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Winter Academic Term 2001 Course Guide

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Courses in Classical Civilization

This page was created at 7:48 AM on Thu, Oct 26, 2000.

Winter Term, 2001 (January 4 April 26)

Open courses in Classical Civilization

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The Department of Classical Studies believes that the literature, monuments, and social institutions of the ancient world, together with the reflections of the Greek and Roman thinkers about their own cultures, are of unique value in themselves, well worth our contemplation and understanding; and that as we attempt to learn about and appreciate classical civilization, we necessarily learn as well a variety of contemporary methodologies and disciplines.

The department offers three groups of courses for distribution, those in Classical Civilization (introductory courses that require no knowledge of Greek or Latin), courses in Classical Archaeology, and upper-level language courses in Greek and Latin authors or genres. While only a few courses are repeated in yearly or biennial rotation, most courses are offered less regularly. This system guarantees that the instructor approaches the subject each time with fresh impetus. We believe in a healthy change and variation in our course offerings.

Classical Civilization offerings include the general surveys of Greek and Roman civilizations (CC 101 and 102), which provide (through readings, lectures, and discussions) a broad understanding of the literatures, thought, and social development of ancient Greece and Rome, and thus provide the student with knowledge of and appreciation for our cultural origins, as well as an acquaintance with modern methods for understanding an ancient culture. These courses are taught each year. CC 101 is offered in the Fall and CC 102 is offered in the Winter. Other courses provide understanding of particular aspects of the ancient world, approached from a variety of disciplines and studies literary, philosophical, historical, sociological, and so on. Some students (particularly those who have already developed special interests in such disciplines) may wish to explore one of these topics without having had a broader introduction.

Courses in this division do not require a knowledge of Greek or Latin. They are intended for students who wish to acquire knowledge of ancient literature, life, and thought, and of the debt modern civilization owes the Greeks and Romans.


CLCIV 102. Classical Civilization II: The Ancient Roman World (in English).

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Robert John Sklenar (rsklenar@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: (4). (HU).

Foriegn Lit

Credits: (4).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

What did it mean to be Roman in the Ancient World? Was it all about togas, orgies, and world conquest? Or anxiety, violence, and a propensity for self-destruction? This course will approach the issue of Roman identity from a variety of social, political and philosophical angles. Using selected Roman historians (Livy, Tacitus) and poets (Catullus, Vergil, Ovid, and Lucan) as our guides, we will explore who the Romans thought they were, what position they felt their society occupied in the Mediterranean world and in the universe, and how their self-definition changed over time. Particular emphasis will be placed on the ways in which the Romans constructed their past in order to understand who they were in the present. Grade will be based on exams, papers, and participation in discussion sections.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 4 Waitlist Code: 4

CLCIV 120. First-year Seminar in Classical Civilization (Humanities).

Section 002 Human and Divine in the Ancient World

Instructor(s): John F Shean (jfshean@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Only first-year students, including those with sophomore standing, may pre-register for First-Year Seminars. All others need permission of instructor. (3). (HU).

First-Year Seminar, Foriegn Lit

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: http://www-personal.umich.edu/~jfshean/herodo~1.htm

From the very beginnings of human consciousness, mankind has regarded the divine as an integral part of the physical world which, for better or worse, had a profound impact on everyday life. In response, all human societies tried to establish a modus vivendi with the numinous forces surrounding them both to harness their benefits and to avoid harm.

This seminar is a survey of the different types of relationships portrayed between humans and the divine from the early Mesopotamia to the triumph of Christianity in the fourth century, CE. We will examine these relationships by reading some of the more significant works of literature that have survived from the ancient world in order to study human attitudes towards the supernatural and to consider the nature of human-divine interactions described by the various authors. While reading through these texts, we will also consider the following issues:

  • What was humanity's overall attitude towards the divine and how did this change over time and across different cultures?
  • Did human beings regard the gods as essentially beneficent or malignant?
  • Did the gods use their power to enforce a moral code or were they capricious, even spiteful?
  • What did human beings owe the gods?
  • What did the gods owe in return?
  • Did humanity need the gods?
  • Did the gods need mankind?
  • How did Christianity change human attitudes towards the divine?

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 4

CLCIV 120. First-year Seminar in Classical Civilization (Humanities).

Section 003 Literacy and Orality in the Ancient World

Instructor(s): Arthur Verhoogt

Prerequisites & Distribution: Only first-year students, including those with sophomore standing, may pre-register for First-Year Seminars. All others need permission of instructor. (3). (HU).

First-Year Seminar, Foriegn Lit

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

What were the uses of writing in the ancient world? What the uses of the spoken word? When were texts (literature, laws, decrees, accounts) written down, and why? Why not?

Every student of the ancient world will have to address these questions and more when assessing the textual information at his/her disposal.

The concepts of orality and literacy are important for our understanding of the ancient world. Writing, as is quite apparent from the enormous amount of texts that has survived, was very important in the Greek and Roman world; it never, however, supplanted the oral communication lying behind it. It never could, in a way, because only a very small percentage of the population could actually read and write.

This seminar explores the roles of written and oral communication in the social and historical context of the ancient world. Themes to be discussed include the functions and uses of writing and the spoken word, oral poetry, the power of the written word, the documentary habit, and the role of education. These themes will be illustrated with texts in translation.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 4

CLCIV 121. First-year Seminar in Classical Civilization (Composition).

Section 001 The Culture of Contemporary Greece: Between Antiquity and Modernity.

Instructor(s): Artemis S Leontis (aleontis@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Only first-year students, including those with sophomore standing, may pre-register for First-Year Seminars. All others need permission of instructor. (4). (Introductory Composition).

First-Year Seminar, Foriegn Lit

Credits: (4).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

Famed for its antiquity as well as vibrant in modernity, Greece provides countless examples of a society at work to preserve but also adapt itself to changing times. With Greece as a focal point, we will study how contemporary societies with a rich past reshape their present. Our sources are literature, art, music, film, art, food, dance, popular culture, and everyday life. Through discussion and writing, we will explore whether antiquity and modernity are opposite poles or complementary ideas that change in relation to one another. Students will be evaluated on class participation and writing, which includes a number of short, one-page responses to readings, several short papers, and a culminating final paper of reflection, analysis, and basic historical research.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 4

CLCIV 365/Class. Arch. 365. Alexander the Great: The Making of a Legend.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): John Cauclner Cherry (jcherry@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: (3). (HU).

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

Alexander's world-conquering exploits and early death in 323 B.C. made him a legend not only in his own time, but for posterity. This course employs historical, literary, archaeological, artistic, and other forms of evidence to focus critically on the 'reality' and 'image' of Alexander in antiquity. Its scope, however, extends far beyond Alexander's own world, to examine his legacy and how knowledge about him has been transmitted and distorted, used and abused: what the Romans made of him, the Medieval Alexander tradition, even his relevance in contemporary politics. There are illustrated lectures, supplemented where possible by the occasional use of film and museum resources. Students will read about Alexander in selections from two ancient lives, a medieval romance-legend, modern scholarly study, and a novel about Alexander. A midterm, final, and short paper are expected.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 2 Waitlist Code: 4

CLCIV 454. The Roman Army.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): John F Shean (jfshean@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Upperclass standing. (3). (HU).

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: http://www-personal.umich.edu/~jfshean/454.htm

More so than any other nation in history, the Romans were a people created by war. For their entire history the Romans were in a constant state of conflict with both foreign enemies and each other. War was the primary occupation of the state, its magistrates and its political and religious institutions. The martial virtues molded the basic moral outlook and motivation of the individual citizen and permeated every aspect of public and private life. An appreciation of the nature of the Roman army and its impact on the society which produced it is fundamental to any study of Roman history. This course will provide an introduction to the Roman army itself and its wars; its weapons, organization, tactics, installations, as well as discussion of the individual's role in the military, such as recruitment, terms of service, and retirement. In addition, there will be consideration of the wider social, political, and economic significance of the army and warfare in the Roman world. Here we will see how the army as an institution came to mold the society it was supposed to serve. We will discuss situations in which the military served as an instrument for social change and as a mechanism for the assimilation and inculcation of romanitas. We will also consider how the needs of war and the maintenance of a permanent standing army during the imperial period led to growth and expansion of the state, a development which anticipated and paralleled the appearance of the modern nation state in seventeenth century Europe.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 4

CLCIV 460/WS 460. Theorizing Women in Antiquity.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Sara L Rappe (rappe@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Junior standing. (3). (HU).

Foriegn Lit

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: http://www-personal.umich.edu/~rappe/

  1. To familiarize students with the broad spectrum of ancient theories concerning the meaning of gender, sex, and sexuality. By the end of the course, students will have studied philosophical, medical, religious, and literary discourses originating in the ancient Greek world, all of which present theories about the social, moral, and even metaphysical potential of women.
  2. To familiarize students with modern responses to central philosophical constructs that originated in the ancient Greek world. By the end of the course, students will have read contemporary theorists including Irigaray, Foucault, Lacan, and Butler. The course will be topical (art, drama, philosophy); historical (Classical, Hellenistic, Late antique) and theoretical.
Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 3 Waitlist Code: 4

CLCIV 462. Greek Mythology.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Derek B Collins (dbcollin@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: (4). (HU).

Foriegn Lit

Credits: (4).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

The aim of this course is to introduce students to the principal Greek myths as they developed in Greek and Roman literature. We shall also move beyond narrative to consider the ways in which classical myths have been interpreted by both ancient and modern commentators. We will discuss the many contexts in which Greeks and Romans retold their myths, including song, dramatic performance, written literature, and plastic arts such as sculpture and painting. Required reading will include Hesiod's Theogony and Works and Days, Homer's Odyssey, the Homeric Hymns, selected tragedies from Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides, and Ovid's Metamorphoses. Course requirements include two hour tests and a final exam.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 4

CLCIV 472. Roman Law.

Section 001 Meets with Latin 642.001

Instructor(s): Bruce W Frier (bwfrier@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Not open to first-year students. (3). (HU).

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No Homepage Submitted.

This course acquaints students with the fundamental concepts of Roman private law, with their origin in the society and government of the High Roman Empire, and with their all-important influence in the development of Western European legal theory and institutions. The course aims primarily to meet the interests of undergraduates with a bent toward law as a profession, but it is open to all students (except freshmen). We will use a direct application of the American case-law method to the teaching of Roman law. Our basic text will be a series of actual problems from the Roman jurists, which we will discuss in class; only as the occasion demands will the instructor "fill in the gaps" with short lectures on other relevant legal material. Thus, students should develop a feel for legal analysis and for the contribution made through such analysis by the Roman jurists; at the same time, students will learn Roman law in a form that will be directly relevant to future legal studies. Besides the handouts, one general introduction to Roman law (ca. 250 pages) will be required reading. There will be one hour test on material covered in class, in addition to the final examination; one paper (10 pages) will allow the student to analyze in detail a particular legal problem.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 2 Waitlist Code: No Data Given.

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