C G Christofides
The aim of the course is to present to the students, in a historical and analytical way, a number of Greek literary and art masterpieces. In this overview, based on specific "great books" or monuments of Hellenic culture, literature and the visual forms will interact. For instance, when we begin our literary study with Sophocles, Oedipus the King, the class will have been initiated into the cultural context of pre-classical Greece, the Cycladic, Minoan and Mycenaean civilizations, mostly through the history of art of these periods, linguistic questions, notably Linear B, as well as references to the Homeric epics. This multi-disciplinary study of Oedipus the King will include Periclean Athens and its monuments, segments of Thucydides Peloponnesian War, and of course, Aristotle's theory of poetry and fine art. Considerations of New Testament Greek will then be examined by studying the Greek language of the Gospel of John. Early Christian art in the Byzantine world will provide the art historical and iconographic dimension. "Greekness" will be a topic that will be discussed by reading the first half of the Kazantzakis Report to Greco along the great Yannis Ritsos poem, Romiosyne. Finally, the poetry of Constantine Cavafy, considered as one of the very great Greek poets, and the poetry of the two Greek Nobel prize winners, George Seferis and Odysseas Elytis, will enable the students to gain an understanding of the modern nation founded after the Revolution of 1821.
Student learning goals
General method of instruction
Class assignments and grading
Note: A lot of reading material will be provided by the professor in "xeroxed" form.