Emily Fairey

Undergraduate Courses 2017-2018

Greek (Ancient)

Beginning Greek

Open , Seminar—Year

This course provides an intensive introduction to ancient Greek grammar, syntax, and vocabulary, with the aim of reading authentic excerpts of ancient Greek poetry and prose as soon as possible. We will also examine the etymological relationship of Greek to English and discuss the development of Greek culture during the Classical era. There will be several short quizzes and two longer translation exercises. Students will also choose a special author or topic for a conference project. During the spring semester, while continuing to refine their grammar and reading skills, students will read extended selections of Plato’s Apology in the original Greek.

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Advanced Latin

Advanced , Seminar—Year

This course will explore the literature, history, and politics of the Late Roman Republic, with particular emphasis on the tumultuous years from the death of Sulla (78 BCE) to the death of Caesar (44 BCE). Closely examining works of Catullus, Lucretius, Cicero, Caesar, and Sallust, we will consider how the violent struggle for political power resulted in the demise of republican government and the centralization of authority in the hands of one individual. Class discussions and writing assignments will assess the relationship between intellectual views and political action during this critical moment in Western history. Students will attend seminar meetings and, in addition, develop and refine their reading comprehension skills by reading selections of the seminar texts in Latin for their conference work. Reading assignments will be read in their entirety in English. Additional conference hours and grammar review will be included, as necessary. Conference projects can also include science and linguistics. With the permission of the instructor, qualified students will participate in the Intermediate Latin seminar and complete additional readings in Latin for class and conference work.

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Intermediate Latin

Intermediate , Seminar—Year

This course will offer students who have established a foundation of Latin skills a chance to read poetic and prose works from a pair of famed authors of the Late Roman Republic: the poems of Catullus and Cicero's Pro Caelio. Poet and politician reveal very different attitudes about some of the same controversial figures in Roman life during this period. Catullus is famed for immortalizing his mistress, "Lesbia," in the groundbreaking genre of Roman neoteric poetry. This woman is traditionally identified as the notorious Clodia whom Cicero, in his exemplary legal oration, the Pro Caelio, blames for attacking his client. Through the study of these two authors, the conventions of Roman rhetoric and poetry will be introduced. To establish context, the class will explore the literature and history of the Late Roman Republic with particular emphasis on the tumultuous years from the death of Sulla (78 BCE) to the death of Caesar (44 BCE). Excerpts of other authors will be examined, including Lucretius, Caesar, and Sallust. There will be two formal translation exercises per semester, and students will develop a special topic in conference for a paper or presentation. Additional conference hours and grammar review will be included, as necessary.

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Ancient Roman Comedy

Open , Seminar—Spring

What a culture finds funny can reveal its hidden tensions and preoccupations. With the downfall of its civic freedoms, comedy in Greece shifted its focus away from the scathing and volatile material of the 5th century BCE to the milder New Comedy, where ridiculously complex situations and typological characters become the preferred new laughs. The conventions established during this period had an enduring impact on the literary heirs of the Greeks, the Romans, and blossomed in their theatre, as well as reaching into literatures as diverse as their lyric poetry, satire, oratory and even the early novel. The echoes of Greek and Roman Comedy extended to authors as late as the Renaissance, and even live on in modern drama.

We will begin the study of Roman Comedy with an examination of Greek New Comedy and its sole representative, Menander, then moving into its adaptation by Roman dramatists Plautus and Terence. The historical context of Roman and its differences from Greece will be established, with analysis of the changes this brings about in character, scene and setting. We will view the Roman theatre with all of its conventions and accoutrements through the lens of Roman art and architecture. The rising prominence of slaves in Comedy, both as characters and actors, will be an important issue with significance for our understanding of Roman ideology. Female characters, from courtesans and witches to stepmothers and ingenues, become well established theatrical figures, and then take root in genres such as love poetry in the works of Catullus, Ovid, and Horace, and even the legal rhetoric of Cicero. The Roman theatrical types of Comedy develop into the early stages of the novel in works such as Petronius’ Satyricon and Apuleius’ Golden Ass, and take on a new life in the fantastic micro-dialogues such as Lucian’s Philosophers for Sale. Finally, we will end with a look at Shakespearian adaptations of ancient Comedy, as well as some modern implementations of ancient theatre.

Requirements: In this course, as well as reading and sometimes informally enacting ancient Comedies, we will study the impact of theatrical comedy on other genres, such as visual art, music, and related literature. Our primary focus will be on reading and discussion, as well as responding in writing about the works we read. Although most readings will be ancient sources, we will also include some modern secondary scholarship. Most weeks, students will write one-page written responses to questions about the texts. There will also be one major paper or interpretive artistic project, which will be developed over the semester in individual conferences.

Conferences: Conference time will be 30 minutes every 2 weeks, so students will be on an A or B week schedule. Spring conferences will be devoted to choosing and developing research topic for paper/presentation, as well as going over any difficulties with class materials.

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