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    Oberlin College
   
 
  Dec 15, 2017
 
 
    
Course Catalog 2010-2011 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Classics


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Kirk W. Ormand, Associate Professor of Classics, Chair
Benjamin T. Lee, Assistant Professor of Classics
Jennifer Thomas, Visiting Assistant Professor and Mellon Post-doctoral fellow
Chris Trinacty, Visiting Assistant Professor
Thomas Van Nortwick, Nathan A. Greenberg Professor of Classics
Andrew Wilburn, Assistant Professor of Classics

 

 

 Introduction.

Due to the early and central position of Greek and Roman civilization in the development of the western tradition, acquaintance with classical thought and culture is an important part of a liberal arts education.

The department offers courses in Classical Civilization covering aspects of literary creation, historical and social process, and the Greek and Roman contribution to areas such as philosophy, religion, and government. No knowledge of Greek or Latin is required. These courses provide a broad background for all areas of literary and humanistic study.

The department offers courses in Greek and Latin language and literature for students who wish to develop a deeper understanding of the works and the capacity for making independent judgments about them. Acquisition of the languages is a prerequisite for advanced work. Elementary courses in the languages are designed to enable students to approach significant material as soon as possible.

 

Advanced Placement.

Students who have been enrolled in this program in high school will be assigned advanced placement in accordance with the results of the qualifying examinations. A score of 4 or 5 in the examination is required for the award of college credit.

  

Entry-Level Course Sequence Suggestions.

Students just beginning to approach the classics should begin with Classics 101 (Homer’s Iliad and the Myths of Tragedy), or Classics 102 (Homer’s Odyssey and the Myths of Comedy), or with Latin 101 or Greek 101. Students are encouraged to enroll in any language course for which they are qualified. All entering students who have studied Latin or Greek previously should consult with a member of the department before enrolling in any course in Latin or Greek.

Students with four years of secondary-school Latin (including Vergil) will ordinarily be eligible for Latin 202 (Cicero) offered in the second semester. Such students especially should consider beginning the study of Greek in the fall semester. Students with two or three years of secondary-school Latin will ordinarily be eligible for Latin 201 (Vergil).

Students whose preparation in Latin is deficient will be advised to enroll in or audit Latin 101, or to devote a Winter Term to review in order that they may enroll in Latin 102.

It should be noted that well-motivated students have done the equivalent of Greek 101 or of Latin 101 during a Winter Term and have then participated successfully in Greek 102 or Latin 102 in the spring.

Students considering a major in Greek or Latin should include in their freshman and sophomore programs four semesters of work in the language, Classics 101 or Classics 102, and either Classics 103 (History of Greece) or 104 (History of Rome). Students who plan to major in Classical Civilization should take Classics 101 or 102 in the fall, and Classics 103 or 104 in the spring, and two semesters of either Greek or Latin. Early consultation with the Classics Department concerning proposed plans of study is advisable, particularly for those who contemplate spending part of the junior or senior year in Rome or in Athens.

Major


A major in classics can serve as the central focus of a widely ranging undergraduate curriculum since it includes many areas of human activity and creativity, and it has so served for students who have gone on to careers in medicine, law, writing, etc.

Classics as a major or as a component part of an interdisciplinary or double major is preprofessional training for those who intend to engage in research and teaching at the university or college level in such fields as classics, classical archeology, comparative literature, religion, linguistics, medieval studies, philosophy, and many others. An undergraduate major in classics in whole or in part is also preparation for those who intend to teach languages, literatures, or humanities in junior colleges or secondary schools. Interested students are advised to consult with the chairperson in devising a major or partial major program which will meet with their needs and desires. Great flexibility is possible.

The Department of Classics offers three majors: Classical Civilization, Latin Language and Literature, and Greek Language and Literature.

  1. The major in Classical Civilization includes Classical Civilization 101or 102, 103, 104, at least two courses in Greek or Latin, and 18 hours in Classics or “Related Courses.” Among these must be at least one course in ancient Art and/or Archaeology, and at least one course on a relevant topic offered by another department (typically Art, English, History, Philosophy or Religion; courses from other departments may be substituted with the approval of the Chair.  See below for list of approved related courses.)

    Students with a preprofessional interest should select one of the majors below. Work in the other language and literature is strongly recommended. Attention is called to the possibility of a minor in the other language and literature (see below).

  2. The major in Latin Language and Literature includes 12 hours in Latin above Latin 102, plus Classical Civilization 101or 102, 104, and nine hours in Classics or “Related Courses.”  Among these must be at least one course in ancient Art and/or Archaeology, and at least one course on a relevant topic offered by another department (typically Art, English, History, Philosophy or Religion; courses from other departments may be substituted with the approval of the Chair.  See below for list of approved related courses.) 
  3. The major in Greek Language and Literature includes 12 hours in Greek above Greek 102, plus Classical Civilization 101or 102, 103, and nine hours in Classics or “Related Courses.”  Among these must be at least one course in ancient Art and/or Archaeology, and at least one course on a relevant topic offered by another department (typically Art, English, History, Philosophy or Religion; courses from other departments may be substituted with the approval of the Chair.  See below for list of approved related courses.)

With the permission of the major advisor, additional work in Greek or Latin or appropriate courses from other departments in the College may be substituted for some of the above.

Courses in which a student has earned a letter grade lower than a C-/CR or P cannot be used to fulfill the requirements of the major.

Minor


Students may receive a minor in Greek or Latin upon completion of approved programs of study. Such programs will consist of at least 15 hours of courses in Classical Civilization, Greek Language and Literature, Latin Language and Literature, ancient philosophy, and classical art and archeology, and will ordinarily include Greek 202 or the equivalent for the minor in Greek and Latin 202 or the equivalent for the minor in Latin. Interested students are advised to consult the chair.

Honors


To be eligible for admission to the Honors Program, a student must have completed by the end of the junior year:

  1. Two 300-level courses in either Greek or Latin and at least the 102-level course in the other classical language; or one 300-level course in Greek and one 300-level course in Latin; and
  2. Classical Civilization 103 (Greek History) or 104 (Roman History); and
  3. Classical Civilization 101 or 102, plus two more courses in Classical Civilization.

The department may invite qualified students to apply at the end of their junior year, but would also welcome applications from interested majors. Admission is based on overall academic distinction and outstanding work within the department.

To be awarded Honors, a student must:

  1. Complete a major in Latin or Greek;
  2. Complete satisfactorily in the first semester of the senior year, a reading list devised in consultation with a member of the department and approved by the department which includes primary (ancient) and secondary (critical, historical) readings;
  3. Pass (at the level of B+ or better) at the end of the first semester a written translation examination on the primary sources in Greek or Latin;
  4. Complete satisfactorily a research project designed in consultation with members of the department;
  5. Pass an oral examination on the reading list and research project. (This examination may be conducted by an outside examiner, who would also pass judgment on the Honors project.)

Students participating in the Honors Program should register for Greek or Latin 501 and 502 for three units of credit each semester.

Related Courses


The Classics Department normally awards major credit for selected courses with material related to Classical antiquity in the following departments and programs: Archaeology, Art, English, History, Philosophy, Politics, and Religion. Below is a list of courses that are considered approved.  Other courses may be approved through consultation with the Chair.

Anthropology

Anth 103 Introduction to Archaeology

Archaeological Studies

Achs 200 Archeological Field Course
Achs 250 Advanced Archeological Field Course 

Art

Arts 311 Egyptian Art and Architectures
Arts 324 Story of Mediterranean Archeology
Arts 326 Technology of Greek and Roman Architecture
Arts 365 Greek and Roman Painting
Arts 465 Greek and Roman Sculpture

Comparative Literature

Cmpl 200 Introduction to Comparative Literature

English

Engl 293 Medieval and Renaissance Lyric
Engl 301 Chaucer
Engl 310 Early Medieval Literature: from Epic to Romance

History

Hist 101 Medieval and Early Modern European History
Hist 204 Medieval Intellectual History
Hist 303 Historical Consciousness in Medieval and Early Modern Europe 

Religion

Relg 217 Christian Thought and Action: Early and Medieval

Art/Archaeology Requirement


All majors are required to take at least one course in ancient Art or Archaeology. These may be courses at Oberlin or offered by various programs abroad. The following courses fulfill this requirment; others may be substituted with the approval of the Chair.

Anthropology
Anth 103 Introduction to Archaeology
 
Archaeological Studies
ACHS 200 Archeological Field Course
ACHS 250 Advanced Archeological Field Course
 
Art
Arts 311 Egyptian Art and Architectures
Arts 324 Story of Mediterranean Archeology
Arts 326 Technology of Greek and Roman Architecture
Arts 365 Greek and Roman Painting
Arts 465 Greek and Roman Sculpture
 
 

Archeology


Students interested in classical archeology as a profession should note the availability of a concentration in Classical Archeology in the Archeological Studies program. This concentration requires both the relevant courses in classical art and archeology and basic training in the classical languages and literatures. For further information, see the separate listing under Archeological Studies above, or consult Ms. Kane in the Art Department.

Study Abroad


Oberlin College is a participating member of the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome. A semester of study in Rome during the junior or senior year is available for qualified students majoring in the department, either at the Intercollegiate Center or other accredited Classics programs in Italy. There are also programs in Athens. Consult the chair for details.

Transfer of Credit


No more than half the hours credited toward the major may be granted for work at other recognized institutions.

Winter Term


The following faculty are particularly interested in sponsoring Winter Term projects as indicated. Mr. Ormand: intensive beginning Greek, Mr. Van Nortwick; intensive beginning Latin; many other topics are also possible. 

The Martin Classical Lectures


The Martin Classical Lectures are delivered annually at Oberlin College by an eminent visiting scholar. Thirty-eight volumes in this distinguished series have appeared.

Classical Civilization


Greek


Latin


First Year Seminar Program Courses


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