Courses in English

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

Archaic and Classical Greece
A survey of Greek history from Homer to the Hellenistic period, based primarily on a close reading of ancient sources in translation. The course covers the emergence of the polis in the Dark Age, colonization and tyranny, the birth of democracy, the Persian Wars, the interdependence of democracy and Athenian imperialism, the Peloponnesian War, and the rise of Macedon. Authors read include Herodotus, Thucydides, Aristophanes, Plutarch, Xenophon, and the Greek orators. 2 hrs. lect., 1 hr. disc.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

EUR, HIS, LIT

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Course Description

History of Rome
This course is an introductory survey of Roman history, from the emergence of the Republic to the influence of Rome on the western world. In the first half of the course we will study the origins of Rome's rise to dominance, the conquest of the Mediterranean and its effect on Roman society, and the crumbling of political structures under the weight of imperial expansion. In the second half, we will study the empire more broadly, starting with the emperors and moving out to the daily lives of people around the Mediterranean. The course will end with the importance of Rome for the Founding Fathers. We will read from authors including Polybius, Plutarch, Appian, Caesar, Suetonius, Tacitus, Juvenal, and Pliny. 2 hrs. lect./1 hr. disc.

Terms Taught

Fall 2021, Fall 2023

Requirements

EUR, HIS, LIT

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Course Description

Augustus and the World of Rome
In 44 B.C., Julius Caesar was assassinated. Within two months his adoptive son, Augustus, still in his teens, traveled to Rome, soon extorted the highest office of the Roman Republic, and after 13 years of civil war became the state's first emperor. The resulting "Augustan Age" (31 B.C. to A.D. 14) produced a period of political change and cultural achievement unparalleled in Rome's long history. In this course we will examine the literature, art, history, and politics of this era, evaluate the nature of Augustus's accomplishments, and explore the Roman world. Readings include: Augustus, Vergil, Suetonius, and I, Claudius. 2 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022

Requirements

EUR, HIS, LIT

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Course Description

The Rise and Fall of the Roman Republic
This course is an introduction to the literature, politics, culture and history of the Roman Republic (c.509-31BCE) - a period which saw Rome grow from a small city on the Tiber to the supreme power in the Mediterranean, and also saw the development of Latin literature. Our readings cover a broad variety of literary genres and authors: comedy (Plautus and Terence), lyric (Catullus), epic (Ennius), political speeches and letters (Cicero), history (Caesar, Sallust, Polybius), and didactic philosophy (Lucretius). As we read we will be careful to investigate how these texts present different and often conflicting ideas of what it means to be Roman, as well as how different ideologies of Rome compete throughout each work. 3 hrs. lect. 1hr. disc.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

EUR, HIS, LIT

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Course Description

Literature of the Roman Empire
In this course we will investigate the literature, culture, and history of the Roman Empire, focusing on how Romans sought, often at the cost of their own lives, to define the role and powers of the emperor and their place as subjects to this new, autocratic power. Texts we will read include: epic (Lucan), tragedy (Seneca), history (Tacitus), biography (Suetonius), prose fiction (Petronius), as well as early Christian literature. As we read we will seek to answer questions about the nature of freedom and empire, what is gained and lost by replacing a republican with an autocratic political system, and whether literature in this period can offer an accurate reflection of reality, function as an instrument of change and protest, or of fearful praise and flattery. 3 hrs lect. 1 hr. disc.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023

Requirements

CW, EUR, HIS, LIT

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Course Description

Greek and Roman Epic Poetry
Would Achilles and Hector have risked their lives and sacred honor had they understood human life and the Olympian gods as Homer portrays them in the Iliad? Why do those gods decide to withdraw from men altogether following the Trojan War, and why is Odysseus the man Athena chooses to help her carry out that project? And why, according to the Roman poet Vergil, do these gods command Aeneas, a defeated Trojan, to found an Italian town that will ultimately conquer the Greek cities that conquered Troy, replacing the Greek polis with a universal empire that will end all wars of human freedom? Through close study of Homer's Iliad and Odyssey, and Vergil's Aeneid, we explore how the epic tradition helped shape Greece and Rome, and define their contributions to European civilization. 3 hrs. lect., 1 hr. disc.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

CMP, EUR, LIT, PHL

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Course Description

The Golden Age of Athens: History and Literature
In this course we will trace the unprecedented intellectual innovation that begins with Greece’s triumph over the Persian invasions in 490 and 480-479 BC, continues through the emergence of radical democracy and imperialism at Athens, and culminates in the Peloponnesian War and Athens’ defeat in 404 BC by her former ally, Sparta. Through intensive study of selected works of historiography (Herodotus, Thucydides), tragedy (Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides), comedy (Aristophanes), and philosophy (Plato), we will explore the central concerns of 5th-century Athenians: freedom and power, knowledge and virtue, law and nature, and the place of the divine in the human world. 3 hr. lect., 1 hr. disc.

Terms Taught

Fall 2021

Requirements

EUR, HIS, LIT

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Course Description

Greek and Roman Comedy
A survey of the comic playwrights of Greece (Aristophanes and Menander) and Rome (Plautus and Terence) in light of their ancient social, political, and religious contexts as well as modern theoretical approaches to laughter (including psychoanalysis and structural anthropology). We will trace enduring aspects of the comic tradition that can be found in both Greece and Rome and also look forward to Renaissance and modern comedy. These include: the nature of the comic hero; the patterns of comic plots; the dependence of comedy on language; the comic poet's concern with questions of freedom and slavery, desire and repression. 3 hrs. lect., 1 hr. disc.

Terms Taught

Spring 2022, Spring 2025

Requirements

EUR, LIT

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Course Description

Greek Religion
In this course we will examine the religious experience of the Greeks in all its complexity and variety. Drawing on literary sources (e.g. Homer, Hesiod, tragedy, and comedy, among others) and archaeological evidence, we will study the Greek views of the gods as these emerge from both mythical narratives and cult practice. We will explore the Greek ideas of personal salvation, but also the importance of religious festivals for the community of the polis. Finally, while looking at ancient philosophical critiques of the traditional gods, we will trace the transition to Christianity and we will compare the sacred in Greek culture with the place of religion in our own society. 3 hrs. lect., 1 hr. disc.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2023

Requirements

EUR, HIS, PHL

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Course Description

Greek Philosophy: The Problem of Socrates
Why did Socrates “call philosophy down from the heavens, set her in the cities of men and also their homes, and compel her to ask questions about life and morals and things good and evil”? Why was philosophy indifferent to man, then considered dangerous to men when it did pay attention? How was philosophy ultimately transformed by Plato and Aristotle as a consequence of the examination of human knowledge that Socrates made intrinsic to philosophy? In this course we will consider the central questions of ancient Greek philosophy from the pre-Socratics through Plato and Aristotle by focusing on what Nietzsche called "the Problem of Socrates": why Socrates abandoned "pre-Socratic" natural science in order to examine the opinions of his fellow Athenians, and why they put him to death for corruption and impiety. Texts will include selected fragments of the pre-Socratics and sophists, works of Aristophanes, Xenophon, Plato, Aristotle , and Nietzsche. 3 hrs. lect disc.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020

Requirements

EUR, LIT, PHL

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Course Description

Roman Philosophy
In this course we will seek to answer the question of what is Roman philosophy - philosophia togata. Is it simply Greek philosophy in Roman dress? Or, while based in its Greek origins, does it grow to have a distinctive and rigorous character of its own, designed and developed to focus on uniquely "Roman" questions and problems, in particular, ethical, social, and political questions? We will investigate how some of the main schools of Hellenistic Greek thought came to be developed in Latin: Epicureanism (Lucretius), Academic Skepticism (Cicero), and Stoicism (Seneca). As we read we will investigate how each school offers different answers to crucial questions such as what is the goal of life? What is the highest good? Should one take part in politics or not? What is the nature of the soul? What is the nature of Nature itself? Is there an afterlife? Can we ever have a certain answer to any of these questions? 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2023

Requirements

CW, EUR, PHL

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Course Description

Apocalypse When? Reason and Revelation in the Ancient World
Apocalypse: why does this word, originally meaning “revelation,” hold such power today? In this class we will investigate the origins of apocalyptic and eschatological thought in order to understand Greek, Roman, Jewish, and Christian ideas about the end of the world in their historical context and to see how they shape contemporary visions of the end. We will read and discuss a wide range of texts, including Hesiod, Plato, Lucretius, Cicero, Seneca, and Daniel and Revelation from the Bible. The ways in which globalization and political leaders have shaped apocalyptic thought from ancient times to today will be an area of particular focus. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, EUR, PHL

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Course Description

Sparta and Athens
For over 200 years, Athens and Sparta were recognized as the most powerful Greek city-states, and yet one was a democracy (Athens), the other an oligarchy (Sparta). One promoted the free and open exchange of ideas (Athens); one tried to remain closed to outside influence (Sparta). This course studies the two city-states from the myths of their origins through their respective periods of hegemony to their decline as imperial powers. The goal is to understand the interaction between political success and intellectual and cultural development in ancient Greece. 2 hrs. lect., 1 hr. disc.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, EUR, HIS, LIT

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Course Description

Roman Law
The Romans' codification of civil law is often considered their greatest intellectual achievement and most original and influential contribution to the world. This course treats the four main divisions of Roman law (persons, property, obligations, and succession). Great emphasis is placed on the role of law in Roman society. How did the law influence the lives of Roman citizens living under it? How did ordinary Roman citizens shape the law? Students will come to understand the principles of Roman law through actual cases. Designed for students with some background in Roman history and/or literature. 2 hrs. lect./1 disc.

Terms Taught

Spring 2023, Spring 2024

Requirements

EUR, HIS

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Course Description

Seminar in Classical Literature: Sophocles
The life of the tragic playwright Sophocles spans the Athenian 5th century BCE – from the Persian Wars to the defeat of Athens by Sparta. It thus coincides with Athens’ incredible intellectual and artistic achievements, its increasingly radical democracy, but also its ever more aggressive foreign policy. Against this background, Sophocles’ tragedies probe the mysteries of the soul, both of the individual and of the community, and confront the riddle of the human existence. In this seminar we will study closely Sophocles’ seven surviving plays as astute responses to their historical context and as poignant reflections on the human condition. Time permitting, we will also consider their profound impact on later thought and art, including opera and film. 3 hrs. sem.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022, Spring 2023, Spring 2024, Spring 2025

Requirements

CMP, EUR, HIS, LIT

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Course Description

History of Classical Literature
A comprehensive overview of the major literary, historical, and philosophical works of Greece and Rome. Greek authors studied include Homer, Aeschylus, Sophocles, Herodotus, Aristophanes, Thucydides, Plato, and Aristotle. Roman authors include Lucretius, Cicero, Livy, Vergil, Petronius, and Tacitus. Required of senior majors in Classics/Classical Studies (see CLAS 0701 below) and open to all interested students with some background in Greek and Roman literature, history, or philosophy. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

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Course Description

Independent Study
(Approval required)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Winter 2025, Spring 2025

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Course Description

(Approval Required)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Winter 2025, Spring 2025

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Course Description

Senior Essay for Classics/Classical Studies Majors
(Approval required)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Winter 2023, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024, Fall 2024, Winter 2025, Spring 2025

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Course Description

History of Classical Literature
A comprehensive overview of the major literary, historical, and philosophical works of Greece and Rome. Greek authors studied include Homer, Aeschylus, Sophocles, Herodotus, Aristophanes, Thucydides, Plato, and Aristotle. Roman authors include Lucretius, Cicero, Livy, Vergil, Petronius, and Tacitus. Required of senior majors in Classics/Classical Studies and open to all interested students with some background in Greek and Roman literature, history, or philosophy. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

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Courses in Greek

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

Beginning Greek I
This course is a rapid and intensive introduction to classical Greek for beginners. The aim of the course is to prepare students to read the major authors of Greek literature. In addition to a systematic study of grammar and syntax, we will also read excerpts from a variety of ancient authors.

Terms Taught

Winter 2022, Winter 2024, Winter 2025

Requirements

LNG, WTR

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Course Description

Beginning Greek II
This course completes the introductory course offered in Winter Term and will conclude with a reading of Plato's dialogue, Ion. 6 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Spring 2024

Requirements

LNG

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Course Description

Intermediate Greek: Attic Prose-Lysias & Plato *
Readings in major authors. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

EUR, LNG

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Course Description

Intermediate Greek
Readings in majors authors. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2025

Requirements

EUR, LNG

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Course Description

Readings in Greek Literature I
Readings in major authors. Students should have had some formal study of Greek and should consult with the instructor during the first week of classes to determine whether or not the class is at the appropriate level. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2021, Fall 2023

Requirements

LIT, LNG

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Course Description

Readings in Greek Literature II
Readings in major authors. Students should have had some formal study of Greek and should consult with the instructor during the first week of classes to determine whether or not the class is at the appropriate level. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Spring 2024

Requirements

LIT, LNG

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Course Description

Advanced Readings in Greek Literature: Homer's /Iliad/
Readings in major authors. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2024

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Course Description

Advanced Readings in Greek Literature II: Greek Cosmology–Hesiod and Plato
Readings in major authors. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2025

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Courses in Latin

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

Beginning Latin I
The course offers an intensive introduction to the Latin language that prepares students to read the major authors of ancient Roman literature. In addition to their systematic study of grammar and syntax, students translate excerpts from Vergil, Seneca and the Vulgate Bible. This course is designed for students who have had no previous experience with Latin, as well as those who have had some Latin but want to review the fundamentals of grammar.

Terms Taught

Winter 2021, Winter 2023

Requirements

LNG, WTR

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Course Description

Intermediate Latin: Prose
Readings in major authors. Students should have had some formal study of Latin and should consult with the instructor during the first week of classes to determine whether or not the class is at the appropriate level. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2021, Fall 2023

Requirements

EUR, LNG

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Course Description

Intermediate Latin: Poetry
Readings in major authors. Students should have had some formal study of Latin and should consult with the instructor during the first week of classes to determine whether or not the class is at the appropriate level. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Spring 2024

Requirements

EUR, LNG

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Course Description

Readings in Latin Literature I
Readings in major authors. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2022, Fall 2024

Requirements

LIT, LNG

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Course Description

Readings in Latin Literature II: Vergil’s Aeneid*
Readings in major authors. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2025

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Course Description

Advanced Readings in Latin I
Readings in major authors. . Students should have had some formal study of Latin and should consult with the instructor during the first week of classes to determine whether or not the class is at the appropriate level. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2021, Fall 2023

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Course Description

Advanced Readings in Latin II
Readings in major authors. . Students should have had some formal study of Latin and should consult with the instructor during the first week of classes to determine whether or not the class is at the appropriate level. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2022, Spring 2024

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Course Description

Advanced Readings in Latin III
Readings in major authors. Students should have had some formal study of Latin and should consult with the instructor during the first week of classes to determine whether or not the class is at the appropriate level. 3 hrs lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

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Course Description

Advanced Readings in Latin IV: Flavian Literature
Readings in major authors. 3 hrs lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2023, Spring 2024

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Classical Studies Cognates

Courses offered in the past four years. Courses offered currently are as noted.

Course Description

History of Mathematics
This course studies the history of mathematics chronologically beginning with its ancient origins in Babylonian arithmetic and Egyptian geometry. The works of Euclid, Apollonius, and Archimedes and the development of ancient Greek deductive mathematics is covered. The mathematics from China, India, and the Arab world is analyzed and compared. Special emphasis is given to the role of mathematics in the growth and development of science, especially astronomy. European mathematics from the Renaissance through the 19th Century is studied in detail including the development of analytic geometry, calculus, probability, number theory, and modern algebra and analysis. (MATH 0122 or waiver)

Terms Taught

Fall 2020

Requirements

CMP, DED

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Course Description

Ancient Greek Philosophy
This class introduces students to the range and power of Greek thought, which initiated the Western philosophical tradition. We will begin by exploring the origins of philosophy as found in myth (primarily Hesiod) and in the highly original speculation of the Pre-Socratic thinkers (such as Heraclitus and Parmenides). We will then focus on Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, examining their transformations of these earlier traditions and their own divergent approaches to ethics and education. We will also consider the influences of Greek philosophy on later thought. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Fall 2020, Fall 2021, Fall 2022, Fall 2023, Fall 2024

Requirements

EUR, HIS, PHL

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Course Description

Philosophy of Plato
In this class, we will explore the significance, influence, and development of Plato's thought, paying special attention to the form of the dramatic dialogue and topics such as Platonic love, rhetoric and politics, learning and recollection, and the theory of forms. We will begin with the early period (dialogues such as the Meno and the Apology) focused on the historical figure of Socrates, continue to the middle period (Symposium, Republic), in which Plato develops his own distinctive views; and conclude with the later period (Philebus, Parmenides) in which Plato suggests a critique of Socrates and his own earlier positions. (Previous course in philosophy or waiver)

Terms Taught

Spring 2021

Requirements

EUR, PHL

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Course Description

Philosophy of Aristotle
In this class we will explore both the original breadth and the contemporary relevance of Aristotle's thought. We will read a diverse selection of his writings, beginning with ethical and political works, continuing to works on art and poetry, the soul, and nature, and concluding with logical and ontological works. We will ask why Aristotelian virtue ethics in particular has enjoyed a recent renaissance and generated special interest in Aristotle's ideas about the ethical role of friendship, the perceptive power of the emotions, and the different kinds of intelligence. (Previous course in philosophy or waiver.) 3 hrs. sem.

Terms Taught

Spring 2024

Requirements

CW, EUR, PHL

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Course Description

Introduction to Political Philosophy
What is politics and how should it be studied? Is there a best regime? A best way of life? How are these two things related, if at all? Can we gain knowledge of such topics? We will examine these questions through a study of the some or all of the following texts: Plato, Apology of Socrates, Republic; Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, Politics; Thucydides, The Peloponnesian War; St. Augustine, Confessions; St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Summa Contra Gentiles; Machiavelli, The Prince; Hobbes, Leviathan; Locke, Second Treatise on Government; Rousseau, Discourse on the Origin and Foundations of Inequality Among Men; Marx, The Communist Manifesto, The German Ideology, Capital; and Weber, “Science as a Vocation.” 4 hrs. lect./disc. (Political Theory)

Terms Taught

Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022, Fall 2022, Spring 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Fall 2024

Requirements

EUR, PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Ancient and Medieval Political Philosophy
We will study some classic works in ancient and medieval political philosophy: Plato (Laws, RepublicApology, Republic, Gorgias, Protagoras, Meno); Aristotle (Ethics, Politics, Rhetoric); Cicero (Republic, Laws), Maimonides (Guide to the Perplexed), Aquinas (Summa Theologica, Summa Contra Gentiles), Alfarabi (The Political Regime). (PSCI 0101 or PSCI 0107 or by waiver) 4 hrs. lect./disc. (Political Theory)/

Terms Taught

Spring 2025

Requirements

PHL, SOC

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Course Description

Women and the Sacred in Late Antiquity and Byzantium
This course will explore the female religious experience in Greco-Roman antiquity and Early Christianity. We shall trace the transition from the mystery religions of Demeter and Isis in the Eastern Mediterranean to the cult of Mary the Mother of God (Theotokos) and the worship of female saints. Drawing on a wide range of sources (hymns, saints' Lives, Apocryphal Gospels, Patristic texts, and icons), we shall study the varieties of female devotion and examine the roles available to women in the early Church: deaconesses and desert mothers, monastics and martyrs, poets and rulers. Different theoretical approaches will enable us to ask a series of questions: were women in the early Church considered capable of holiness? To what extent did the female 'gifts of the spirit' challenge church authority? What is distinct about the feminine experience of the divine? Finally, we shall consider the vision and poetics of female spirituality in select modern poets. 3 hrs. lect.

Terms Taught

Spring 2023

Requirements

EUR, HIS, PHL

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