Elementary Modern Greek I
Designed to serve as an introduction to the language of modern Greece. Practice in speaking, grammatical analysis, composition, and graded reading. Four classes. No credit is given for HLS 101 unless followed by HLS 102.
Elementary Modern Greek II
A continuation of 101, aiming to develop the skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing modern Greek in a cultural context. Classroom activities include videos, comprehension and grammar exercises, and discussions. Four classes.
Intermediate Modern Greek
Advanced grammatical analysis, composition, and graded reading, with further practice in speaking. An introduction to themes in the Hellenic tradition through readings in modern Greek literature. Four classes. Prerequisite: 102 or instructor's permission.
Advanced Modern Greek
Advanced composition and oral practice aimed at developing idiomatic written and spoken style. Discussions entirely in Greek. Introduces students to contemporary Greek culture and literature through the study of works by Cavafy, Sikelianos, Seferis, Elytis, Ritsos, and Anagnostakis, among others. Readings from articles on current Greek topics. Four classes. Prerequisite: 105 or instructor's permission.
The Classical Roots of Western Literature
An introduction to the methods and some major texts of comparative literary study. It will focus on the Greco-Roman tradition, asking what it means to call a work a "classic": it will consider the outstanding characteristics of this tradition, how it arose and gained influence and attempt to place it in a global context. Readings will be divided into three topics: Epic Heroes (centering on Homer's Odyssey), Tragic Women (in ancient and modern drama), and the "invention" of modernity (Aeneid). Selected additional readings in non-Western literatures and in influential critical essays. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
Medieval Art in Europe
The art of Europe from the fall of Rome to the Renaissance. Emphasis on the effects of cultural, religious, and political change on artistic production. Works treated include the Lindisfarne Gospels, the Bayeux Tapestry, Chartres Cathedral, and the Ste. Chapelle. For department majors, this course satisfies the Group 2 distribution requirement. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
Byzantine Art and Architecture
Art and architecture of the Eastern Mediterranean and Eastern Europe ca. 600-1500. The course will focus on the art of the Byzantine Empire and its capital, Constantinople, and on its broad sphere of cultural influence (Russia, Armenia, Georgia, Sicily, Venice, Serbia, Bulgaria, Rumania). An examination of principal factors that shaped the artistic legacy of eastern Christendom during the Middle Ages. Offered in alternate years. For department majors, this course satisfies the Group 2 distribution requirement. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
Introduction to Ancient Philosophy
Professor/InstructorMerrick Emlyn Anderson
Designed to introduce the student to the Greek contribution to the philosophical and scientific ideas of the Western world through study of works of Plato, Aristotle, Epicurus, and Lucretius in English translation. Topics in moral and political philosophy, as well as epistemology and metaphysics, will be included. Attention will be focused on the quality of the arguments presented by the philosophers. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
Rhetoric: Classical Theory, Modern Practice
Professor/InstructorAndrew Laughlin Ford
Stylish, seductive, surreptitious, and scorned, the ubiquitous art of persuasion will be the focus of this course. We will first approach rhetoric through the classical tradition, learning to recognize basic figures of speech and thought with an eye towards identifying what is persuasive and why. We will then consider how rhetoric continues to thrive, despite abundant moral and philosophical attacks, in public self-presentation, whether of household products, of politicians, or institutions such as Princeton.
Professor/InstructorJoshua Henry Billings
A study of classical myths in their cultural context and in their wider application to abiding human concerns (such as creation, generation, sex and gender, identity, heroic experience, death, transformations, and transcendence). A variety of approaches for understanding the mythic imagination and symbol formation through literature, art, and film. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
The Greek World in the Hellenistic Age
Professor/InstructorMarc Domingo Gygax
The Greek experience from Alexander the Great through Cleopatra. An exploration of the dramatic expansion of the Greek world into the Near East brought about by the conquests and achievements of Alexander. Study of the profound political, social, and intellectual changes that stemmed from the interaction of the cultures, and the entrance of Greece into the sphere of Rome. Readings include history, biography, religious narrative, comedy, and epic poetry. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
Introduction to Post-Classical Greek from the Late Antique to the Byzantine Era
Readings will focus on historical, literary, philosophical, or religious texts with a range from the Hellenistic to the Byzantine periods. Two 90-minute seminars.
Christianity in the Roman Empire: Secret Rituals, Mystery Cults, and Apocalyptic Prophets
This course is a historical introduction to early Christian texts within and outside of the New Testament canon. We investigate how the Christian movement began, using ancient sources - Jewish, Greek, Roman, and Christian - about Jesus of Nazareth. We read the letters of the Apostle Paul and New Testament gospels, and the recently discovered gospels of Thomas and Mary. We will discuss the formation of the New Testament canon, views of Jesus, and attitudes toward gender, race and community. The course is accessible to students new to these sources, as well as to those familiar with them. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
Plato and His Predecessors
Readings in translation from pre-Socratic philosophers and from Plato's dialogues, to provide a broad history of Greek philosophy through Plato. Topics covered will include: Socrates's method of dialectic, his conceptions of moral virtue and human knowledge; Plato's theory of knowledge, metaphysics, and moral and political philosophy. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
The Art of the Iron Age: The Near East and Early Greece
Professor/InstructorNathan Todd Arrington
The course will focus on the formation of new artistic traditions in the ancient Near East and late-period Egypt after 1000 B.C.E. and then investigate their interrelationships with early Greece and the controversial theories of modern scholars of the dependence of early Greece on the ancient Near East. For department majors, this course satisfies the Group 1 distribution requirement. Two 90-minute classes.
Aristotle and His Successors
Professor/InstructorBenjamin Charles Atkin Morison
Aristotle's most important contributions in the areas of logic, scientific method, philosophy of nature, metaphysics, psychology, ethics, and politics. Several of his major works will be read in translation. Aristotle's successors in the Greco-Roman period will be studied briefly. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
Political Theory, Athens to Augustine
A study of the fundamental questions of political theory as framed in context of the institutions and writings of ancient Greek and Roman thinkers from the classical period into late antiquity and the spread of Christianity in Rome. We will canvass the meaning of justice in Plato's "Republic", the definition of the citizen in Aristotle's "Politics", to Cicero's reflections on the purpose of a commonwealth, and Augustine's challenge to those reflections and to the primacy of political life at all in light of divine purposes. Through classic texts, we explore basic questions of constitutional ethics and politics. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
Topics in Greek Literature
Professor/InstructorJoshua Timothy Katz
The subject matter of the course will vary from year to year depending on the interests of the instructor and students. The reading may concentrate on one or more authors, a theme, a genre, a personality, or an event.
Topics in Medieval Greek Literature
Professor/InstructorEmmanuel C. Bourbouhakis
The subject of this course will be medieval Greek Romantic fiction. We will read translations of the four surviving novels written in twelfth-century Constantinople in a bid to answer questions about the link between eroticism and the novel, truth and invention in the middle ages, who read fiction and why, and what role, if any, did the medieval or Byzantine Romances have in the story of the European novel. Above all, we will seek to recover some of the pleasure felt by the medieval readers and audiences of these novels.
Classical Historians and Their Philosophies of History
Professor/InstructorMarc Domingo Gygax
Major classical historians, especially Herodotus and Thucydides, are studied in connection with the theory and practice of the art or science of history. Lectures and preceptorials treat the development of historical writing and its relationship to philosophy, politics, literature, and science, and problems such as that of fact and interpretation in historical writing. Two lectures, one preceptorial.
The Classical Tradition
Classical mythology in the arts from Ovid to Shakespeare, from Zeuxis to Titian, with a particular emphasis on the subject of love. Introductory discussions on the nature of myth in its relation to the literary and visual arts. Readings will include major literary works from antiquity to the Renaissance integrated with the study of mythological painting, principally from 15th- and 16th-century Italy, including the works of Botticelli, Correggio, and Titian. One three-hour seminar.
The tragic vision as expressed by Greek, Renaissance, and modern writers who dramatize the relationship between human suffering and human achievement. Readings in Aeschylus, Sophocles, the Old Testament, Shakespeare, Milton, Chekhov, Ibsen, Sartre, Brecht, Beckett, and T. S. Eliot. One lecture, one two-hour seminar.
Topics in Ancient History
A period, problem, or theme in ancient history or religion with critical attention to the ancient sources and modern discussions. The topic and instructor vary from year to year. Format will change each time, depending on enrollment.
The Muslim Mediterranean
Although the word "Mediterranean" evokes images of Italy and Spain, much, if not most, of the Mediterranean has been under some form of Muslim rule--whether Arab or Turkish--since the 7th century C.E. This course will explore the Muslim experience of, and impact on, the Mediterranean world from the medieval period through the 20th century. Two 90-minute classes.
Modern Transformations of Classical Themes
A special topic concerning the adaptation of one or more classical themes in contemporary culture through media such as literature, film, and music. Two 90-minute seminars.