AP/HUMA 1105 9.00
Myth And Imagination In Greece And Rome
The mythical narratives of the ancient Greeks and the Romans constitute a continuous tradition that extends from before the reach of history to the present day. Myths survive in literary texts and visual art because their narratives have continued proved compelling and fascinating in different languages, historical eras, and social contexts (the myths of Odysseus, Heracles, and Oedipus are just a few examples). Literature and art of all kinds have been inspired to retell and represent their stories, while the search for the meaning of mythic stories has informed and profoundly influenced a great range of intellectual disciplines including literary criticism, anthropology, and psychoanalysis. In these ways, myths have and continue to exercise a fundamental influence on western culture and, in consequence, even today they maintain a certain cosy familiarity. On the other hand, the historical contexts in which the Greeks and Romans told and retold these mythical narratives are to us in the twenty-first century culturally alien and unfamiliar.
SUMMER 2023 – Course Director: M. Khimji
A close examination of influential primary texts from ancient Greek and Roman myth and philosophy with a view to understanding fundamental ideas, principles, and values on the basis of which the ancient Greeks and Romans understood themselves, others, and their world. Students are required to read and engage seriously with the assigned primary texts independently, i.e., without reference to any AI, Internet, or secondary sources, for the duration of the course.
Texts: Homer, Iliad; Plato: Euthyphro, Apology, Phaedo, and selections from Republic; Virgil: Aeneid; selections from the New Testament.
Final grades will be determined on the basis of in-class tests (25%, 25%, 15%, 15%) and tutorial work (20%).