Although written down in the 6th century B.C., the Homeric epics offer a literary narrative that captures echoes of a Bronze Age world in transition, an era of globalization reshaped by collapse, migration, and war. Empires fell and pirates plundered. This course recontextualizes the original Greek texts of the "Iliad" and the "Odyssey" in this space.
Reading sections of the "Iliad" and the "Odyssey" in the original Greek, this course introduces students to the literary and linguistic structures of Homer and contemporary Mediterranean texts. We will examine Homeric language and scholarly approaches to structure, narrative, and cultural concepts (kinship, blood sacrifice, piracy, honor) in the context of Bronze Age Indo-European texts, from Hittite historical annals and poems, to Mycenaean Linear B tablets (the earliest-known form of Greek), as well as inscriptions from Archaic-period Greece.
This course will fall under the Poetry & Performance and History/Social Justice tracks.