, and intellectual culture of the first centuries A.D.  WR, HU

* CLCV 377a / HUMS 177a / PLSC 306a, Tragedy and PoliticsDaniel Schillinger

The canonical Greek tragedians—Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides—dramatize fundamental and discomfiting questions that are often sidelined by the philosophical tradition. In this seminar, we read plays about death, war, revenge, madness, impossible choices, calamitous errors, and the destruction of whole peoples. Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides were also piercing observers of political life. No less than Plato and Aristotle, the Attic tragedians write to elicit reflection on the basic patterns of politics: democracy and tyranny, war and peace, the family and the city, the rule of law and violence. Finally, we also approach Greek tragedy through its reception. Aristophanes, Plato, Aristotle, and Nietzsche: all these thinkers responded to tragedy. Texts include Aeschylus, Oresteia; Aristophanes, Frogs and Lysistrata; Euripides, BacchaeHeracles, and Trojan Women; Nietzsche, The Birth of Tragedy; Plato, Symposium; and Sophocles, AntigonePhiloctetes, and Oedipus Tyrannus. Previous work in political theory, classics, or philosophy is recommended.   HU
W 3:30pm-5:20pm

* CLCV 447b / PHIL 347b, Pleasure in Plato and AristotleVerity Harte

Pleasure is a central topic of moral psychology. This course focuses on certain central questions and the answers given by philosophers of Classical Greek antiquity: What is pleasure? Where and how does it fit in animal and human psychology? Where and how does it fit in a good human life? Is pleasure a good, the good, something else entirely? The main philosophers in focus are Plato and Aristotle, but the hedonist theories of Epicurus and of the Cyrenaic school are points of comparison and contrast. Our reading is supplemented by appropriate material from modern philosophical and psychological discussions of pleasure and of hedonism. All readings are in translation. Enrollment priority is given to seniors and juniors if necessary. All participants must have taken at least one prior course in the history of ancient philosophy and at least one other prior course in philosophy.   HU

* CLCV 498a, Senior Tutorial in Classical CivilizationAndrew Johnston

Tutorial for seniors in Classical Civilization. As a culminating experience in the major, the student completes under the supervision of a faculty member an original research project, intensive language and literature study, or a creative endeavor. To register, the student must submit a written plan of study for approval by the director of undergraduate studies and the faculty instructor. Fulfills the senior requirement for the B.A. degree. Enrollment limited to senior students majoring in Classical Civilization.